Zucchini frittata: Dealing with the deluge

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It’s a given: every year you end up planting WAY more zucchini plants than you should.

They look so tiny, there at the farm stand. Those brave little shoots in their 4″ pots, reaching for the sun – who’d ever think they’d turn on you with a vengeance, once they’re in the ground?

But turn they do – from tiny tendrils to brazen behemoths, blundering around and across your garden and leaving their enormous green fruit everywhere.

But hold on – even if your zucchini have gotten away from you, there are certain recipes where it really doesn’t matter. Big, dry, seedy… no problem.

Frittata is one of those recipes.

Frittata, a blend of sautéed vegetables, eggs, and cheese, will remind you of quiche – but without the crust.

Now, a classic French chef would blanch (more than his or her green beans) at a “quiche” that didn’t involve heavy cream and farm-fresh eggs. But I often make frittata with – gulp! – egg substitute. You know, that yellow stuff in the carton you find in the dairy case, right above the “real” eggs.

Hey, Egg Beaters are cholesterol-free, low-fat, and they taste good – at least when combined with other, more interesting ingredients. When my calorie-counting, cholesterol-watching husband wants something filling and “eggy,” something beyond a plain poached or hard-boiled egg, I make him a pan of frittata.

At just 100 calories a serving, it’s a sensible way to add protein and vitamins to his diet, AND use up some of that out-of-control zucchini.

Besides, it reminds him of his mother’s zucchini, which was nothing more than chopped zucchini simmered/sautéed with beaten eggs, salt, and Italian seasoning. And ladies, I’m sure many of you will agree: the path to a man’s heart isn’t through his stomach (as the old saw goes); it’s through Mom’s Special [fill in the blank].

Trying to decide in advance what to do with those 2-pound zukes you’ll no doubt find hiding  Make Zucchini Frittata.

Let’s start by grating 2 pounds of zucchini and or yellow summer squash. Two pounds is about 3 medium (8″ to 10″) squash. Don’t make yourself crazy trying to figure out an exact amount here; it’s really not critical if you wind up with a bit more or a bit less.

I like to grate my squash in the food processor using the grating disk.

 

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Stir 1/2 teaspoon salt into the grated squash. Place the squash in a colander, weigh it down, and let it drain for an hour or so.

Combine the drained squash with 1 large sweet onion, which you’ve peeled and cut into small dice.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet, and sauté the squash/onions until they’re soft, about 20 minutes. The vegetables will greatly diminish in volume. Season to taste with additional salt, if desired, and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

In a large bowl, beat together the following:

1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
8 large eggs OR one 15-ounce carton egg substitute
2 tablespoons (1/2 ounce) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Add the cooked vegetables, drained of any liquid if necessary. Stir to combine.

Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil into a 9″ or 10″ cast iron skillet (or other burner-to-oven pan), and heat the skillet on the stovetop until the oil is very hot.

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Spread the vegetable mixture evenly in the pan.

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Bake the frittata for about 20 to 25 minutes.

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When it’s done, it’ll be a light golden brown on top, with darker edges.

Loosen the edges of the frittata from the pan. Wait about 10 minutes, until it loses its oven-hot fragility; then transfer it (in one piece, if possible) from pan to serving plate. If you leave the frittata in the pan, you run the risk of it sticking.

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Serve the frittata hot, in wedges. Store any leftovers in the fridge.

Now admittedly, this recipe won’t take care of your entire zucchini harvest; but isn’t that what friends (and neighbors, and the mailman, and the guys at the gas station) are for?

Please read, bake, and review our recipe for Zucchini Frittata.

Print just the recipe.

I’m sure you still have zucchini to spare; here are some more good recipes –

The Shipyard Galley’s Zucchini Muffins; Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread; Zucchini and Sausage Strata; Baked Zucchini Sticks with Sweet Onion Dip; Chocolate Zucchini Cake; Whole Wheat Zucchini-Nut Bread; Zucchini-Cheese Pancakes.

 

 

 

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. Jules

    I find myself ovenless this summer due to construction. I have an electric skillet. If I use the cover, can I make a reasonable substitute in that?
    Ovenless is not such a bad thing this summer with all the heat! I have not been near my oven in weeks! Yes, the skillet should be a good substitute! Elisabeth

    Reply
  2. Kathy

    Oh I wish I had planted zucchini this year! This looks fabulous!
    Did your neighbor? Or your neighbor’s neighbor? There must be some in the neighborhood begging for a home! Elisabeth

    Reply
  3. AnneMarie

    HA! “turn on you with a vengence!” Love it. Grandma always said only one person in the neighborhood needed to plant zucchini. In fact, when I was little, you had to make sure you locked your car doors, or you’d be surprised with a brown bag of the things “gifted” to you by an anonymous “friend”. (Read abandoned by someone who was being overrun with the things.)

    :D
    Thanks for the laugh, AnneMarie! Elisabeth

    Reply
  4. Marina

    While egg beaters are low in calories they’re overloaded with sodium. Not really a healthy alternative.
    Thank you, Marina. Elisabeth

    Reply
  5. Sarah

    While I haven’t made this frittata, we’ve made others with our summer vegetables and found the leftovers make AMAZING sandwiches. Just heat a bread-sized portion in the microwave until warm, then put it on mayonaisse-slathered pread for a great hot sandwich.
    What an excellent idea! Thanks so much for sharing, my husband will be thrilled with this. ~ MJ

    Reply
  6. cecilia stein

    I assume I can use your gluten free flour in this recipe?
    It would be nice if King Arthur would specify… “Gluten free flour is not recommended in this recipe.” Or, “Gluten free flour is not suggested.” Or even, “For a gluten free recipe similar to this one, please see…………….”

    This is one recipe where you CAN use GF flour one for one. Happy GF Baking – Irene@KAF

    Reply
  7. Brenda

    Just wondering – hubby won’t eat anything with parmesan cheese. Any suggestions for a substitute? Thanks!

    Asiago would be comparable to the parm – you can also consider your favorite cheese-of-choice (a nice cheddar, or others)! Let us know how your variation works out. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

    Reply
  8. joltster

    Well, when I was growing up, we would spend our summers in northern Westchester county and one year my mother planted a garden – or least attempted to. She planted tomatoes, corn,and I think zucchini. Well the corn didn’t fly, but we were inundated with tomatoes and zucchini- couldn’t get rid of the stuff as that the neighbors learned to avoid us when Mom sent me and my brother with bags full of the stuff. Did I say that she planted the garden right over the septic tank? Yup, that had a lot to do with the revenge of the zucchini and the tomatoes.

    Reply
  9. RecCook

    Can’t wait to try this! No one on our block is growing zucchini, though; what other veggies would work?

    How sad that no-one has gifted you zucchini – there should be a zucchini supply at your grocery store. Frittatas are made with any vegetable, meat or other savory ingredient. Let your imagination wander – happy baking! Irene@KAF

    Reply
  10. Jo

    I don’t see a “print” button. Has the blog been formatted to be able to do this? That would be a great feature.

    Your browser should give you the option to print – (click on it in the upper left hand corner and you’ll find print in the options) but do be aware that the complete blog entry will take several pages! Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

    Reply
  11. Janet

    Am I the only one humming “hakuna matata?”

    Never thought of that, Janet – but I see (hear) your point! :) PJH

    Reply
  12. jin

    made this last night, came out beautifully in the cast iron skillet. everyone loved it, definitely a keeper!

    Reply
  13. Marque

    Living in a seniors only building, we sadly have no garden space but we do have “helpful” daughters and sons that bring us extra vegetables once or twice a week! I have decided to cut this in half at least or else I’d be eating this for at least 2 weeks. I’m on the third floor with no air conditioning so I’ll make it late night and may just eat it cold. Great recipe, won’t cost much to make and will feed me for a week!
    Why not make two and have the whole third floor over for dinner? :) ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  14. Amanda

    Made this Saturday with cheddar instead of parmesan and it was unbelievably good. I must be one of the few people in the world who never has enough zucchini – it’s such a versatile filling for so many great dishes. Sadly our zucchini plants did not make it this year so I have to keep buying it.

    I agree, Amanda. So many uses for one vegetable! It truly is the “wunderkind” of the vegetable world. I hope your plants pop back up next year (maybe a bumper crop will happen!) so you can keep it close by all summer long. Cheers, Kim@KAF

    Reply
  15. Stacey

    Can I make this in a smaller casserole dish? I wouldn’t be able to heat the oil on the stovetop like it says in the recipe. My husband most likely won’t eat this so I want to make a smaller version so I can attempt to polish this off myself.
    Sure, you can make a smaller version if you’d like, but for best results, you’ll want to stick to using a skillet and make sure the oil is very hot before adding the mixture to the pan. ~Amy

    Stacey, you can also just simply spoon everything into a greased casserole dish. You’ll be missing some of the crusty crust, but that’s OK. :) PJH

    Reply
  16. Jessica

    I do not have a cast iron skillet. Can I use a non-stick skillet?

    Jessica, you can use a regular pie pan, or a non-stick skillet if it’s completely oven-safe, i.e. has a heat-proof handle. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  17. Penny

    I just made this. It is totally delicious! I am wondering if it will freeze well? I am having lots of company for a long weekend in August and would like to just take it out of the freezer (perhaps the night before?) and heat it up for breakfast in the morning.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Penny- We’re so glad to hear you enjoyed the frittata! We generally wouldn’t recommend freezing this product, but it should keep in the fridge well for you for several days, so you could still make it ahead. Just keep it wrapped up well, reheat it when you’re ready to serve and enjoy! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Kathleen, you can fry the zucchini mixture in a regular frying pan, then transfer to a 9″ cake pan or deep-dish pie pan to bake. Enjoy – PJH

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