Skip the buns, and make sloppy Joes healthier, low carb and gluten free by stuffing fresh zucchini boats with the classic filling.
As a child (or even as an adult), I’m sure you’ve had one or two sloppy Joes in your day. They’re usually made of ground meat, onions and peppers simmered in a tomato-based sauce with spices and served on buns.
While I love the traditional recipe, I wanted to make these healthier and gluten free while keeping that same great taste we all love. By using zucchini instead of buns, you’re getting a serving of vegetables that even the kids won’t mind.
Gluten-free sloppy Joe-stuffed zucchini recipe
Prep time: 15 minutes | Cook time: 25 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes
- 4 medium zucchini
- 1 pound extra-lean ground beef
- 1/2 small red onion, diced
- 1 large red bell pepper, diced
- 1 small handful fresh parsley, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/2 tablespoon yellow mustard
- 2 tablespoons agave or brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees F, and spray a large baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- Slice each zucchini in half, and carefully remove the insides, using a spoon to create a boat. Place all the zucchini halves in the casserole dish, and set aside.
- To a large pan over medium heat, add the beef, onions, peppers and chopped parsley (reserving the 2 tablespoons for garnish).
- Cook the mixture for 6 to 8 minutes or until the juices run clear and the ground beef is no longer pink.
- Drain any liquid from the pan, and return it to the heat. Stir in the ketchup, mustard, agave and seasonings, and simmer for 2 minutes.
- Spoon the filling into each zucchini boat, and bake uncovered for 15 minutes or until the zucchini is tender.
- Remove from the oven, and garnish with the remaining parsley. Best served warm.