Beef, Dinner, Food, Recipes

Stuffed Zucchini!

John told me last night that this was one of the best meals I have made in a while so either my cooking has been really shabby lately or my stuffed zucchini was a step above our average dinner. We were given a few giant zucchinis from a friend and that was all the excuse I needed to stuff them, bake them, and watch my family devour them.  I used ground bison but you can use whatever ground meat you have on hand. I hope you enjoy!!

Stuffed Zucchini

3-4 large zucchinis

2 pounds ground bison or other ground meat

1 red onion, diced

1 eggplant, peeled and diced

8.5 oz sun dried tomatoes packed in olive oil, finely chopped

1 cup fresh basil, diced

2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely diced

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon dried oregano,

A splash of balsamic vinegar

Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 375. Cut a thin slice of the top of the zucchinis and scoop out the inside of the squash leaving the shell.  Drizzle the insides of the squash with olive oil and bake for 20 minutes.  While the squash shells are in the oven, start browning your ground meat, when the meat is almost brown, add the onions, eggplant, and diced excess zucchini, and cook until the eggplant is soft.  Add the remaining ingredients and cook for another 5-10 minutes.  Pull the shells out of the oven and stuff them all as full as possible with the meat mixture.  Put the stuffed zucchinis back into the oven and bake for another 30-40 minutes.


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Sarah Fragoso

Sarah Fragoso is an international best selling author of 6 books, co-owner of the Chico, CA based gym JS Strength and Conditioning, and founder of the Everyday Paleo franchise. Sarah is the co-host of the popular Sarah and Dr. Brooke Show podcast and she also conducts workshops and retreats on the subjects of nutrition, lifestyle and fitness.

Her message is from the heart and she carries a genuine desire to help other families looking for guidance. These attributes have contributed to her successes and provide the drive to keep the discoveries coming.

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  1. Margie says:

    We have been eating Paleo for a few months now. My John brought home a bag of bell peppers recently from Costco, and I mentioned stuffed bell peppers, so now he has made them twice. This last time he also cut up home grown egg plant and put that in too. We find they are great to take to work for lunch!! I see you on Facebook.

  2. I ♥ this idea! What a great summer dinner. This will def be making it into the rotation.

  3. Those look great. Do you think it really needs the eggplant or would it still be good without it? I don’t have any right now 🙂

    1. I was wondering that too – eggplant actually give me migraines.

      1. My husband gets migraines and has been to specialist after specialist. I recently read in a magazine that doctors are finding most people with migraines are lacking in magnesium.
        They recommend taking 400 milligrams a day to prevent migraines. My husband is going to give it a try. I have also read you need calcium to actually make the magnesium work.

        1. Such a good point, Kristy-
          I have had debilitating migraines since I was 8 (I’m now 27). I’ve taken every medicine there is. I ran into a guy recently who takes 400 mg of magnesium and said it changed his life- he hardly ever gets a migraine anymore (after having severe ones). I’ve begun taking it as well, and have definitely noticed a difference. I still get them occasionally when I’m really stressed/tense, but I can tell a difference in the frequency of them.
          I didn’t know about the calcium- I’ll have to add that in my routine.

          Sarah- LOVE your site. I head over here regularly to grab recipes!

          Thanks for sharing all your knowledge- it’s really appreciated!

    2. Sarah says:

      I think it would be fine without the eggplant! Also, you can chop up the inside of the zucchini and add that in as well.

  4. Jennifer in Newfoundland says:

    Hi Sarah – looks fantastic! I just wanted to say a big thank you for your cookbook Every Day Paleo! We got it in the mail this week and it’s been making the switch to paleo super easy 🙂 We went Primal last year for about four months, but I got sick and life got hectic and we just kinda slid back into our old eating patterns. I was also really reliant on dairy during that period, which I think limited my results. Having recently been going through the steps of getting a diagnosis for what may be MS, I have become far more motivated to adjust my diet for my health’s sake (as opposed to just fat loss), and paleo really fits the bill for me.

    I’m enjoying my first morning cappuccino with the coconut milk you recommended this morning. It isn’t quite a rich as my normal cow’s milk one, but it’s by far the best substitute for milk I’ve tried.

    So keep up the awesome work and know that you have my and my husband’s thanks for being such a great resource, particularly now that it is so important for me to do everything I can to stay well.

    All the best,

  5. Looks good. I’m going to say it was the balsamic vinegar. All red meat is better with a little balsamic.

  6. Sounds awesome! We have zucchini coming out of our ears right now – well the garden- but they literally grow overnight. Keep the zucchini recipes coming I need more creative ideas!

  7. Jeannette says:

    This sounds great, never thought of using balsamic vinegar. We don’t have any large zucchini right now, but did get eggplant & pattypan squash in our CSA box. I think those pattypans would be so cute stuffed! Thanks for the great ideas; keep them coming!

  8. Hmm….I was going to try your zucchini spaghetti & meatball recipe tonight. But maybe I’ll try this one instead??Pretty much the same ingredients, right? Decisions, decisions. lol. Thanks for the ideas!

