- For those of us who love cooking with fresh vegetables, a trip to the farmers market is a recipe for trouble — delicious, plant-based trouble. When we find ourselves surrounded by an abundance of affordable, fresh produce, it’s too easy to walk away with a (reusable) bag-full of more than a week’s worth of produce. In summer, the lovely green summer squash otherwise known as zucchini is often the culprit in our “oops, I bought too much” farmers market trips. If this has ever happened to you, then you know that as soon as you return home, you’ve entered into a race against the clock to use your zucchini before it starts to go bad.
We’re here to help you with that. From zoodles to stuffed zucchini, there are endless ways to use your summer squash while it’s still in season. For starters, we suggest reading 15 Ways to Use Zucchini. In the event that you really went overboard with the zucchini, however, we’ve got your back. Here are five ways you can incorporate zucchini into every meal of your day:
For breakfast, try this Snickerdoodle Baked Oatmeal by Lauren Smith, also known as The Oatmeal Artist. In this recipe, Lauren blends zucchini with oats, non-dairy milk, sweetener, baking powder, and spices, pours the batter into a ramekin, and then bakes it in the oven until light and fluffy, just like a big, soft snickerdoodle cookie that’s secretly good for you.
For lunch, add this Sliceable Zucchini Cheese by Lena Ksanti to your favorite veggie sandwich or have it on crackers with hummus. Lena made this cheese by blending zucchini, pumpkin seeds, and hemp seeds until creamy, then combining it with a solution of agar agar and water. Then, all you do is pour it into an oiled container and let it cool for at least two hours in the refrigerator.
Not only are these Raw Chocolate Zucchini bites tasty, they’re also a great way to sneak veggies into the diet of those who aren’t so inclined to eat them. Blogger Tiana Haines makes these by blending oats, Medjool dates, grated zucchini, cacao powder, plus a little bit of sweetener and coconut oil into a thick paste. After that, all you need to do is roll the paste into balls and then roll them in a “topping” of your choice. Tiana went with shredded coconut and cacao powder in this recipe, but we also recommend trying them with hemp seeds. These are great as a mid-day or pre-workout snack.
We never thought that we would be able to make creamy, cheesy sauce that tastes better than the real thing, but hey — we’ve embraced the fact that the possibilities of plants of practically endless. Whether you’ve been eating plant-based food for a while, you’re completely new, or you’re a skeptic, his Ultra Cheesy Mac and Cheese is a guaranteed win. Blogger Shannon Leparski made this creamy sauce by blending a base of zucchini, potatoes, and carrots with aromatics, a little bit of Dijon mustard, and nutritional yeast, the secret to making the best-tasting dairy-free cheese sauces. Just pour the finished sauce over your favorite pasta and serve!
We ain’t pullin’ your leg — there is actually an entire zucchini in this Frozen Piña Colada Cake. According to Emily Spain, the blogger behind this cocktail-inspired dessert, adding grated zucchini to the coconut milk and pineapple-based filling enhances the texture, leaving you with a frozen treat that’s creamy, tropical, and doesn’t taste like veggies.
Need more zucchini inspiration? Read Don’t Let Summer End Without Trying These 20 Vegan Zucchini Recipes and 10 Zucchini-Filled Dishes. Time is running out for zucchini season — don’t let it pass you by!
For even more plant-based recipes, seasonal cooking tips, and how-to’s, we highly suggest you check out the Food Monster App. For those who don’t know, it’s a brilliant food app available for both Android and iPhone, and you can follow it on Instagram and Facebook. It’s a great resource for anyone looking to cut out or reduce allergens like meat, dairy, soy, gluten, eggs, grains, and more. Check it out!
Lead image source: Ultra Cheesy Mac and Cheese