Enchilada zucchini boats stuffed with lentils, corn, and spinach and topped with melty lactose-free cheese. Serve them with your favorite hot sauce and a side of chips and salsa for a guilt-free fiesta!
I created this recipe for my client, GO VEGGIE! As always, thank you for supporting the brands that keep me inspired in the kitchen.
I’m always looking for ways to lighten up my favorite Mexican food recipes, and I think I hit the jackpot with these enchilada stuffed zucchini boats. They’re filled with traditional flavors, but swapping the tortillas in favor of zucchini cuts the calories and adds plenty of filling fiber.
Instead of using chicken or beef, I filled these zucchini boats with protein-packed lentils cooked with red onion, corn, spinach, and enchilada sauce (you can use your favorite store-bought sauce or make your own homemade enchilada sauce!) Then I baked them under a blanket of melty GO VEGGIE! lactose free mozzarella shreds, which has 65% more calcium than ordinary cheese and no cholesterol.
(If you have leftover filling, it makes also makes a great topping for vegetarian nachos. Just spoon it on top of baked tortilla chips, top with GO VEGGIE mozzarella or cheddar, and bake until the cheese melts.)
Tips for making stuffed zucchini boats
- You can use any small spoon to hollow out the zucchini but if you have one, a grapefruit spoon or small melon baller is practically made for the job! Both will give you more control, so you won’t accidentally dig straight through the bottom of your boat.
- Some zucchini boat recipes call for boiling the zucchini before stuffing them, but I find that it isn’t necessary and just creates another dirty pot. 30-40 minutes in the oven will ensure that they’re fully cooked.
- Be sure to save a little enchilada sauce for the bottom of your pan – it will keep the zucchini from sticking.
- Rather than waiting until the very end to add the cheese, add tons of GO VEGGIE! mozzarella before baking the zucchini boats, then cover the pan with foil to a create a steamy environment that will help the cheese get melty and gooey without drying out.
Enchilada Stuffed Zucchini Boats (Vegetarian)
- 3 medium zucchini
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 red onion, diced
- 1 cup cooked lentils
- 1/2 frozen corn
- 2 cups baby spinach, chopped
- 1 1/2 cup enchilada sauce (store bought or homemade)
- 1 1/2 cups GO VEGGIE! mozzarella shreds
- fresh cilantro, for garnish
Heat your oven to 375ºF.
Slice the zucchini in half lengthwise. Use a small spoon to scoop out the center of each zucchini half, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Roughly chop the zucchini that you scooped form the middle. Save all but 1 cup of zucchini for another use (like chocolate zucchini muffins or even a smoothie).
Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cool until soft, 3-5 minutes. Add the lentils, corn, spinach, and 1 cup enchilada sauce. Simmer 5 minutes, or until slightly reduced.
Pour the remaining 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce into the bottom of a 9x11 baking dish. Arrange the zucchini halves cut-side up in the dish and fill with the lentil mixture. Sprinkle with mozzarella.
Cover the baking dish tightly with foil. Bake 30-40 minutes, or until the zucchini is tender and the cheese is melted. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with cilantro.