Zucchini fritters are an easy, tasty, and fun recipe the whole family will love. They are golden brown, slightly caramelized outside, and soft, juicy, and flavorful inside.

Make them with or without eggs and serve them as a starter, side dish, or main dish with our marinara sauce, sour cream, or tzatziki sauce. We are sure you’ll love them!

Zucchini fritters with marinara sauce

Check out our best vegetable sides recipe collection!

If you like zucchini, you’ll love our zucchini fritters recipe.

They are tasty savory pancake-shaped flat cakes made with a simple batter of grated zucchini, and you can choose to prepare them with eggs or without.

Our recipe is a breeze to put together. First, we toss grated zucchini in a bit of salt so that they release their water.

We then squeeze the water out and mix them with simple ingredients like olive oil, oregano, garlic, and red onion.

Finally, we cook the zucchini fritters batter on a skillet with extra virgin olive oil until they turn golden brown and slightly caramelized.

Zucchini fritters pack a ton of flavor and are an excellent meal for the whole family. Our tip is to top them or dip them with tzatziki sauce, marinara sauce, or our homemade sour cream.

Did you know that zucchini fritters are a popular traditional Turkish recipe called Mücver and are often served as a starter on a meze platter with other delicious small dishes?

Zucchini fritters with tzatziki

Ingredients

ingredients for zucchini fritters

Zucchini

We use bright green zucchini, but you can use any other varieties, including round zucchini, yellow zucchini, crookneck squash, and more.

For this recipe, squeezing out the water from the zucchini is essential so that the patties stay together on the pan and won’t turn out wet and soggy.

Luckily that’s very easy to do in a colander with a bit of salt.

Chickpea Flour or Eggs

We tested this recipe with and without eggs; honestly, we could not tell the difference. The fritters were identical in texture and flavor.

If you want to make fritters without eggs, the best egg replacement is chickpea flour, sometimes known as garbanzo bean flour.

We’ve used chickpea flour as an egg replacement before (zucchini frittata, potato frittata, frittata muffins, asparagus frittata, savory pancakes, and egg-free carbonara), and it never disappoints.

It adds a wonderful flavor and a light yellow color, and it helps keep the batter together. If you prefer eggs, one large egg is more than enough for this recipe.

Flour

You’ll need all-purpose flour to absorb moisture from the zucchini and keep the fritters together.

We tried to make zucchini fritters without flour, just using chickpea flour, but the result was not good. The patties were too moist and did not keep their shape as we flipped them.

You can make this recipe gluten-free using a one-to-one gluten-free flour mixture and one egg. We tried King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten-Free flour.

Red Onion

We love the sweet, mild flavor of red onion with zucchini, so we decided to include this ingredient in our fritters.

The onions caramelize slightly as the fritters cook on the pan, adding flavor and sweet notes.

Substitute yellow, white, or green onions for the red onion.

Garlic

Garlic is a must in zucchini fritters. We recommend using fresh cloves, grated finely. The fritters will burst with flavor and aroma thanks to the fresh garlic.

Substitute garlic powder for fresh garlic.

Herbs

You can use your favorite dried herbs like oregano, thyme, mint, dill, basil, rosemary, or sage.

Or you can use finely chopped fresh herbs like parsley, dill, mint, and chives.

Baking powder

Baking powder allows some air into the fritters and makes them light and fluffy, but you can also make them without it.

Salt and pepper

We use fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. You can also add a pinch of red pepper flakes for some heat.

Oil

We recommend extra virgin olive oil to pan-fry the zucchini fritters. Extra virgin olive oil adds a beautiful flavor.

Also, thanks to its high polyphenol content is stable at high temperatures, making it healthier for you.

Substitute canola oil or frying oil for olive oil.

Toppings and dips

You must try the fritters with our homemade marinara sauce, a garlicky tzatziki sauce made with greek yogurt or a quick and easy sour cream made with cashews.

