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Preserve Your Harvest,  Seasonal Recipes

13 Must-Try Zucchini Recipes: Clever Ways to Use Zucchini

Last Updated on September 21, 2023

Are you growing zucchini, but also growing tired of eating it? Or are you simply looking for some interesting and different ways to use zucchini? Then this post full of zucchini recipes is for you!

I love zucchini and summer squash, but it can admittedly get a bit boring if it’s prepared the same few ways all summer long. It can also become overwhelming if your garden is pumping out pounds and pounds of it. Yet with its mild flavor and texture, zucchini is one of the most versatile veggies out there! You just have to be creative. So, read along and get inspired to try something new with 13 delicious vegetarian and vegan zucchini recipe ideas.

Need tips on successfully growing your own zucchini? Pop over to our summer squash grow guide once you’re finished browsing here!

Ways to Prepare Zucchini 

Before we jump into the recipes, let’s quickly discuss some ways you can prepare and use zucchini in general. After all, we honestly don’t follow exact recipes all that often. Perhaps you’re the same?

Our go-to way to eat zucchini is lightly sautéed or stir-fried with olive oil or butter, salt, pepper, and some garlic or onion (and usually other seasonal veggies too). The key is to not overcook it so it doesn’t become mush. Zucchini is also wonderful grilled, either cut into rounds and added to a skewer or long slices right on the grill. I also really enjoy raw zucchini, such as sliced and served with dips, or turned into zoodles for a cold zucchini salad. Of course it can also be baked or roasted as well.

One awesome way to use up a lot of zucchini is to add it to soups. We make large batches of veggie-loaded soups all year long, and freeze extras in these reusable BPA-free quart containers to enjoy as quick and easy meals later. Zucchini can also be frozen raw, prepped and ready to use in future zucchini bread, soups, stews or chili. Check out this guide for tips on freezing zucchini. 

A flat lay image containing two 8 oz. BPA free containers full of shredded squash and a cookie sheet lined with squash slices. Below lies the silicon bag full of squash chunks. Accenting the prepared squash are random grates of zucchini, slices of zucchini, as well as stem pieces from the squash.
Zucchini ready for the freezer. We love using these silicone food storage bags and these reusable BPA free freezer containers. The chunks are perfect to add to future soup, stew or chili, while the grated bits are prepped and ready for baked goods!

13 Zucchini Recipe Ideas

1) Zoodles with Pesto

Of all the zucchini recipes on the list, we eat this one the most often. Zoodles are a fantastic low-carb alternative to pasta (Type 1 diabetic here), and with the assistance of a spiralizer, are very quick and easy to prepare! You can substitute zoodles in any recipe that calls for noodles, and enjoy them raw or cooked. 

Zucchini noodles are excellent with classic tomato sauce, as a cold salad with nuts, green onion, grated carrots and an Asian-style dressing, or our personal favorite: zoodles served with garden pesto, fresh tomatoes, black beans (because protein), and sourdough focaccia.

Learn how to make the perfect zoodles with pesto here! 

A white ceramic plate filled to the edges with cooked zucchini noodles topped with fresh pesto, black beans, red and yellow tomatoes and a garnish of basil with two slices of focaccia nestled against the edges of the noodles. When you have too much zucchini to use fresh, remember to freeze zucchini as well.

2) Zucchini “Ravioli” 

Y’all know Half Baked Harvest, right? Teighan’s recipes always look fantastically scrumptious, and these pesto-stuffed zucchini raviolis are no exception. Despite the name, the recipe doesn’t include any pasta. Rather, thinly-sliced zucchini becomes the “ravioli” shell to hold the creamy filling. Even without the whole tomatoes, I’d be keen on dumping some of our simple roasted tomato sauce in the dish around the raviolis instead.

A white ceramic dish that contains baked zucchini slices folded in the shape of a ravioli sitting atop cherry tomatoes. The top is garnished with fresh basil and thyme. Try different zucchini recipes to use your summer harvest in a new way.
Photo courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

3) Zucchini and Walnut Sourdough Bread

Zucchini breads are a fun and tasty way to “sneak” more veggies into your diet. And while sweet zucchini breads definitely have their place and time (next in line below), I’m all about the savory! Please enjoy our rustic zucchini and walnut sourdough bread recipe. It’s moist, fluffy, chewy, and even more nutritious than regular sourdough!

