Zucchini Stuffed with Pine Nuts and Basil

It is really too warm to be cooking, especially to turn on the oven, but after hardly anything new for weeks I really felt like cooking something. The recipe for this filling is pesto-inspired, with basil, pine nuts, parmigiano, and garlic, and it turned out delicious. I made it as a side dish, but you could turn this into a full lunch by adding bread or rice, and egg. Here I’ve used round zucchini, but you could use the same recipe to stuff regular zucchini.


For 2 servings

2 zucchini of about 300 grams (.66 lb) each

10 grams (1 Tbsp) pine nuts

20 grams (1/4 cup) freshly grated parmigiano reggiano

50 grams (1/3 cup) minced shallot

1 Tbsp finely sliced basil

1 clove garlic, minced

salt and freshly ground black pepper

olive oil


Preheat the oven to 190C/375F (fan forced), and toast the pine nuts in the oven while it preheats (this will take about 8 minutes).

Slice the top of a round zucchini (or cut a regular zucchini in half lengthwise) and scoop out the soft part with the seeds. Keep scooping until you see no more seeds.

Chop the zucchini flesh.

Sprinkle the inside of the hollowed out zucchini with salt and put them upside down so they will lose some water.

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and add the minced shallot. Season with salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until the shallot has softened and is golden, about 5 minutes.

Add the garlic and stir for another minute. Do not allow the garlic to color.

Add the chopped zucchini flesh, and season with salt.

Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until the mixture becomes dryish.

In a bowl, combine the cooked zucchini flesh with the parmigiano, basil, and pine nuts. Season with freshly ground black pepper.

Stir to mix. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if needed.

Dry the inside of the zucchini with a paper towel.

Transfer the filling into the zucchini. There will be some space leftover, which is fine because the zucchini will shrink when it is cooked in the oven.

Brush the exposed parts of the zucchini with olive oil.

Bake the zucchini in the oven at 190C/375F (fan forced) for about 30 minutes, or until golden. The zucchini should be tender but firm to the bite.

Serve warm or at room temperature.



These fish and parsnip balls with tarragon have an original delicious taste of parsnip, tarragon, and fish. They are soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside. The remoulade sauce turns it into a real treat. You can serve these as a meal in themselves, or make them slightly smaller and serve a couple of them as an appetizer.

11 thoughts on “Zucchini Stuffed with Pine Nuts and Basil

  1. What a unique and tasty dish. The little round zucchini’s are adorable. I love that you incorporated the spooned-out zucchini flesh into the stuffing. I’m tempted to try this stuffing made into a soufflé for an appetizer for a dinner party, but I’m not sure how large the zucchini balls are. You know I’ll be on the lookout for them on my next shopping! Thanks Stefan.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That looks so good. I like your creation. The only stuffed zucchini I’ve made are versions of an Italian recipe, using bread, egg, sausage, Prosciutto, and cheese. I had it on my blog but just trashed it because the photos were terrible. Another post to redo!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sausage AND prosciutto sounds strange, but a meat filling is nice of course. A combination of ham and mortadella (baloney in the US) would be very suitable for zucchini I think.


  3. Once I saw your post, I knew I had to make your Zucchini Stuffed with Pine Nuts and Basil recipe. I went out to my humble condo garden and my Zucchini just weren’t big enough (they grow slow up here). Finally they were perfect and we picked them and stuffed them and ate them. Stefan, all I can say is that they were magnificent.

    Liked by 1 person

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