Stuffed Zucchini with rice is a great way to make a flavorful dish. Made with zucchini halves stuffed full of rice, feta, tomatoes, & basil. You'll love the flavor of this simple dish.
The first time that I made this zucchini recipe, I was shocked at how easy it was. I knew that the flavors of the white rice and zucchini shells would be good, but I didn't know how good. Adding fresh herbs and feta cheese really enhances the flavor, making this a great option for a meal or a hearty side dish.
The rice mixture on the inside of the zucchini adds a heartiness that can't be topped. It's a great recipe for a quick weeknight meal or a fun one to share with family and friends. You'll appreciate the flavor and taste of this vegetarian stuffed zucchini recipe.
Speaking of good recipes, be sure to check out my Blackstone Fried Rice for a great side dish or tasty vegetarian main dish.
All you need to make this simple recipe is listed below. Be sure to scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for full measurements and details.
Zucchini - Clean the outside well with water. And use a grapefruit knife, spoon, or melon baller to scrape out the zucchini pulp.
Olive oil - To help cook faster on the grill. Avocado oil or coconut oil could be used as well.
Salt and black pepper - To taste.
White rice - For the filling. This needs to be cooked prior to adding.
Tomatoes - You can quarter cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes or chop larger varieties.
Feta cheese - Crumbed for flavor.
Fresh basil - To taste.
How to make Stuffed Zucchini with Rice
These vegetarian zucchini boats are easy to make and do make a great side dish or meatless main course.
Step One: Preheat the grill.
Step Two: Cut and halve the zucchini, and then scoop out some of the middles. Drizzle the zucchini with olive oil and then season with salt and pepper.
Step Three: Turn the heat on the grill to low and then add the zucchini, open side down.
Step Four: Mix the feta, basil, rice, remaining oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl.
Step Five: Cook the zucchini on low for 8 minutes, then flip and add the rice filling.
Step Six: Cook for another 5 minutes.
Add ground beef - If you want to add meat to the middle of the large zucchini, you can. Just cook the meat first on medium heat, and then add to the zucchini half. You can also use Italian sausage, ground chicken, ground turkey, and even some crunchy bacon for these edible vessels.
Use cauliflower rice - Keep it low in carbs by using cauliflower rice instead of white rice. You can also use wild rice or brown rice instead of white rice.
Add sauces and herbs - For a fun flavor, add a little bit of tomato sauce. In terms of seasonings, add Italian seasoning, garlic powder, or even some cayenne pepper to this particular recipe.
Add more cheese - You can replace the feta cheese or add more cheese. Up to you. Mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese are two great flavors to add to this main dish. Grated cheese is a great topping as well.
Baked - If you don't want to grill the zucchini you can bake it on a baking sheet or in a baking dish drizzled with a little oil. I like to add the rice towards the end so it doesn't dry out.
Vegan - For a vegan option simply omit the feta cheese. And serve with this vegan caesar salad for a great meal.
What do I serve with zucchini boats?
You can serve this with a simple green salad or pair other delicious recipes with it. Having a side of cooked black beans is a great way to up the protein and add more flavor.
How do I make a hollowed-out zucchini?
The easiest way to scoop the middle out of the zucchini is to use a melon ball. You can use this on larger zucchini or medium zucchini and get the same great results.
Don't toss away the middle of the zucchini that you've removed, either. You can always find a way to use it in another recipe - like zucchini bread.
The more that you make this recipe, the more ideas on ways that you can use that scooped zucchini for other foods. It's fun to think outside the box when it comes to cooking.
What toppings can I add?
I like to think of this as a blank canvas for toppings. You can add a breadcrumb mixture to the top of this stuffing mixture, or keep it simple and add a little bit of cheese on top.
A tad bit of sour cream pairs well with the creamy rice, and a little bit of lemon zest on top of this simple recipe is always delicious as well. (Lemon juice works great, too.)
If you have picky eaters in the house, talk to them and see what toppings they want to add to this zucchini boat recipe. You can change it up each time to make this dish different as well.
- 3 medium zucchini
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt divided
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups white rice cooked
- ½ cup feta cheese crumbled
- ¼ cup fresh basil chopped
- Preheat the grill to high.
- Drizzle zucchini with 1 tablespoon of the oil and sprinkle with half the salt and pepper.
- Turn grill to low. Add zucchini, open side down.
- Combine the rice, feta, basil, and remaining oil, salt, and pepper.
- Cook for 8 minutes on low. Flip zucchini over and add filling.
- Cook for 5 additional minutes.