How to Cook: Zucchini Pancakes

Recipe from How to Cook Everything: The Basics. Photos by Romulo Yanes.

Recipe from How to Cook Everything: The Basics. Photos by Romulo Yanes.

Zucchini Pancakes

Vegetable pancakes turn everyday ingredients into a special treat.

TIME: 30 to 40 minutes, plus time to chill
MAKES: 4 servings

2 pounds zucchini
½ medium onion
2 eggs
¼ cup all-purpose flour or bread crumbs, preferably fresh, or more as needed
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup olive oil, or more as needed

1. Trim off the ends of the zucchini. Grate the zucchini and onion on the large holes of a box grater or with the grating disk of a food processor. Squeeze as much water out of it as possible in a mesh sieve or with your hands.

2. Beat the eggs with a fork in a large bowl and add the vegetables, along with the flour, Parmesan, and a sprinkling of salt and pepper. If the batter looks too watery, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. (The mixture can be refrigerated for up to an hour.)

CORRECT BATTER CONSISTENCY: Zucchini gives off lots of liquid, but the fl our or bread crumbs will soak it up, so the pancakes get crisp. The batter should plop from a spoon easily but not be too runny; add more flour or bread crumbs— a little at a time—to reach this consistency.

CORRECT BATTER CONSISTENCY: Zucchini gives off lots of liquid, but the fl our or bread crumbs will soak it up, so the pancakes get crisp. The batter should plop from a spoon easily but not be too runny; add more flour or bread crumbs— a little at a time—to reach this consistency.

3. When you’re ready to cook, put 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, carefully drop large spoonfuls of batter into the pan and spread them out with a fork to flatten them a little. You’ll need to work in two or three batches to avoid overcrowding the pan.

COOKING VEGETABLE PANCAKES: The heat should be high enough to brown both sides in the same amount of time it takes for the insides to cook through. Peek underneath with a spatula to check on the color.

COOKING VEGETABLE PANCAKES: The heat should be high enough to brown both sides in the same amount of time it takes for the insides to cook through. Peek underneath with a
spatula to check on the color.

4. Cook, undisturbed, until the pancakes are browned on the bottom, 5 to 8 minutes, adjusting the heat as necessary so they sizzle without burning. Turn them over and cook for another 5 to 8 minutes on the second side. As the pancakes finish cooking, transfer them to paper towels to drain, add 1 tablespoon more oil to the pan if it looks dry, and repeat the process until the batter is gone. Serve the pancakes hot or at room temperature.

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Serve plain or with a little sour cream or yogurt or salsa on the side for dipping.

Tips

  • Hand grating results in slightly differently shaped shreds than food-processor grating, but both work.
  • You can make the patties bite-sized (for hors d’oeuvres or snacks) or big (for a main course or sandwich filling)— but don’t make them more than ½ inch thick or they won’t cook through.
  • Other vegetables to use for pancakes (start with about 2 pounds raw): grated carrots, celery root, beets, fennel, sweet potatoes, or winter squash; cooked spinach or other greens (squeezed between your hands to remove excess water); and chopped bean sprouts.

Variations

  • Vegetable Pancakes with Asian Flavors: Skip the cheese and add 1 tablespoon grated or minced fresh ginger, 1 tablespoon minced garlic, and ¼ cup chopped scallions to the batter. Use vegetable oil instead of olive to fry the pancakes.

Photos by Romulo Yanes

Posted in American, cooking.how, Mark Bittman Books, Produce, Recipes

9 Comments

  1. canan b said...

    in Turkey it is called mucver.We add an egg for every zucchini and lots of dill and fresh mint,

  2. Marion said...

    You can also bake this as one big pancake on a silicone lined baking sheet at 375. Then flip it off th silicone onto the underlying baking sheet to finish the other side.

  3. Alli C said...

    I have a bunch of pre-grated zucchini in the freezer. Do you think it would work with this recipe?

  4. Kristin said...

    My boyfriend made zucchini pancakes from a different recipe and they were a bit of a flop. I am going to share this with him and hope he redoes them!

  5. Isasehat said...

    My kids love Zucchinis….i should try this for them. it looks yummy and healthy…thanks for sharing this recipe!

  6. Barb said...

    I have made zucchini pancakes a bit differently. I squeezed then dry with a micro fiber towel, dosed them with lemon juice (1/2 lemon). Then I used cinnamon, crushed pecans and pancake flour and eggs and enough water to finish the batter. I fried them is a skillet with butter in the size I wanted to serve them. A wee bit of maple syrup on them for breakfast. Tastes a lot like apples.

  7. ACLS Class said...

    Will try this out. Looks good and most importantly, it’s a healthy pancake! I’ll cook some variety by trying other veggies. Thanks for the suggestions!

  8. Victoria said...

    Too little flour and eggs for the amount of zucchini, my pancakes didn’t bind and fell apart.

  9. Bee said...

    Mm mm, tasty! Try serving with poached eggs on top…fantastic,

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