The Magical Zucchini: A Look at a Very Versatile Superfood

Recently, my parents have been giving me a lot of zucchini to eat. I mean, a lot of it. I'm not complaining since it has a ton of health benefits, but I will say this has caused me to have to come up with different ways to cook and prepare this versatile vegetable in order to give myself some variety. This got me thinking: why not share my recipes on my blog? So here we go...

The first zucchini recipe I tried was simple unseasoned sautéed zucchini. It was less than ideal and tasted like the oil I used in the pan.

After that, however, I became determined to use whatever ingredients I found around the house to make a variety of dishes. The first dish played off of the failed sautéed zucchini. I made a sort of "Amateur Zucchini Ratatouille".

Amateur Zucchini "Ratatouille" 

I give it 3/5 stars.

1 average zucchini, sliced
A splish of olive oil
A can of spaghetti sauce (yes, I used spaghetti sauce)
Parmesan cheese

Here's all I did:

First, I sautéed the sliced zucchini with the olive oil, some parmesan cheese, and garlic on the stove. I might have used too much oil, because the zucchini was so slimy and gross. Because of that, I laid down some paper towels and plopped the zukes down to soak up some of the oil.

While that was drying, I grabbed a pop-top microwavable Tupperware container and snatched a can of spaghetti sauce from the cupboard. 

Place the zucchini in the Tupperware, then open up that can of spaghetti sauce and plop it in. I also added some more parmesan cheese to the container before putting on the lid.

The good thing about this is you could put this in the fridge for later, separate individual dishes from the container, or microwave it all at once and it still works fine.

What I did was throw it in the fridge for later.

Bonus tip: I like humming/listening to Le Festin from Ratatouille while I cook. It makes me feel like the main character in a Disney movie. (In fact, I'm actually listening to it right now!)

Note: I also ended up making a REAL ratatouille using zucchini and yellow squash based on this recipe, which was DELICIOUS! 5/5 stars, would definitely recommend. Other than only using zucchini and yellow squash, the only other changes I made were that I used dried herbs instead of fresh ones, I used green peppers in the sauce, I used garlic seasoning in place of mincing my own garlic cloves, and I substituted crushed tomatoes with a can of spaghetti sauce. It was still amazing though!

I tried to plate the ratatouille like they did in the movie.

Next up is a recipe my mother found on the internet and then told me about. Zucchini Pizza Bites.

Zucchini Pizza Bites

5/5 stars, I love these lil guys!

About 20 or so slices of zucchini
A splash of olive oil 
Tomato sauce
Basil (the herb, not the author)
Black pepper
Mozzarella cheese (Cheddar works fine too)

So this was also a Le Festin-worthy dish. First, splash that olive oil on a cookie sheet and spread it all around. You want to coat the WHOLE thing from edge to edge so your pizza boys don't stick to the pan.

Lay down the zucchini slices in whatever pattern your heart desires. They should all be of similar thickness so you don't burn any of the thinner ones. I used about 1/4 of an inch slices.

Next, spoon some tomato sauce on each slice like you are making tiny pizzas (because that's exactly what you are doing). When they all are sauced up, grab the basil and shake away. Spice up the pizzas with the oregano and pepper too. I messed one up once and had a huge pile of pepper - that was a mistake. Try to keep the spices evenly shaken across all the pizzas.

When your boys are seasoned, it's time to add the cheese. I sliced up a block of mozzarella because I couldn't find a cheese grater, but it is up to you how you choose to cheese the pizzas.

When the prepping is done, cook the pizza boys in the oven at 350° for ten minutes, or until the cheese is nice and melted. Just keep an eye on them so they don't burn.

Then, serve and enjoy!

Zucchini Patties

5/5 stars, I love these!

This recipe was picked out by my sister one day when I was trying to decide what to make next, and they are absolutely delicious. I loved them, she loved them, everybody loved them.

Again, since the recipe is available here, I won't bother going into too much detail, but I will share a little bit.

I peeled the zucchini for this recipe, but only because my sister refuses to eat anything with zucchini unless it is peeled first.

