This time of year, zucchini is at its peak. The versatile veggie is made mostly of water, making it low in calories — one medium zucchini has 33 calories. Zucchini is high in potassium, a good source of dietary fiber and provides 58% of the daily value for vitamin C. This low-carb squash is gaining popularity as a pasta alternative and plays a starring role in these 10 recipes.
1. SHRIMP & ASPARAGUS ZOODLE PASTA | EATING BIRD FOOD
It takes just 20 minutes to whip up this quick-and-easy, low-carb garlic shrimp and asparagus zoodle pasta. This weeknight dinner uses only 10 ingredients: asparagus, shrimp, zucchini, lemon juice, garlic, crushed red pepper, salt, black pepper, olive oil and parsley. If you don’t have a spiralizer, slice zucchini into thin matchsticks instead. Recipe makes 2 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 352; Total Fat: 10g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 361mg; Sodium: 727mg; Carbohydrate: 21g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugar: 10g; Protein: 48g
2. CHEESE & ZUCCHINI QUESADILLA | UPROOT KITCHEN
Quesadillas are versatile and easy to make. In this recipe, sauteed onions and zucchini are aptly paired with savory goat cheese and crispy whole-wheat tortillas. Recipe makes 2 servings at 1/2 quesadilla each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 173; Total Fat: 7g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 13mg; Sodium: 358mg; Carbohydrate: 22g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugar: 2g; Protein: 6g
3. ZUCCHINI NOODLE BOLOGNESE | DOWNSHIFTOLOGY
Pair bolognese with zucchini noodles for a tasty weeknight dinner that is also gluten- and grain-free. Pro tip: Keep the “zoodles” and sauce separate until ready to eat. (Note: Zucchini noodles stay fresh for only a couple of days, so plan accordingly.) Recipe makes 4 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 350; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 6g; Cholesterol: 71mg; Sodium: 251mg; Carbohydrate: 30g; Dietary Fiber: 8g; Sugar: 11g; Protein: 32g
4. ZUCCHINI NOODLE FRITTATA WITH GOAT CHEESE & SUN-DRIED TOMATOES | INSPIRALIZED
For a quick and healthy meal, make this savory one-pan frittata. You only need five ingredients: zucchini, sun-dried tomatoes, eggs, goat cheese and black pepper. This versatile dish is great for brunch or any meal during the day. Recipe makes 2 servings at two, 2-inch slices each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 188; Total Fat: 11g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 375mg; Sodium: 190mg; Carbohydrate: 6g; Dietary Fiber: 1g; Sugar: 4g; Protein: 16g
5. CHILI-CHEESE STUFFED ZUCCHINI BOATS | MAEBELLS
You may have tried stuffed tomatoes or bell peppers before, but wait until you get a load of this dish. Fresh zucchini — hollowed out and filled with a savory chili loaded with lean ground beef, spicy tomatoes and beans — makes a complete low-carb, protein-packed meal. For extra crunch, top your boats with crushed tortilla chips. Recipe makes 5 servings at 2 zucchini boats each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 375; Total Fat: 13g; Saturated Fat: 7g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 79mg; Sodium: 455mg; Carbohydrate: 30g; Dietary Fiber: 10g; Sugar: 7g; Protein: 37g
6. NO-PASTA LASAGNA | EAT DRINK PALEO
Bye-bye pasta! This take on lasagna substitutes sheets of zucchini, eggplant and parsnip for traditional semolina noodles. These three mild-flavored veggies pair well with tomato passata meat sauce and make for a high-protein, high-fiber meal. Recipe makes 8 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 417; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 7g; Cholesterol: 64mg; Sodium: 806mg; Total Carbohydrates: 36g; Dietary Fiber: 12g; Sugars: 15g; Protein: 26g
7. MANGO ZUCCHINI SALAD | CLEAN EATING
Spirals of zucchini and carrot are a lighter, lower-carb alternative to grain-based noodles. In this recipe, zucchini and carrots are tossed with a spicy mango and avocado dressing, and topped with chicken and crunchy cashews. Recipe makes 6 servings at 2 cups each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 198; Total Fat: 5g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 28mg; Sodium: 127mg; Carbohydrate: 24g; Dietary Fiber: 4g; Sugar: 16g; Protein: 15g
8. MINI ZUCCHINI-NUT MUFFINS | DIETITIAN DEBBIE DISHES
These vegan mini-muffins deliver heart-healthy omega-3 fats from ground flaxseeds and walnuts. Keep a batch on hand to grab and go or pair with a banana and a cup of yogurt for a filling breakfast. Recipe makes 12 servings at 1 muffin each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 174; Total Fat: 9g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 108mg; Carbohydrate: 21g; Dietary Fiber: 2g; Sugar: 8g; Protein: 4g
9. SLOW COOKER ITALIAN TURKEY MEATBALLS | SKINNYTASTE
Want the secret to making the juiciest turkey meatballs ever? Add shredded zucchini. Rather than frying or baking the meatballs first, this recipe drops them right into the sauce to slow-cook together. For a complete meal, serve over whole-wheat pasta or zoodles. Recipe makes 6 servings at 4 meatballs and 2/3 cup sauce each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 235; Total Fat: 11g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 104mg; Sodium: 471mg; Carbohydrate: 10g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 22g
10. SUMMER VEGGIE QUINOA | MYFITNESSPAL’S RECIPES
Enjoy nutty quinoa with flavorful grilled summer vegetables like zucchini, peppers and carrots. Enjoy this delicious grain and veggie salad on its own or with a lean protein like grilled chicken breast or a hardboiled egg. Recipe makes 4 servings at 1 1/2 cups each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 361; Total Fat: 11g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 559mg; Carbohydrate: 57g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugar: 11g; Protein: 11g