Zucchini season is coming to an end, and I wouldn't blame you for feeling a little burned out on the delicate squash by now—it has a tendency to take over a garden and there's only so much zucchini bread a person can eat. But don't despair, because we have plenty of creative ways to use the last of your zucchini—for starters, you can fry it into fritters with corn and cheese, blend it into soup with basil and lettuce, or layer it in a summery lasagna. For these recipes and more, check out our 22 favorite dishes to get you to the end of zucchini season.
Zucchini-and-Corn Fritters With Herb Sour Cream
Zucchini has tons of water in it; grating and squeezing it is the best way to concentrate its flavor. Here we use grated zucchini to make cheesy fritters with fresh corn and Gruyère or cheddar. Try serving the fritters with sour cream flavored with herbs like basil and chives.
Pizza With Zucchini, Feta, Lemon, and Garlic
The water content of zucchini is especially problematic for pizza: if you just slice it up and put it on the pie you're going to end up with undercooked squash, burnt crust, or both. Salting and squeezing the zucchini before adding it to the pizza can remove as much as 30% of its weight, making it much more appropriate for adding to pizzas, like this one made with feta, lemon, and garlic.
Corn and Zucchini Quesadillas
Corn, zucchini, and cheese pair just as well in quesadillas as they do in fritters. We start by browning the vegetables in a pan with jalapeño and cilantro, then mix them with shredded Jack cheese. Mixing together the veggies and cheese before stuffing the tortillas helps evenly distribute the ingredients and keeps the filling intact.
Grilled Summer Squash With Chimichurri
Zucchini takes well to grilling—the fire brings out its natural sweetness. Charring the zucchini on the hot side of a grill and finishing on the cooler side lets you cook the squash through while maintaining some of its firmness. For serving go with chimichurri, an Argentine sauce made with fresh herbs, oil, and vinegar.
Easy, Summery Zucchini-Basil Soup
Zucchini's high water content is a benefit when it comes to making soup—since it barely takes any cooking to make the squash tender enough to blend, it's easy to preserve its fresh flavor and vibrant color. This soup makes short work of 1 1/2 pounds of zucchini, which we cook down with leek, celery, and lots of basil.
Zucchini and Lettuce Soup With Pesto
This soup will help you work through a variety of vegetables that might be taking over your garden: zucchini, lettuce, and basil. We make the pesto with a mortar and pestle to give it the best possible flavor and spoon it into the soup. There's less dairy in the soup than you might expect since it gets its creamy texture in part from the dried rice we use as a thickener.
The Best Minestrone Soup
The title of this recipe is a bit misleading—there is no single best minestrone recipe because the beauty of the dish is in its versatility. The soup is made with beans, pasta, broth, and vegetables, and you have a variety of options for each component. Zucchini almost always makes it into our minestrone, along with summer squash, green beans, and spinach.
Tuscan Ribollita With Summer Vegetables
Ribollita was invented as a way to stretch out leftover minestrone with stale bread, but it's worth making from scratch. As with minestrone, you can make ribollita with just about whatever vegetables you like. You also have options in terms of texture—ribollita can be served as a soup, cooked down into a stew, or cooked even further into a porridge that is then traditionally sautéed into a pancake.
Provençal Tian (Eggplant, Zucchini, Squash, and Tomato Casserole)
If this photo looks familiar, you might have the movie Ratatouille to thank—the dish that the hero supposedly invents is actually an old-school Provençal vegetable casserole called a tian. Our version recreates the one from the film by layering zucchini, summer squash, and eggplant in tomato sauce.
Easy Sautéed Zucchini, Squash, and Tomatoes With Chilies and Herbs
Zucchini can overcook very quickly, becoming unpleasantly mushy. To make sure that it keeps a little of its bite you need to brown it quickly over very high heat. For this 10-minute side dish we mix zucchini (and yellow squash, which should be cooked the same way), with cherry tomatoes, shallot, and serrano chili.