Zucchini fritters with marinara sauce

Instructions

1. Drain the zucchini

Grate the zucchini with the large holes of a box grater or a food processor with a grating disc attachment.

Put the zucchini in a colander and toss them with the salt. Put the colander over a bowl, and let them drain for 10 minutes.

Grated zucchini in a sift

Now squeeze the water out of the zucchini with your hands.

You can also squeeze them in a kitchen towel or cheesecloth, although hand squeezing is a lot faster, with less washing up.

Note: squeeze out as much liquid as you can. This is essential to remove excess moisture that would come out while the fritters cook, ruining your recipe.

squeezing zucchini juice in a hand

2. Make the batter

In a large bowl, whisk together chickpea flour and water. Alternatively, beat one large egg with a fork.

Add shredded zucchini, finely chopped red onion, grated garlic, oregano, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and black pepper.

Zucchini and red onion in a glass bowl

Stir with a spatula until the ingredients are well combined into a thick batter.

Zucchini fritter batter and a spatula

3. Cook the fritters

Heat the olive oil on medium-high heat in a large non-stick pan or cast iron skillet (you’ll need more oil in cast iron).

Drop four heaping tablespoons of zucchini mixture into the skillet, flatten the patties with the back of the spoon, and cook on medium heat for a couple of minutes or until golden brown.

Zucchini fritters on a pan with oil

Turn the zucchini fritters around with a spatula, cook for two more minutes, then arrange them on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil and cook the next batch.

Cooked zucchini fritters in a pan

Serve the fritters on a platter with a sprinkle of chopped fresh herbs (parsley, chives, dill, thyme), flakey salt, and lemon wedges.

Dip or top with tzatziki sauce, marinara sauce, or sour cream.

Zucchini fritters on a platter

Variations

Zucchini fritters with cheese

You can make zucchini fritters with non-dairy cheese or regular cheese.

We recommend crumbled feta cheese or non-dairy feta, grated parmesan cheese or non-dairy parmesan, and shredded cheddar or non-dairy shredded cheese.

Add one or two handfuls to the zucchini batter.

Vegan zucchini fritters

To make vegan zucchini fritters follow our recipe with chickpea flour.

Serve them with marinara sauce, vegan sour cream, or with our tzatziki recipe that you can make with non-dairy yogurt.

Zucchini fritters with lemon wedge and tzatziki sauce

Serving suggestions

You can serve the zucchini fritters hot, right out of the pan, or at room temperature.

We eat them as a starter, snack, side, or main dish with dip and dressings:

  • Tzatziki (yogurt, cucumber, mint, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, etc.)
  • Marinara sauce (onion, garlic, whole peeled tomatoes, dried oregano, fresh basil, etc.)
  • Chipotle sauce (sour cream, chili in adobo sauce, vegan mayo, garlic, lime, etc.)
  • Sour cream (cashew nuts, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, salt, etc.)
  • Vegan mayo (soy milk, lemon, garlic, mustard, etc.)

Our favorite way to serve them is as part of a beautiful mezze (appetizer) platter with other small Mediterranean and middle easter dishes such as:

mezze platter with tabbouleh and hummus

Questions

Why do my zucchini fritters fall apart?

Your zucchini fritters fall apart for one of two reasons:

1) You haven’t drained the zucchini enough, and the batter is too moist. Remember to squeeze out as much water as possible per our instructions above.

2) You haven’t added enough flour, which helps absorb the moisture and makes the zucchini fritter stick together.

To fix the problem, add more flour to the batter to make it thicker.

What do you eat zucchini fritters with?

We recommend eating them with a topping or dip of tzatziki sauce, marinara sauce, or homemade sour cream.

Try them as part of a meze platter with other small dishes. Check out our serving suggestions chapter for more ideas.

Can I make zucchini fritters in the oven?

We don’t recommend making zucchini fritters in the oven because they won’t cook fast enough, and the zucchini will get soft and mushy.

You can try cooking them in an air fryer, although we found it a little hard to shape them when using the air fryer.

