Lebanese Stuffed Kousa
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4.36 from 14 votes

Lebanese Stuffed Kusa Squash

The meat and rice mixture is flavored with garlic and dried mint to give it tons of added flavor.
Course Entree
Cuisine Lebanese
Keyword kusa, stuffed squash
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 392kcal
Author Liz Della Croce


  • 8 small/medium kousas
  • 20 ounces tomato juice or tomato paste mixed with water
  • 1 pound ground sirloin
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic grated
  • 2 tablespoon dried mint
  • 2 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Plain yogurt to serve


  • To hollow out the kousa, trim off to top and use an zucchini core to slowly remove the inside of the squash. Be careful not to poke through the bottom or the sides. Once the squash is hallowed out, set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, combine beef, rinsed uncoked rice, salt and pepper. Add half of the garlic (3 grated cloves) and half of the mint (1 tbs) to the meat mixture and combine.
  • Before you start stuffing the squash, place the tomato juice or tomato paste/water mixture in a large pot and heat in medium high until boiling.
  • While tomato juice is heating up, begin stuffing the kousa, careful to leave about 1 1/2 in at the top which leaves room for the to expand. If you have left over meat mixture, simply roll them into little meatballs and add to the tomato broth.
  • When tomato juice has come to a boil, add the remaining mint and garlic (1/2 tbs and 3 cloves) as well as the lemon juice. 
  • If you used tomato paste/water, add salt and pepper to the broth to taste.
  • Gently add in the stuffed kousa. Bring to a boil then turn to low and simmer for 35 minutes. The meatballs are the perfect way to see if the rice is fully cooked.
  • Serve in a bowl with plain yogurt on the side. 



Calories: 392kcal | Carbohydrates: 51.8g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 5.9g | Saturated Fat: 1.9g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 684mg | Fiber: 8.8g