Champaign, Ill. (WCIA)

Zucchini Green or Yellow Summer Squash

Fruit or Veggie? Botanically speaking, a zucchini (a type of squash) is definitely a fruit. Not only does it have and come from seeds, it grows on the flowering part of the zucchini plant. Guest chef, Lisa Lewey-Shields fun facts and delicious recipes using what’s left of your garden produce.

Crispy Fried Zucchini
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 4 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Servings 8
Author Holly Nilsson
• 2 medium zucchini about 1 ½ lbs
• 2 eggs
• ¾ cup all-purpose flour
• ½ cup grated parmesan cheese.
• 2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
• canola oil for frying

  1. Trim ends off zucchini and slice into ½” slices.
  2. Beat eggs with salt and pepper to taste. Combine parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and salt & pepper to taste in a separate dish.
  3. Pour oil into a pan to ½” deep and heat over medium heat.
  4. Dredge zucchini in flour, dip in eggs and finally dip in bread crumbs. Repeat with remaining slices.
  5. Add zucchini to the pan, a few at a time (don’t crowd) cooking 2-3 minutes per side.
  6. Drain on paper towels. Season with salt if desired.

Zucchini Soup
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
• 1 ½ pounds zucchini about 2 medium
• 1 tablespoon butter
• 1 small onion diced
• 2 cloves garlic minced
• 2 ¼ cups chicken broth not low sodium
• salt & black pepper to taste
• ½ cup heavy cream
• sour cream and fresh dill for garnish

  1. Dice zucchini into ½ ” pieces, do not peel.
  2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add zucchini and cook until tender, about 5 minutes more.
  3. Stir in broth, salt & pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook 10-15 minutes or until the zucchini is very soft.
  4. Puree soup using a hand blender or immersion blender*. Stir in the cream and simmer 1 minute more.
  5. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with sour cream and fresh dill.
    Store leftovers in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.
    Use a hand blender or immersion blender to blend hot soups right in the pot. Less mess and it’s easy!
    If you don’t have a hand blender, the soup can be blended in a regular blender in batches. When using a regular blender, be sure not to seal the lid or the steam can build up causing it to burst open. Leave the lid open just enough to allow steam to escape.

Sauteed Zucchini and Tomatoes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Servings 4
Author Holly Nilsson
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• ½ cup onion diced
• 2 cloves garlic minced
• 1 large zucchini cut into ½-inch cubes
• 1 teaspoon dried parsley
• ¼ teaspoon dried basil
• 1 cup ripe tomatoes diced, any variety
• ½ teaspoon seasoned salt
• ½ teaspoon black pepper
• 1 ounce mozzarella cheese shredded
• ½ ounce parmesan cheese shredded

  1. Heat olive oil in a 10-inch skillet. Cook onion over medium heat until tender.
  2. Add garlic, zucchini, parsley, and basil. Cook until zucchini is tender-crisp, about 5-6 minutes.
  3. Add tomato, seasoned salt & pepper. Cook an additional 2-3 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat, sprinkle with cheeses and cover with a lid*, rest 2-3 minutes, or until cheese melts.

Zucchini Fritters
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes
Servings 4
Author Holly Nilsson
• 1 medium zucchini 12 ounce
• ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
• 1 egg
• ½ cup mozzarella cheese shredded, or chedddar cheese
• ¼ cup seasoned bread crumbs
• 1 green onion thinly sliced
• 1 tablespoon flour
• 1 tablespoon parmesan cheese shredded
• ½ teaspoon baking powder
• 1 tablespoon oil for frying

  1. Use the large holes of a box grater to shred zucchini (no need to peel). Toss shredded zucchini with ½ teaspoon salt and let sit for 5-10 minutes.
  2. Using cheesecloth or a kitchen towel, squeeze out as much liquid from the zucchini as possible.
  3. Combine the zucchini with remaining ingredients, except the oil, in a bowl and form into 4 patties, approximately 3″ across.
  4. Heat oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Once hot, add the zucchini patties.
  5. Cook for about 3-5 minutes per side or until deep golden brown.

The above recipes from Holly Nilsson can also be found here:

For a look at the many health benefits of zucchini visit the website here: