Fried zucchini is a nostalgic snack-bar staple. It’s a great way to eat more garden veggies! Serve it as a crispy appetizer or a tasty side. Make this easy recipe in 30 minutes.
- 2 medium zucchini, sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch thick medallions
- 5 large eggs
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups dry plain bread crumbs
- 2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 1/4 teaspoons dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly-ground
- Corn oil, for frying
- Coarse salt, for garnishing
- Chopped fresh parsley, for garnishing
- Lemon wedges, for serving
DIPPING SAUCE: Ranch Dressing
HOW TO COAT ZUCCHINI
- Slice off the stem ends and discard. Cut zucchini crosswise into 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick slices, or lengthwise into 3-inch long sticks for zucchini fries.
- Pull out 3 shallow bowls. Add flour to the first bowl. Whisk eggs in the second bowl. In the third bowl, mix together bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and spices.
- On your workspace, set up an assembly line of ingredients: sliced zucchini, bowl of flour, bowl of whisked eggs, bowl of seasoned bread crumbs, and prepared baking tray.
- Coat a piece of zucchini in flour. Dip it in egg. Dredge it in the breadcrumb mixture. Lay coated pieces on prepared baking tray.
- Put the tray in the freezer for 30 minutes, or refrigerate 1 for one hour. This step is a MUST for the breading to stick and not fall off during frying!
HOW TO PAN FRY ZUCCHINI
RECIPE PREP: Preheat oven to 200°F. Line a baking tray with paper towels. Place an oven-proof wire rack over the tray. This is the draining station for freshly-fried zucchini.
- Add 1/2 inch oil to a heavy skillet. Heat the pan over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add a pinch of flour to the pan. If the flour sizzles, the oil is ready for frying.
- Add a few pieces of zucchini to the pan. We want to prevent overcrowding. There should be enough room for the pieces to freely float about in the oil as they cook.
- When bottoms are golden and crisp, flip the pieces over. Total cooking time is 1 to 2 minutes. When working with a new batch, adjust the heat up or down as needed. The oil should gently bubble without smoking or burning the fried zucchini. Between batches, use a metal strainer to remove pieces of coating left behind in the oil.
- Transfer deep fried zucchini to the wire rack over the prepared baking tray. The oil will drain down. Do not use paper towels to directly blot off excess oil from the pieces, or the breading will stick to it.
HOW TO KEEP FRIED ZUCCHINI WARM: Remove paper towels from baking tray with rack. Put tray with rack in the preheated oven to keep appetizer warm until serving.
HOW TO GARNISH AND SERVE DEEP-FRIED ZUCCHINI
- ARRANGE fried zucchini on a platter.
- GARNISH with a sprinkling of coarse salt, parmesan cheese and freshly-chopped parsley.
- SERVE with juicy lemon wedges and ranch dressing.
SHOULD I PEEL THE ZUCCHINI FOR THIS RECIPE? No, keep the skin on! It’s edible and will help the deep fried zucchini slices keep their shape. Additionally, the skin of the zucchini offers nutritional benefits.
INGREDIENT SWAP FOR PLAIN BREAD CRUMBS: Use Italian-style bread crumbs or Panko breadcrumbs.
CAN I USE CORNMEAL FOR BREADING THE ZUCCHINI? Yes. If you don’t have breadcrumbs on hand, use cornmeal instead. Many restaurants prefer cornmeal. But the texture of the fried zucchini will be different. Instead of soft, the coating will be crunchy, a little sweet, and mealy.
HOW TO MAKE BAKED ZUCCHINI FRIES: Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Slice zucchini lengthwise into 3-inch sticks. Coat with breading, per this recipe. Arrange zucchini fries in a single layer on the baking tray. Spritz zucchini with cooking spray. Bake 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
HOW TO MADE AIR FRYER ZUCCHINI FRIES: Preheat air fryer to 375°F. Slice zucchini lengthwise into 3-inch sticks. Coat with breading, per this recipe. Arrange zucchini in a single layer. Cook THE air fryer zucchini fries for 8 minutes, or until crisp and golden blonde.
- Category: Appetizers, Side Dish
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Fried Zucchini