And the grand prize for easiest, most flavorful and nutritious dinner goes to….drum roll….
Lasagna Zucchini Boats!!!
Winner, winner chicken dinner!…
I mean beef dinner.
I mean you could totally make this vegan with a little mushroom mix, right? But why?
I totally tried to be a vegan once or twice in my life. At one point I was actually a raw vegan…did it for about 8 months. Had to suffer through 2 weddings (with my bag of peaches and bananas in the back)...life saver. As wonderful as I did feel, I just couldn’t put up with lugging my food around every where I went. I was hungry just about every hour.
A fun fact about me…
I have eaten a whole watermelon in one sitting.
I have eaten 20 peaches in one sitting.
I have eaten 12 bananas in one sitting.
I have eaten 40 cherry tomatoes in one sitting.
Need I go on?
And yes, I was still hungry an hour later. I guess I was training for a marathon at that point of my life as well (which is no longer on my TO DO list…more about that story on another day)… that makes for one hungry girl.
And another thing…this girl was missing meat.
I don’t mind doing meatless monday or something of the sort…but to completely give it up again? No thank you.
The greatest part of this meal was it’s versatility. I followed my dietary needs for mine and went a little fancy for the rest of my family. In place of the greek yogurt I used feta (or would have used ricotta had I had it). I also used “real” cheese on theirs. And they loved ’em!
And they loved me for making them feel special!!
There are a ton of Zucchini Boat recipes! My goal was to use good quality ingredients that I had on hand. Had I had some ground turkey, or just bacon, my recipe would look a lot different.
So, in other words, feel free to explore with this recipe. Use the idea of the zucchini boat and go from there.
With more time, I’m sure the sauce could have been fancier. But who has time for that?
Didn’t your Mama tell you “Keep It Simple Stupid!” Or is that just a bumper sticker I’ve read before? Either way, OK.
- 4-6 zucchinis/squash
- several handfuls of vegan/soy free shredded cheese
- several tablespoons of greek yogurt
- 1 lb. pastured raised ground beef
- 1 diced onion
- 1 T dried basil
- 24 oz. jar of your favorite organic marinara
- s & p
- a few tablespoons of olive oil/coconut oil/avo oil
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Slice the zucchini and/or squash in half (lengthwise) and carve out the guts (seedy, stringy stuff).
- Coat them in olive oil (coconut oil, avo oil - whatever makes you happy). I used my silpat and a sheet pan. Feel free to use a baking dish.
- Bake 20-30 minutes or until fork tender.
- In the meantime, lets prepare the yummy meaty sauce. Put a little bit of your favorite cooking oil in a medium sized pan over medium high heat. Saute the onions until tender.
- Add in the ground beef with a little salt and pepper. Crumble as you brown.
- If needed, strain before adding the marinara to the browned ground beef.
- Add the basil after adding the marinara. Give it a good stir.
- The veggies should be tender by now. Remove them from the oven.
- Turn the oven up to 500F.
- Take several tablespoons of greek yogurt and mix in enough salt for your liking (about the saltiness of cream cheese). Spread this mix on the top sides of the veggies.
- Now do a layer of the meaty sauce.
- Finally, top with a handful of vegan cheese.
- Put back in the 500F oven and broil for 5-10 minutes (brown the cheese to your liking).
Don’t forget about the buns!
Plantain Buns that is…these guys make a great addition to this dish 🙂 I was so glad I had some in the freezer to heat up!!