An image of slices of sourdough bread displayed showing their insides. Below the slices, there is the rest of the loaf of bread. There is a nice and brown crusty crumb showing on both the top and bottom of the slices and it is also littered with air holes, walnuts, and specks of zucchini.

4) Sweet Zucchini Breads

Looking for something on the sweeter side? You’ve gotta try our Delicious Sourdough Zucchini Bread Recipe with optional add-ins like chocolate, nuts, seeds, or dried fruit. Made with probiotic-rich sourdough starter, zero refined sugar, and whole wheat pastry flour (optional), our recipe is more nutritious than classic sweet zucchini breads. You may also like this popular chocolate zucchini bread recipe from Allrecipes. Or check out Bakertia’s chocolate chunk zucchini bread; it’s gluten-free and paleo-friendly!

A slice of sourdough zucchini bread with a tab of butter sitting in the middle of the slice on a small ceramic plate,  a small butter knife is resting on the plate. Nearby is the rest of the loaf as well as some fresh summer squash.

5) Zucchini Fritters

Here’s another one of our in-house zucchini recipes. These parmesan zucchini fritters are so fun and flavorful. Kiddos love them, and they’re even good as cold leftovers! The fritters are fluffy, moist, browned to perfection on the outside, and soft on the inside. Reminiscent of hash browns – but less carbs, and with cheese! I highly recommend serving them with our healthy dill, garlic, and lemon yogurt sauce.

Six cooked zucchini fritters are stacked one atop one another like a stack of pancakes. They are golden grown and the edges reveal a golden yellow quiche like look. The plate has been garnished with chopped chives and two wedges of lemon. A spoon is dropping in from the top of the image dropping a dollop of yogurt dill sauce on the stack. It has landed on the top fritter and has partially slid off the front side of the stack, getting sauce on the remaining fritters below.

6) Zucchini Relish

Looking to preserve some of your zucchini harvest? Try this zesty zucchini relish recipe from Binky’s Culinary Carnival. I admit we haven’t made zucchini relish ourselves (yet) but had a jar gifted from a friend – and it was SO good! Zucchini relish goes great with veggie burgers, hot dogs, mixed into deviled eggs or salads (like potato, pasta or egg salad) and other grilled summer meals. 

A white ramekin containing fresh relish is in the forefront. Beyond is a clear glass jar with the remaining relish, a small ramekin of mustard seed, and another ramekin of relish.

7) Squash Skillet Casserole

I just saw this creamy crunchy squash skillet recipe from Must Love Herbs on Instagram the other day, and knew it needed to be included in this zucchini recipe round-up. She calls it a casserole, though it instantly reminded me of au gratin potatoes (but with zucchini instead). Yum! Either way, it’s safe to say I will definitely be making this soon.

A large cast iron skillet is full of a squash casserole of sorts that has a browned bread crumb topping with a creamy white sliced squash filling. A serving has been plated on a small brown plate while squash flowers garnish the surrounding area.
Photo courtesy of Must Love Herbs

8) Stuffed Squash or “Zucchini Boats”

Squash grows really fast, and has the ability to get HUGE seemingly overnight. Overgrown squash has the tendency to get a bit seedy and tough, but that doesn’t mean it needs to go to waste. In fact, I purposely allow a few zucchini to grow extra large every season – just so we can make stuffed squash! There are dozens of recipes out there, but I hope you thoroughly enjoy our fiesta-style stuffed zucchini recipe with wild rice and black beans. It’s wonderful topped with cheese and fresh cilantro.

A close up of the final cooked stuffed squash, still in the glass baking dish and now covered in melted cheese and with fresh bright green chopped cilantro sprinkled on top

9) Zucchini Risotto with Roasted Tomatoes

My friend Jackie from the Vegan Yack Attack is making me drool over her summery zucchini risotto with roasted tomatoes. The dish is hearty, delicious and ultra-comforting. As her blog name suggests, this zucchini recipe is also vegan, though it’s easy to swap around ingredients if you prefer dairy in your risotto!

Two white ceramic bowls are full of risotto that has been garnished with roasted zucchini and tomato slices, along with fresh basil.
Photo courtesy of Vegan Yack Attack

10) Air Fryer Zucchini Chips

We tried to make zucchini chips in our food dehydrator once, and they didn’t get crisp enough for my liking. On the other hand, these air fryer zucchini chips from Michelle at Healthier Steps look super crispy – and delicious! They’re lightly breaded, perfectly seasoned, vegan, low-carb, paleo and gluten-free! Or if you’re into a more classic option, try these zucchini chips complete with parmesan cheese, panko breadcrumbs and a sour cream dip. 

