Easy Healthy zucchini recipes? Who knew that was a thing? Well, this is apparently a thing because the demand for easy healthy zucchini recipes has saturated the internet. Many of us now have a love hate relationship with summer squash and cucumbers, which are becoming ever so abundant at our local grocery stores and farmers markets. Zucchinis can be delicious and healthy (like in my Garlic Parmesan Zucchini) when prepared in the correct way. It’s also important to know that there are recipes that aren’t healthy for you at all (like most cakes). I’ve made it my mission to combine the best of both worlds of quick and easy healthy zucchini recipes that the entire family will love.
Healthy Ways to Cook Zucchini
Summer brings a bounty of fresh zucchini, whether it’s from the farmers market or your own backyard. But what can you do with an abundance? These easy recipes for breads, zoodles, fries, fritters, and more help you make the most of this versatile veggie (or fruit, if you’re going by the technical definition).
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Healthy Zucchini Recipes
From crispy baked zucchini chips to stuffed zucchini boats, there are so many healthy ways to cook zucchini. Peak season for zucchini is June through late August, but they’re available year-round at most grocery stores. So, whether you’re wondering what to do with an abundance of summer zucchini, or you’re simply looking to eat healthier, you’re sure to find the perfect zucchini recipe here.
Spicy Zucchini Salad
This late-summer salad uses zucchini ribbons, which you can make with a Y-shaped vegetable peeler. Buttery Bibb lettuce adds adds flavor, but you can also substitute chopped romaine or a spinach-arugula mix. Fiber- and protein-packed chickpeas bulk up the salad while roasted pepitas add crunch.
Seared Salmon With Zucchini Noodles
If you like crisp salmon skin, this cooking method is for you. Just be sure when you place the salmon, skin side down in the pan that you don’t touch it for the full 6 minutes while it cooks—that’s the key for the crispiest browned skin around. After turning the fish, cook it to your preferred degree of doneness. The barely warmed vegetables are still crunchy and flavorful. Serve with lemon wedges, if you like.
Crispy, salty zucchini fritters make for an excellent appetizer or side dish. Best served fresh out of the pan, this recipe is a great way to use up a bumper crop of fresh summer zucchini.
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Zucchini Noodles with Spicy Peanut Sauce
Zucchini noodles (a.k.a. “zoodles”) are the the perfect gluten-free alternative to traditional pasta. Find pre-cut zucchini noodles or spirals in the produce section of your local grocery store—or make your own at home with a spiralizer, a julienne peeler, or the julienne blade on a mandoline. This stunning summer salad packs plenty of crunch thanks to zucchini noodles, matchstick carrots, bean sprouts, and chopped peanuts. We top it with a creamy peanut butter sauce that packs a touch of heat from Sriracha sauce.
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Elote-Style Zucchini Noodles
Mild in flavor and tender just like pasta, zucchini noodles pair well with virtually any sauce or ingredient mix-ins. Here, we’ve spun zoodles into a flavor-packed zucchini pasta salad inspired by elote, or grilled corn that’s a staple of Mexican street food. You’ll find all the traditional elote ingredients—corn, fresh cilantro, queso fresco cheese, and fresh lime juice—mixed in with zucchini noodles.
For a complete meal, pair these zucchini noodles with our Coriander-Crusted Flank Steak with Cuban Black Beans recipe.
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Sautéed Baby Zucchini With Pecans and Mint
Sautéed zucchini gets a sprinkle of turmeric (pair it with black pepper for maximum health perks) for an extra nutrition boost, but you can keep this dish kid-friendly by omitting it. A simple saute of zucchini with butter and salt is just as tasty. The mint will turn brown quickly; for the prettiest presentation, stir it in just before serving.
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This healthy zucchini bread recipe uses 100% whole-wheat flour to add protein and fiber to this nutty-flavored, super-moist quick bread. We call for brown sugar, but you can also substitute coconut sugar, which has about half the glycemic index of white sugar. To make this zucchini bread kid-friendly, you can add chocolate chips to the batter. Enjoy a slice for breakfast or as a mid-morning snack.
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Broiled Zucchini and Radishes
This broiled zucchini side dish stars baby zucchini, a pint-sized, more tender version of zucchini. Find baby zucchini at the farmer’s market or in the produce section of Whole Foods. Flashing the vegetables under the broiler for a few minutes adds a touch of char to the zucchini and mellows the bite of the radishes. Serve this speedy side dish alongside roasted chicken, pork tenderloin, or pan-seared fish.
Chicken Parmesan Over Zucchini Noodles
If you prefer curlier zucchini noodles in this recipe, then a spiralizer is your best bet. Spiralizers are easy to use, and they can produce an impressively large pile noodles quickly. A julienne peeler, on the other hand, yields straighter noodles and isn’t quite as speedy—but it’s the least expensive of all the “zoodling” methods. The zucchini noodles in this healthy take on a classically unhealthy dish cook quickly in a skillet and get tossed with a bright and fresh tomato sauce.
Easy, Healthy Zucchini Main Dish Recipes
When fresh zucchini abounds in summer gardens, these are the main-dish recipes you need. They’re easy to make, delicious, and offer loads of variety. So when your garden gives (and gives and gives!) zucchini, transform your surfeit of squash into these healthy, top-rated main dish recipes.
Zucchini Spaghetti alla Marinara
Zucchini noodles, aka zoodles, are tossed in a quick-and-easy, fresh tomato-based marinara sauce.
