25 Delicious Zucchini Recipes That Make Following a Low-Carb Diet Way Easier
While cauliflower gets all the glory these days, we haven't forgotten about zucchini when it comes to finding low-carb swaps for our favorite dishes. Thanks to this versatile green veggie, you can still enjoy pizza, pasta, breadsticks and more on a low-carb diet. Check out some of our favorite low-carb zucchini recipes that taste just as comforting as the original.
Almond-Flour Zucchini Bread
Almond flour gives this tender gluten-free zucchini bread a boost of protein. Squeezing excess moisture from the zucchini prevents the bread from becoming too soggy. If you want to make it extra special, add some dark chocolate chips to the mix.
Zucchini Noodle Cacio e Pepe
Cheese and pepper star in this simple Italian dish. While the combo is traditionally tossed with pasta, we toss Parmesan cheese and freshly ground pepper with zucchini noodles instead for a lower-carb dish that helps you get in an extra serving of veggies. To simplify the recipe, look for prepackaged zucchini noodles in the produce section of your supermarket.
Baked Zucchini Waffle Fries with Creamy Herb Dip
These crispy baked zucchini waffle fries with a ranch-style dipping sauce are a super-fun snack, appetizer or side dish. You can use all sorts of herbs in the creamy dipping sauce, including chives, dill, tarragon or parsley--or a combo. Pickle fans will love the sauce with dill, which pairs especially nicely with the Old Bay in the breadcrumb coating on the zucchini. To create the waffle shape, you can use a mandoline or special waffle cutter, such as the Borner Wave Waffle Cutter, which sells for about $20. This healthy fry recipe would also be delicious with regular sliced zucchini rounds if you'd rather not fuss with special equipment at all.
Zucchini Pizza Casserole
Got a bumper crop of zucchini? Try this crowd-pleasing casserole-meets-pizza dish, which can easily be made gluten-free. A layer of tender shredded zucchini is topped with all the classics: sauce, cheese, pepperoni and sliced bell pepper. Experiment with your own favorite toppings, but make sure you don't overload the crust or it will be too wet.
Garlic-Parmesan Hasselback Zucchini
Using the hasselback technique--cutting partially into a whole fruit or vegetable every 1/2 inch or so--gives you an easy way to sneak lots of flavor into this healthy zucchini recipe. To bake the zucchini instead of grilling, place in a foil-lined 8-inch-square baking pan and bake at 425°F until tender, 25 to 30 minutes.
Spiralized Zucchini Nest Eggs
These impressive-looking zucchini eggs in a nest are actually surprisingly easy to make. There's no frying or poaching required--instead, the eggs are baked right on top of a bed of spiralized zucchini noodles. An herbed cheese mixture adds plenty of flavor and keeps the eggs from running through the zucchini nests. Serve these eggs for a healthy breakfast or brunch.
Caprese Zucchini Casserole
A summertime favorite--zucchini casserole--gets an Italian spin in this delicious and healthy side dish with tomatoes, mozzarella and basil. You can use zucchini or summer squash in this caprese-style casserole, or a combination of the two. A sprinkling of fresh basil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar just before serving brightens up the flavors. Serve with grilled or roasted chicken and some quinoa, rice or couscous to soak up the juices from the casserole for a satisfying and easy dinner.
Baked Chili-Lime Zucchini Chips
Crunchy chips are so satisfying--even when you swap in zucchini for potatoes. In fact, you might even find you like these baked zucchini chips even better than potato chips.
Zucchini Noodle "Pasta" Salad
This healthy zucchini noodle salad has all the flavors you love in a classic Mediterranean pasta salad but we've swapped in zoodles for wheat pasta, which makes the salad lighter, lower in carbs and gluten-free. Serve it with grilled chicken or fish for a light and healthy summer dinner.
Flourless Blender Zucchini Muffins
The batter for these healthy gluten-free zucchini muffins comes together in a flash in your blender. And these tasty treats are baked in a mini muffin tin, so they're the perfect snack or quick breakfast. The chocolate chips are an optional but excellent addition.
