This is one of the easiest meals I make, and it’s also one of my favorites. It’s fast, requires minimal pot and pan usage, and is a total crowd-pleaser. There’s nothing fancy going on with these zook boats, but they still stand out among other quick and easy meals: They’ve got the whole hearty, flavorful meat mixture and brown bubbly cheese combo goin’ on, which gives them a distinctly cozy vibe, but without the prep or cooking time of a traditional wintery night meal.
These babies are also insanely versatile: you can easily add or amend ingredients and transform them based on whatever you’re craving. Feelin’ like something different on a Taco Tuesday? Throw some cumin and chili powder in with the meat mixture and get some guac goin’ on the side. Fancy something Indian-inspired? Instead of oregano and garlic powder, use some Garam Masala or curry powder, sub the turkey for chicken and you’ve got a totally different (yet just as easy) dish. The possibilities are endless, guys. Go nuts.
If you decide to stick with the ol’ standby recipe, here’s how I make my Turkey & Cheese–Stuffed Zucchini Boats:
Turkey & Cheese-Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- 4 Zucchini halved lengthwise, flesh scooped out
- 1 Lb ground turkey
- 1 Tsp salt, black pepper, garlic powder, dried oregano and chili flakes
- 1 yellow or brown onion chopped
- 3 fresh tomatoes chopped
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1-2 Tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Palmful fresh flatleaf parsley chopped
- 1/2 Cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 Cup shredded mozzerella cheese
- 1 Tbsp panko bread crumbs
- 1 Tbsp olive Oil
Preheat an oven to 400 degrees Farenheit. Meanwhile, in a large pan, saute the ground turkey with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, dried oregano and red chili flakes over medium heat until the meat begins to brown – break it up into small chunks with the back of a wooden spoon while it cooks.
Once the meat has begun to brown, add the chopped onion and saute for 2 minutes.
Next, add the chopped tomatoes and saute for another two minutes.
Add the tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce and stir to combine everything. Continue cooking while you prepare the zucchini by halving them lengthwise and scooping out the flesh. Add the flesh to the meat mixture and continue to cook, about five minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the topping by combining the cheese and breadcrumbs.
Assemble the boats: season the zucchini with some salt and pepper and drizzle them with olive oil. Add the meat mixture to the boats and top with the cheese and breadcrumb mixture.
Bake for 20 minutes, until the cheese is brown and melted. Serve immediately.