A baking sheet is full of baked zucchini chips that have been browned to perfection. A bowl containing sour cream dip sits in a corner of the baking sheet.
Photo courtesy of Feel Good Foodie

11) Zucchini Pickles

Here’s another preserved zucchini recipe idea: pickled zucchini. They’re admittedly not *quite* as crunchy as cucumber pickles, but they’re still zesty and delicious! If you’re interested in canning, I suggest using this well-rated zucchini pickles recipe from All Recipes. Otherwise, you could try these popular and easy refrigerator zucchini pickles from Valerie’s Kitchen.

Three half pint mason jars are aligned in a triangle shape. Each one contains slices of squash, dill, garlic, and various spices.
Photo courtesy of Valerie’s Kitchen

12) Vegetarian Lasagna 

I mean, who doesn’t love a good lasagna? I honestly haven’t had it in a long time, but between all the squash, basil, carrots and eggplant we’re currently harvesting from the garden, I think we’re going to make some this weekend! We have our sights set on this vegetarian lasagna recipe from the Cookie and Kate. It’s easy to modify and use whatever seasonal veggies you have on hand. Plus, it’s a great way to use our favorite homegrown roasted tomato sauce!

A slice of cheesy vegetarian lasagna sits on a white ceramic plate. Some of the vegetables and sauce are spilling out from the bottom slightly. A larger baking dish sits beyond with the rest of the lasagna.
Photo courtesy of Cookie and Kate

13) Zucchini Greek Salad

Let’s end on a light, fresh, extra-healthy note with a Greek-inspired zucchini salad. The recipe calls for raw zucchini, so the salad comes together in minutes! The kalamata olives, red onion, parsley, fresh lemon and feta cheese offer bright and savory flavors, while the chickpeas provide a nice punch of protein. According to the author, the salad stores and travels well, so it’d be a good one to make ahead or share!

A cold salad of squash chunks, olives, garbanzo beans with fresh parsley sit in a white ceramic bowl.
Photo courtesy of Fifteen Spatulas

And that concludes this round-up of zucchini recipes!

As you can see, there are SO many tasty and creative ways to use zucchini – and endless recipes out there to try! This is literally just the tip of the squash-berg. Putting together this list of zucchini recipes for you honestly made me SO excited for our next bumper crop of squash… something I’m not usually so stoked about by July. 😂 I want to make and eat it all. I hope you also found a few zucchini recipes you’re excited to try! Please add any of your favorite summer squash recipes in the comments below.

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DeannaCat signature, keep on growing


  • Deana Tankersley

    Yes, so nice to see more exciting options for lots of zukes coming feom the garden.😉😄🤗 Thanks so much for sharing some excellent looking recipes. 😍👌

  • Judy Hawkes

    Try this. It’s a real favourite in our house.

    Greek Style Courgette and Cheese Pie:

    2 tbsp plain bread crumbs
    2 tsp. vegetable oil
    ¼ cup finely chopped onion
    2 cups grated courgette
    1 clove minced garlic
    3 eggs
    1 cup cottage cheese
    1 tbsp. cornflour
    1 dessert spoon chopped fresh oregano or teaspoon dried
    pinch salt
    pinch pepper
    small pinch of cinnamon
    1 cup grated cheese
    Method for Greek Style Courgette and Cheese Pie:

    Grease a 9″ pie plate, sprinkle it with bread crumbs and set it aside.
    Heat oil in a large non-stick pan. Add onion and cook over medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring often.
    Add courgette and garlic. Cook 3-4 minutes, stirring often.
    Set aside to cool for 5 minutes. Preheat oven Gas 4, 180ºC .
    Combine eggs, cottage cheese, cornflour, oregano, salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Stir until smooth.
    In a large bowl, combine cooked vegetables, cottage cheese/egg mixture and cheddar. Pour into prepared pan.
    Bake 30 minutes or until knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.
    Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
    Absolutely delicious. Serve with a green salad and bread if necessary (the pie is filling on its own). And it’s another way to use up that summer glut of courgettes!

  • Hillary

    Our favorite way to eat zucchini is the same as yours–sauteed with avo oil or ghee, and a bit of onion and garlic powder; however we always add this to our scrambled eggs in the morning, so delish!! Second fav is zoodles, with a veg sauce with more squash like butternut. Thanks for alllll the recipes, we’ll have to try the chocolate Zuc bread and fritters next.

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