  9. Paige Rossman says:

    Sarah -I have been following your website for several months and have your book too. I am always so excited when there is a new post from you! You have so many yummy recipes! This looks delicious so will have to try it this weekend.
    I had to reply to the post above about the magnesium and migraines. I have suffered from terrible migraines for years and several months ago started taking magnesium 400 mg daily (without calcium) and it has made an amazing difference for me! I don’t get nearly as many migraines and when I do they have not been as severe. Anyway, thank you Sarah for all of your wonderful recipes.

  10. Marcy says:

    I am heading to the farmer’s market tomorrow morning with this recipe in hand!

  11. Erin says:

    This recipe looks delicious and super easy. Can’t wait to try it!

  12. david mcadams says:

    What do you do with the excess zucchini ? Why not use that instead of the egg plant?

    1. Sarah says:

      You can! I did actually use a lot of the excess zucchini, totally forgot to put that in the post. I’ll update it now!

  13. Jeannette says:

    Made this for lunch/dinner today, but couldn’t bear to turn on the oven and heat up the house even more, so followed the directions except that I chopped up all the zucchini and treated it more like a “stir fry.” Delicious! Thanks, Sarah.

  14. sonja says:

    i make a “breakfast hash” with the EXACT same ingredients (except i use butternut squash instead of zucchini) and get lots of compliments on it so i know this will be good too. thanks for giving me the idea to stuff it inside a zucchini!!

  15. Jason says:

    Im going to give this a shot but stuff bell peppers instead following the general directions here and here

    Im planning on using “asian eggplant” that came in my farm box. Does the eggplant need to be salted? I dont think these types of eggplants need to be peeled either correct?

  16. Will definitely be trying this!! What a fabulous idea! I may be sending my readers this way for this one! 😉

  17. Michelle says:

    Sarah –
    This was the PERFECT dinner not only for a Monday night but to use the giant zucchinis that my garden produced over the weekend!!

    Thank you so much, your blog & cookbook have been detrimental in my ability to stay 100% paleo the past 6 months! I have yet to make something I wouldn’t make a 2nd time! You are awesome!!!!

    1. Carrie says:

      Hiya, sorry to point this out. I asume everyone knows your true meaning.
      Instead of detrimental (which means damaging) I assume you mean invaluable 😉

      1. Angelique says:

        Or she might mean “instrumental”. ^_^

  18. Robbin says:

    This was great! I used a small white eggplant that I didn’t peel and extra basil. Didn’t use all of the zucchini because it wouldn’t fit in my pan. The combination of herbs and the added balsamic and sun dried tomatoes added so much flavor. I also used ground venison instead of bison.

  19. Great idea, I needed something else to do with all the zucchinis I am getting from our garden

  20. Robyn Lang says:

    Made this last night – it was SO delicious that I actually took it to work today and had it for breakfast.. and lunch! Lol! Excellent!

  21. Teresa Garceau says:

    Hi Sarah,

    When your cookbook came out, it was not in our Connecticut stores except by special order… I managed to call the stores until they ordered it…
    Thank you for your hard work and inspiration. I love Paleo cooking and you have made it easy for me to stay creative! Keep up the good work!

    1. kathy-jo says:

      Love your ideas Sarah!!! will try this tomorrow!!!! FYI-Teresa owns her own co. Cross Cuisines so if you all arent in the mood for cooking yourself and your in CT Look Teresa up!!! Great Paleo food delivered!!!!! YUM!!! Couldnt let you post and not plug Teresa sorry!!!

      1. Sarah says:

        I will for sure! Thanks!

  22. Hi Sarah,
    When your cookbook came out, the bookstores in CT did not have it except by special order… I called them until they ordered it. Thank you for all your hard work, I love listening to you. I love cooking Paleo and you have made it easy for me to stay creative! Keep up the good work!

  23. Hi Sarah,
    Thank you for sharing your story and your talent. I love listening to you. I love cooking Paleo and you make it easy for me to stay creative. So happy to have your book and look forward to more of your creations! Keep up the good work.

  24. Sorry about the posts.. kept getting a message that they did not go through because of a required field not filled… I teach computers!??

  25. Susan says:

    I LOVE this!! It was super yummy! I think that the “stuffing” would be GREAT as a burger! Similar to a veggie burger.

  26. Virginia says:

    I enjoyed this recipe as a stuffing for red bell peppers – the only zucchini I could find were tiny (much too small to stuff!). Am I they only one who ended up with MUCH more stuffing than would fit in the vegetable “containers”? Not that I’m complaining, because I’m planning to scramble up the leftovers with some eggs tomorrow for a great frittata!

  27. Ryan King says:

    This was fantastic! Our eggplant was bad so we just left it out, but it was still great. We actually made four regular zucchini and ended up buying four more to use all the stuffing. Also used apple cider vinegar cause I was out of balsamic, but it was still fantastic. My wife wants to do this again for company… Great meal! Thanks Sarah!

    1. Sarah says:

      So glad you liked it Ryan, thank you!

