Delicious, low in carbs, high in nutrients, and super versatile, zucchini is undoubtedly a must-have and must-cook summer squash. Whether you are looking to add more plant-based options to your diet or simply wish to experiment with new flavors and ingredients, this vegetable will fit any and every profile.
Grill it, roast it, or sauté it, this summer squash tastes great by itself, but you can completely elevate the flavor by pairing zucchini with different proteins and other vegetables in numerous creative ways.
That’s the best part about this vegetable – there are so many amazing ways to cook with zucchini and feature this summer favorite in a variety of recipes and dishes.
When it comes to vegetables like zucchini, there are a few basic ways to cook them, but what sets the method apart is how you use the vegetable in different recipes and what you pair it with.
Some simple ways to cook with zucchini include the following.
Steaming is an excellent way to leave the zucchini crisper and full of flavor as compared to boiling.
Simply bring a pot of water to boil. Cut your zucchini lengthwise into quarters and trim the ends. Take a steamer basket, add the zucchini in it with some garlic cloves and place it on top of the pot of boiling water. Let it steam for about 10-15 minutes, transfer it to a clean bowl, drizzle some olive oil on top and mix well together.
Sautéing allows vegetables to caramelize and achieve a really mild, sweet taste, which works so well with zucchini.
Take a large skillet, place it over medium heat, and add some olive oil. Add chopped garlic, zucchini cut into rounds, and a pinch of dried oregano. Cook until the zucchini is tender and in the end, season it with salt and pepper.
Broiling is quite a speedy cooking method for vegetables and keeps their insides on the crispier end.
To broil zucchini, remove its ends, cut it lengthwise and arrange the pieces on a greased baking tray. Pour some oil or melted butter on top, sprinkle grated parmesan cheese, and a pinch of paprika. Broil it in the oven until it’s half cooked and still has a nice crunch to it. It should be cooked al-dente, just like how you boil your pasta.
Delicious Zucchini Recipes
Zucchini is such an amazingly versatile vegetable that you can cook however you want and eat it with your choice of sides and condiments.
While there are numerous incredible zucchini recipes out there, here are two of the most fun and delicious ones that you ought to try.
Zucchini Loaf With Sesame
For times when you have extra zucchini lying around in your fridge, one of the best ways to utilize it is making a loaf out of it! While that may sound weird to some people, once you experience the unique taste, you will probably find yourself going for second helpings!
Moist and delicious, this zucchini loaf with sesame and walnuts is a great addition to your breakfast or even your evening tea.
- All-purpose flour – 2 cups
- Coarsely grated zucchini – 2½ cups
- Toasted and chopped walnuts – 1 cup
- Eggs – 2
- Brown sugar – ½ cup
- Granulated sugar – ½ cup
- Olive oil – 2/3 cup
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Lemon – 1
- Sesame seeds – 2 tbsp.
- Baking powder – 2½ tsp
- Oil two 6×12 inch loaf pans with olive oil.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Whisk salt, flour, and baking powder together in a bowl.
- Mix the brown sugar and granulated sugar in another bowl and add some grated lemon zest.
- Add the oil and eggs, and whisk until well combined.
- Add in the grated zucchini, the flour mixture you prepared earlier, and then gently fold in the chopped walnuts.
- Take the oiled loaf pans, divide the batter between both of them equally, sprinkle some sesame seeds on top and let it bake for about 40 minutes.
- Allow it to cool on wire racks and enjoy!
Zoodles (Zucchini Noodles) with Turkey Meatballs
Zoodles have to be one of the most popular ways to cook with zucchini given how they are so light and offer such a great replacement for your usual pasta cravings.
Zucchini noodles with turkey meatballs is a classic pairing option, but you can pair it with literally anything you want, such as a creamy avocado dressing, crispy tofu, sesame peanut sauce, green garlic beans, and so much more.
- Ground turkey – 1 lb.
- Egg – 1
- Dry breadcrumbs – ¼ cup
- Grated parmesan cheese – 1 cup
- Chopped garlic cloves – 2
- Chopped fresh parsley – 3 tbsp.
- Salt – as per taste
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil – 2 tbsp.
- Marinara sauce – 3 cups
- Zucchini – 4
- Cut the zucchini into noodles with a julienne peeler or a spiralizer.
- Take a medium bowl and combine the turkey, egg, parsley, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, and chopped garlic.
- Mix well and then form 2-inch meatballs.
- In a large skillet, heat some olive oil and cook the meatballs until they are brown on all sides.
- Stir in the marinara sauce and let it cook for about 15 minutes until the sauce achieves a thick consistency and the meatballs are perfectly cooked through.
- In another pan, add the zoodles, drizzle some olive oil and cook it over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes until the zucchini is tender.
- Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top of the meatballs and let it melt for a few minutes until it turns a brown-gold color.
- Dish out the zoodles onto a serving plate, top it with the meatball gravy and sprinkle some grated parmesan.
Are You Ready to Give Zucchini A Creative Spin?
Even if you aren’t a zucchini fan, the chances are that once you experiment and try the different ways to cook with zucchini and feature it in your lunches and dinners, you will actually enjoy it.
So, are you ready to give this summer squash your own creative spin?