Garden still overflowing with zucchini? I’ve got your back with two suggestions: a) make these fabulous little baked-not-fried zucchini bites or b) pass some on to me; moving in the middle of summer means no overflowing garden in my backyard currently.

I know a lot of people get sick of zucchini, but I could eat the stuff year round. It’s probably one of my favorite vegetables because it is so darn versatile. Me + Zucchini = Soulmates.

These cheesy zucchini bites are a healthier zucchini fritter without sacrificing any flavor. Since they are baked at a high temperature, you get the slightly crunchy edges with wonderfully soft, tender insides.

Baked Zucchini Fritters

My kids will tell you they were elevated to otherworldly heights when dipped in their favorite ranch dressing, and while I don’t necessarily disagree, they are pretty stellar on their own, too, and make a fabulous side dish for just about anything.

Last time we ate them, it was a super simple summer meal of zucchini bites, grilled chicken, corn on the cob, and watermelon. Perfection.

Baked Zucchini Fritters

One Year Ago: Overnight Oatmeal Cinnamon Pancakes {Em’s Famous Recipe}
Two Years Ago: Homemade Chocolate Syrup for Chocolate Milk
Three Years Ago: Buttermilk Lime Shortbread Bars

Baked Cheesy Zucchini Bites

Yield: Makes 1-2 dozen zucchini bites, depending on size

Baked Cheesy Zucchini Bites


  • 1 1/2 cups packed shredded zucchini (no need to peel the zucchini)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup panko or regular bread crumbs
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil (or 1-2 teaspoons fresh)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly coat with cooking spray or lightly grease an unlined baking sheet.
  2. Place the shredded zucchini in a clean kitchen towel and wring out all the excess water over the sink until the zucchini is really dry.
  3. Place the zucchini and remaining ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until combined.
  4. Drop the mixture by tablespoonfuls on the prepared baking sheet and lightly press the mounds with your hands to flatten slightly.
  5. Bake for 16-20 minutes until the edges are golden.

Source: adapted from this recipe at Skinnytaste (used more zucchini, omitted the onion, added basil and garlic, changed the type of bread crumbs, increased oven temp, etc.)

85 Responses to Baked Cheesy Zucchini Bites

  1. I don’t have a garden overflowing with zucchini either, but I will have to pick some up at the farmers’ market to try these! I love that you’ve added cheddar!

  2. Jen T says:

    If you lived closer I would love to share my zucchini horde with you! I love it too. It is awesome. These look great and will add them to my zucchini recipes. Thanks!

  3. Jackie says:

    I’ll share! After making a quadruple batch of your zucchini bread I still have 8 zucchinis sitting on my counter… and that’s not even counting the ones I’m sure are currently waiting for me in my garden

  4. Sara says:

    Can these be frozen (either before or after cooking)?

    • Maureen says:

      Can these be frozen before or after cooking?

      • Mel's Kitchen Cafe Admin says:

        Hello Maureen – Mel doesn’t have access to internet right now so I’m helping her out with comments for the next few days. I have frozen these before with success after they were cooked. The texture does get a little softer and mushier though when you reheat them the second time.

  5. Kim says:

    I make these all the time when I get a bumper crop from our CSA. I scoop them into a mini muffin tin sprayed with Pam. Then we dip them in sirracha mayo. They go great at potlucks.

  6. Annie says:

    Mel !!! Yum, yet again! Superstar 🙂 Congrats on your move & hope all is well!
    Ok fellow gardeners! I had a lot of zukes this summer thanks to more than usual rain; but that also meant over-infestation of squash bugs! I tried really really really hard to go organic, but the bugs won the war. Any suggestions for next year??

    • Mary says:

      Organic pesticides !

      • Angela says:

        We lost half our crop to squash bugs every year, but now we plant three or four marigold plants around each plant. We haven’t lost one plant since doing this in over 10 years. Put them about 5 inches from the plant’s zuke’s main stem and the arch of the leaves grows right over the marigolds. A farmer gave us the tip and it’s worked like a charm ever since.

  7. Jan C. says:

    Just shredded about 12 zucchini and will have to give this a try! Looks so yummy!

  8. Kimiko says:

    Yesssss! I love baked versions of normally fried things, and this looks absolutely delicious! Hope your move went well and are getting settled in to your new kitchen. 🙂

  9. Danya says:

    Thanks for this recipe! I have tons of zucchini that needs to be used! These look awesome!

