Zucchini parmigiana

You surely know Melanzane alla parmigiana, well the same recipe can be made with zucchini, and it taste great too!

Zucchini parmigiana can be quite bland, however when you know how to enhance their fresh taste with the right recipe. you’ll love them.
The good thing about this type of recipe is that you can make it whenever you have the time, then put it in the freezer either cooked or raw and have it on hand when you are in a hurry. It is perfect when you have guest and you need a make-ahead recipe that will save you a lot of time. It is possible to prepare it the day before, keep in the fridge and cook it as soon as the guests arrive.

You can also use a slow cooker to make it! In this case the only thing you’ll need is to broil it for a few minutes before serving.

Zucchini parmigiana

Zucchini parmigiana health facts

Zucchini are rich in vitamins and minerals, low in calories and perfect if you want to add more veggies to your daily diet. In particular zucchini contains potassium and phosphorous and also magnesium. Vitamin A, B5, C along with others are also in zucchini however, since they tend to degrade in heat, using the slow cooker can be the best way to retain most of the nutrients.

When paired with tomatoes and cheese this dish becomes a full meal rich in antioxidant, lean protein, fibers and nutrients. I use little to no fat in the recipe to keep it even lighter and perfect for a light mid-week dinner or a lunch on the go. It taste amazing either cold or hot, so you can pack it in a lunch box.

When adding a hot kick with chili pepper you also allow your body to increase your metabolism and activate the brown fat that burn the bad fat in your body.

How to make zucchini parmigiana

Tips, tricks and variations

  1. You can slice the zucchini and sprinkle with salt then let them sit onto a wire rack for 15/20 minutes. This way you’ll remove all the moisture from the zucchini and the end result will be tastier and the cooking time will reduce slightly.
  2. You can put the passata in a bowl, add salt, pepper and chili pepper along with some olive oil and mix well, then use it without the need to sprinkle the seasoning on each layer. You can also add herbs such as oregano, rosemary or parsley to you liking.
  3. To make this dish richer in taste, you could prepare a “sugo” by adding to a pan some finely chopped onions, the passata, salt and pepper and cook for 5 to ten minutes. then use this mix to layer the dish.
  4. Don’t have mozzarella? You can use any melting cheese, however I would try to avoid ultra processed cheeses, or pre diced or sliced ones, if you can get a good quality cheddar it works great as well, or maybe gruyere, fontina or provolone, they’ll make the recipe very savory and flavorful.
  5. Want to make the extra effort? Turn this into a zucchini lasagne. Layer dried lasagne in between the zucchini then add some water to allow the pasta to cook, in this case cook for 50/60min.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 800gr of zucchini
  • 500ml of passata
  • 200gr of mozzarella
  • 50gr of parmigiano or grana
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1tbs of extra virgin olive oil
  • chili peppers to taste


Step 1
Wash well and slice the zucchini into 1cm slices. Tear the mozzarella into small pieces. Great the parmigiano and keep aside. Pre heat the oven to 180°C/375°F.

zucchini recipes

Step 2
Oil a 20x30cm tray with the oil, then spread a tablespoon of passata. Lay the zucchini slices, sprinkle with some salt, pepper and chili, spread some passata and then add a layer of mozzarella and cheese on top.

Zucchini parmigiana

Keep layering all the ingredients, and finish with some passata and mozzarella.

Step 3
Put in the oven and cook for around 30/40 minutes.
If you use a slow cooker, cook on low for around 3/4h, then broil the surface for 5min.


Try also my quick eggplant parmigiana, you can make it with eggplants but works perfectly with zucchini too.

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