  28. Amy L says:

    This sounds wonderful. I just harvested some spaghetti squash from my garden. Have you tried this recipe with spaghetti squash?

  29. Paula says:

    I made this tonight. My son who doesn’t like zucchini or eggplant is eating it as I write. I added mushrooms, too, store-bought ones today since I used up all my wild foraged ones yesterday. I couldn’t find oil-packed tomatoes so this came up a little dry (eggplant is a real sponge!) and I added more olive and refined (unflavored) coconut oil. The sun-dried tomatoes add a nice flavor so this is not just a ratatouille with meat. This one is a keeper! Thanks!

  30. Liz G says:

    I love this recipe! I made it today for lunch for my husband and my self. When my husband was taking his first bite i was cringing with one eye open watching him slowly chew waiting for the normal adverse reaction he has to many things that I think sound great and try to get him to eat (living with a picky eater is rough). Low and behold he scarfs down the meal and says to me that I should make this more often. So please keep recipes like this one coming because I know I can get my husband to eat!!!

    Thanks for all you do!!!!!

    1. Sarah says:

      Hurray on the success – so cool!! I’ll keep em’ coming, I promise!

  31. Holly Lefevers says:

    I made this for my family and they loved it. Thank you so much for your recipes and videos! They also love spaghetti squash now too. I am cooking this way now for my whole family. Following you and other paleo sites and receipes are helping my so much on this paleo journey!

  32. Oh my goodness. We made this tonight and my kids (10,4,3, and 14 mos) practically licked the plates afterwards. This was fantastic!!!! (I added garlic salt to ours.. yum!!!)

    1. Sarah says:

      So glad you all liked it Brandy!

  33. Thanx for the recipe… used it in a pinch and it was great!!!

  34. Terrie says:

    The picture looks like you’re using what I call acorn squash. Is this correct? It looks scrumptuous!

  35. I made these tonight, but since I cannot eat nightshades right now I omitted the tomatoes and eggplant. Instead, I added some lemon zest and herbs, and sauteed the red onions in some extra balsamic vinegar. Quite tasty! I served with a salad of butter lettuce, sliced fennel and homemade herb dressing. Fabuloso!

    Love your website Sarah! I also made your sausage and cabbage one night – boyfriend gobbled it up!

    1. Sarah says:

      Yum, sounds great and thank you!

  36. I put these on my menu for the week – yummy! Thank you so much for your blog and book; they have been such a help. We went cold-turkey Paleo on 1/1/12 – what an adventure!

  37. Ellen says:

    Just made this recipe and it is amazing! I used ground turkey and cut the zucchini into cup-like shapes. I cut each zucchini into 4 or 5 cylinders then hollowed them all out except for one side, creating a “zucchini shotglass”. They were much thinner and smaller than the pictures on this recipe, so I baked them for about 10 minutes before stuffing and 8-10 minutes with stuffing. They turned out amazing!!! I’ll be making these for my cooking group that is going paleo for this dinner 🙂

  38. I’ve been eating paleo for almost a month now. I wanted to thank you for your recipes! They are what helped me see that paleo wasn’t just good for my body but it could taste good and could involve my whole family too. This recipe was the first one I made, but I’ve made several from your blog since. Thanks again!

  39. Brittany says:

    I’m wanting to try this recipe tonight but I have a question. Does the zucchini have a crunch to it? I don’t like mine cooked too long. Should I skip the step where you cook the zucchini shells before stuffing them to make sure they are still crunchy?

    1. Sarah says:

      Depends on the size of your zucchini but no, it won’t turn to mush necessarily but if you are worried, yes, I would recommend skipping the cooking before hand step. It will most likely be pretty crunchy!! : )

  40. Dannielle says:


  41. Ny-Ann says:

    Whoa, this looks amazing, and what I’m looking for, for tonight. I have an over abundance of bison meat, basil, and bell peppers.

    I was wondering if switching out the zucchini and squash for the bell pepper would work. If so, do I still need to roast them for 20 mns ahead? — since they don’t have “shells” — any difference in cooking time?

  42. Made this today and it was good! I got really lazy and didn’t even use the eggplant even though I bought it. Used about half of the dugout zucchini pieces. I added a little more balsamic vinegar than a splash and then still thought it needed something like tomatoes. So I added 1/2 cup of leftover tomato sauce that was in the fridge. Came out great!

    1. Amanda says:

      I agree! It was super delicious but I normally enjoy stuffed zucchini a little more moist so i added in some tomato sauce. Absolutely yummy!

  43. Ali007 says:

    I just stumbled on your webpage, and I am glad I did! I made the stuffed zucchini today, except I used butternut squash, we had no zucchini around, and it turned out fantastic! I can’t wait to serve this to my family. I love it, but I hope they do too! I’ll revisit your site now that I know you rock!

  44. Ground bison! Ewwww. You can’t get that in Australia. I will try minced beef but without the tomato. I find eating meat and tomato doesn’t agree with me. Maybe I will use zucchini pulp instead.

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