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!
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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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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 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.
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
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.
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.
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.
Stir with a spatula until the ingredients are well combined into a thick batter.
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.
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.
Serve the fritters on a platter with a sprinkle of chopped fresh herbs (parsley, chives, dill, thyme), flakey salt, and lemon wedges.
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.
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:
- Chickpea hummus, lentil hummus, or baba ganoush.
- Shirazi salad or tabbouleh.
- Zaalouk (Moroccan eggplant salad).
- Roasted eggplants or eggplant pizza.
- Farinata (socca), Italian flatbread, or warm pita.
- Caramelized onions and confit tomatoes.
- Greek salad or farro salad.
- Bruschetta or crostini with olive tapenade.
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.
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.
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.
- Box grater with large holes or food processor with grating disc attachment
- 2 pounds zucchini (about 4 medium)
- 1½ 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
- 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.
- Squeeze the water out of the zucchini with your hands.
- 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.
- Stir with a spatula until the ingredients are well combined into a thick batter.
- 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.
- 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.
- Serve the fritters on a platter. Optionally, garnish 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 cashew sour cream.
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