To Ukrainians, eating perogies is second nature. I honestly can’t ever remember a meal at Baba’s that didn’t include perogies. And that’s okay when you’re a kid, but as a health-conscious adult, pierogies at every meal aren’t exactly the healthiest of choices. I am Ukrainian, grew up on perogies, and love anything remotely related to a perogy! And since perogies (and Ukrainian food in general) aren't particularly healthy, I created these Weight Watchers friendly Potato Pierogi Zucchini Boats.
These Weight Watchers Zucchini Boats are not only delicious, but these Potato Stuffed Zucchini are healthy, gluten-free and only 2 WW points each! This is the healthiest and best way to get your perogy fix and a fun twist on your typical stuffed zucchini! And if you're just looking for ideas for what to do with leftover pierogi filling, this is a great way to use it up. This recipe was inspired by the Potato and Cottage Cheese Perogies recipe on this site and is popular during zucchini season! This recipe also inspired my Buffalo Chicken Zucchini Boats.
I am always in search of healthy and delicious, easy recipes and recently discovered easy stuffed zucchini boats. I fell in love with them. And since I like to create, modernize, and make Ukrainian foods healthier, perogies and zucchini boats just seemed like the perfect pairing. Your leftover mashed potatoes can also do double duty in this recipe. But if you don't have any, you can easily use the gluten-free instant mashed potatoes in the ingredient links.
For this low-carb recipe, you'll need a handful of simple ingredients:
- fresh zucchini
- mashed potatoes
- dry curd cottage cheese (also known as Farmer's cheese)
- low-fat cheddar cheese
- onion powder
- bacon bits
- dill (fresh or dried)
- sour cream (optional)
- Optional Garnish: light parmesan cheese
*See recipe card for quantities
📖 Variations & Substitutions
- Cheese, Sour Cream & Milk, and Margarine (in potatoes) :I used reduced fat/low-fat versions of all of these to reduce fat and calories in this recipe and make them Weight Watchers friendly
- Vegetarian option: Skip the bacon bits
- Mashed potatoes: You can use leftover mashed potatoes or instant mashed potatoes (affiliate link) or your own leftover cottage cheese perogy filling
- Dill: If you use fresh dill, use double the amount
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F./205 degrees C. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with non- stick cooking spray. (*Alternatively, you can use olive oil, but it's more calories. You could also line the pan with parchment paper.) Prepare mashed potatoes, as per package directions. Cool. NOTE * use low-fat milk and margarine to reduce calories. Add remaining filling ingredients. Wash and cut the zucchini in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop the seeds and zucchini flesh center out of each zucchini half, leaving at least ¼ inch thick zucchini boat. You can discard the scooped zucchini flesh.
- Place the zucchini in the baking dish cut-side up.
- Spoon the perogy potato mixture into the zucchini shells. Press the mixture down into the zucchini using the back of the spoon.
- Cover the baking dish with foil. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until soft enough that fork can easily go into zucchini, but is still firm. Garnish: If desired, add a dollop of sour cream, sprinkle with dill, and serve.
You'll need a 9X13-inch baking dish (at least 2 inches deep) for this zucchini with potatoes recipe. I usually use a lasagna pan. (affiliate link). Alternatively, you can use a baking sheet.
👪 Serving Size
This delicious stuffed zucchini recipe is 8 servings. However, you can half, double, or triple the recipe by clicking on the blue serving number and selecting the number of servings you'd like. The ingredient quantities will automatically adjust.
This is a Weight Watchers zucchini boats recipe and it's only 2 WW points per serving. If I use instant mashed potatoes and add in milk and margarine, I add those points as well.
🥗 Side dishes
If you're not sure what to serve with zucchini boats, here are some ideas for side dishes with work well with this recipe (you can also serve them as a side dish!)