  10. Dorothy Beall Griffin says:

    Mel, when I saw the headline Baked-cheesy-zucchini-bites, I thought since “great minds think alike,” that you were going to share one of MY zucchini favorites that my kids grew up with and still beg me to make when they come to visit (they are grown: Ryan, Melanie, and James, now 40, 35, 29 years old).
    It was so easy (best green vegetable stand-in) with few ingredients:
    Several Zucchini (small, preferably), sliced in 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick circles
    Shredded cheese (your choice – I like to use mild cheddar or monteray jack)
    Salt & pepper

    All you do is preheat the oven to 400
    Spray a small shallow pan with non-stick spray (I use a cake pan)
    Slice the zucchinis into circles
    Salt and pepper the zucchini circles
    Sprinkle the circles with cheese to cover each circle
    Bake about 10 minutes (we like ours crisp, not soft veggies)
    Yes, the kids used to scrape & eat the cheese off the zucchini circles and leave the zucchini behind when I first made this recipe (kids always like to outsmart the adults), but pretty soon they were eating the whole zucchini circle along with the cheese and acquiring a taste for a yummy vegetable that was (oh my gosh!) healthy for them. They still love my zucchini circles!

  11. Linda says:

    Mel, these look yummy! Do you serve them hot, cold, or both?

  12. Marilyn M says:

    Sounds yummy! Have got some zucchini in the fridge that would be perfect for this recipe!

  13. Leslie says:

    We are eating these right now for lunch — so yummy. I had a big bowl of shredded zucchini draining, ready to make zucchini fritters for lunch — saw your post — switched it up and I’m so glad. Baking is easier than frying — and these are great.

    I never hesitate to try one of your recipes — they are all so good. Your quinoa bites are a family favorite — now these join that recipe as quick and delicious.

    Oh — wondered when I was putting ingredients together if I needed salt. But I trusted your recipe and it was perfect.

    Thanks again.

  14. Leslie says:

    Oh no! I ran took a quick break to make the comment above, and when I got back ALL the zucchini cheesy bites were gone. Grandkids finished off the first batch while I was at the computer. LOL That’s a good testimony to the flavor. Now I need to shred and make more. So fun!

  15. These look divine! Can’t wait to give them a try! Hope the new move and family are adjusting well! 🙂

  16. Kim in MD says:

    Yum! Sadly, my MIL’s garden plants are no longer producing anything except grape tomatoes, but lucky for me I have a great farmstand a few miles from my home. I will pick up some zucchini so I can try these! I think yellow squash would work, too!

  17. LM says:

    Mel,I cannot wait till you have a cookbook.Once again another great recipe.I found it worked even though i had to tamper with it.I substituted potato flakes and used Parmesan.

  18. Oh, I think I could eat a hundred of these! YUM!

  19. heather says:

    Seriously? Making these tonight, they look SOOOO good! What a great, quick, easy recipe. Everything on hand.

  20. Julie says:

    These were very tasty! Even my kids said they weren’t “too bad” which, coming from them, is a compliment for any vegetable. Mine ended up being about 2 in. in diameter and must have been quite a bit larger than yours because I only could make 14 zucchini bites. Thanks for a fun new way for us to eat up our zucchini!

  21. Gillie says:

    Goodness, made them for lunch on Saturday for two friends, along with home made tomato soup…..delicious! Thanks, Mel!

  22. Jenny Z says:

    Thanks for another great recipe, Mel! I made these last night and my whole family ate them! We liked them with a little dollop of pasta sauce. My oldest said, “It kind of tastes like a little pizza.” – That is a big compliment from him! 😉

  23. Margo says:

    I stumbled upon your blog about a year ago and love it. My family has enjoyed many of your delicious recipes. This one required a special thanks, though. These were really yummy. But here is the best part. My nearly 5-year-old son has not consumed more than a few teeny nibbles of any vegetable in almost 3 years, but he LOVED these. I almost cried tears of joy as I watched him devour one after another, after another, after another. Unbelievable. Thank you so much! We will be making these again for sure!

  24. Leann says:

    Is the 1 1/2 cups of shredded zucchini before you wring out the excess water or after? It seems like it shrunk down considerably after l wrung the water out of it and I don’t think I ended up with more than a dozen bites. Thanks for all the great recipes I just seem to be missing something here.

    • Mel says:

      Leann – The 1 1/2 cups is before I shred it but it’s really packed into the measuring cup. You might try using a bit more, especially if you think the shredded zucchini wasn’t as packed into the cup as it could be. Hope that helps!

      • Alahna says:

        Hey Mel! Surely you mean after you shred it? I don’t think you just stuck a zucchini in a measuring cup, right?

        • Mel says:

          Just an error on my part when I responded to that last comment – the 1 1/2 cups is before I wring it out.