Make Ahead & Storage

Make Ahead: zucchini fritters are best when right out of the pan. However, we do like to make them ahead of time and use them for meal prep for the week. Their flavor is delicious even after several days. To crisp them up, reheat them in the air fryer.

Refrigerator: store leftovers wrapped in plastic or in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Freezer: let the cakes cool down, transfer them to a freezer-friendly bag, and freeze them for up to 3 months. Thaw in the microwave or the fridge.

Reheat: the air-fryer is your best friend to revive your fritters and make them a little crisp. Alternatively, you can use a microwave or a pan with a drizzle of olive oil.

More zucchini recipes

Get more spring-and summer recipe inspiration from these easy zucchini ideas:

  • Zucchini pasta (fusilli pasta, zucchini, garlic, vegetable broth, yogurt, pine nuts, lemon, etc.)
  • Easy zucchini risotto (arborio rice, garlic, butter, zucchini, lemon, white wine, thyme, etc.)
  • Roasted zucchini (breadcrumbs, zucchini, garlic powder, dried thyme, rosemary, etc.)
  • Zucchini bread (flour, sugar, baking powder, chocolate chips, zucchini, walnuts, etc.)
  • Stuffed zucchini boats (lentils, walnuts, garlic, onion, crushed tomatoes, zucchini, etc.)

More veggie-packed appetizers

Try these crispy and vegetable-packed starter ideas; they’re great for cookouts and family dinners:

  • Fried eggplant (chickpea flour, eggplant, breadcrumbs, salt, etc.)
  • Risotto cakes (leftover risotto, garlic powder, dried oregano, plant milk, etc.)
  • Sweet potato chips (sweet potato, olive oil, salt.)
  • Italian rice balls (arborio rice, onion, garlic, white wine, tomato passata, breadcrumbs, etc.)
  • Kale chips (curly kale, garlic, salt, lemon olive oil, red pepper flakes.)

For many more starter ideas, check out our starters category page.

zucchini fritters with tzatziki

Zucchini Fritters

By: Nico Pallotta
5 from 11 votes
Zucchini fritters are an easy, tasty, and fun recipe the whole family will love. They are golden brown, slightly caramelized outside, and soft, juicy, and flavorful inside.
Make them with or without eggs and serve them as a starter, side dish, or main dish with our marinara sauce, sour cream, or tzatziki sauce. We are sure you'll love them!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 fritters
Course: Appetizer, Main, Side dish
Cuisine: American

Equipment

  • Box grater with large holes or food processor with grating disc attachment

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds zucchini (about 4 medium)
  • teaspoons salt
  • 1 egg or ⅓ cup or 50 g chickpea flour + ¼ cup or 60 g of water
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or more if needed

Instructions 

  • Grate 2 pounds zucchini with the large holes of a box grater.
    Put the zucchini in a colander and toss them with 1½ teaspoons salt. Put the colander over a bowl, and let them drain for 10 minutes.
    Grated zucchini in a sift
  • Squeeze the water out of the zucchini with your hands.
    squeezing zucchini juice in a hand
  • In a large bowl, beat 1 egg with a fork.
    Alternatively, whisk together chickpea flour and water.
    Add shredded zucchini, 1 red onion (finely sliced), 2 cloves garlic (grated), 1 teaspoon dried oregano, ¾ cup all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and ½ teaspoon black pepper.
    Zucchini and red onion in a glass bowl
  • Stir with a spatula until the ingredients are well combined into a thick batter.
    Zucchini fritter batter and a spatula
  • Heat 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil on medium-high heat in a large non-stick pan or cast iron skillet (you'll need more oil in cast iron).
    Drop four heaping tablespoons of zucchini mixture into the skillet, flatten the patties with the back of the spoon, and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes or until golden brown.
    Zucchini fritters on a pan with oil
  • Turn the zucchini fritters around with a spatula, cook for 2 more minutes, then arrange them on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil and cook the next batch.
    Cooked zucchini fritters in a pan
  • Serve the fritters on a platter. Optionally, garnish with a sprinkle of chopped fresh herbs (parsley, chives, dill, thyme), flakey salt, and lemon wedges.
    Zucchini fritters on a platter
  • Dip or top with tzatziki sauce, marinara sauce, or cashew sour cream.
    Tzatziki sauce on zucchini fritters