What I found out is that the most important part about this recipe is squeezing as much water as you can out of the grated zucchini before mixing the ingredients. I thought I could be lazy and get away with just squeezing a little of the water out, but that first batch was a disaster. They were so liquidy that I couldn't even flip them until they were burning to the pan, and the insides ended up very slimy.

My second attempt involved using a lot of flour, which ended up taking away a lot of the flavor the patties were supposed to have, so I recommend getting it right the first time and getting rid of some of the excess water.

They still ended up tasting very good in the end though.

I wanted to make it look fancy like something off a Food Network show so I added a side sauce, some tomato slices, and sprinkled some dried basil and parsley on top. 100% Recommended.

Next up are some 100% original recipes that came from my own head.

Christmas Zucchini 

It was okay. Could use more sugar for a sweeter taste. 3/5 stars.

Zucchini, sliced
Olive oil

I didn't measure out any spices for this one. I did a lot of cinnamon, and a little nutmeg, cloves, and sugar. 

Simply sautée the zucchini, add the other ingredients in, and voila! Christmas Zucchini.

Lemon Pepper Garlic Zucchini

Kind of sour, possibly too much lemon juice, 2/5 stars because they tasted like hot lemon slices.

Zucchini, sliced
Lemon juice 
Black pepper
Olive oil 

Sauté the zucchini with the oil. 
Add in lemon juice, garlic, and black pepper. 
And you're done!

Cajun-style Zucchini 

Very good, 4/5 stars

 Zucchini, sliced
 Chilli powder (or cayenne pepper)
 Onion powder
 Garlic powder
 White pepper
 Black pepper
 Sea salt

Mix the spices together (or you can substitute with pre-made cajun seasoning) before starting the zucchini. I just did a "dash of this, a dash of that", there are plenty of online cajun seasoning recipes if you want specifics. Then, sauté the zucchini in the oil, dash in the spice mix, and serve hot. 

Zucchini Tomato Bake

5/5 stars, very good and it makes a great lunch or dinner!

2 medium Zucchini, chopped
1 medium yellow squash, chopped
3 pre-cooked pork sausage patties, chopped
½ onion, diced
½ medium Tomato, chopped
1 28oz. can of spaghetti sauce 
Grated parmesan cheese 
Black pepper 

This is a very simple and easy recipe. All you do is prep the ingredients, then toss everything into a cake pan or casserole dish. Make sure all the ingredients are mixed together, then slide it all in the oven on 350° for 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are cooked to your liking.

Zucchini Ice Cream

Dessert time! Pictured: Maple Zucchini Ice Cream

I know what you are thinking...

Just trust me, it is SO good! 5/5 stars, I definitely recommend it!

I even have TWO different flavors for you to try! The ingredients for both flavors are listed first, with the general instructions for making the ice cream listed after.

Chocolate Zucchini Ice Cream 

2 medium to large Zucchini, peeled
½ cup of 1% milk
Pinch of salt
4 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp cocoa powder 
½ cup of powder sugar

Maple Zucchini Ice Cream
2 medium to large Zucchini, peeled
½ cup of 1% milk
Pinch of salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup of lite maple syrup
⅛ cup of powder sugar
¼ tsp of cinnamon

After picking the flavor you want, chop up the zucchini and place it and the milk in a blender and blend until smooth. Next, add the remaining ingredients, pureeing occasionally until all ingredients have been incorporated and the mixture is smooth. 

The mixture is then poured into a freezer container and placed in a freezer. If you have an ice cream maker, you could also use the mixture in that. I simply put it in the freezer, stirring it occasionally so it did not freeze solid.

When serving, I usually take it out a little ahead of time to soften the ice cream, since the mixture freezes solid once left overnight.

For creamier ice cream that doesn't require thawing it slightly before serving, you could try replacing the 1% milk with whole milk or even heavy cream.


That's it for this post, thanks for reading! I hope you are able to try out and enjoy some of the recipes here because some of these dishes deserve all the love in the world. My personal favorites are the zucchini ice creams, the REAL ratatouille, the zucchini bake, and the zucchini patties.

Questions, comments, or concerns? Sound off in the comments below! 

Thanks again and happy cooking! :) 

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