Food For Thought

Stuffed Zucchini

4-5 medium zucchini
1 medium onion, chopped
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup brown rice
2 1/2 cups water or broth
olive oil
1/2 cup shredded or crumbled reduced-fat Cheddar or Jack cheese (1/4 cup if using Parmesan)

Serves 4

  • Preheat oven to 350. Add a tablespoon or two of olive oil and saute the garlic and the dry rice for 2-3 minutes in saucepan over medium-high heat.Add the liquid, reduce heat to low, and simmer 30-40 minutes.
  • While the rice cooks, cut zucchini in half lengthwise and scoop out flesh from each half, leaving zucchini “shells.”
  • Place shells in a baking dish, season with a little salt and pepper if desired, and bake until slightly soft, about 20 minutes.
  •  Chop the scooped-out flesh and saute the chopped zucchini and onion in olive oil over medium heat until they begin to brown and are a little translucent.
  • Mix with the cooked rice and about half the cheese, and spoon mixture into the shells. Top with the remaining cheese, and bake 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and slightly browned.
  • Serve with your favorite tomato sauce if desired.
  • Add a side salad and fresh fruit and whole grain bread for a complete meal.

    Nutrition Content per serving:
    307 Calories, 12 grams protein, 35 grams carbohydrates, 14 grams fat

    “My husband created this recipe for stuffed zucchini, and we make it a different way most every time, but it’s always good.
    “We try new seasonings or add extra veggies to the stuffing.
    “We use brown rice to make it healthier, but this type of rice does take longer to cook, so allow for extra time.
    “I love this recipe because it keeps great in the refrigerator and heats up well in the microwave for lunch leftovers.”

    Nancy Hiner is a Registered Dietitian and a Certified Diabetes Educator with the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department. Her husband, Scott, a music teacher with Fayette County schools, is the primary family cook. Their daughters are 5 and 2 years old.