zucchini recipe

Gluten-Free Zucchini Brownies

Gluten-Free Zucchini Brownies

These brownies are everything you want in a brownie. Sweet, moist and very tender. The fact they are also flour and gluten-free is a nice bonus for those who can’t have gluten.

You might think, when you read the ingredients, that I left something out. I didn’t. They baked up beautifully and had a wonderful texture.

I made them for a dinner with friends and everyone liked them, a lot.  I think the next time I make them, I might also add some chopped nuts.

 

Gluten-Free Zucchini Brownies

1½ c. shredded zucchini
1 c. almond butter- but you could use peanut butter instead
1 c. chocolate chips
1/3 c. honey – but you can use 1/2 cup if you want a sweeter brownie
¼ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon
½ t. allspice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×9 inch pan, set aside. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until well blended. Pour batter into pan and spread evenly. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool before cutting. Makes 16.

Zucchini Carrot Cupcakes

Zucchini Carrot Cupcakes

Zucchini Carrot Cupcakes

These are really good cupcakes. They are moist and not too sweet with a slightly dense texture. Sort of a cross between carrot cake and zucchini bread they have more texture than a traditional cupcake and plenty of flavor. I made these for a group of kids yesterday and they loved them.  I got 24 cupcakes out of the recipe but they were a little small. Perhaps 18 would be a better way to go. I used a simple vanilla buttercream to finish them off. I whipped the frosting a long time so it was extra fluffy. Here are the recipes for both the cupcakes and the frosting.

 

Zucchini Carrot Cupcakes

2 eggs
1 c. sugar
2/3 c. oil
1¼ c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon- I think I would use a little more next time
½ t. salt
1 c. grated carrot
1 c. grated zucchini, squeezed dry and packed tightly
½ c. chopped nuts, optional
Beat eggs with sugar until frothy. Beat in oil then add dry ingredients. Beat on high for 4 minutes. Stir in veggies and nuts. Pour batter into 18- 24 paper lined muffin tins, filling them 2/3 full. Bake in a 350-degree oven for about 15 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched. Cool and frost. Makes 24.

Note: These cupcakes deflate a little while cooling.

 

Classic Vanilla Frosting

3/4 cup butter
6 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk
Beat butter in a large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add 3 cups of the sifted confectioners’ sugar, beating well. Slowly beat in the vanilla, salt, and 1/3 cup of the milk. Gradually beat in the 3 remaining cups of confectioner’s sugar. Beat in additional milk (1 to 2 tablespoons) if needed, to make frosting of spreading consistency. If desired tint the frosting with 6 to 8 drops of food coloring.

 

 

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

It seems when zucchini are abundant I can never find enough ways to use them all. That means I end up shredding and freezing a LOT of zucchini. It comes in handy throughout the year. I decided to make these cupcakes for an event I have later today. I like the recipe because the zucchini makes the cakes nice and moist. They aren’t that sweet, either. I used a simple vanilla frosting but you could just dust them with powdered sugar or perhaps use a cream cheese frosting.  I have a friend who likes me to leave them plain. She prefers them unfrosted. Frosted or not these are a simple and tasty recipe that can make a dessert even the zucchini haters should love.

 

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

½ c. butter
½ c. oil
1 ¼ c. sugar
2 eggs
½ c. buttermilk
1 t. vanilla
2 ½ c. flour
1/3 c. cocoa
2 t. cinnamon
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
2 c. shredded zucchini

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 30 muffin pans with paper liners and set aside. In mixing bowl combine butter, oil, sugar and eggs and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in milk and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients and add to egg mixture- beating until smooth. Stir in zucchini. Scoop batter into cupcake paper lined pans, filling about 2/3 full. You will get about 30, I sometimes get more. Bake 15-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool and frost. Makes 30-36.

I used the Classic Vanilla Frosting recipe below, but doubled the recipe.

