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stuffed vegetables in a dish

Stuffed vegetables

  • Author: Amélie
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main course
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: French


Stuffed vegetables are French comfort food at its best! The vegetables are stuffed with the most delicious meat stuffing, topped with breadcrumbs, and baked until juicy and tender. 


  • 4 large tomatoes
  • 1 medium-sized zucchini
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 3 tsp fine sea salt (and more to salt the hollowed-out vegetables)
  • 1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
  • 85g crustless stale white bread (3 oz)
  • 180ml whole milk (¾ cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 large onion
  • 5 parsley sprigs
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 250g ground beef, not lean (9 oz or ½ lb)
  • 100g ground pork sausage (3.5 oz or ¼ lb)
  • 100g ground veal (3.5 oz or ¼ lb), or replace with ground chicken/turkey or more ground beef
  • 8 tsp dried breadcrumbs
  • 30g butter (2 tbsp)


  1. Prepare the tomatoes and the zucchini. Slice off the tops of the tomatoes and discard them. With a small sharp knife, cut all along the inside of the tomatoes, trying not to pierce the bottom. Remove the tomato flesh and set it aside. If there are tomato seeds or juice left in the tomatoes, pour them into the sink or a bowl and discard them. Trim the ends off the zucchini and cut it in half lengthwise. Then cut into half widths so that you will have 4 pieces of zucchini. Remove the zucchini flesh with the small knife, leaving a 1cm (½ in) border, trying not to pierce the bottom. Set the flesh aside. Salt the cavities of the tomatoes and zucchini. Place them on several layers of paper towels cut side down. 


  2. Cook the flesh. Chop the tomato and zucchini flesh and place into a medium-sized non-stick pan. Add the bay leaves, 1 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tsp of fine sea salt, and ½ tsp of black pepper. Stir with a wooden spoon and place over medium-high heat. Cook for 20 min, stirring from time to time to prevent catching. Grease the largest roasting pan or baking dish you have with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Spread the stewed vegetables at the bottom and discard the bay leaves.


  3. Make the stuffing. Roughly cut the bread into big chunks and place them in a bowl. Pour the milk over it and set aside for now. Peel the garlic cloves, finely dice them, and set aside. Peel the onion and finely chop it. Heat a medium-sized non-stick pan over medium-low heat. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and once hot add the chopped onion. Cook for 8 min, stirring from time to time, until translucent. Stir in the garlic and cook for 2 min. Tip the content of the pan into a large mixing bowl. Pick the leaves from the parsley sprigs and discard the sprigs. Finely chop the leaves and add them to the mixing bowl. Squeeze out the milk from the bread chunk and pour the excess milk into the sink. Mash the bread with your fingers or a fork and add to the mixing bowl. Add the meat and the egg to the mixing bowl and season with 2 tsp of fine sea salt and ½ tsp of black pepper. Mix the stuffing thoroughly by hand for 3 min, until everything is well combined.


  4. Stuff and bake. Preheat the oven to 200°C (390°F). Place the hollowed-out tomatoes and zucchini boats in the roasting pan, spacing them well apart if you have the room. Generously stuff the tomatoes and zucchini boats. Top each stuffed vegetable with 1 tsp of breadcrumbs and a knob of butter. Bake the stuffed vegetables in the middle of the oven for 45 min.  The vegetables will release some juice while cooking but check towards the end that the bottom of your pan isn’t too dry, if so you can add a splash of water. If the stuffed vegetables are browning too much for your liking, you can cover them loosely with aluminum foil. Once cooked, remove the pan from the oven and wait for 10 min before serving the stuffed vegetables. Don’t forget the stewed caramelized vegetables in the pan, they are very tasty.


You can keep leftover stuffed vegetables in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.


  • Serving Size: 1 serving
  • Calories: 583

Keywords: baked stuffed tomatoes, farcies, classic french dishes