Zucchini is one of the most prolific vegetable plants in your summer garden. Once it starts producing, you are on a mission to find new ways to bake it into breads, spiralize it into side dishes, or incorporate it into a cheesy casserole. In this recipe, zucchini is used as a vessel for a flavorful cornbread, ground chicken, and corn mixture. Hearty enough on its own, simply add some sliced fresh tomatoes to round out the meal. Choose squash that are uniform in shape so they will cook evenly. The best kind for this recipe are long, straight, and not too skinny.
3 cups coarsely crumbled cornbread (about 10 oz.)
4 (12-oz.) zucchini
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
16 ounces ground chicken
1/2 cup chopped red onion
4 garlic cloves, minced (about 2 Tbsp.)
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
6 ounces white Cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup fresh corn
3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 375°F. Spread cornbread in an even layer on one end of a baking sheet. Cut zucchini in half lengthwise. Using a serrated tomato corer or melon baller, scoop out zucchini pulp to equal 3 cups pulp, leaving a 1/2-inch shell intact. Coarsely chop 1 1/2 cups of pulp; reserve remaining pulp for another use. Brush zucchini shells with 2 tablespoons of the canola oil. Place zucchini shells on baking sheet with cornbread, and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Bake zucchini and cornbread at 375°F until cornbread is lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add ground chicken to skillet; cook, stirring to crumble, until browned, 5 to 6 minutes. Add onion, garlic, paprika, pepper, reserved 1 1/2 cups zucchini pulp, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt to skillet; cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer mixture to a large bowl, and stir in cornbread, white Cheddar cheese, corn, and parsley. Divide chicken mixture evenly among zucchini shells. Place shells on a baking sheet.
Bake stuffed zucchini at 350°F until filling is lightly browned and zucchini is tender, 25 minutes.
This recipe can also be made with yellow zucchini or summer squash. Can’t tell the difference? Summer squash (also called yellow or crookneck squash) is curved with a narrow neck; yellow zucchini is long and straight, like the green kind.