All my life, I have always loved vegetables. I was the weird kid out to dinner asking for a plate of chicken tenders or popcorn shrimp with a side of steamed broccoli, please. Oh, then just whatever cooked veggies you have are fine.
I just liked vegetables. And I still do. There are so many vegetables out there to take place of unhealthy or tummy-troubling ingredients. Case in point, Keto Zucchini Pizza Boats. Instead of pizza crust, I seeded and roasted half of a zucchini and put pizza toppings on it, and now I need to share it with the world. You can use whatever pizza toppings you like, omit the pepperoni if you want to make this recipe vegan.
I started with a few pizza staples, like stuff to make a quick tomato sauce, toppings, and of course, the zucchini. Wash your produce thoroughly! We are in a pandemic, people. Killer virus or not, always wash your veggies and fruit when you get home from the store, pat dry, and then store.
I began by seeding my zucchini. I wanted to pre-roast the zucchini until just tender. Just use a spoon and gently dig out the middle to a pretty, smooth boat shape. Save the middle on the zucchini to add to your pizza sauce. Waste not, want not!
Add your can of tomato puree into a medium pot. Go ahead and add your zucchini middles. You won’t realize they’re even there, so why throw them away?
Now chop your fresh oregano leaves and garlic and put into the sauce. I actually added some olive oil and balsamic vinegar to the sauce, but forgot to photograph that step. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow to simmer on your lowest setting, stirring frequently, while your zucchini roasts.
Season your now halved and seeded zucchini with some olive oil, salt, and pepper. Massage all around the vegetable so that it is coated evenly in seasoning. Roast at 375F for 25 minutes, flipping one or twice to ensure even cooking.
After 25 minutes, your zucchini will look like this. A knife or fork should also pierce the zucchini easily. Your sauce should also be bubbly, slightly caramelized, and very delicious. Time to assemble!
Start by spooning about 1 1/2 tbsp of sauce onto each zucchini. You may need a little less or more depending on the size of your zucchini.
*Note: I had a lot of leftover sauce after this. I did not have to use a 24oz can of tomato puree, but that is all I had in the house. This sauce is fantastic for leftover zoodles, for dipping gluten free bread into, whatever you want. So you get dinner and a snack out of this recipe!
Next, top with one slice of mozzarella cheese per boat. Each slice was cut into thirds to best fit on the pizza.
Bake at 375F for an additional 5 minutes. I actually then turned on the broiler for 2-3 minutes to brown the cheese slightly. Et voila!
Top with some basil chiffonade and serve to your converted vegetable-liking spouse. Enjoy!
Keto Zucchini Pizza Boats
- 1 large zucchini, halved lengthwise and seeded, seeds saved
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 24oz can tomato puree
- 1 sprig chopped fresh oregano, or 1 pinch dried
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
- 2 slices mozzarella cheese, cut into thirds
- 8 slices pepperoni, sliced thin
- 2 leaves fresh basil, chiffonade
- Begin by preheating your oven to 375F.
- Half your zucchini and season with 2 tsp of the olive oil, then salt and pepper. Rub the zucchini to completely coat in seasoning. Lay out on a baking sheet lined with foil and bake for 25 minutes, while you prepare your sauce.
- In a medium saucepan, add tomato puree, chopped oregano, garlic, balsamic, and the remaining olive oil. Stir to combine and cook over low heat, ensuring the sauce does not bubble vigorously and make a mess all over your stove. Keep stirring every so often while your zucchini roasts.
- Cut your cheese slices into thirds. Also slice your pepperoni at this time.
- After 25 minutes, test the zucchini with a fork to ensure doneness. The fork should pierce easily but still have some slight resistance.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of sauce per boat. Smooth to ensure even coverage.
- Top with your cheese, dividing it evenly among the two boats.
- Top the cheese with your pepperoni and bake in the same 375 oven for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, turn on the broiler and broil for 2-3 minutes until cheese is bubbly and slightly browned.
- Remove from the oven and top with your basil. Serve immediately.