- Ukrainian Shortcut Borscht Soup (shown below)
- Quick Cucumber Kimchi
- garden salad
- Spinach salad
- sliced fresh tomatoes
- Skinny Coleslaw Recipe
- frozen mixed vegetables
- Grilled Corn Stuffed Bell Peppers
- sweet corn (try my Healthy Corn Chowder)
And be sure to check out my 35 Recipe ideas for what to serve with stuffed zucchini!
💭Health Benefits of Zucchini
The New Year brings new health goals and if you are hoping to start off on the right foot, then zucchini is a great recipe because it's low-calorie and chock-full of vitamins and minerals.
A zucchini has just 25 calories, compared to a baked potato, which has 130 calories! (You can read more about the benefits of zucchini HERE.
And if you love healthy zucchini recipes, give my 5 Ingredient Shredded Zucchini & Feta Saute a try!
These low-calorie zucchini boats can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days, then reheated in the microwave for approximately 1 minute.
Make ahead: If you want to make this pierogi boat recipe ahead, I recommend you prepare the zucchini and stuffing mix a day in advance, then store them in separate containers until you are ready to cook them.
I do not recommend freezing this stuffed zucchini, as both potatoes and zucchini tend to get watery when frozen. If you have an abundance of zucchini, I would recommend Shredding and freezing it for future use.
I know these easily stuffed zucchini boats would make Baba proud, although she wasn't exactly health-conscious herself. She didn't eat very healthy or exercise. She also had a plethora of health concerns, including diabetes, and passed away after having a stroke at the young age of 66 (when I was only 12 years old). I am assuming she would have eaten healthier if she had known what we know now.
Either way, I want to be around for my grandchildren as long as possible so I try to eat healthy and although it's no guarantee, it definitely increases the odds. And since longevity is said to be ⅓ lifestyle, ⅓ genetics, and ⅓ dumb luck, it's the one thing I can control!
I didn’t get my Baba's perogy recipe (or any of her recipes) but I was ever so fortunate to get my husband's grandma's incredible Cottage Cheese and Potato Perogies Recipe!
Not only did we have her authentic recipe, but we also had the opportunity to watch her make them and write down every step! She always used dry curd cottage cheese in her perogies and that's why I use it in most of my Ukrainian recipes. You can find those Ukrainian recipes HERE!
As for my recipes, I am doing everything I can to preserve them. That's one of the reasons I started this blog. Not only do I want to eat healthy so I can increase my odds of living longer to enjoy my future grandchildren, but I also want to make sure my recipes live on so they can enjoy making them!
What to do with leftover Dry Cottage Cheese
You will have some leftover Dry Curd Cottage Cheese (see NOTES) so here are a few other recipes you can make to use it up!
Whether you're looking for potato stuffed zucchini ideas, healthy stuffed zucchini boats, ww zucchini recipes, stuffed zucchini recipes, zucchini boat ideas, or simply new recipes to try, this recipe doesn't disappoint!
📋 Healthy Potato Pierogi Zucchini Boat Recipe
- 4 medium or large zucchini about 1¾ pounds
- ½ 180 g package Gluten-free instant mashed potatoes * or use your leftover mashed potatoes
- 1 cup dry curd cottage cheese *also known as Farmer's cheese
- ½ cup low-fat cheddar cheese shredded
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ cup real bacon bits *make sure they are gluten-free (not all brands are)
- ¼ cup sauerkraut drained, patted dry and finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon dried dill *2 teaspoon fresh dill
- dollop sour cream
- dill *fresh is best
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F/205 degrees C. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with non- stick cooking spray. Prepare mashed potatoes, as per package directions. Cool. NOTE * use a low-fat milk and margarine to reduce calories. Add remaining filling ingredients.
- Wash and cut the zucchini in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop the seeds and centre out of each zucchini half, leaving at least ¼ inch thick zucchini boat.
- Place the zucchini in the baking dish cut-side up.
- Spoon the perogy filling mixture into the zucchini boats. Press the mixture down into the zucchini using the back of the spoon.
- Cover the baking dish with foil. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until soft enough that fork can easily go into zucchini, but is still firm.
- If desired, add a dollop of sour cream, sprinkle with dill and serve.