Classic Vanilla Frosting

3/4 cup butter
6 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk
Beat butter in a large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add 3 cups of the sifted confectioners’ sugar, beating well. Slowly beat in the vanilla, salt, and 1/3 cup of the milk. Gradually beat in the 3 remaining cups of confectioner’s sugar. Beat in additional milk (1 to 2 tablespoons) if needed, to make frosting of spreading consistency. If desired tint the frosting with 6 to 8 drops of food coloring.

 

Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

I got this over sized zucchini from my friend Carl. It was a round zucchini that had gotten to the size of a small pumpkin. I wanted to use it for dinner so I decided to hollow it out and stuff it. My friend Kat was coming over for dinner and I knew she’d be open to trying out my experiment. She’s pretty open to trying things out. I hollowed it out and lightly salted in the inside. I was wary to put uncooked meat in there because I wasn’t sure if it would get cooked through. Same thing for the rice.  I ended up cooking ground turkey and seasoning it with cumin, oregano, paprika, salt  and a little cayenne. I cooked the rice in a mixture of beef stock with some butter and fresh parsley. Tossed that mixture together and put it in the zucchini. I also added some mozzarella cheese after every few scoops of the filling.  I had some marinara sauce so I added a bit of that for moisture and a chopped onion that I had sauteed in oil.

I had no idea on how long it would take so I set in in at 350 and covered the top with foil. It was done in about 90 minutes. The zucchini was still firm but tender enough to eat.

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Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Peppers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had some extra filling so I made some stuffed peppers, too. I split the peppers and boiled them a couple of minutes to soften. I filled them and baked them, also covered in foil for about 45 minutes- then removed the foil and baked 15 minutes longer.

 

The meal was a big hit. I could have used any over sized zucchini. It was a great way to use something that at first might have been thought of as unusable, except perhaps shredded for zucchini bread.

 

 

 

 

Zucchini Potato Pancakes

Zucchini Potato Pancakes

Zucchini Potato Pancakes

I really like putting potatoes and zucchini together in this dish. They work so well together to produce a  pancake that is crispy on the outside and tender inside. I’ve made this dish with just potatoes and with just zucchini- and I like them. For some reason the pairing up really works well, though. We made this dish is class last night and everyone liked it a lot. Rather than make a bunch of smaller pancakes we did them as a sort of large pancake. Worked out really nicely.

 

Zucchini Potato Pancakes

4 medium potatoes, I used red skinned
2 medium zucchini
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 T. flour
¼ t. baking powder
1 t. salt or to taste
Pepper to taste
2 T. grated onion, I used dried chopped onion
½ c. oil

Peel *and grate potatoes. Place them in cold water and set aside. Trim zucchini and grate coarsely. Place in large bowl. Drain potatoes and squeeze dry. Place between towels to get out excess moisture and place in bowl with the zucchini. Add the rest of the ingredients, except the oil and stir to combine. Heat oil in a skillet. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of the potato batter into the skillet. Cook several minutes per side or until golden and crispy. Drain on paper towels and serve. Serves 6-8.

* Peeling is really optional. I chose not to and I think they worked out fine. Personal choice.

Corn and Zucchini Saute

Corn and Zucchini Saute

Corn and Zucchini Saute

For those of you looking for another way to use some of those zucchini this dish is really fun and easy. The flavors of the zucchini, corn and peppers work really well together and makes a tasty side dish in just a few minutes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quick Corn and Zucchini Sauté

2 sweet peppers, seeded and cut into strips
2 medium zucchini, sliced
Oil
2 c. corn kernels cut from cobs, about 4 ears
1 t. garlic salt*
½ t. Italian seasoning

In oil cook peppers and zucchini until crisp tender, about 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and cook 4 more minutes, or until heated through. Serves 6-8.

 

*Feel free to use 1 teaspoon of salt and some fresh garlic, I often do.

