3rd January 2022 All Posts Sustainability in the Early Years

Meat-Free Monday – Meatless Meatball Courgette Boats


Sustainable living is something we are trying to promote at Connect Childcare in 2022, and as part of our efforts, finding recipes that are more sustainable for our planet is a project we are excited to share!

Eating less meat in our diets is a great way to be more sustainable, and that’s why we will be sharing Meat-Free Monday recipes suitable for the whole family, to promote healthy eating in ourselves and our children. By creating tasty meals that are affordable and easy to prepare, you have the chance to find some new family favourites and even get the children involved in cooking and understanding where their food comes from.

As well as sharing our delicious recipes on the blog, we will also be sharing reels and Tik Tok videos to show you how to make them step by step! If you aren’t already following us on those channels, you can find our Instagram and Tik Tok here! Plus, if you like saving recipes and ideas for later, make sure you follow us on Pinterest.

Our first edition is hearty, healthy, full of flavour, and easy to prepare. Enjoy!

*Although we are a childcare company, we’re sharing these recipes to our adult audience. If you are cooking for children, there are some foods which you should avoid giving babies and young children. Find out more on the NHS website and adapt your recipes accordingly.

Meatless Courgette Meatball Boats

4 Servings       Prep Time:  45 minutes


400g Meatless Farm mince (or your favourite meat free mince)
1 tbsp vegetarian parmesan cheese
1 tbsp chopped basil
1 egg (or 1 chia egg = 1 tbsp chia seeds and 1 tbsp water)
Salt and pepper
250ml tomato sauce (my recipe is here)
2 large courgettes
1 tbsp mixed herbs
1 tbsp chilli flakes
Olive oil
Cheddar cheese for topping
Salad to serve


1. Mix your meatless mince, parmesan cheese, basil, and egg in a bowl until combined. Season with salt and pepper. 

2. Roll into small balls, approximately 16. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. 

3. Cut the tops off your courgettes and slice lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon to make boats. Add to a roasting dish. Season with salt and pepper, chilli flakes, mixed herbs, and drizzle with olive oil. 

4. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 

5. Once the meatballs have chilled, heat up a frying pan with some olive oil and pan fry on each side until crispy and golden brown. 

6. Remove your courgettes from the oven, spoon in some sauce, add your meatballs, and spoon some extra sauce over the top. Reserve some sauce for the plate. 

7. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese and place under the grill for 5-10 minutes until bubbling.

Heat your remaining sauce and add it to your plate. Place a courgette boat on top, and serve with a fresh salad.

Are you a nursery chef or cook? We would love to share more recipes for children’s meals! Email me at marketing@connectchildcare.com to share your favourite family recipes!

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About the Author

Imogen is our Content and Social Media creative