Mega-Zucchini Quinoa Stuffed Zucchini


This quinoa stuffed zucchini recipe was contributed from the November issue of Foods Matter, the magazine for special diets and allergies.  Online subscriptions are available for both U.S. and U.K. residents.

A very satisfying vegetarian main course which can also be used as a vegetable with a roast. Ideally the centre of the zucchini-like squash should be cooked and the outside remain slightly crisp to give it some texture.

Special Diet Notes: Quinoa Stuffed Zucchini

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.

  • 1 medium size zucchini-like squash or large, overgrown zucchini
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 leek, finely sliced
  • 2 heaped teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground cilantro
  • 5 oz flat mushrooms, chopped fairly small
  • 1¾ oz quinoa grains
  • ⅞ cup water
  • 7 oz canned chickpeas, drained
  • 3½ oz roasted, salted cashew nuts
  • 3½ oz roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 3 handfuls of fresh baby spinach
  1. Cut the zucchini-like squash/zucchini in half lengthways and scoop out the pips and the woolly centre part. Season well with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oven to 350F. Heat the oil in a wide pan and add the leek and the spices - stir well and cook for a couple of minutes then add the mushrooms and continue to cook until the mushrooms give their juices. Add the quinoa grains and the water, bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes or until the quinoa is nearly cooked.Add the chickpeas, cashew nuts, seeds and the spinach and mix well together.
  3. Lay one half of the zucchini-like squash out in a big dish and pile the stuffing into the middle. It will spill out into the dish but that does not matter. Top with the other half of the zucchini-like squash, cover with foil and bake in the oven for 1 hour and 40 minutes. Serve from the dish.


About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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