Video

Zucchini Fritters (vegetarian & vegan)

Notes

Nutritional information is for 1 zucchini fritter out of 8 made with one egg.
SUBSTITUTIONS
Egg: you can replace the egg with ⅓ cup or 50 g chickpea flour + ¼ cup or 60 g of water.
Red onion: sub white, yellow, or green onions.
Olive oil: sub a neutral vegetable, canola oil, or other.
Garlic: sub with garlic powder.
Dried oregano: sub with thyme, mint, dill, rosemary, sage, or your favorite dried herb. You can also use finely chopped fresh parslely, dill, or chives.
Baking powder: it’s optional, you can leave it out.
MAKE AHEAD & STORAGE
Make Ahead: zucchini fritters are best when right out of the pan. However, we do like to make them ahead of time and use them for meal prep for the week. Their flavor is delicious even after several days. To crisp them up, reheat them in the air fryer.
Refrigerator: store leftovers wrapped in plastic or in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Freezer: let the cakes cool down, transfer them to a freezer-friendly bag, and freeze them for up to 3 months. Thaw in the microwave or the fridge.
Reheat: the air-fryer is your best friend to revive your fritters and make them a little crisp. Alternatively, you can use a microwave or a pan with a drizzle of olive oil.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 121kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 20mg, Potassium: 449mg, Dietary Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 262IU, Vitamin B6: 0.2mg, Vitamin C: 22mg, Vitamin E: 1mg, Vitamin K: 9µg, Calcium: 76mg, Folate: 60µg, Iron: 1mg, Manganese: 0.4mg, Magnesium: 27mg, Zinc: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Leave a comment below or mention @theplantbasedschool on Instagram. We are also on Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, and TikTok.

If you liked these zucchini fritters, you might also enjoy the following:


Nico and Louise in the kitchen

Hi! We are Nico & Louise

Welcome to The Plant-Based School, a food blog with easy, tasty, and wholesome recipes.

Our aim is to help you and your family eat more veggies through delicious recipes with simple ingredients.

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Recipe Rating




16 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I have made these twice now and both times they turned out great! Even my teenage boys enjoyed them with some tzatziki sauce. Very yummy! Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Amazing, Traci-lin! Your comment made me smile, I’m really happy your (teenage) sons liked them too!

      Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. All the best,

      Louise

  2. 5 stars
    Chef Nico

    Happy Everything….and BUONISSIME! So easy to make and so tasty!

    Question: how forgiving is the batter? If I pre-make it 30 min before actually cooking the fritters and put it in the fridge or leave on the counter will they still come out delish?
    Grazie 1000,
    Sara

    1. Update: I grated and squeezed the cold zucchini. I then left them on my kitchen counter with the bowl covered with a plate for 1 hr as I was cooking the rest of the meal. I also halved all the ingredients as I only wanted 4. The fritters came out absolutely perfect.

    1. Fantastic, Beti.
      I’m very happy you liked the fritters.
      Thank you very much for leaving a comment here.
      Kindest, Louise

    1. Hi Deea,
      That’s great, I’m so happy you liked the fritters! Thank you for taking the time to write a message ❤️

  3. These were so easy to make and absolutely delicious. They were even better the next day heated up in the Air Fryer. Yum!

  4. Wir haben heute dieses Rezept ausprobiert in der veganen Option .
    Super lecker 🤤
    Werden wir noch öfter machen
    Liebe Grüße
    Manu

    1. Hi Aline, fantastic, we’re so happy you liked the fritters!
      Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment here.
      Kindest,
      Louise