Baked Parmesan Zucchini Rounds are the BEST way to use up summer zucchini! This simple, addictive side dish is quick & easy using just TWO ingredients!
Zucchini is one of those summer vegetables that not only grows abundantly, but it tends to come in all at once. Thanks to my generous in-laws and their bountiful garden, we are the lucky recipients of boatloads of it each summer, and I try to use it up in a variety of ways, from breads and muffins to fritters to hiding it in as many dinner entrees as possible.
However, my old standby recipe for enjoying zucchini as a dinnertime side dish are these Baked Parmesan Zucchini Rounds. I hesitate to even call this a recipe because it requires only two ingredients and about five minutes to prepare.
If you want to get all wild and crazy, you can sprinkle your zucchini slices with a bit of garlic salt and freshly ground black pepper before spooning on the Parmesan. It's a step I always include when I make this recipe. Of course, if you elect to do that, budget an additional 30 seconds of prep time into the long and arduous process of making this recipe. 😉
Even those who claim to dislike zucchini will be popping these little babies in their mouth as fast as humanly possible. By baking at a relatively high temperature, the slices get nice and soft. They develop an almost creamy texture, while the Parmesan turns crispy and golden brown.
You can experiment with the thickness of your zucchini slices and the ratio of Parmesan to zucchini to determine your sweet spot. I find that ¼-inch thick slices work pretty perfectly. And since I like to put a generous mound of grated Parm on each round, I end up using about ¼ cup of cheese per every medium-sized zucchini that I slice up.
Regardless of how you decide to customize these, I definitely recommend making more than you anticipate needing. For one thing, the zucchini rounds do shrink a bit during the baking process. But on top of that, they are just so dang tasty. Don't tell anyone, but I may have eaten an entire pan of these all by myself...a time or twelve.
Oh, and feel free to place your slices much closer together than depicted in the pics on this post. I evenly spaced them for more aesthetic photography. But typically, I cram them on the pan and don't pay any heed to neat, symmetrical rows. 😉
A certain someone at my house was very intrigued by my endeavors on this particular day.
As you will see below, towards the end of my photo shoot, she just couldn't resist touching, and then grabbing, and then face planting ("Mama, I smell!") into my carefully arranged plate. And after that, she didn't appreciate being informed that she needed to step away from the zucchini.
If you love zucchini as much as my little gal, you definitely need to give these Baked Parmesan Zucchini Rounds a try. If you hate zucchini, they just might change your mind. And if you have lots and lots of fresh garden zucchini to use up every summer? I think you'll find yourself falling back on this recipe quite often!
Finally, if you're overrun with yellow summer squash, this same concept will work for that! Be sure to check out the full post I did using yellow squash. I also shared Baked Parmesan Summer Veggies combining zucchini, yellow squash, and tomatoes -- yum!
More Summer Side Dish Recipes
- Baked Parmesan Summer Veggies
- Marinated Tomatoes
- Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad
- Creamy German Cucumber Salad ~ Gurkensalat
Baked Parmesan Zucchini Rounds
- 2 medium-sized zucchini
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Garlic salt & freshly ground black pepper, optional
- Place oven rack in center position of oven. Preheat to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with foil (lightly misted with cooking spray) OR parchment paper.
- Wash and dry zucchini, and cut into ¼-inch thick slices. Arrange zucchini rounds on prepared pan, with little to no space between them. If desired, lightly sprinkle zucchini with garlic salt and freshly ground black pepper. Use a small spoon to spread a thin layer of Parmesan cheese on each slice of zucchini. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until Parmesan turns a light golden brown. (Watch these closely the first time you make them and pull them out of the oven early if the Parmesan is golden before 15 minutes!) Serve immediately.
Post originally published on June 21, 2014
I put them in an air fryer (top shelf) for over 20 minutes the Parmesan cheese did not brown and get bubbly
Sorry to hear that. I developed this recipe to be cooked in an oven, but thanks for sharing your results for others who may be curious about trying it in an air fryer. 🙂
Do you allow the slices to rest on a paper towel for a bit to soak up the water from the zucchini ? or does it matter ? will def. be trying these this summer !
I've never found that step to be necessary, Sandie. Hope you enjoy! 🙂
This did not work for me, as I had to guess about the baking temperature.
I'm sorry to hear that, Cathy. The baking temperature is listed in the recipe card, along with the list of ingredients and full instructions for the recipe. The recipe card is towards the bottom of the post, after the paragraphs of general information and photos. That being said, at the very top of the post, there is also a "Jump to Recipe" button to help you get to the recipe card directly and more quickly. Hope that helps!
I always make my zucchini slices on the stove top, cooking them in a little oil and butter, flipping them once. And when they're almost done, I sprinkle parmesan cheese on them and it is so delish. I also season them with Janes Crazy Mixed Up Salt, but not too much. But your recipe sounds a lot healthier.
These were so delicious, and so simple to make. I just sprinkled the zucchini rounds with a little garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper, then put on the mounds of parmesan and baked. The squash becomes almost creamy, and of course the yummy parmesan gets so crispy. It is a great combination of flavors.
Can I know is this recipe suitable for meal prep? Would it taste as good the next day?
Hi Anitha! The zucchini gets pretty soft once baked. So my preference is to enjoy them as soon as they come out of the oven, since they can turn rather mushy when reheated.
I made rugs last night for dinner. It was deliciou I did have to use the parmesan cheese from the bottle with the green top. It is the only one dairy free.. I added a litt,e bit more. Tasted very good. Thanks
These were so delicious, and very simple with just a few ingredients. I cut the zucchini fairly thin as suggested, sprinkled it with garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper first, then put the little piles of parmesan on top of each. The cheese gets so bubbly and crisp, while the squash underneath is creamy. She is right, you can just keep popping them in your mouth. My husband enjoyed them too, and he doesn't usually like zucchini except in bread! Great recipe.
Do you pat some of the water out of the zucchini before topping it. I tried making zucchini fat fries and they never got crispy. I figured they had too much water in them.
Hi Monica! These zucchini rounds aren't intended to get crispy. The cheese turns chewy and the zucchini underneath turns tender, so I wouldn't expect fat zucchini fries to get crispy. Hope that helps!
Easy and tasty. My husband didn’t like the skins since they were a little tough the first night, but once reheated were better
I made these yesterday and they were scrumptious and so, so easy! I sprinkled them with a bit of garlic powder, salt and pepper. In a separate bowl I mixed together parmesan cheese, panko bread crumbs and some basil and oregano. I placed this mixture on top of the zucchini rounds. I baked them on a cooling rack over a cookie sheet so they would not get soggy bottoms. Everyone loved them! I also made a quick 10 minute marinara sauce to dip them in. Yummy!!!
This was good and tasty-we had some hummus and other spreads served with them. I like your idea of cooking on the cooling rack and using herbed panko mixed in with the parmesan (which ended up being pretty salty). Good ideas! I will try that next.