It’s no secret that I am a huge fan of zucchini. Super healthy and incredibly budget friendly, this mild tasting squash is so versatile and fun to worth with. If you browse through my recipe box you’ll see I’ve included zucchini in everything from Zucchini Bacon Pancakes to Garlic Zucchini Pepperoni Biscuits to Zucchini Pizza Bites. And so, in honor of my slight obsession with this vegetable, I’ve added one more zucchini recipe to add to your collection….or my collection…. or is it our collection? Hmmmm, moving on then…..
When I first decided to try out this idea of a “zucchini boat” I honestly thought that it was going to be a lot harder than it was. I was able to throw this together on a Thursday afternoon, after picking my daughter up from school but before homework time. I kinda feel like I deserve a gold star for that;) This recipe is just the bombdiggety (oh yes, I did indeed just type that…. There is a definite possibility that I am turning into a super lame, super mom….. Ok fine, probably just a lame and corny mom but adding two supers makes me feel cool. But back to this the bombdiggety dinner) This dish is a cinch to throw together for a variety of reasons. I used chicken breast but really any leftover chicken will work. (This is the perfect dish for that leftover rotisserie chicken from earlier in the week) I also prefer to make my own marinara sauce using crushed tomatoes and favorite combination of spices but if you have a favorite jarred pasta sauce or even have some homemade stuff frozen (you’re like my superhero btw) you can totally substitute with that. I kept the parmesan on the lighter side to curb the calories and with parmesan, a little goes a long way. If you have some serious cheese lovers in your house, you could always add more or even a bit of mozzarella. The chicken marinara sauce makes about 3 1/2 cups so you can expect to have about 1 cup left over. I took the leftovers and served it over pasta for the kids but I’ve included the nutritional information for a variety of servings with and without that extra cup. Chicken parmesan meets zucchini in a whole new way. I hope you enjoy!
Chicken Parmesan Zucchini Boats
- 2 cups canned crushed tomatoes * or favorite jarred marinara sauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely ground garlic salt
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried ground basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried ground oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pinches dried crushed rosemary
- 6 ounces (appx 1 1/2 cups) cooked chicken breast (chopped small)
- 4 medium zucchinis
- 1/2 cup whole wheat panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup shredded parmesan
Preheat oven to 350
In a small saucepan, combine crushed tomatoes and spices and bring to a slow simmer.
Add in chopped (cooked) chicken.
As the sauce simmers on low you can prepare the zucchinis. Chop the ends off of each zucchini and then slice in half lengthwise.
Using a spoon (I used a grapefruit spoon with a serrated edge) scoop out the seeds and core leaving just the hollowed out shell.
Stir the zucchini seeds and core into the chicken marinara sauce.
Place zucchini shells or boats as unlike to call them, in a greased baking dish.
Fill each zucchini boat with chicken marinara sauce. The amount will vary depending on the size of the zucchini but mine required 3-4 tablespoons each.
In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs and parmesan.
Divide evenly among zucchini boats.
Bake covered for 35 minutes and then bake another 5 minutes uncovered or until zucchini is soft. When I made this in a dark baking dish, my boats were ready closer to the 30 minute mark while the ones in the white ceramic dish needed until the 40 minute mark. Just something to consider when choosing your dish.
I served this on its own but I think it pairs well with a salad as well.
Zucchini boats with the extra 1 cup chicken marinara sauce
Nutrition Facts Servings 8 Amount Per Serving Calories 110 Total Fat 2g Saturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 21mg Sodium 415mg Potassium 496mg Total Carbohydrate 12g Dietary Fiber 3g Sugars 4g Protein 11g
Zucchini boat without the extra 1 cup chicken marinara sauce
Nutrition Facts Servings 8 Amount Per Serving Calories 94 Total Fat 2g Saturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 16mg Sodium 319mg Potassium 428mg Total Carbohydrate 11g Dietary Fiber 3g Sugars 3g Protein 8g
Information for 1/2 cup serving chicken marinara sauce
Nutrition Facts Servings 7 Amount Per Serving Calories 64 Total Fat 1g Saturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 21mg Sodium 384mg Potassium 274mg Total Carbohydrate 5g Dietary Fiber 1g Sugars 2g Protein 9g