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20 Best Zucchini Recipes

Best Zucchini Recipes

A page for those of us with bumper crops of zucchini. For any of you who don’t often use zucchini, I’m hoping this will give you a change of heart! It’s an incredibly versatile ingredient in season throughout the summer, from June to late August.

The Many Ways to Use Zucchini

You can shave zucchini into salads, puree it into delicious soups, spiralize it into noodles, bake it into cakes and breads, or even grate it along with other ingredients into a slaw of sorts. It’s great with pasta, wonderful grilled, and welcome in many soups and stews. I’m including recipes below for my favorite ways to use zucchini.

How to Store Zucchini

Any zucchini you aren’t using immediately, can be preserved, pickled or frozen for later (instructions below). Because, unfortunately, with zucchini the deal is use it or lose it. When you’re faced with a crop that produces a lot of squash at once, it can feel like a part-time job to use it. The good news is you have options.

Twenty Favorite Zucchini Recipes

If you’re looking for great zucchini recipes, you’re in the right place! These are some tried and true recipes we revisit often. The Pasta with Smashed Zucchini Cream and Zucchini Bread are especially popular.

  1. Grilled Zucchini & Bread Salad

    Put a 2-pound dent in your zucchini supply with this bread salad made with torn pieces of toasted multi-grain bread, grilled zucchini, chickpeas, and a simple, garlic-forward ponzu dressing.

  2. Zucchini Bread Recipe

    A single beautiful loaf of walnut-studded, sugar crusted zucchini bread. It’s popular every year!

  3. Pasta with Smashed Zucchini Cream

    A summer favorite. This simple, garlic-boosted pasta uses two pounds of zucchini, and is endlessly adaptable.

  4. Simple Sautéed Zucchini

    Coins of zucchini are browned in a pan with toasted gold slivers of garlic combined with lots of fresh dill or scallions. Finish with a sprinkling of almonds for a bit of crunch.

  5. Quick Pickled Zucchini

    They’re quick to make and great to have on hand. Delicious on crusty, goat-cheese slathered grilled bread (or just about anything cheesy or crunchy) and simple salads.

  6. Buttermilk Farro Salad

    Farro with shaved radishes, zucchini, and fennel tossed with a tangy herbed buttermilk vinaigrette.

  7. Summer Squash Gratin

    A decadent, crunchy-topped summer squash gratin made from thinly sliced summer squash, potatoes, oregano pesto, and brown-buttered breadcrumbs.

  8. Buttermilk Summer Squash Soup

    A pureed summer squash soup with a buttermilk twist.

  9. Quinoa with Currants, Dill, and Zucchini

    Made from a quirky combination of quinoa, dill, shredded zucchini, and currants – a quinoa salad from Maria Speck’s book, Ancient Grains for Modern Meals.

  10. Shaved Fennel Salad

    A favorite salad recipe from Super Natural Every Day – shaved fennel, arugula, zucchini coins, feta, toasted almonds.

  11. Zucchini Agrodolce

    Shredded zucchini doused with a garlic infused agrodolce splash of vinegar, honey, and olive oil.

  12. Sopa Verde de Elote

    Sweet corn, zucchini and peas are off-set by a spike of green chile, a finishing dollop of creme fraiche, and generous squeeze of lime.

  13. Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

    A savory, summertime ricotta cheesecake recipe made with shredded zucchini, dill, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Perfect picnic or brunch fare.

  14. Quinoa and Grilled Zucchini

    Quinoa and grilled zucchini recipe is tossed with a pretty, pale green cilantro-flecked avocado dressing.

  15. Spinach and Zucchini Soup

    Vibrant green spinach and zucchini soup, it’s light-and-healthy, but still creamy textured and plenty tasty.

  16. A Tasty Frittata

    The prettiest, tastiest, frittata recipe. Made with potatoes, onions, zucchini and eggs drizzled with a cilantro chile sauce.

  17. Quinoa with Currants, Dill, and Zucchini

    A quinoa salad made from a quirky combination of quinoa, dill, shredded zucchini, and currants.

  18. Summer Vegetable Cianfotta

    A vibrant, colorful Campagnian summer stew from the A16: Food + Wine cookbook. It features zucchini, eggplant, cherry tomatoes, fennel, and other ingredients braised in olive oil.

  19. Lasagna Tart

    A noodle-free lasagna baked in a pie crust – layers of zucchini, ricotta, and tomato sauce.

  20. Lemony Chickpea Stir-fry

    An easy stir-fry featuring golden crusted, pan-fried chickpeas, chopped kale, summer squash, tofu, and a bit of lemon zest.

Have fun cooking with zucchini and all the wonderful summer squash this time of your! Experiment with different varietals and ask your neighboring shoppers at local farmers’ markets to share their favorite ways to cook it. I hope this inspires you. Enjoy!


How to Freeze Zucchini

When you’ve used all the zucchini you can stand, and there’s still more coming, freezing is a quick and easy way to store it.


  • 2 pounds zucchini or summer squash
  • water


1. Start by slicing zucchini into 1/2 inch coins, or4-inch batons along the length. This way you maintain skin on each piece, which provide structure.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. While the water is coming to a boil, prepare a large ice bath – the bowl of a salad spinner works well for this. Line a baking sheet thick with paper towels or, even better, a clean dish towel.
3. When the water boils, add the zucchini and cook for just a minute or so. The hold bright up but remain firm. Definitely avoid over-cooking.
4. Use a strainer or slotted spoon to quickly transfer to the ice bath. Cool well, drain well, and then Arrange the zucchini in on the towel. Blot the tops to remove any residual water.
5. Freeze until solid in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Transfer to freezer bags and keep for up to a few months.
6. When you’re ready to use it, thaw your zucchini and proceed with your favorite recipe.

