Summer arrives and our dinner tables move outside, gardens overflow with an abundance of zucchini and our lunch rooms are filled with baskets of zucchini supplied by co-workers grown in their gardens with a sign that reads, Enjoy.
Zucchini has many health benefits. Since zucchini has high water content, it’s very low in calories. One cup of zucchini contains 36 calories and 10% of the RDI of dietary fiber. This aids in digestion, maintains blood sugar levels, prevents constipation and curbs overeating. Zucchini also contain Vitamins B6, C and riboflavin. This summer squash is especially rich in the minerals potassium and manganese.
Choose young tender squash, small to medium in size, with shiny, taut skin. Avoid any with soft spots or scarring. Refrigerate in a plastic bag for up to 1 week. When ready to use, wash and trim the ends. No need to peel if young and tender. Sauté thin half-moons of zucchini and yellow squash in olive oil and garlic serve as a side dish or toss with pasta. Use in salads, baked goods or stuffed as an entrée. Zucchini is a very versatile vegetable and may be grilled, roasted or baked. Here is a great way to get more vegetables into your diet, zucchini chips. Give them a try!
Baked Zucchini Chips
Parmesan Cheese (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 225 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
- Slice your zucchini into thin slices (about the size of a quarter)
- Arrange on baking sheet
- Drizzle slices with olive oil
- Sprinkle with sea salt.
- Bake 45 minutes, then rotate sheet and bake another 40 – 50 min. until desired crispness.
- If you desire to put parmesan cheese on the zucchini slices, with 5 minutes left on the cooking time, lightly sprinkle zucchini with parmesan cheese and bake for the remaining 5 minutes.
Ohio State University Extension; Selecting, Storing, and Serving Ohio Squash and Pumpkins: http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/5000/pdf/5530.pdf
Written by: Beth Stefura, OSU Extension Educator