  25. Emily says:

    Zucchini + cheese = heaven…unless you read the recipe wrong! I don’t know what was going on in my brain but I put 1 1/2 cups of cheese in! Don’t get me wrong, it was still good but way too much cheese and way too greasy…probably not what you had in mind. I’ll just have to try it again! 🙂

  26. Liz says:

    I stumbled on your site thanks to a friend and this was the first of your recipes that I tried. My family – including a 4 & 7 year old – LOVED these! My kids finally ate zucchini and I’m thrilled to finally have another vegetable for them to eat. Thank you!!!

  27. Anissa says:

    Perfectly delicious! I loved them. And one of the three kids liked them. Success!

  28. Kris Jeffery says:

    Mel, I was introduced to your site last week and have tried 3 recipes so far (Cheesy Zucchini Bites, White Bean Chicken Chili -using zucchini to thicken, and Zucchini Bread). All 3 have been MAJOR hits with the whole clan (ages 3-18). Today I’m making Brookies. I am a huge “Taste of Home”(r) but have loved adding your amazing creativity into my culinary mix. Thank you so much for sharing!

  29. Erika says:

    Question on the breadcrumbs – could you use fresh or do you have to use panko or purchased crumbs. I have some stale bread in the freezer I could use for these. But not sure if that will throw off the recipe. Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Erika – I haven’t used fresh breadcrumbs but I think it stands a good chance of working. If possible, try toasting the bread crumbs before using. If not, the mixture may end up a little gummy.

  30. Jocelyn says:

    I made these for dinner tonight, and they are very tasty! Thanks, Mel.

  31. Teresa says:

    These were just scrumptious. I did substitute dried dill weed as I was out of basil and I used up some swiss cheese that was in my fridge in lieu of the cheddar. I love how crispy the tops and edges were. We all devoured these in minutes. So easy to whip up and bake. Thank you for another delicious vegetable option.

  32. Michelle says:

    I just made these for dinner. AWESOME!!! I did change a couple things. I used Gluten free bread crumbs and shredded mozzarella because that’s what I had. Came out great.

  33. Susan says:

    Wowee, these were as yummy as I hoped they would be! So quick an easy and delicious paired with some tomato slices and a green salad. Now, I’m actually sad that the zucchini is finally petering out. 🙂

  34. NJCher says:

    I make all kinds of zucchini fritters and couldn’t find my favorite recipe tonight, so had to quickly Google something up. Found this. The recipe is definitely fast and easy. I had only limited time and got them done as an accompaniment to chicken soup.

    .Try these with a dollop of sour cream and a crisp piece of turkey bacon on top!

  35. Tonia says:

    What type of dipping sauce would you suggest for these. Thanks so much.

  36. Kasey Alder says:

    Made these today on the grill on my yoshi mat. Turned out delicious! I couldn’t bear to turn my oven on.

  37. Adrienne says:

    Hi! Am about to put these in the oven. I have no idea how you were able to get 2-3 dozen out of these. I scraped together only 10. 🙁
    Will definitely double the recipe next time! Can’t wait to try these!

    Thanks for the recipe!

  38. Karolina says:

    These were so yummy! We ate them with tomato dipping sauce. One question- any tips for keeping them from burning on the bottom? Mine seemed to brown pretty quickly on the bottom, but needed more time on the top.

  39. Oh, these were fabulous for my dinner tonight! 🙂 I used rounded tablespoons so my came out bigger but they are delish (as usual)! Do you think they’d freeze ok? I’m thinking just cooking them about half way and then freezing to pull out for a tasty snack whenever. Not sure how the zucchini would hold up to freezing though.

    • Mel says:

      These should freeze quite well since the zucchini has been wrung of most the liquid. They might be slightly softer upon reheating but I think it’s definitely worth a try!

  40. Mollie says:

    Do you have nutritional information for this recipe?

  41. Nancy says:

    Did I miss something? New to Pinterest . Saw recipe and looked good but didn’t see the baking temp, just the ingredients. Advice?

  42. Kate says:

    I made these for the first time and they were really good. Will make again so friends and family can try them.

  43. Becky says:

    These look fantastic but they didn’t turn out well for me. They were soft and spongy and would not come off the pan! I squeezed and squeezed out all the moisture and lightly greased the baking sheet. What went wrong?

    • Mel says:

      Sorry these didn’t work out for you! It’s really hard for me to know what exactly went wrong…they may have needed a bit of extra flour if the zucchini was extra wet.

  44. Beverly says:

    This is probably a silly question, but do you think I could bake these in a toaster oven? I love zucchini and these sound so good, but turning on the oven in the summer in Texas is just too much for me!

    • Mel says:

      I’m not really familiar with toaster ovens, Beverly, but I think that should work as long as they don’t overcook. Good luck!

  45. kelly says:

    I’m going to try these for breakfast!

