Deep fried zucchini is delicious, but few of us have the time or want to go through the hassle of making it at home. Zucchini can, however be “fried” in the oven, which not only saves time and calories, it doesn’t stink up the house like deep frying, and it eliminates the possibility of a guilty conscience due to the excess fat.
This version of Oven Fried Zucchini takes very little time; not only does it call for a very few ingredients, it can be put together in about 15 minutes or less. Baking time is only 8-10 minutes, so the zucchini can be popped in the oven just as you’re setting the table and calling everyone to dinner. If it’s more convenient, Oven Fried Zucchini can be prepared up to the baking step several hours ahead, covered with plastic wrap, and refrigerated until ready to bake.
Panko breadcrumbs are available at Asian grocers and in the Asian section of larger grocery stores; I like them better because they are extra crisp. You may use regular breadcrumbs, however with excellent results. Dried breadcrumbs can be purchased, but I always grind stale bread in my food processor, spread the crumbs in a shallow layer on a jelly-roll pan, then let them air dry, stirring them every 8 hours or so to make sure all the crumbs dry thoroughly. Once they are dry, the crumbs can be stored in an airtight Ziploc type bag for months.
This recipe will be a hit even with the zucchini haters who, along with the zucchini lovers, may even wish the zucchini season would last a little longer!
Oven Fried Zucchini
2 pounds zucchini, 6-8" long
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup panko breadcrumbs, or dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons cooked and crumbled bacon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 450°.
- Quarter the zucchini lengthwise, then cut spears in half; cut in half crosswise so each spear is 3" long.
- Transfer the zucchini spears to a bowl.
- Whisk the vegetable oil and eggs together; pour over the zucchini spears and mix.
- Mix the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, bacon, and pepper in a gallon-size Ziploc bag.
- Dump the zucchini mixture into the bag and mix until the zucchini spears are coated.
- Transfer the mixture to two parchment-lined baking sheets and press any loose mixture onto the strips.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until the strips are brown and crisp.
- Serve immediately.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 239 Calories from Fat 160
Percent Total Calories From:
Fat 67% Protein 12% Carb. 22%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 18 g
Saturated Fat 3 g
Cholesterol 59 mg
Sodium 229 mg
Total Carbohydrate 13 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 7 g
Vitamin A 10% Vitamin C 17% Calcium 0% Iron 7%