Zucchini Bread

Zucchini Bread

Zucchini Bread

This time of year I get a lot of questions about overgrown zucchini.  People seem to think there is nothing you can do with them. That’s not true. Oh you may want to give up the idea of thin slices of squash lightly sauteed in oil, but don’t toss them. Even older squash can be eaten in all sorts of ways. You can determine if the skin is too tough to eat by trying to pierce it with a fingernail. If you can easily poke the skin- it is tender enough to eat. If it isn’t, just peel before using.  Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and look at the seed cavity. If the middle looks spongy, hollow or if the seeds are developing scoop out the middle and discard. The remaining zucchini can be cubed or sliced and added to stews, soups, stir fries and all sorts of dishes. One of my favorite things to make with the bigger zucchini is zucchini bread. I shred up a whole zucchini and portion it out in amounts I will need for my bread. I freeze what I won’t be using that day. It is really nice in the dead of winter to be able to make zucchini bread. Here is the recipe I use. It is a favorite and makes 2 loaves, which is a bonus.

 

Zucchini Bread

3 c. flour

3 eggs

2 c. sugar, I use less

2 c. shredded zucchini

1 c. oil

1 c. chopped nuts or raisins, optional

½ c. sour cream or Greek yogurt

1 t. each vanilla, cinnamon, salt and baking soda

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 2 (9×5 inch) loaf pans. Set aside. Place flour in large bowl. Beat eggs and add with remaining ingredients to flour, mixing well and scraping bowl. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake 1 hour , or until browned and toothpick in center emerges clean. Cool in pans on wire rack. Freezes well. Makes 2 .

Zucchini Pancakes

Zucchini Pancakes

Zucchini Pancakes

August is zucchini month. They are everywhere and if you have them you might be looking for another way to cook them. I’ve been making zucchini pancakes for years and always enjoy them. I did change one thing in the recipe today though and I liked the result. The secret? Baking soda. I don’t know why I never thought to add it before. It makes the pancakes light and fluffy. Here is the recipe I used today. I served mine with a tomato salsa, mostly because I didn’t have any sour cream. I really liked the combo. This could be a great breakfast or lunch dish or as a side dish with dinner.

Zucchini Pancakes

2 c. shredded zucchini

1 medium onion, diced

2 eggs

1/2 c. flour- you made need a little more or less depending on how moist your zucchini is

2 t. hot pepper sauce, or to taste

1 t. baking soda

salt to taste

oil for cooking

Combine all ingredients, except the oil, in a medium bowl. Heat oil in skillet and spoon batter in. I used a little over 1/4 cup for each. Cook over medium heat until lightly browned around the edges. Flip and cook until golden on both sides and pancake springs back when touched lightly. Remove to platter and keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve with salsa or sour cream. Makes 8.

Corn and Zucchini Saute

Corn and Zucchini Saute

Corn and Zucchini Saute

I still have some of last summer’s corn in the freezer. I always think I should freeze more than I do. This is a quick dish that is both colorful and tasty. Best yet it makes me think of warm summer days. 

 Corn and Zucchini Sauté

2 sweet peppers, seeded and cut into strips

2 medium zucchini, sliced

Oil

2 c. corn kernels cut from cobs, about 4 ears

1 t. garlic salt

1t. Italian seasoning

In oil cook peppers and zucchini until crisp tender, about 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and cook 4 more minutes, or until heated through. Serves 6-8.

Garden Skillet Dinner

Garden Skillet

Garden Skillet

I love to cook- not so crazy about a lot of dishes to wash so I am always happy with recipes that require fewer pots and pans. I love this Garden Skillet Dinner. It’s a little like mac and cheese but with some added veggies for extra flavor. Always a hit when I make it. This time I used a sharp white cheddar cheese. You can add whatever veggies you have on hand. 

 

 

Garden Skillet

1 large onion, sliced

2 small zucchini, sliced

1 T. oil or butter

1 t. dried basil

1 14 oz. can tomatoes, chopped, undrained- I used my home canned tomatoes

4 c. cooked pasta

1/2 c. milk

2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

1 t. spicy mustard

 In large skillet cook onion and zucchini in oil or butter until tender. Add remaining ingredients and cook over medium heat until heated through and cheese has melted. Serves 3-4.

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