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Zucchini Rolls - Healthy Pigs in a Blanket
These were delicious. I love crescent bread rolls with cheese and meat inside (yes, kind of like a fancy pigs-in-a-blanket). Since my husband and I are cutting down on the amount of flour and grains we eat, I decided to try an alternative to those yummy crescent rolls. After looking around online, I got this idea and modified it just a bit. These make for a fun combination of a fancier look but are still fairly simple to make. The hardest thing for me was slicing the zucchini. If you have a mandolin to slice them, then this recipe just became a whole lot more fast and easy. Even if you don't have one, you can slice them yourself. If you have a few mishaps while doing so, I will show you a great way to serve them anyway.
If you are looking for appetizer bites, a side, or even a main dish, these can be used for a variety of purposes when serving and are a tasty alternative to bread rolls! Here is what I did.
Take ground beef, mix in salt and pepper into it, and shape it into small sausage-like shapes. Using a skillet with grill ridges, cook the beef along with a few large slices of onion. While the beef is cooking, prepare the zucchini.
Slice the zucchini long-ways into thin strips. Use a mandolin slicer if you have one. If you don't, you can still slice them using a knife.
As the meat is nearly finished cooking, begin adding in slices of zucchini to the same pan to begin cooking. You may need to add a bit of olive oil to the pan to keep the zucchini from sticking. Season it with salt and pepper, and don't forget to season the other side when you turn them over!
As the meat, onions, and zucchini are finished cooking, pull them off the skillet and set them on a plate to cool. Once cooled, spread pesto (I made my own modified version, but you could use regular also) across the zucchini. Set a piece of meat and an onion toward the end of a zucchini slice and roll it up! Secure it with a toothpick.
If you were slicing the zucchini by hand, don't fret if all of your slices did not turn out even. If you had some that were too short or too thick, you can simply spread the pesto over them and set the onions and meat on top to eat with a fork and knife. It gives it a different look, but is delicious nonetheless. It's also handy to use the slices with a lot of skin on them to do this since they do not roll as easily.
- 3 Medium Zucchini, Sliced thin
- 1/4 lb Ground Beef
- 1/4 Onion, Sliced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Note: You'll also need toothpicks.
- Mix salt and pepper into uncooked ground beef. Shape the meat into small sausage-shaped links and place them in a skillet. Add in onions and brown.
- Slice the zucchini into strips using a mandolin slicer or a knife if you don't have one. As the meat is nearly finished cooking, add in the zucchini to the same pan. Season the zucchini on both sides with salt and pepper. You may need to add olive oil to the pan to keep the zucchini from sticking.
- Once they are finished cooking, remove the onions, meat, and zucchini from the skillet. Allow them to cool on a plate.
- Spread pesto over zucchini evenly. Then, take a piece of meat and an onion and place on zucchini to roll up. Use a toothpick to secure it.
Did You Know?
Did you know that zucchini is a good source of potassium and Vitamin C? It also has a low calorie count (well, before you add things like pesto...). Check out these nutrition facts for zucchini.
Zucchini Nutrition Facts
|Serving size: 1 medium (196 g)|
|Calories from Fat||0|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 0 g|
|Saturated fat 1 g||5%|
|Carbohydrates 2 g||1%|
|Fiber 8 g||32%|
|Protein 4 g||8%|
|Cholesterol 0 mg|
|Sodium 0 mg|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
Vitamins in Zucchini
- Vitamin A: 7%
- Calcium: 3%
- Vitamin B-6: 15%
- Magnesium: 8%
- Vitamin C: 58%
- Iron: 3%
- Vitamin B-12: 0%
These percent daily values are also based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie need.