Artichoke and Spinach Stuffed Zucchini Recipe
Artichoke and Spinach Stuffed Zucchini recipe has a creamy stuffing with cheesy Parmesan. It’s easy to make ahead, bake 20 minutes and enjoy on a busy weeknight!
The ultimate appetizer is warm, cheesy, creamy, Spinach and Artichoke Dip. So, why not take all of this goodness and stuff it into Zucchini? That’s right, stuffed zucchini boats! This Artichoke and Spinach Stuffed Zucchini recipe has all the goods! It tastes delicious and indulgent, but it’s healthy too with so many nutrient-dense veggies! Each fantastic bite gives you creamy and earthy artichoke, nutty and cheesy Parmesan, fresh and bright spinach, and meaty zucchini.
Try serving this with either a Mushroom Quinoa Risotto or Creamy Parmesan Polenta to complete the meal!
Meatless Meals for Everyone!
With a Certification in Nutrition and Healthy Living, I am always looking for ways to get more veggies into our meals. Meatless Mondays and meatless meals are a great way to do that!
Whether you are vegetarian or a full-fledge meat eater, meatless meals can wow the pants off of anyone. All it takes is the right combo of a few delicious ingredients. Replacing an animal protein with vegetables means you are getting more fiber, calcium, and vitamins than you can get from meat. With the right veggies, you can still get a healthy dose of protein as well. Which brings me to THIS Spinach and Artichoke Stuffed Zucchini.
In this recipe, artichokes provide Fiber AND protein and are packed with nutrients, Vitamins C and K, Magnesium, Potassium, and Iron just to name a few! Spinach provides Vitamins A, C, and K1, as well as protein, fiber, Iron, Folic Acid, and calcium.
Overall, you get 5g of Fiber and 9g Protein per serving in this Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Zucchini Recipe!
Try these other Meatless Meals packed with Fiber, Protein, and other Nutrients:
- Super Cheesy Cauliflower Rice
- Walnut Sauce Fettuccine with Ricotta and Spinach
- Korean Rice Bowl with Lentils and Cauliflower
- Quinoa Crust Tomato Tart with Artichoke & Goat Cheese
Quick note! This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them. This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :). But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used.
Simple Ingredients and Substitutes
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Onion, diced – I used yellow onion, but you can use white onion, red onion, shallots, or even scallions.
- Fresh Garlic cloves, minced – Fresh is best in this simple recipe, but you can buy the pre-minced garlic sold in a small jar or use dried garlic flakes or garlic powder.
- Artichoke Hearts – I used canned whole artichoke hearts stored in water. You can also use the quartered hearts in a can. Frozen artichoke hearts work great too, just thaw them before you start the recipe.
- Fresh Baby Spinach Leaves – Fresh baby spinach is the most tender and melts down wonderful in this recipe. You can use frozen spinach or frozen chopped spinach, but frozen tends to not be as tender and the chopped will have tiny pieces of spinach that will mix more into the sauce, so the look will be different. Substitutes for spinach are kale leaves or collard greens that has been sliced thin and blanched.
- Vegetable Broth – Vegetable stock is great too. Substitutes are chicken broth or chicken stock or beef broth or stock. You can also use 5 cups water with 5 bouillon cubes.
- Cornstarch – Cornstarch is mixed with cold milk to create a cornstarch slurry. This is the thickener for the stuffing. The alternative is to add 1 tablespoon flour and 1 tablespoon butter to the cooked onions and garlic, stirring to combine into a roux. Then whisk in the broth slowly and continue the recipe.
- Milk – I used 1% milk, but any milk will work, including non-dairy options.
- Parmesan Cheese, grated – If you don’t have parmesan, you can substitute in Pecorino Romano, Grana Padano, Asiago, or other very dry cheese, such as aged manchego.
- Zucchini – Well, zucchini really is the star here, so there isn’t much to say about replacing it. But, this filling can definitely be used to stuff a variety of veggies, including bell peppers, tomatoes, portabella mushrooms, or yellow squash.
Prep-Ahead Steps for Stuffed Zucchini
We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details)
For this recipe, you can make the stuffing, scoop and stuff the zucchini, then store in the fridge until ready to bake and eat.
For the stuffing, start with the cornstarch slurry. Mix 2 tbls cornstarch into ¼ cup cold milk until completely dissolved. Set aside.
Grate the Parmesan Cheese. I like to grate cheese at home so that I know it’s fresh and doesn’t have fillers. FREEZER HACK: You can store it in the freezer to make it last longer too!