Oven-Fried Zucchini Fries with Herbed Buttermilk Dipping Sauce
These easy oven-baked veggie fries are made from thick slices of zucchini dipped in a seasoned breadcrumb batter. Served with an herbed buttermilk dipping sauce, they're so good, you may just prefer them over regular potato fries!
Spiralized Zucchini & Summer Squash Casserole
If you don't have a spiralizer to make this healthy zucchini noodle casserole (aka zoodles), use a vegetable peeler to make long thin strips of the squash and zucchini, stopping when you reach the seedy center. Just a few minutes under the broiler gives these ricotta-and-basil-filled nests a light golden top.
Zucchini, Corn & Egg Casserole
This healthy casserole is essentially a crustless quiche, brimming with fresh summer vegetables. Bake it up for an elegant summer brunch or a casual backyard barbecue.
Zucchini Noodles with Pesto & Chicken
This healthy summer dinner subs zoodles for pasta to help use up your zucchini bounty--as well as slash calories and carbs. Once the spiralized zucchini has time to soak up the herby pesto sauce, this chicken and pesto pasta makes particularly good leftovers.
Mozzarella, Basil & Zucchini Frittata
This vegetable-studded frittata recipe is one of the quickest meals you can make. Make it for breakfast, or serve for lunch or dinner with a tossed salad and a slice of olive oil-drizzled crusty baguette.
Swap vegetables for noodles in this healthy lasagna-inspired recipe. Stuffing zucchini boats with chicken sausage, tomato, ricotta and herbs gives you all the flavors of lasagna without all the carbs.
In this genius carb swap recipe, shredded zucchini held together with a little cheese creates a delicious gluten-free tortilla. These low-carb tortillas are delicious on their own as a snack, but you can also wrap them around your favorite tortilla fillings. Be sure to squeeze as much liquid as possible from the zucchini, as this will yield crispy tortillas.
Hasselback Zucchini "Pizzas"
Turn zucchini into a lower-carb version of pizza with this easy recipe. Using the hasselback technique creates a fun and unique way to stuff zucchini with all the goodness of classic pizza--pepperoni, sauce and melty cheese.
Quiche Lorraine with Zucchini Crust
Shredded zucchini acts as the crust in this recipe for healthier, low-carb quiche Lorraine—quiche with Jarlsberg cheese, bacon and scallions—a brunch classic.
Cheesy Zucchini Breadsticks
Shredded zucchini, eggs and cheese combine in this easy recipe for low-carb cheesy breadsticks like you would get from the pizzeria, but healthier! Dip this gluten-free appetizer in marinara or pico de gallo for even more flavor.
Using thinly sliced zucchini in place of tortillas is a great way to cut back on carbs and still enjoy cheesy chicken enchiladas. If you like the heat, opt for a spicy enchilada sauce.
Bacon-Wrapped Zucchini Fries
These delicious, low-carb "fries" are wrapped in bacon and baked in the oven until they achieve a nice crispy coating. To keep the coating crisp, serve them on a large plate or platter (not piled in a dish) alongside BBQ sauce, ranch dressing or your favorite sauce for dipping. Thinly sliced bacon works best in this recipe for easy wrapping.
Basil-Parmesan Zucchini Roll-Ups
With a little time and a clever technique, zucchini and cream cheese are transformed into a playful and easy party snack. You will have leftover zucchini after shaving the ribbons; dice or slice the leftovers and use them in salads, omelets, or pasta.
A frittata, as a flat omelet is known in Italy, can be filled with a variety of vegetables and cheeses and makes a great impromptu brunch dish or supper. In this version, fresh mint and basil brighten the mild taste of zucchini. If you prefer, use feta or ricotta salata in place of the goat cheese. Source: EatingWell Magazine, Spring 2003
Zucchini Noodles with Quick Turkey Bolognese
Forgo regular pasta (and most of the carbs) for spiralized zucchini "noodles" in these make-ahead meals. The zoodles quickly turn tender-crisp as the veggie-packed Bolognese warms in the microwave. Source: EatingWell.com, January 2019