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Quinoa-Salad Stuffed Zucchini Cups

If you’re a gardener, summer is the time for lots of things – lots of watering, lots of tomatoes, and lots of zucchini. Zucchini is one of those things that I sometimes love and sometimes am…. not too excited about. Although you can give me a piece of zucchini chocolate cake any day. 🙂

I actually got the zucchini to make some raw (dehydrated) wraps. Making those has not yet fit into my schedule, so today I decided to go ahead with another mostly-raw zucchini recipe – filled zucchini cups!

Quinoa-Stuffed-Zucchini-Cups-1

They are relatively easy to make, take on the flavor of whatever you fill them with, and are a great finger food that can be used as part of a full meal, or as a nice appetizer for a summer party.

I chose to stuff mine with a nice flavorful quinoa salad. I got the quinoa cooking first, and then prepared the rest of the salad ingredients, along with the zucchini cups.

Please note – this isn’t a recipe with actual measurements. I threw it all together on the spot, and you can customize it for your own tastes.

For the quinoa salad, I used:

  • a few cups of cooked quinoa (I have ALOT leftover for snacks)
  • chopped kalamata olives
  • sun-dried tomatoes that I soaked in a bit of olive oil, tamari, balsamic vinegar, and warm water
  • chopped kale
  • about 1/4 cup of minced red onion

and I seasoned it all with the soaking water from the tomatoes, more tamari and balsamic vinegar, and a few dashes of cayenne. It could have used a little garlic. Just sayin’.

For the zucchini, I peeled some stripes along the length to make it look interesting, and then cut it into rounds about 1 1/2 inches high (maybe a little shorter than that). Then I used a small melon baller to remove the insides of the zucchini, making little cups. (I did save the insides for my raw dehydrated wraps, so now I have to make them).

Since zucchini has a plain taste in itself, and I didn’t want such a contrast between the raw, crunchy misto-sprayerzucchini pieces and the soft quinoa salad, I used my handy Misto and sprayed the cups with a mixture of tamari, balsamic vinegar, and liquid smoke (yes, it’s vegan!). That gave them some flavor for themselves, and also tenderized the zucchini a bit so they cups weren’t totally hard. Great idea, that was! Then I filled them with the quinoa salad and they were ready to go. On a few of them, I gave a couple extra squirts of the tamari/balsamic/liquid smoke mixture, and that was a nice flavor to have when biting in.

Quinoa-Stuffed-Zucchini-Cups-2

These were easy to make, and can be filled with an endless variety of items, from other salads to cashew creams to hummus to almost anything you want!

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3 thoughts on “Quinoa-Salad Stuffed Zucchini Cups”

  1. Great idea for finger food! Love it. I made a quinoa/kale salad yesterday that could use a dress-up. Thanks!

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