Italian Baked Zucchini is basically a zucchini parmesan but without the breading. Italians love making baked vegetables with tomatoes and cheese and this baked zucchini is no exception.
The flavors of this dish are so incredible and it is so easy to make. Most of the cooking and work are done before the baking. The zucchini is grilled (it can also be sauteed) and fully cooked first and then the sauce is gently warmed so it is not cold when we assemble the dish.
For the sauce, you can use any marinara sauce recipe you love or your favorite jarred marinara (there are so many amazing ones like RAO’s that are from Italy and so delicious). My favorite homemade marinara is also really easy and so delicious! The recipe is for meatballs and sauce but you can follow the instructions for the sauce portion only. You will want to make sure you have a batch of marinara available to go over the zucchini and some extra to go over some pasta if you are serving some on the side with this (my favorite way!)
Here are a few pictures to show you how easy the steps are in this dish.
I hope you give this a try and see just how delicious this dish is!
Italian Baked Zucchini
- 5 small zucchini or 3 large ones
- 8 oz fresh mozzarella Try to use fresh if you can but shredded will work too
- 24 ounces of good quality marinara sauce homemade or jarred sauce
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan
- Clean and wash your zucchini
- pre-heat a grill pan or a grill to medium heat. If you do not have either than pre-heat a large heavy bottom skillet
- Cut your zucchini lengthwise into 1/2 inch strips
- drizzle the zucchini with olive oil
- Sprinkle the zucchini with salt and pepper
- Once your grill or pan is ready, add your zucchini and cook for about 3 minutes per side.
- Remove your zucchini from the pan and set aside
- Gently heat your marinara sauce on low heat
- Pre-heat your broiler on high heat
- Grab a large oven safe baking dish
- Scoop 1/2 cup of your marinara sauce into the baking dish and spread it out evenly
- Next, Add your zucchini slices into the dish side by side but not overlapping. You may need 2 baking dishes if your zucchini are larger.
- Now take a tablespoon of your marinara and place on each slice of zucchini and spread it out. Keep doing this until all the zucchini has sauce
- Now cut your mozzarella into thin strips and place over the zucchini. Don't worry too much about neatness here since it all melts
- Next, sprinkle your freshly grated parmesan evenly over top of this
- Once your zucchini are all dressed with sauce and cheese, place the zucchini under the broiler until the cheese melts and is bubbly and just turning brown (about 3-4 minutes).
- Remove from the oven and serve with a side of pasta and the remaining marinara sauce