I have never met a squash I didn’t love but I am currently smitten with zucchini, particularly this healthy zucchini boat recipe.
There are all sorts of zucchini boat recipes online and they pretty much all call for scooping out the insides of the zucchini and then mixing with some sort of filling (often cheese or meat.) But I’ve found you can get the same results with less hassle by skipping the scooping part as long as you spend just a few moments pan-grilling the zucchini. And you don’t need to add cheese or meat either…
Healthy Zucchini Boat Recipe
Zucchini, the most popular of summer squash, is a high summer crop that keeps producing late into fall in warm regions. As long as your zucchini is super fresh, nature gives us permission to keep preparation simple. My zucchini boat recipe is as simple as it is healthy.
I’ve done without the cheese and meat but added a rich savory quality with healthy pine nuts and a burst of delicious cheesy flavor that comes not from cheese—but from nutritional yeast. Nutritional yeast is different than baking yeast because it is inactive, meaning that it does not feed on sugars in your body or promote candida albicans, which is a yeast-like fungus that lives in the digestive tract. For this reason, those who are advised to avoid yeast (most always this refers to “active” yeast) can almost always tolerate nutritional yeast. Nutritional yeast melts and has a mild cheddar cheese flavor that marries magically well with the pine nuts and other ingredients (oregano, sundried tomatoes and garlic.) Just be sure to look for non-processed and non-fortified nutritional yeast, such as Sari Foods brand.
When all is said and done this fun and festive “eye candy” recipe for zucchini boats helps make eating veggies a bit more exciting. And it is great for company.Print
Healthy Zucchini Boats
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 10 mins
- Total Time: 20 mins
- Zucchini Boats
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1/3 cup julienned sundried tomatoes
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon non-fortified nutritional yeast
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more for skillet
- 3 zucchini, halved lengthwise
- Unrefined Sea salt, to taste
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Place the pine nuts, sundried tomatoes, garlic cloves, nutritional yeast, oregano and 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a mini food processor; process until well blended and crumbly. Set mixture aside.
- Season the cut side of the zucchini with salt. Lightly coat a heavy oven-proof skillet with a very thin layer of extra virgin olive oil and heat the skillet over medium heat.
- Place the zucchini onto the hot skillet, cut side down. Use your finger tips to lightly press the zucchini into the skillet and cook for about 3 minutes. Turn the zucchini over and cook the other side for about 2 minutes, or until zucchini begins to soften and lightly caramelize. Remove the skillet from the heat.
- Turn the zucchini back over, cut side up, and divide the crumbly topping on top of each zucchini half. Transfer zucchini to the oven and bake for 4 minutes, or until just tender (be careful not to over bake.) Serve warm.