- 6 small-medium zucchini
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 finely diced onion (about 1/3 cup)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 pound ground beef (see notes for alternatives)
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp salt (or more to taste)
- ground pepper (to taste)
- 1 (15oz) can unseasoned tomato sauce
- 2 cups shredded cheese (I used Mozzarella and Parmesan; Gouda would work well, too)
- To prepare the zucchini:Wash zucchini, then slice in half lengthwise. Scoop out flesh and set aside (you'll need it for the filling later). Place zucchini halves on a sheet pan.
- Cook the beef:Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes until translucent, then add the beef and brown well. Stir in the tomato paste, oregano, salt and pepper.
- Finish the filling:Add tomato sauce to pan and stir well. Chop zucchini flesh and stir into the sauce. Cover with a lid and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for 5 more minutes.
- Stuff zucchini and bake:Heat oven to 360°F. Spoon filling in zucchini halves. Top evenly with cheese and bake around 20 minutes until bubbly.
- skip the onions and substitute onion powder to cut further carbs
- the sauce should be quite thick so it stays in the zucchini, if it’s watery (depends on the brand of tomato sauce) simmer it a little longer with the lid off
- you can substitute any ground meat – pork, beef, a mix or ground turkey for an extra-lean version
This is one healthy meal my family absolutely LOVES! The kids gobble it up, my husband could finish the entire batch by himself… And I really enjoy the zucchini, too. Also, making it is a cinch, so… Family dinner winner all around!