Makes 2 pounds.

The post 20 Best Zucchini Recipes appeared first on 101 Cookbooks

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Vegetarian Recipes

Lemon Ricotta Pasta

Here’s a quickie recipe for those nights when you just need something fast and delicious. This Lemon Ricotta Pasta is super fast, light, and fresh, which makes it perfect for an easy weeknight dinner during the summer. The bright lemon flavor perfectly compliments the light and creamy ricotta, and the little pops of sweetness from the peas make every bite a little more interesting. Simple, fresh, and easy.

Originally posted 3-4-2011, updated 6-8-2022.

Overhead view of a bowl of lemon ricotta pasta with a fork and lemon wedges.

Do I Have to Use Fresh Lemon?

This is one of those recipes where you really do want to use a fresh lemon instead of bottled juice. The zest from the lemon adds a ton of bright, summery lemon flavor to the pasta without making the sauce too sour. We add just a little of the juice to balance the creaminess of the ricotta, but the zest is where you’re getting all that gorgeous sunny lemon flavor!

Not All Ricotta is Created Equal

I find there is quite a bit of variation in the quality of ricotta from brand to brand. Some are smooth, mild, and sweet like fresh milk, while others are bland and grainy. My preferred brand is Galbani, but they didn’t have any at the store when I went, so I got the generic Kroger brand. It was definitely a bit grainy, but the pasta was still quite delicious despite that!

Also, make sure to get whole milk ricotta. Low-fat ricotta just doesn’t hit the same in this recipe.

What Else Can I Add?

This simple pasta is a great jumping-off point for making a more elaborate pasta, if that’s what you’re in the mood for. Try adding some sliced chicken breast, fresh basil, or fresh spinach. Garlic butter shrimp would also go great with this pasta!

What to Serve with Lemon Ricotta Pasta

This pasta is so light and fresh that I suggest keeping any side dishes really simple, light, and fresh as well. I would go with a super simple side salad, or maybe some roasted asparagus and tomatoes.

Overhead view of lemon ricotta pasta in a skillet.

Overhead view of a bowl of lemon ricotta pasta.

Lemon Ricotta Pasta

Lemon Ricotta Pasta is light, fresh, and quick to prepare, making it the perfect pasta for weeknight dinners in the summer.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American
Total Cost $4.27 recipe / $1.07 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 400kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes


  • 1 lemon $0.89
  • 8 oz. pasta* $0.67
  • 1 cup frozen peas $0.50
  • 1 clove garlic, minced $0.08
  • 1 Tbsp butter $0.11
  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta $1.60
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan $0.36
  • 1/4 tsp salt (or to taste) $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper (or to taste) $0.02
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper (or to taste) $0.02


  • Zest and juice the lemon. You’ll need about ½ tsp zest and 1 Tbsp lemon juice.
  • Cook the pasta according to the package directions (boil for 7-10 minutes, or until tender). Before draining, reserve about 1 cup of the starchy water from the pot.
  • Place the frozen peas in the colander before draining the pasta so the pasta will thaw the peas as it drains.
  • Add the butter and minced garlic to a large skillet and sauté over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or just until the garlic is fragrant.
  • Add the drained pasta and peas, and about ½ cup of the starchy pasta cooking water to the skillet with the butter and garlic. Stir to combine, then turn off the heat.
  • Add the ricotta, Parmesan, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and ½ teaspoon lemon zest to the skillet. Stir until everything is well combined, the residual heat from the skillet and pasta have warmed the ricotta, and the ricotta has formed a creamy sauce. Add more of the warm reserved pasta water if needed.
  • Season the pasta with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste. Serve warm.


*Use any short shape pasta.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 400kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 14g | Sodium: 335mg | Fiber: 4g

close up side view of lemon ricotta pasta in a bowl.

How to Make Lemon Ricotta Pasta – Step By Step Photos

A zested and juiced lemon on a cutting board.

Zest and juice one lemon. You’ll need about ½ tsp of zest and 1 Tbsp juice.

Boiled pasta in a pot, water being scooped out with a measuring cup.

Cook 8oz. pasta according to the package directions (boil for 7-10 minutes, or until tender). Reserve about 1 cup of the starchy pasta water before draining.

Peas and cooked pasta in a colander.

Add 1 cup of frozen peas to a colander, then pour the boiled pasta over top to thaw the peas as you drain the pasta.

Sautéed garlic in butter in a skillet.

Add 1 Tbsp butter and 1 clove garlic to a large skillet. Sauté over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or just until the garlic becomes very fragrant.

Pasta, peas, and pasta water added to the skillet.

Add the still-hot pasta and peas to the skillet along with about ½ cup of the hot reserved pasta water. Stir to combine, then turn off the heat.

Cheese and lemon added to pasta.

Add 1 cup whole milk ricotta, ¼ cup grated Parmesan, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, and ½ tsp lemon zest to the pasta. Stir until the ingredients are combined, the residual heat from the pasta and skillet have warmed the ricotta, and the ricotta has turned into a creamy sauce.

Salt, pepper, and red pepper added to the pasta.

Add more of the reserved pasta water if the mixture is too thick or too dry. Season the pasta with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste.

Finished lemon ricotta pasta in the skillet.

Enjoy the lemon ricotta pasta while still warm!

Overhead view of a bowl of lemon ricotta pasta.

The post Lemon Ricotta Pasta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

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