  46. Margaret says:

    Thank you-thank you- thank you for this recipe!! Made it tonight for 1st time!! Omg loove it!! Made it for an easy healthier different work lunch!! I doubled recipe & ate 1/2 already, yummy with a dip! This will be a regular go 2 recipe for me!!! Only deviation from your recipe for me was I added an epicure spice- a good shake of Brushetta!!

  47. Lorrie says:

    Followed the recipe exactly and these were awesome! Whole family loved them! Husband dipped them in some thick blue cheese dressing. Thanks for this recipe!

  48. Diane says:

    I made these this morning and cooked them in my waffle iron. I used 2 eggs and another 1/4 cup of bread crumbs.
    My son said they could have cooked a little longer to get more crispy but the taste was great. I also added some crushed red pepper because my family likes things with some zing.
    Will make these again in the oven next time for the allotted time in hopes that they will crisp up a bit more.
    I wonder if I added a little of flour if these would turn out like a sandwich patty and could be used as a bread and put some bacon or sausage in the middle.

  49. Leah says:

    I am going to give these a whirl but want to try a test batch on my BF before making it for his parents. Can I make the entire mixture, bake a few for testing purposes, refigerate the rest of the mixture then bake the rest later? I would think it would be OK, but wanted to double check.

  50. Sandra says:

    Just made these and with 1 1/2 cups or zucchini before I wring out th excess water only gave me about 8. Did I do something wrong?

  51. Jeanne says:

    Just thought I would let you know that I just did this recipe and they came out awesome!! I added minced jalapenos to half of the batch, gave them a little kick!!! Glad I found your recipe and think these are healthy too……………

  52. Sarah says:

    Any idea if oatmeal could be substituted for the bread crumbs?

  53. Kirsten says:

    Have you ever tried parmesan cheese instead? We love sautéed shredded zucchini with garlic and parmesan.

    Thanks for having such wonderful recipes!

  54. Rachel says:

    Yes so glad you posted this on Insta today! Perfect for zucchini season!

  55. Ashley says:

    Made these tonight and everyone loved them! They kind of reminded me of potato pancakes. Delicious. Thanks!

  56. T_John says:

    OMGoodness!!! I tried this recipe and the whole family loved it! Even my most picky eater loved them. Can’t wait to take a batch to this week’s BBQ!

  57. Kesa says:

    Hey Mel, my family LOVED these! Thanks again for another great recipe! So awhile back I told you about a 100% whole wheat bread recipe and never shared it with you so now I have two recipes for you 🙂 K so for the bread, this recipe is made up by my mother in law, Barbara. We use a bosch mixer and you put 2/3 c powdered milk, 2 c warm water, and 2 TBSP yeast, let that sit and proof while you measure 1/2 c oil (I like using olive or avocado) 1/4 c honey, 2 eggs, 2 tsp salt, and 2 TBSP vinegar, pour all of that into mixer and then add 7.5 C white whole wheat flour. Mix with a dough hook for 7-10 minutes. Now here is the beautiful part about this recipe…once it is done you divide the dough into three greased loaf pans and let it rise until 1 inch above the pan…yes only 1 rise…it seems crazy, but trust me! Then you bake the bread in a 300 degree oven for 35 minutes. This doubles beautifully and freezes amazing too. I was so excited about this bread because it is 100% whole wheat and actually tastes amazing and is light weight, just how bread should be. K I’ll post the other recipe in a new comment since this is already crazy long! 🙂

  58. Kesa says:

    The other recipe that we actually just had for dinner tonight and all the kids and hubby (and myself) were loving it! It is a great way to use up all that zucchini! They are called chicken zucchini poppers and I got the recipe from It is 1 lb of ground chicken breasts, 2 c grated zucchini (no need to ring out), 2-3 green onions, sliced, 1 clove of garlic, minced, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 3/4 tsp cumin, Mix everything together and pan fry with a little oil for about 5 minutes per side (about 1-2 TBSP size scoops) I like to flatten them out so they are like mini patties. Or there is a baking option to drizzle with a little oil and bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes. I have only ever pan fried and I use a non stick pan so I actually don’t even use any oil to cook them so they are super healthy and delicious! Then I took it up a notch tonight and made a dip by combining guacamole, sour cream, and salsa verde (make sure it is good quality). I don’t have measurements because I just threw those three things together tonight on a whim and OH. MY. GOODNESS!!! The kids were licking it off the plate!! I hope you try it and love it as much as we do! Thanks for all you do Mel, you really spell everything out so clearly and do such an amazing job!!

  59. Kerilyn says:

    I made this tonight in a desperate attempt to get my kids to eat veggies. I ended up using a combination of zucchini and carrots since I ran out of zucchini. They turned out SO yummy! My vegetable-avoiding husband even asked if he could have the last one! Thanks for a great recipe!

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