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Buffalo Mac and Cheese Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Savory and delicious buffalo mac and cheese stuffed zucchini with a crispy panko breadcrumb topping. These mac and cheese zucchini boats are easy to make, protein-packed, and such a fun way to use up summer zucchini! Choose your buffalo spice level and enjoy the perfect weeknight meal.

Course Dinner, Gluten Free, Lunch, Vegetarian
Cuisine American
Keyword buffalo mac and cheese stuffed zucchini, mac and cheese stuffed zucchini, mac and cheese zucchini boats
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 620 kcal
Author Monique Volz of AmbitiousKitchen.com


  • For the zucchini boats:
  • Olive oil
  • 4 medium zucchini, sliced in half lengthwise (look for zucchini that is similar in size)
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper
  • For the buffalo mac and cheese:
  • 8 ounces dry elbow noodles
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour (or sub whole wheat or GF all purpose flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 3/4 cups unsweetened cashew milk, almond milk or regular milk
  • 6 oz sharp cheddar cheese (about 1 ½ heaping cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese off the block)
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup medium to hot buffalo sauce
  • For topping:
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • For garnish:
  • Sliced green onion


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch pan with olive oil or line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using a spoon, scoop centers from zucchini while leaving a 1/4-inch rim to create boats. Place zucchini in the greased pan; they should snuggle pretty tightly in there, but if you can’t fit them all in, you can use two pans. Brush zucchini with a little olive oil (about 1 tablespoon or so). You can also simply spray them with an all natural oil-only cooking spray. Generously season with salt and pepper.
  3. Boil the noodles in a large pot until al dente, according to the directions on the package. Once done cooking, drain and return noodles to the large pot.
  4. While the noodles are boiling, make your mac and cheese sauce: in a medium pot or skillet, add butter and place over medium heat. Once butter is melted, whisk in a little bit of the flour and then slowly add in milk, a little bit at a time, alternating with the flour and vigorously whisking away any lumps. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for a few minutes stirring every so often, until the sauce thickens up a bit. Stir in garlic powder, onion powder, salt and LOTS of freshly ground black pepper.
  5. Next add in 1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese to the sauce and stir until completely melted. Pour the cheese sauce over the noodles, then add in buffalo sauce. Stir to completely coat the noodles.
  6. Spoon mac and cheese evenly into zucchini boats. Cover with foil, and bake for 20 minutes or until zucchini is slightly fork tender.
  7. Remove from oven and top each with 1 tablespoon of shredded cheddar cheese. In a small bowl, mix breadcrumbs with melted butter. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture on top of zucchini boats. Bake for 5-10 more minutes until breadcrumbs become slightly golden. Garnish with green onion before serving and drizzle with some ranch or bleu cheese dressing, if desired. Serves 4; 2 boats per person.

Recipe Notes

Feel free to serve these with a drizzle of ranch or bleu cheese dressing if you’d like. You can also omit.

If you don’t want these spicy, simply leave out the buffalo sauce! They’ll still be delish as regular mac and cheese stuffed zucchini boats.

See the full post for ways to customize, plus storing instructions.

Nutrition Facts
Buffalo Mac and Cheese Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Amount Per Serving (2 zucchini boats)
Calories 620 Calories from Fat 275
% Daily Value*
Fat 30.6g47%
Saturated Fat 16.4g103%
Carbohydrates 62.2g21%
Fiber 4.3g18%
Sugar 7.1g8%
Protein 24.5g49%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.