Pasta with Scallops, Zucchini, and Tomatoes
Sautéed garlic, diced zucchini, and red pepper flakes are simmered with chopped tomatoes, bay scallops, and fresh basil. This simple and fresh pasta is ready in about 30 minutes!
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Chicken Zoodle Pho
“Chicken zoodle pho made super simple in the slow cooker and topped with spiralized zucchini noodles for a healthy version of a restaurant favorite. Make takeout easy at home with a comforting bowl of this gluten-free and low-calorie soup!” —Megan Olson
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“These cheesy zucchini patties are an excellent way to use up that abundance of zucchini from the garden. Serve with a bit of tomato sauce or sour cream dabbed on top,” says Sherlie A. Magaret.
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Lemon Herb Chicken with Zucchini Pasta and Ricotta
“This was delicious and easy. My picky family loved it, and I did too. I prepped the chicken in the morning and even spiralized the zucchini. Put it in separate zip lock bags. It was so easy when dinner time came around. Definitely a keeper recipe.” —ewill
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Individual Grilled Veggie Pizzas
“Delicious! No matter what combination of veggies you use this is going to be good. This is a great base to get creative and use what you may have on hand or fresh from your garden. I used portobello mushrooms, tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, red and green peppers, and red onion,” Jillian says.
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Turkey Veggie Meatloaf Cups
It’s meatloaf in muffin cups! Lean ground turkey is mixed with chopped zucchini, couscous, coarsely chopped red bell peppers, and onions, along with Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and a little barbeque sauce. Save some meatloaf muffins for next-day lunches, too.
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Farmer’s Market Vegetarian Quesadillas
“Making the most of simple, fresh ingredients found at your local farmer’s market, these quesadillas make great appetizers or a quick and healthy meal. Serve while hot with your favorite salsa, sour cream, and guacamole,” Jennifer Baker says.
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Zucchini Artichoke Summer Salad
“Very nice and easy dinner salad. Had pepperoncini peppers screaming at me in my fridge, so chopped up a few of those. And wish I had some grape tomatoes to add, as well,” Phoebe says. “A simple green salad on the side and dinner is on!”
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Chicken Zoodle Soup
Zucchini-spiraled noodles are a genius way to sneak extra vegetables into your healthy diet. The soup’s rich, herbed broth is delicious and hearty, loaded up with chicken breast meat, carrots, onion, celery, and garlic.
Favorite Zucchini Recipes
Got zucchini to use up? We’ve got your back! Here are all the very best zucchini recipes to make! These work in any season, whether you’ve got a boatload of this summer veggie or just bought some at the store. There are so many ways to enjoy this mighty green veggie.
Zucchini works with both savory and sweet flavors, so there’s a little something for everyone here. Start with mind blowing sauteed zucchini full of Italian flavor. Then bake up a batch of the best zucchini bread and muffins. And don’t forget chocolate zucchini cake! This veggie makes an unforgettably rich and moist cake everyone will be talking about.
And now…the best zucchini recipes to try!
Perfect Sauteed Zucchini
If zucchini doesn’t sound like a vegetable to sing praises about…you haven’t met this zucchini recipe. Yes, this really is the perfect sauteed zucchini. Just 10 minutes in a hot pan and this vegetable goes from tasteless to tender! Oregano and garlic make a pop of savory flavor, and grated Parmesan cheese takes it over the top. It’s beyond easy, and one of the best zucchini recipes we’ve had.GET RECIPE
One of our favorite zucchini recipes is baked zucchini! It’s the opposite of soggy or slimy: coat this tasty veggie lightly with breadcrumbs and a little Parmesan cheese. Even better, it’s not so labor intensive as zucchini fries (where you dip in flour and egg): so you get the best of both worlds! Pop it in the oven and it’s a tasty and easy side dish for summer meals.GET RECIPE
Perfect Zucchini Lasagna
We cracked the code to the perfect Zucchini Lasagna! You might not share our elation if you haven’t attempted a no noodle lasagna before. It’s easy to spend lots of effort and end up with a watery mess. But not with this recipe! This zucchini lasagna alternates beautiful layers of roasted zucchini noddles, hearty garlicky tomato sauce and three gooey cheeses. It tastes as good–or better–than a classic lasagna! In fact, we might pick it over the classic.GET RECIPE
Yep, we think it’s one of the best zucchini bread recipes out there! What makes it the best? Well, it’s the perfect texture: moist, but not oily. And it’s got the best flavor: cinnamon-scented, with just the right sweetness. To us, it’s everything that a zucchini bread should be!
Squash and Zucchini Casserole
What’s more homey than squash and zucchini casserole? It’s got the vibe of Sunday dinners and summer evenings where the sun stretches into the late evening. This one is packed with flavor and quickly disappeared in our house. A light Parmesan sauce covers the tender squash, and it’s topped with crunchy breadcrumbs. It’s a cozy casserole that’s not too rich and heavy.GET RECIPE
Roasted Zucchini and Squash
Zucchini and squash give us those nostalgic vibes of summer dinners on the patio. So here’s a recipe that that makes the best of summer’s bounty: Roasted Zucchini and Squash! These vegetables go hand in hand with Italian-style herbs like oregano and basil. Topped with a bit of melty Parmesan cheese, they’re absolute perfection! This recipe is very easy to make, and you can whip up the rest of your meal while it bakes. GET RECIPE
Sure, you’ve heard of the Ratatouille movie: but do you know what ratatouille actually is? This humble dish that’s not anything like it’s glamorized movie version. This classic French dish of stewed late summer vegetables is anything but fancy, but it’s a darn good way to use eggplant! Dollop with pistou, the French version of pesto.