Dice the onion and mince the garlic. FREEZER HACK: I mince a ton of fresh garlic in a mini food processor and then store it in the freezer so it’s always ready for me!
Chop the artichoke hearts. Wash and dry the spinach leaves.
To a preheated large skillet or medium pot, add the olive oil and then the onions. Stir and cook, then add the garlic and stir to combine. Cook until the onions are translucent.
Next add the chopped artichoke hearts and 2 giant handfuls of baby spinach leaves. Stir to combine and start wilting the spinach.
Add the vegetable broth, milk cornstarch slurry, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer stirring until it gets thick. Last, turn off the heat and stir in the grated parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
Warning, taste with caution, you may not be able to stop!
Store in the fridge to cool while you prepare the zucchini.
Prep the Zucchini
Now we prepare the zucchini! Wash and trim the ends off and then slice in half. Scoop out the seeds to make a boat using a small tasting or coffee spoon. Fill each zucchini with the chilled filling. Store in the fridge until you are ready to bake and eat.
Cook the Artichoke Spinach Stuffed Zucchini
Place on an oiled baking sheet, sprinkle with the remaining parmesan and bake for 15 minutes in 400 F degree oven. For the last 5 minutes, you can keep it at 400 F degrees or turn on the broiler so the top gets lightly browned. If you turn on the broiler, keep an eye on them so they do not burn!
Artichoke Spinach Stuffed Zucchini FAQs
Can I make these stuffed zucchini in advance?If you want to make these Artichoke Spinach Stuffed Zucchini ahead, I recommend the following. Fill each zucchini with the chilled filling. Store in the fridge in an airtight container until you are ready to bake and eat. You can store them for up to 3 days. Then all you need to do is bake for 20 minutes.
Can I use a Different kind of Cheese in these Stuffed Zucchini?Yes, when it comes to cheese, I say go nuts! You can replace the parmesan all together and you can also add double the cheese in the recipe. If you do, you will likely have extra filling. Either use another zucchini or eat it as a dip the next day! Some great shredded cheese options for this are cheddar, manchego, jack, gruyere, gouda, or mozzarella.
What can I serve with these Stuffed Zucchini?You can add a protein, such as a simple grilled chicken breast, salmon, steak, or pork chop. You can also make the Stuffed Zucchini the star and pair with another side, such as a simple steamed rice, buttered pasta, or something more jazzed up. I love Quick & Easy Pancetta, Parmesan, & Pepper Pasta or Mushroom Quinoa Risotto or Creamy Parmesan Polenta.
Artichoke and Spinach Stuffed Zucchini Recipe
- 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/2 cup Onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 can Artichoke Hearts 14-15oz
- 10 oz Baby Spinach Leaves
- 1/2 cup Vegetable Broth, low sodium (Chicken Broth is fine for non-vegetarian)
- 2 tbls Cornstarch
- 1/2 cup Milk
- 3/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated 1/2 cup stuffing, 1/4 topping
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
- 6 Small Zucchini or 4 Medium
- Make the sauce by starting with the cornstarch slurry. Mix 2 tbls cornstarch into ¼ cup cold milk until completely dissolved. Set aside.
- Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Chop the artichoke hearts.
- To a preheated large skillet or medium pot, add the olive oil and then the onions. Stir and cook for about 3 minutes on Medium-Low heat, stirring so they don't burn, until they start to soften. Then add the garlic and stir to combine. Cook for another 3-4 minutes until the onions are translucent.
- Next add the chopped artichoke hearts and 2 giant handfuls of baby spinach leaves. Stir to combine and start wilting the spinach.
- Add the vegetable broth, milk cornstarch slurry, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer stirring until it gets thick. Last, turn off the heat and stir in the grated parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
- Wash and trim the ends off the zucchini, then slice in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds to make a boat using a small tasting or coffee spoon.
- Fill each zucchini with the chilled filling. Store in the fridge covered until you are ready to bake and eat.
Cook the Stuffed Zucchini
- Preheat oven to 400 F degree oven.
- Place on an oiled baking sheet, sprinkle with the remaining parmesan and bake for 15 minutes. For the last 5 minutes, you can keep it at 400 F degrees or turn on the broiler so the top gets lightly browned. If you turn on the broiler, keep an eye on them so they do not burn!
- Serve and Enjoy!
What's the purpose of the cornstarch in this recipe?
What is the vegatable broth for? You don't mention it in the instructions.