Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

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Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer loaded with Bolognese. Our Zucchini boats are cooked from start to finish in the air fryer with minimal prep and lots of Italian Bolognese flavour. We love to binge on zucchini boats for a quick lunch with the kids and it is perfect toddler food too.

Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer is a delicious Milner family favourite and is updated to reflect our current readership. Originally published on back in 2016.

Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

Can you imagine how great it would be to cook a Bolognese in the air fryer and then load it into zucchini boats for the best tasting zucchini boats that you have ever tried?

Well this is exactly what I am doing right here and right now!

The problem I often find when cooking zucchini boats is that the zucchini is never crispy enough as you always want that just grilled texture.

Then add to this the problem with cooking a Bolognese. You hate the fact that you must keep stirring the Bolognese and want an easier option.

Well this is when my Bolognese zucchini boats in the air fryer become the perfect lunch. The Bolognese is cooked in the air fryer and you don’t need to constantly stir it and the zucchini boats are crispy thanks to the great technology of the air fryer.

Or if Bolognese is not your thing, you can swap it for another filling for your zucchini boats.

The choice is yours.

What Are Zucchini Boats?

You might be wondering what a zucchini boat is. Basically, it is where you chop up and remove most of the flesh of a zucchini so that it is the shape of a boat. Then you fill it with your favourite fillings and toppings.

It makes an alternative to bread or pizza in your favourite recipes.

My favourite filling for a zucchini boat is Bolognese but a lot of favourites work well too. Just imagine your favourite buffalo chicken, Tuscan chicken, hamburger helper or even baked beans inside of a zucchini boat.

Zucchini Boats For Toddlers

Let me show you a quick cute picture:

Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

It has one plate with Peppa Pig on it and the other with Mickey. Peppa Pig is Sofia’s plate and Mickey is Jorge’s. They are aged 4 and 2 and love to eat mummy’s cooking.

What I did was make the Bolognese zucchini boats in the air fryer, as usual, then chopped them up into bite sized chunks. Due to the cheese topping it looked just like Bolognese pizza. All the kids saw was the meat and the cheese and ate it all!

Are Zucchini Boats Healthy?

Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

I call my zucchini boats fairly healthy. That is because they have cheese in them for your cheese fix. They would be considered low carb, Keto Weight Watchers or Slimming World friendly though if you follow a diet.

We could never call processed cheese healthy, but it’s a much better alternative than giving your kids a can of Bolognese or a Bolognese pizza for their lunch.

You could lose the cheese on top if you wanted to keep the zucchini boats 100% healthy. And replace it with something crispy such as quinoa.

Can You Reheat Zucchini Boats?

Yes you can! Place them back in the air fryer in its basket or the air fryer grill pan and reheat at 160c/320f for 3 minutes. Then they are lovely and hot again like they were when you originally cooked them.

How To Freeze Zucchini Boats?

If the zucchini boats are fully cooked wait until they are cool, place them on a baking tray in the freezer and wait until they are partly frozen. Then remove them from the tray and place into freezer bags. This will stop the zucchini boats from sticking together.

If they are uncooked wrap them in silver foil and freeze them in separate portions. But don’t include the grated cheese to the top of the zucchini boats until at the end of the cooking process.

Zucchini Boats Cook Time?

To create the perfect zucchini boats the cook time is quicker than you would think.

  • 10 minutes for cooking the Bolognese. This is based on using a dish inside of your air fryer so that you don’t have any Bolognese escaping.
  • 10 minutes for cooking your zucchini and getting them nice and crispy.
  • 2 minutes for your loaded zucchini boats in the air fryer and giving the cheese a chance to melt.
  • 22 minutes total time from start to finish. I love the fact that my zucchini boats cook time is so low!

What To Serve With Zucchini Boats?

I live on the Mediterranean this means we don’t have big appetites and instead tend to eat small portions. Because of this we find a couple of zucchini boats each is adequate for our lunch, so rarely have it with a side.

But if you wanted to serve your zucchini boats with a side or maybe you want a smaller portion of zucchini boats then I would recommend the following:

  • Instant Pot Garlic Spaghetti – My number #1 Italian cheat recipe in the Instant Pot which I originally cooked in a field on a camping holiday.
  • Air Fryer Potato Wedges – For me zucchini boats are like having pizza and you just want more finger food to go with it.
  • Air Fryer Veggie Fries – Keep the vegetable party going with some veggie fries. They are delicious and so easy to make in the air fryer alongside your zucchini boats.
Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer loaded with Bolognese. Our Zucchini boats are cooked from start to finish in the air fryer with minimal prep and lots of Italian Bolognese flavour. We love to binge on zucchini boats for a quick lunch with the kids and it is perfect toddler food too.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time22 minutes
Total Time27 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Air Fryer
Servings: 4
Calories: 309kcal


Recipe Ingredients:


  • Place your minced pork, garlic, diced onion and a little salt and pepper into an air fryer cake pan. Cook for 8 minutes at 180c/360f in the air fryer.
  • Stir in tinned tomatoes and oregano and cook for a further 2 minutes at 200c/400f.
  • Slice the zucchini in half lengthways and remove centre from the zucchini using a spoon.
  • When the air fryer beeps load the cooked Bolognese into the zucchini boats and place the zucchini boats in the air fryer on the grill pan. Cook for a further 10 minutes at 180c/360f.
  • Once it beeps add cheese on top and cook for a further 2 minutes at 200c/400f.


Because you’re using minced pork instead of minced beef it carries more fat and doesn’t need olive oil.
When cooked you can chop them into bite sized pieces as its perfect little pizzas for toddlers.
You need to press the cheese down on the zucchini boats otherwise the air will take them.
If your zucchinis are really large chop them in half and then each zucchini would make 4 zucchini boats instead of 2.
If you live outside of the US a zucchini is a courgette. If you live in the US minced pork might be known as ground pork.
You can grate or slice on any of your favourite cheeses that melt well. My favourite is English cheddar, but the choice is yours.


Calories: 309kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 261mg | Potassium: 811mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 535IU | Vitamin C: 29.5mg | Calcium: 168mg | Iron: 2.7mg
Nutrition InfoPlease Note: Nutrition values are our best estimate based on the software we use at Recipe This and are meant as a guide. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
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Bolognese Zucchini Boats In The Air Fryer

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Hi! I am Sam and along with my chef hubby Dom we love sharing with you easy everyday recipes using kitchen gadgets. We are also the authors of The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook, an amazing air fryer cookbook filled with 140+ everyday air fryer recipes. Beyond the air fryer we also love the instant pot, slow cooker, soup maker, ninja foodi, pie marker and several other kitchen gadgets. CLICKING HERE →

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