Zucchini Pizza Boats
Yield: 4 servings (recipe can be easily scaled up or down)
All the flavor of pizza, stuffed into a simple, satisfying, low-carb meal. Add your favorite toppings to taste!


  • 4 medium zucchinis (about 8 ounces each)
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt plus freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1½ cups spaghetti or pizza sauce*
  • 1 lightly rounded cup (about 5 ounces) shredded mozzarella or Italian cheese blend
  • Topping choices: ½ teaspoon dried Italian seasoning, ¼ – ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, pepperoni (minis or regular), cooked sausage, thinly sliced bell pepper, mushrooms, sliced black olives, slivered red onion – even anchovies!
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Optional garnish: torn fresh basil or other fresh herbs of choice


  1. Preheat the oven to 375℉, and lightly coat a rimmed baking sheet with oil or spray. Alternatively, you may line the sheet with foil or parchment for easy cleanup.
  2. Slice each zucchini lengthwise into two even halves. Using a small spoon or melon baller, scrape out the seedy center and a little bit of the flesh, leaving a border of about ⅓ to ½ inch on all sides. Arrange the zucchini shells on the baking sheet. Sprinkle the insides of the zucchini with salt and pepper. Tip: if the zucchini halves lean to one side, I wedge a little something (a veggie scrap, dried bean, nut, etc.) under the lower side. This will keep the surface level and prevent the melted cheese from sliding off later.
  3. Spoon the sauce into each shell, evenly filling the scooped-out area without overflowing it.
  4. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella or Italian blend cheese over the top, and then evenly distribute your toppings of choice. (I like to cut standard-size pepperoni slices in half or quarters for a little bit in each bite.) Finally, sprinkle with the Parmesan.
  5. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is hot and bubbly and the zucchini is tender. (I pierce the zucchini with the tip of a sharp knife to determine doneness; precise cooking time will depend on oven, size of zucchini, thickness of “walls” and desired degree of tenderness.) If desired, you may briefly broil, watching closely to avoid burning, to lightly brown the cheese. (Don’t broil, however, if your baking sheet is lined with parchment, as the paper may catch fire.) Remove from the oven and sprinkle with optional fresh basil or fresh herbs of choice and enjoy immediately.


*You may adjust the sauce and cheese amounts up or down according to size of zucchini. We love a meaty sauce like Doctored Up Spaghetti Sauce, although a traditional pizza sauce (store-bought or homemade) or meatless marinara sauce may also be used.

Storage: leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 4 days. Place in a 350℉ until the boats are warmed through, about 10-15 minutes. Freezing is not recommended.

Tip if using large zucchini: you may adjust this recipe to use any size zucchini, although large zucchinis tend to have a higher moisture content and may benefit from salting and then resting for 15-20 minutes. The zucchini will release some of its excess moisture and can then be drained and patted dry before proceeding.

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