These Easy 30-Minute Zucchini Pizza Boats are a delicious low-carb dinner that will satisfy all your pizza cravings with your fave toppings!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Zucchini – you can try making these pizza boats using squash but the flavour will be different.
- Pizza sauce – make your own pizza sauce or mix things up by using pesto or alfredo sauce.
- Button mushrooms – use any mushroom variety of your choice.
- Red onion – white onion, yellow onion or shallots would also be good here.
- Green pepper – swap out for red or yellow pepper instead.
- Mozzarella cheese – use your favourite kind of cheese like cheddar, Tex Mex or even ricotta.
- Basil – leave this out altogether if you don’t have any on hand.
- Red chili flakes – leave these off altogether if you don’t like spice.
Homemade turkey sausage
- Olive oil – or another neutral cooking oil like avocado or canola oil.
- Ground turkey – ground chicken or ground pork would also work for this recipe.
- Fennel seeds – anise or cumin would be the best substitutes here.
- Garlic powder – finely minced garlic will work in a pinch.
- Italian seasoning – use ½ tsp. of oregano and ½ tsp of basil instead.
- Salt – to taste.
How to make zucchini pizza boats
Step 1: Prepare toppings.
Chop veggies and grate cheese. If you're making homemade sausage, preheat olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add turkey and seasonings, crushing up with a crushing spoon and mixing well. Cook for 5-6 minutes until turkey is browned and fully cooked. Remove from heat and set aside.
Step 2: Prepare zucchini.
Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out flesh.
Step 3: Add the pizza sauce and toppings.
On a baking sheet or in a 9×13 casserole dish, spread each zucchini boat with pizza sauce, then top with sausage, mushrooms, red onion, green pepper and cheese.
Step 4: Bake then serve and enjoy!
Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh basil and chili flakes. Serve and enjoy!
Topping ideas for zucchini pizza boats
I love these zucchini pizza boats because you can make the toppings very similar to how you would your fave pizza! I opted for a “Deluxe” style pizza with sausage, mushrooms, green pepper and red onions, but the flavour combos are limitless with this recipe! Here are some more delicious ideas:
- Meat lovers – sausage, pepperoni and bacon
- Veggie – mushrooms, bell peppers, onions, broccoli
- Pepperoni – just plain old pepperoni and cheese
- Mediterranean – olives, artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and roasted red peppers
- Hawaiian – ham and pineapple
Frequently Asked Questions
You can eat the zucchini skin on these zucchini pizza boats, but it has a bitter taste so it might not go well with the pizza flavours. That being said, zucchini skin is full of nutritional benefits!
This recipe has 346 calories per zucchini pizza boat. It’s a lot more calorie-friendly than a few slices from your favourite pizza spot!
You may want to cook your zucchini boats ahead of time before adding any pizza sauce, cheese or toppings. Personally, I don't like my zucchini overdone and I like a little bit of firmness to them, especially when they are loaded with toppings. However, I recognize that everyone has different tastes and likes their veggies cooked in a different way. If you want them to be softer, bake them in the oven for 10-15 minutes before adding on your toppings.
These zucchini pizza boats only need to bake in the oven for about 15 minutes, so they’re ready in the flash. If you want your zucchini boats to be a lot softer, pop them in the oven before adding on your toppings (see the instructions above).
Storing and reheating
These zucchini pizza boats make great leftovers! The only thing is that with the cheese, they won't last as long as traditional leftovers – you're looking at about 3 days before the cheese goes slimy.
To store the leftovers, add them in individual servings in glass meal prep containers, or store everything together in a casserole dish. You can reheat the casserole dish in the oven at 425° Fahrenheit for 10 minutes, or you can microwave the leftover individual portions for 1-2 minutes on high.
Can you freeze zucchini pizza boats?
I wish you could, but zucchini doesn't freeze very well! It would become super watery and inedible, which is not what you want for your pizza boat.
What you can do is cook and freeze the sausage ahead of time though, then when you go to make this recipe just defrost the sausage in the fridge for 24 hours and add to fresh zucchini.
You can also freeze grated cheese and it should require no defrosting time. I would add 5 more minutes of cook time to the recipe though if you are using frozen shredded cheese.
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Easy 30-Minute Zucchini Pizza Boats
- 4 zucchini, sliced in half lengthwise
- 1 small can Pizza Sauce
- 1/2 8oz package button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 1/2 green pepper, diced
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 tbsp fresh chopped basil (optional topping)
- 1 tsp red chili flakes (optional topping)
Homemade quick turkey sausage (alternative option: use storebought turkey/pork sausage, remove casings and break up with spoon)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 lb ground turkey
- 2 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning (or 1/2 tsp oregano & 1/2 tsp basil)
- Preheat olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add turkey and seasonings, crushing up with a crushing spoon and mixing well. Cook for 5-6 minutes until turkey is browned and fully cooked. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out flesh. On a baking sheet or in a 9×13 casserole dish, spread each zucchini boat with pizza sauce, then top with sausage, mushrooms, red onion, green pepper and cheese.
- Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh basil and chili flakes. Serve and enjoy!