Zucchini……who knew?

It’s been absolutely the most bizarre week of my life with my oldest daughter gone. I’ve been strong, stayed busy with my other two girls, but the “no communication” part has proved to be the hardest. I would say that by Wednesday night or Thursday….if I could have just heard her voice I’d have been set. They weren’t allowed to bring phones or contact us at all. We found out Wednesday there was an email address we could send an email to her…..don’t ask, hubby left that info card in the van when he dropped her off on Monday. When I took the girls to see the free summer movie “Despicable Me” Wednesday morning I discovered it. Alas….in 5 short hours we will be picking her up, and we are all SO excited to see her and hear all about her adventures on her first mission trip!

So zucchini. Where to start? It’s not a vegetable I’ve particularly disliked, but it’s nothing that really stood out in my life. I don’t have any nostalgic zucchini memories from childhood. I knew it was a prolific vegetable if you grew it in your garden, and that people (including my grandparents) have been over run with them at times. And when I thought of zucchini, I always thought of recipes that involved shredding it up into baked goods 🙂 I’ll be honest…when I saw recipes that involved chunks of zucchini sticking out of a pasta dish of some sort I’d usually run the other way.

But if you’ve been hanging around here any time at all, you know how my taste buds have changed over the past year. Last year summer when I ate “raw” for a week (my mom’s a raw vegan), I not only got over my irrational fear of tomatoes , but have fully embraced them. Tomatoes now have a permanent place on my Costco list. So it wasn’t totally a shock when I really, really LOVED this raw zucchini side dish at my friend Robin’s house this past June. I’ll have to get the exact recipe from her (possibly this one?), but it was sliced thinly, drizzled with good quality extra virgin olive oil and dabbed with ricotta cheese. I want to say dill was involved also.

You remember Robin…..she’s my friend….the one that totally pampered me and a few other homeschool moms back in May. She and her husband had hubby and I over for an amazing dinner in June. Her 3 and 4 course meals will spoil you and make it hard to ever even want to eat in a restaurant again…she puts so much thought, planning and care into an evening of entertaining. It really is her gift!

Then over our 4th of July Family Reunion my cousins made amazing zucchini side dishes two different evenings, and that’s when I knew I was hooked! That a non-starchy vegetable could taste so satisfying and flavorful is beyond my comprehension. So I had questions for them…did you bake? Saute? Tell me everything!

So I’m sure my hubby thought it was strange when I requested zucchini and summer squash when he was at the store the other night. I’ve been pinning and stumbling various zucchini recipes to use at some point, but last night I got brave. I headed to the kitchen without a plan (fairly common). In a skillet with a bit of bacon grease, I sauteed up zucchini chunks with only sea salt and pepper. After a good 20 minutes on low, they were soft and browned a bit. I shredded some monterey jack cheese on top. And though I shouldn’t have been surprised at how amazing it tasted, I was! Don’t be surprised to see a few more zucchini recipes popping up on the site this summer.

(So I totally had a picture of this dish to add…and hopefully I can add it at a later date. I am beyond frustrated trying to get it off my DSLR camera this morning. Had this problem last time too. I think it’s the cord it’s connected with. I’m going to try buying a memory card reader and hope that solves the issue!)

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sauteed Zucchini with Jack Cheese
Recipe type: Side dish, Vegetable, Easy, Quick
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 - 2
Surprisingly easy way to enjoy your summer bounty of zucchini. Sauteed zucchini with jack cheese is such a satisfying and flavorful side dish.
  • 2 zucchini, peeled, sliced thin & quartered
  • Bacon grease or olive oil
  • ½ Tbsp butter
  • sea salt
  • pepper
  • 1 -2 oz. monterey jack cheese
  1. Warm bacon grease or olive oil in skillet on medium heat.
  2. Place sliced and quartered zucchini in skillet, and saute for about 20 minutes. At times I used a lid to speed the softening process.
  3. While cooking add salt, pepper and butter.
  4. When zucchini is done, finely shred jack cheese over the top and let melt.
*omitting bacon grease would make this dish vegetarian


* Do you have any favorite zucchini recipes to share? What about veggies you simply thought you didn’t like? I’d love to hear your stories!

~Over in the sidebar you may notice that I’ve changed a few things. One new item is the Babble badge. Clicking on it will take you straight to the site where you can VOTE for Creative Kitchen in the “Top 100 Food Mom Bloggers.” I would appreciate you taking a quick second and voting (even if you’ve done so in the past). Thanks so much!!

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9 Responses to Zucchini……who knew?

  1. Shelby says:

    I just wish someone near me was overflowing with this right now. Fresh garden produce is the best. I hate having to buy it from the store because you never know how long it has been sitting around.

    I have a lot of memories of fried zucchini and zucchini cobbler (reminiscent of apple cobbler) chocolate zucchini cake and zucchini bread. This post just makes me miss it more!
    Shelby recently posted..Peanut-Sauced Chicken Pitas

  2. Maxine Cook says:

    Try some Zucchini Latkes (pancakes). This recipe make around 10:

    2 Grated medium zucchini (on large holes of a box grater)
    1 Grated medium mild onion
    1 Beaten egg
    Flour to bind (or use Matzoh meal or cracker meal)
    Salt and pepper to taste.

    Mix it all together and drop large spoonfuls into hot olive oil. Flatten into pancake size and cook a few minutes on each side until crispy and brown, being careful not to burn.

    Serve with a dollop of sour cream, Greek yogurt or a Tzatziki (cucumber/yogurt) sauce. These are scrumptious!
    Maxine Cook recently posted..The First Ever Wedding Held At Jolico Farm…

  3. Emily says:

    I enjoy using sliced and roasted zucchini as “noodles”. Spoon a hamburger spaghetti sauce over them, and it’s delicious! And I’m not crazy about zucchini…
    Emily recently posted..What Is “Financial Freedom?”

    • Denise says:

      Yes Emily….just did that tonight, except after I sauteed them, I mixed them in with the spaghetti sauce. They had cooked down really small. SO good!! I’m still in shock. I can’t believe how I’ve missed out on this veggie my entire life. 🙂

  4. This is a beautiful way of using zuchhini, love it.
    Georgia Pellegrini recently posted..“Asparagus Cheese Tarts”

  5. what a awesome idea, looks and sounds so tasty! I will have to try it since I love jack cheese!:)
    Sandra’s Easy Cooking recently posted..Whole Wheat Gnocchi with Vegetable and Herb Chicken

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