Baked Zucchini Fries are so simple to make and are great to have your kids help make. They can be eaten with your fingers or cut up. Zucchini is a gourd that belongs in the “squash” family and comes in yellow and light green to almost black and resembles the shape of a cucumber.
Be sure to pay close attention when shopping so you don’t accidentally pick a green cucumber instead of a zucchini. Technically, it’s considered a fruit but in the culinary world is commonly cooked as a vegetable. Many people don’t know that zucchini has many health benefits. It contains a high content of vitamin C, potassium, and vitamin A which are all important for good health.
If you have never used fresh parmesan and grated it yourself now is a good time to take it up a notch and try it. These zucchini sticks are baked and not fried. Crunchy panko crumbs add a fried texture to this vegetable while being healthier than other cooking methods.
How to Make Baked Zucchini Fries
- Mix together panko, salt, pepper and grated parmesan cheese.
- Quarter the zucchini and rub with olive oil.
- Swirl into the mixed ingredients and coat well.
- Bake until fork tender.
- Broil on high until golden brown.
Zucchini Stick Ingredients
- Zucchini: Chose fresh, firm zucchini, any color will do. Do not overbake as it will become more tender when you put it under the broiler.
- Panko: The perfect dried, crustless white breading with a flakier consistency than regular breadcrumb.
- Parmesan Cheese: Jarred or fresh parmesan cheese keeps with the light and airy taste of this dish.
- Olive Oil: A healthier choice oil famous for its antioxidant attributes.
- Salt and Pepper: Traditional seasoning for a clean taste.
- Parsley: Sprinkle this light and fresh herb after broiling to add more nutrient rich vitamins such as A, C, and K.
- blue cheese
- buffalo sauce
- bbq sauce
- hot sauce
- thousand island dressing
- Italian dressing
- garlic butter
- vegetable dip
- soy sauce
- sour cream
- maple syrup
- bacon bites
- Cheese: Mix it up with tangy cheeses such as gorgonzola, feta or blue cheese. Munster, mozzarella gouda, and pepper jack are all great melting cheeses. Romano, sharp cheddar in yellow or white are also great choices.
- Nuts: Add some crunch with ground up almonds, sunflower or pine nuts.
- Dried Fruit: Sprinkle some dried cranberries or cherries for an unexpected pop of flavor.
- Herbs: Parsley, basil, chives, rosemary, mint, thyme or oregano will add some umph.
- Vegetables: Diced tomatoes or green onions, fresh garlic, shaved carrots.
Tips & Questions
Can I use cucumbers since they have the same shape? No, cucumbers are too watery which yields little flavor, and contain lots of seeds.
Can I use different cheeses? Yes, changing the cheese type could drastically alter the taste of the original recipe which is milder. See the Flavorful Variation section.
Can I make this ahead of time? You can quarter your zucchini and tightly wrap and refrigerate up to a day ahead of time along with combining your ingredients and placing them in an airtight container.
How long do they store for? These are best eaten fresh out of the oven as they will provide the best crunch. Otherwise, they can be reheated in a 350°F oven.
What is the best way to serve as an appetizer? It is best to cut the pieces into 2–4 inch sections for appetizers. If you want to have an appetizer that doesn’t involve your guests getting their fingers full of food you can cut it into smaller pieces and put a toothpick through them.
Baked Zucchini Fries
- 3 zucchini quartered
- ½ cup panko
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- ½ cup parmesan cheese grated
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp parsley chopped
- In a large bowl, mix together panko, salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese.
- Rub quartered zucchini with olive oil.
- Coat well in the mixture and place on a baking sheet.
- Bake in a 350°F for 10-15 minutes or until fork-tender.
- Broil on high for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown.
- Garnish with chopped parsley.
Nutritional information is only an estimate and it’s accuracy is not guaranteed to be exact.
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