Serves a Crowd

Italian Zucchini Boats

June 15, 2010
0 Ratings
  • Serves as many as you have prepared for
Author Notes

Monster zucchini, it happens every year; one day they are growing, looking fine, but if you do not pay attention, they will at some point resemble zucchini on steroids. This recipe was inspired by the monster zucchini growing in my garden.

One hot summer day, a perfect time to BBQ, I was wondering what to do with over sized zucchini and so using ingredients on hand I created what we call Italian Zucchini Boats - appropriately named after its shape. The grilled boats take on the flavors of a smoky lasagna and were served as a side dish. This recipe is in the local bi-annual PBS cookbook fundraiser and I recently had fun presenting it on the live broadcast.

Note: Stuffing ingredient amounts are not given because this recipe depends on the size of the zucchini and how many you plan to make. Eyeball it.

What You'll Need
  • INGREDIENTS – to your taste
  • Medium large to monster sized zucchini (cut 6-7 inch inches in length)
  • Ricotta Cheese - fresh would be wonderful
  • Bocconcini Mozzarella balls (or cube up a mozzarella ball if you can’t find bocconcini)
  • Marinara sauce - your favorite
  • Pecorino Romano cheese – microplane grated
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh Italian parsley and/or other seasonings of choice
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Note: when I use Pecorino in a recipe I skip the salt
  1. Prepare a grill with a cover, get the coals hot.
  2. Prepare the zucchini: cut off the stem and cut in half, and spoon seeds out of the middle, if needed, hollow out enough space for filling.
  4. Spoon in and spread marinara sauce. Spoon in and spread Ricotta cheese. Add mozzarella, drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil, and fresh ground pepper. Drizzle one more layer of marinara. Garnish with Pecorino, Italian parsley.
  5. TO COOK
  6. Outdoors: place on greased heavy duty foil; crease the edges up to hold all the zucchini boats in and cook, covered over indirect heat until the zucchini is heated and the filling starts to bubble and melt.
  7. NOTE: If the weather is nasty, cook indoors: place on a greased ovenproof dish and bake @ 375 degrees until the zucchini is heated and the filling starts to bubble and melt.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Bevi
  • Kayb
  • TheWimpyVegetarian
  • sshumans
  • Jennifer Ann
    Jennifer Ann

14 Reviews

Bevi May 7, 2013
The famous TV boats!! I can't wait to put these on the grill.
lapadia May 7, 2013
Zucchini boats from the "Harbor!" Make them yacht size :)
Kayb June 30, 2010
These are also really good to do with small shrimp and a cheesy sauce. Zucchini are just about the most versatile veggies out there! My sympathies on your shoulder...I broke my arm this spring and went through the same "no-cooking" period....sure was nice to heal!
lapadia July 1, 2010
Yum, love your idea and thanks for for your thought-re:my shoulder.
TheWimpyVegetarian June 30, 2010
Made these tonight and they got raves at the table! I used the little round zucchini balls so each person got 2 halves. I used oregano as the herb, since I had some in the garden wanting to be snipped. Just a wonderful presentation and delicious way to have zucchini! Thanks!
lapadia June 30, 2010
Hi, you're very welcome, I'm so happy everybody liked it! It’s a great Italian tasting recipe without all the extra calories. Btw – fractured my shoulder last night, I am in a sling, typing with my left finger…don’t think I will be doing much cooking during the month of July…dang.
TheWimpyVegetarian June 30, 2010
Oh no!!! I'm so sorry - that sounds really painful. I hope it heals quickly, for you and for us as we will miss your wonderful recipes!
sshumans June 28, 2010
I made this last week and it was delicious and easy! You should enter it into the summer squash contest on the site.
lapadia June 28, 2010
Thanks sshumans, glad you liked it! btw- I entered it.
Jennifer A. June 16, 2010
Sounds wonderful!
TheWimpyVegetarian June 15, 2010
What a fabulous idea!! I can't wait to try this.
AntoniaJames June 15, 2010
Mmm, nice! I'd probably put a pinch or two of fresh marjoram or oregano on these. So tasty looking. ;o)
lapadia June 15, 2010
Love marjoram, I usually have oregano in my sauce, but it would make a good picture to see some sprinkled as garnish!
AntoniaJames June 15, 2010
It would also taste great! But you'd want just a tiny bit, or it would overwhelm all the other great things you have going here. Love this one! ;o)