Guilt-Free Zucchini Pizza Boats

I have a quick low-carb, low-fat meal that you can make in a jiffy if you are craving pizza. It’s also a great way to sneak in some veggies if you live with a picky eater. It may even be kid-friendly, but I have not tested it on kids so I can’t say that with certainty.

I try to avoid pizza altogether because I have absolutely no portion control when it comes to pizza. A large pepperoni with mushrooms and olives can disappear in 20 minutes if placed in front of me. I could never consume an equal amount of pasta, burgers, burritos, or cakes, but you put a pizza near me and I just can’t stop! I LOVE pizza, and am happy I can now get my pizza fix guilt-free.

For this recipe, I used 1 pound of group beef added to store-bought Marinara sauce and served it over regular pasta for my husband. Since pasta is on the “No” list when it comes to Paleo eating, I had to change it up a bit for myself. Technically, cheese isn’t Paleo either, but I had to cheat a little bit. Don’t tell. :) If you do not have a pasta eater in the house, I would suggest making the same amount of sauce and serving the leftovers with spaghetti squash.

Guilt-Free Zucchini Pizza Boats
Makes 4 boats (with leftover sauce)

Try these the morning after you make them and enjoy cold "pizza" for breakfast!

Try these the morning after you make them
and enjoy cold “pizza” for breakfast!

Ingredients:

  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Your favorite brand of pasta sauce – I used about half of a 24 oz jar of Marinara
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Cut the zucchini in half and use a spoon to scoop out some of the flesh. You want to leave at least 1/4 inch thickness so that your zucchini boats hold up when you pick them up to eat them.
  2. In a pot, cook the onions and garlic for 3-4 minutes or until fragrant. Add the ground beef and brown. Add the pasta sauce and heat through.
  3. Fill the raw zucchini with meat sauce and bake in a 325˚ oven for 8 minutes.
    Note: Do not cook the zucchini beforehand. I did this the first time around and while it still tastes great, it can’t be eaten as a “boat.” Zucchini has a high water content so if you cook it too long it gets flimsy and will need to be eaten with a knife and fork.
  4. AFter 8 minutes, top with cheese and bake for an additional 3 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbling.
  5. I did not have any fresh basil on hand, but if you happen to have some lying around, garnish with fresh basil!

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