Grilled Summer Squash and Kasseri Cheese With Lemon and Mint
While more prone to melting than halloumi or queso panela, kasseri still performs admirably on the grill. Here we cook it carefully—enough to turn it a little gooey but not so much that it falls apart—and serve it with with zucchini, summer squash, lemon juice, and mint.
Spicy Thai-Style Pomelo, Green Bean, and Zucchini Salad
Thailand is home to some of the most flavorful salads in the world, and this recipe just scratches the surface. We make it with a large citrus fruit called pomelo—a common ingredient in Thai salads—as well as green beans, zucchini, shallots, and mint. The meaty pomelo, blanched beans, and raw zucchini ensure that the salad is packing with textural contrast.
Zucchini Rolls With Goat Cheese and Mint
These appetizers take a little bit of work, but they're impressive enough to be worth the effort. The most important thing is to grill the zucchini slices properly—they need to be soft enough to roll but firm enough to not fall apart. Once the zucchini is done, we roll the slices with goat cheese, balsamic, mint, arugula, and hot pepper and tie each bundle with a blanched chive.
Roasted Zucchini-Chickpea Dip With Za'atar
Every time I look at the hummus section of the grocery store I'm shocked by the variety—it seems like this humble chickpea dip has been flavored with just about anything you could think of. Our entry into the category uses sweet roasted zucchini, which has enough water to make for an extra-light dip.
Zucchini Latkes With Parmesan, Pine Nuts, and Basil
These are far from traditional latkes, but to our credit it's also far from latke season—to make a more summery latke we supplement the standard potato and onion with shredded zucchini. In search of bright flavors that wouldn't overpower the zucchini we turn to a pesto-like combination of basil, pine nuts, and Parmesan.
Zucchini Bread With Walnuts
If you search for ways to use zucchini you will find a seemingly never-ending list of zucchini bread recipes, most of which are too sweet and too oily. Ours cuts back on the sugar significantly and replaces some of the oil with whole-milk Greek yogurt, which gives the bread a cake-like crumb without the greasiness.
Breakfast Tacos With Charred Zucchini and Red Pepper
There isn't much to these breakfast tacos—to make the filling we simply cook the zucchini and bell pepper in a single layer until browned, then season with salt and pepper. We also scramble some eggs (because you can't have breakfast tacos without eggs) and serve everything in warmed tortillas with avocado, cotija, and crema.
Zucchini Stacks in the Style of Eggplant Parmesan
In this recipe we give zucchini the eggplant Parmesan treatment by slicing the squash, deep-frying it, and layering the fried slices with tomato sauce, basil, mozzarella, and Parmesan. We also sneak in some pepperoni—pepperoni isn't a traditional part of eggplant Parm, but since neither is zucchini, we don't feel guilty about it.
Zucchini and Roasted Tomatoes With Pasta and Dried Olive Flavor Shake
A pasta snob will likely tell you that good noodles should be sauced minimally, but we don't see any reason that every pasta dish has to be dominated by the carbs. This recipe is more of a vegetable sauté—the zucchini and tomatoes are the stars and the rigatoni is just there to help fill you up.
Summer Vegetable Lasagna With Zucchini, Squash, Eggplant, and Tomato
Summer isn't the best time for lasagna—even if you can get past the idea that lasagnas should be rich and hearty, summer vegetables tend to be too watery to be good candidates for casseroles. Our solution is to sear the zucchini, squash, and eggplant in this lasagna over high heat to drive off excess moisture before layering with crushed tomatoes and just a little dairy.
Linguine With Zucchini, Tomato, and Crab
When I'm cooking during the week I gravitate towards recipes that require minimal clean-up, which means lots of one-pot pastas. This one pairs linguine with sautéed zucchini and cherry tomatoes. Finishing the pasta in vegetable stock and stirring in sweet crabmeat before serving gives the dish tons of flavor.
Parisian Gnocchi With Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Corn, and Zucchini
If you find potato-based gnocchi to be a little too heavy, you might want to try the Parisian version made with airy pâte à choux. The simplest way to experience Parisian gnocchi is to poach them and eat them plain, but here we toss the dumplings with a summery mix of yellow squash, zucchini, corn, and cherry tomatoes.