Weeknight dinner is a breeze with these delicious BBQ Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Boats! Tender zucchini boats are stuffed to the brim with juicy shredded chicken, tangy BBQ sauce, melty cheddar cheese, and savory red onions. Freezer friendly and perfect for meal prepping, this zucchini recipe is a dream boat! This recipe contains affiliate links for products I’m obsessed with.
Another yummy Zucchini Boat Recipe
As much as I don’t want to admit it, summer is slowly ending and back to school is right around the corner for most of us. While I am soaking it all up, I am also thinking about the best recipes for meal prep, like these BBQ Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Boats!
Make the first few weeks of transitioning seamless with this easy weeknight dinner idea! A healthy alternative to pizza, flatbreads, or sandwiches, these stuffed zucchini boats are swimming with juicy BBQ chicken and smothered in cheese. Get creative with your toppings by adding in onions, jalapenos, cilantro, diced tomato, or even a drizzle of sriracha! Customize it to your heart’s content and please even your pickiest little eaters.
Use my Instant Pot BBQ Chicken [Crock Pot Option] recipe or just some store bought BBQ sauce and rotisserie chicken!
Ingredients for BBQ Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Classic BBQ flavors come together for a not so classic meal!
- zucchini – Sliced and hollowed out for the boats.
- olive oil cooking spray – Or the cooking spray of your choice. I prefer the more mild taste to olive oil cooking spray.
- salt – For the chicken plus an extra dash for the zucchini.
- shredded or diced chicken – About one pound. You could use rotisserie chicken to save time! I also LOVE making a double batch of my Instant Pot BBQ Chicken [Crock Pot Option] for meal prep and using half for this recipe!
- BBQ sauce – Make your favorite from scratch, or you can substitute a store bought low sugar BBQ sauce.
- shredded sharp cheddar cheese – Reserve some to sprinkle on top before baking! You can double this if you have extra blue.
- smoked paprika – That smokey flavor really elevates the BBQ taste.
- onion powder – A staple.
- garlic powder – Adjust if you prefer a stronger garlic taste.
- black pepper – This is optional but I like the additional spice.
- red onion – Diced or sliced is up to you. I love the added crunch and flavor this gives to the dish. Feel free to skip this step if you or your little ones aren’t a fan of onions.
- garnish – Just a couple sliced or diced jalapenos, green onion, and/or cilantro. Feel free to mix up these additional toppings!
How to Make BBQ Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Bake and stuff, these BBQ Chicken Zucchini Boats are a breeze.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Slice each zucchini in half, lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the zucchini seeds and pulp to create a boat. Save the pulp and freeze – then sneak them into your kids’ smoothies! They won’t even notice.
- Line up your zucchini boats onto a baking sheet, or in a casserole dish – I like to line my baking sheet with parchment paper to prevent them from sticking. Spray the zucchini boats with olive oil spray, then sprinkle the boats with a little salt.
- Pre-cook your zucchini in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until the flesh starts to get tender. If you find that any moisture is collecting at the bottom of the boats, just blot carefully with a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel.
4. Mix together the shredded chicken, smoked paprika, onion and garlic powder, salt and pepper, ⅓ cup of the shredded cheddar cheese, and ½ cup of BBQ sauce in a medium bowl.
5. Divide your chicken mixture evenly into the zucchini boats, then top with red onion. Drizzle an additional 1-2 Tbsp of BBQ sauce and 1.5 Tbsp of shredded sharp cheddar cheese on top of each boat.
6. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the filling gets bubbly, the cheese starts to brown and the zucchini is fork tender. I like to broil for the last minute or so to get the cheese topping extra crispy!
7. Garnish with sliced jalapeno, green onion, and/or cilantro (if desired). Enjoy!
Can these boats be frozen for meal prep?
They sure can. Zucchini boats are a great low carb option for meal prep and planning. Simply wait for them to cool completely then wrap in plastic wrap. Store in a ziplock bag or an airtight container. I would use them within a few weeks of freezing. To reheat, just thaw and heat in the oven until warmed through and you’re good to go!
Can I make a vegetarian or vegan option?
Absolutely. Instead of shredded or diced chicken, you can always substitute shredded jackfruit, chickpeas, or even diced tofu. As for the cheese, either skip all together or substitute a non dairy, vegan option. These zucchini boats are the best because you can customize them to fit your tastes and preferences. You can stuff them with whatever you want!
Hungry for More Zucchini Boat Recipes? Check these out:
BBQ Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- 2 large zucchini
- Olive oil cooking spray
- ¼ teaspoon salt + an extra dash for zucchini
- 1 pound shredded or diced chicken
- ¾ cup homemade BBQ sauce (you can sub store bought low sugar BBQ sauce)
- ⅔ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided (you can double this if you have extra blue)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- Dash of black pepper optional
- ¼ red onion diced or sliced (optional)
- Garnish - just a couple sliced or diced jalapenos, green onion, and/or cilantro
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Slice each zucchini in half, lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the zucchini seeds and pulp to create a boat. Save the pulp and freeze – then sneak them into your kids smoothies!
- Line up your zucchinis onto a baking sheet, or in a casserole dish – I like to line my baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray the zucchini with olive oil spray, then sprinkle boats with a little salt. Pre-cook zucchini in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until the flesh starts to get tender. If you find that any moisture is collecting at the bottom of the boats, just blot carefully with a paper towel or clean kitchen towel.
- Mix chicken, spices, ⅓ cup of shredded cheddar cheese, and ½ cup of BBQ sauce in a medium bowl.
- Divide chicken mixture into zucchini boats, then top with a sprinkle of red onion, additional 1-2 Tbsp BBQ sauce and 1 1/2 Tbsp of shredded sharp cheddar cheese on each boat.
- Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the filling gets bubbly, the cheese starts to brown and the zucchini is fork tender. I like to broil for the last minute or so to get the cheese topping extra crispy! Garnish with sliced jalapeno, green onion, and/or cilantro (if desired). Enjoy!