Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats

Embark on a delightful culinary journey with Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats, a savory masterpiece that combines the wholesome goodness of ground turkey, vibrant vegetables, and aromatic spices. These eggplant boats are not only a feast for the eyes but also a satisfying and healthy option for those seeking a flavorful twist on traditional stuffed vegetables. Join us as we explore the ingredients, guide you through the step-by-step instructions, share cook notes and variations, and even unveil keto and low-carb versions. Let’s set sail on a flavorful adventure with Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats!


For the Eggplant Boats:

  • 2 large eggplants, halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Turkey Filling:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced (choose your favorite color)
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (for topping)
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)


  1. Preheat the Oven: Begin by preheating your oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Prepare the Eggplant: Score the flesh of each eggplant half in a crisscross pattern. Brush the cut sides with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Place them on a baking sheet, cut side up.
  3. Roast the Eggplant: Roast the eggplants in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the flesh is tender and easily pierced with a fork. Remove from the oven and let them cool slightly.
  4. Scoop Out the Flesh: Using a spoon, carefully scoop out the flesh of the roasted eggplants, leaving about a 1/2-inch border. Chop the scooped-out eggplant and set aside.
  5. Prepare the Turkey Filling: In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the ground turkey until browned. Add the diced onion, minced garlic, bell pepper, and zucchini. Cook until the vegetables are softened.
  6. Season the Filling: Add ground cumin, paprika, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper to the skillet. Stir well to combine.
  7. Incorporate Diced Tomatoes and Eggplant: Fold in the drained diced tomatoes and the chopped eggplant flesh. Cook for an additional 5-7 minutes until the flavors meld.
  8. Stuff the Eggplant Boats: Spoon the turkey filling into the hollowed-out eggplant boats, distributing it evenly among them.
  9. Top with Cheese: Sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese over each stuffed eggplant boat, creating a cheesy topping.
  10. Bake to Perfection: Return the eggplants to the oven and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  11. Garnish and Serve: Remove from the oven and sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley. Serve the Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats warm.

Cook Notes

  • Choosing Eggplants: Look for eggplants that are firm, with a smooth and shiny skin. Smaller eggplants tend to have fewer seeds and a milder flavor.
  • Draining Diced Tomatoes: Ensure the diced tomatoes are well-drained to prevent excess moisture in the turkey filling.
  • Creative Cheese Choices: Experiment with different cheese varieties like feta, Parmesan, or goat cheese for a personalized touch.


1. Mediterranean Twist:

Enhance the flavors with a Mediterranean flair by adding Kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, and crumbled feta cheese to the turkey filling.

2. Tex-Mex Fusion:

Infuse a bit of Tex-Mex excitement by incorporating black beans, corn, and a sprinkle of taco seasoning into the turkey mixture.

3. Cauliflower Rice Upgrade:

For a low-carb option, substitute part of the ground turkey with cauliflower rice to increase vegetable content.

Keto Versions

For those on the keto path, consider these modifications:

  • Almond Flour Topping: Instead of breadcrumbs, top the stuffed eggplants with a mixture of almond flour and Parmesan for a keto-friendly crunch.
  • Keto Cheese Blend: Use a blend of keto-friendly cheeses like cheddar, mozzarella, and cream cheese for the topping.
  • Avocado Garnish: Slice avocado and use it as a garnish to add a creamy texture and healthy fats.

Low-Carb Version

To cater to low-carb preferences, make these adjustments:

  • Cauliflower Rice Base: Replace the ground turkey with cauliflower rice or a combination of cauliflower rice and ground meat.
  • Reduce Tomato Content: Decrease the amount of diced tomatoes or use cherry tomatoes for a lower-carb option.
  • Herb Infusion: Introduce fresh herbs like basil, thyme, or rosemary to enhance flavors without added carbs.

The Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats present a symphony of flavors and textures that will captivate your palate. From the roasted tenderness of the eggplants to the savory goodness of the turkey filling, each bite is a journey into culinary bliss. Whether you follow the classic recipe, explore variations, or opt for keto and low-carb adaptations, these stuffed eggplants are a wholesome and satisfying option for any occasion. So, set sail on this culinary adventure, experiment with your favorite flavors, and relish the delightful experience of Turkey Stuffed Eggplant Boats. Bon appétit!

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