Mellas Family Lamb Stuffed Zucchini (Koosa)


This recipe is a great way to use up that giant zucchini lurking in your garden. Early-season squash are best, as the skin is tender and the flesh is delicate. Older zucchini still taste great, you just may not be able to eat the skin.

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs 25 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 55 mins
4 servings


  • 2 large zucchini

  • 1 (28 ounce) can chopped tomatoes with juice

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • ¾ cup water

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • ½ cup chopped onion

  • 1 pound ground lamb

  • ¾ cup basmati rice

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • ½ cup water

  • 2 tablespoons dried mint

  • 2 teaspoons salt


  1. Cut each zucchini in half and use a thin, sharp knife to hollow out each section, removing the seeds and leaving a round 1/2 inch shell.

  2. Combine tomatoes with juice, tomato paste, 3/4 cup water, and cinnamon in a large, oven-safe Dutch oven. Bring to a simmer over medium heat; cook until thick, about 20 minutes.

  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a small skillet. Stir in onion; cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Combine cooked onion, lamb, rice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 cup water, dried mint, and salt in a large bowl. Mix well. Lightly stuff lamb mixture into hollowed out zucchini sections. Place stuffed zucchini in simmering tomato sauce.

  4. Cover pot and place in preheated oven. Cook until the rice is soft, about 1 hour. If sauce is very thin, simmer on the stove top until desired consistency. To serve, slice into 1 inch rounds and top with tomato sauce.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

511 Calories
27g Fat
45g Carbs
26g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 511
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 27g 34%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 76mg 25%
Sodium 1593mg 69%
Total Carbohydrate 45g 16%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 26g
Vitamin C 49mg 245%
Calcium 129mg 10%
Iron 5mg 28%
Potassium 1186mg 25%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.