It's summer picnic season and on our weekly What's Cookin'? segment, we're always looking for tasty and inventive recipes that are fun to make and are perfect for the adults and kids in your life.

Kelly Bland, from the UK Cooperative Extension Office here in Daviess County, is serving up one of those recipes.  In fact, if you have kids, they're probably going to want to throw on an apron and help you out in the kitchen.

Here's how to make Zubeanie Boats!

ZUBEANIE BOATS

Nonstick cooking spray
4 medium to large zucchini, cut in half lengthwise
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup diced green onions
2 tablespoons olive oil (or other oil)
1 cup cooked brown rice
1 (15-ounce) can low-sodium black
beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 cup corn (canned, cooked from frozen, or fresh)
1/2 cup salsa
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
Salt and pepper (a pinch of each)
1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese, divided

Igor Osinchuk/Unplash
Igor Osinchuk/Unplash
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DIRECTIONS:

1. Wash hands with warm water and soap, scrubbing for at least 20 seconds.

2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.

3. Gently scrub zucchini and bell pepper with a clean vegetable brush under cool, running water. Rinse green onions. Prepare vegetables as listed above.

4. Scoop the flesh out of the zucchini halves.Tip: First, score the zucchini flesh with a knife or a spoon, then use a spoon to scoop out the flesh. Dice about a cup of the flesh to use for the filling.

Tip: Use leftover zucchini flesh for other dishes, such as soup, stir-fry, or casseroles. You can also freeze it to use later.

5. Place zucchini halves upside down (skin-side up) on oiled baking sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven and turn the boats over.

6. While zucchini is baking, heat the olive oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Add the red pepper, green onions, and zucchini flesh. Stir until tender about 3 to 5 minutes.

7. Add rice, black beans, corn, salsa, taco seasoning, and a pinch of salt and pepper to the skillet and cook another minute until heated through. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese. Reserve 1/4 cup of cheese to top zucchini boats.

8. Evenly distribute the filling mixture between the zucchini boats. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top. Return the filled boats to the oven and bake for 10 to 12 more minutes, until cheese is melted.

9. Store leftovers in the refrigerator within 2 hours.

The great thing about recipes developed by UK Cooperative Extension is that they're designed to be healthy and delicious AND to feed a lot of mouths for cheap.  That's certainly the case with this Zubeanie Boat recipe.  It makes eight servings and a serving is one zucchini boat (half of a whole zucchini).  The cost for the entire recipe is $9.56.  That makes the cost per zubeanie boat just $1.

Here are some additional Zucchini Boat recipes:

 

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