Zucchini Fritte – Crispy Fried Zucchini
This homemade zucchini fritte uses panko breadcrumbs to make perfectly crisp fried zucchini chips!
Have you ever been to Maggiano’s restaurant? Their Zucchini Fritté (crispy fried zucchini) is my absolute favorite appetizer, and I’m not gonna lie, sometimes, when I’m not with a big group of people, I order it as my meal!
This homemade recipe for perfectly crispy fried zucchini is made with panko breadcrumbs to give it a super crunchy, outside just like the ones you get at a restaurant and they are so easy to make!
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How to Prepare the Zucchini for Frying:
Cut the zucchini: Maggiano’s slices their zucchini into long thin strips but I find it’s easier to use a mandolin to cut it into thin circles that are about 1/4 inch thick. This was way easier to fry at home since it doesn’t require a large fryer.
Remove excess water: Zucchini is a watery vegetable so you’ll have to do a little preparation to get it ready for frying. Start by salting the zucchini to draw out the water just like you do for Chicken Alfredo Zucchini Lasagna.
Lay all of the zucchini slices out on a paper towel covered baking sheet and lightly salt them. Let them sit for 30 minutes, flipping them once about halfway through. If you can let them sit for longer go for it. The more time they sit the more water the paper towels will pull out, but 30 minutes will get the job done.
How Hot Should the Oil Be for Frying Zucchini?
The oil should be about 350 degrees F when you are frying. You should use a thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature. Too hot and the zucchini will burn, too cool and it will come out greasy.
Start by heating the oil to 375 degrees F. You heat it higher than 350 because the temperature is going to drop rapidly when you add the zucchini to it.
Fry in batches making sure the temperature never goes below 340 degrees F and letting it heat back up to 375 degrees F in between batches.
How to Make Fried Zucchini:
Step 1 – Dry ingredients. In a small bowl mix together flour, cornstarch, ½ tsp Kosher salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic powder.
Step 2 – Make batter. Slowly add soda water or club soda, whisking the mixture lightly. When your batter is the consistency of pancake batter you can stop adding water.
Step 4 – Bread crumbs. Pour the Panko bread crumbs into another bowl.
Step 5 – Dip. Dip each slice of zucchini into the batter, then into the Panko breadcrumbs pressing the breadcrumbs into the batter to make sure the zucchini is well coated on both sides.
Step 6 – Heat oil. Fill your fryer, or pan, with enough oil to cover the zucchini slices (I used vegetable oil) then heat it to 375°F. The temperature will drop when you add the zucchini. You’ll want to use your instant red thermometer to ensure you keep the temperature betwe 340 – 350 degrees F.
Step 7 – Fry. Gently drop 3-4 slices of coated zucchini into the oil and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and crisp.
Sit finished zucchini frittes on a paper towel-lined baking sheet to get off the excess grease and continue cooking the rest of your chips. Serve hot with lemon aioli dip and enjoy!
No fried zucchini is complete without something to dip it in. This amazing lemon aioli is the perfect addition. The bright lemon flavor takes the fried zucchini to the next level.
Make it ahead of time and keep it in the refrigerator so it’s ready to use when you’re done frying the zucchini.
Frequently Asked Questions
While getting the excess water out of the zucchini before frying is important for getting perfectly crisp fried zucchini, I find the number one reason that fried zucchini is mushy is because it was cooked too long.
Make sure your oil is at the right temperature so the outside of the zucchini cooks quickly and the inside is softened but not mushy. If the oil is too cool, it will take longer for the zucchini frittes to get that golden brown outer crust and in the meantime, your zucchini will be overcooked on the inside.
The batter should be the consistency of pancake batter. Thick enough that it easily coats the zucchini and doesn’t run off and thin enough that you can tap the zucchini to remove excess batter giving it a nice even coating.
Looking for more Zucchini recipes?
- Taco Zucchini Boats
- Refrigerator Zucchini Pickles
- Chicken Alfredo Zucchini Lasagna
- Cheesy Baked Zucchini Casserole
- Crispy Zucchini Chips
- Zucchini Pad Thai
- One Pot Low Carb Shrimp Alfredo
- One Pot Summer Vegetable Pasta
- Spiralizer Recipes
- Summer Zucchini Recipes
Zucchini Fritte – Crispy Fried Zucchini
- Using a mandolin or a sharp knife slice the zucchini into ¼” thick round slices.
- Lightly sprinkle zucchini slices with salt and lay them out on paper towels for about 30 minutes, flipping them once. This will help remove some of the water from the zucchini.
- In a small bowl mix together the flour, cornstarch, ½ tsp Kosher salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic powder.
- Slowly add soda water, whisking the mixture lightly. When your batter is the consistency of pancake batter you can stop adding water.
- Pour Panko breadcrumbs into another bowl.
- Fill your fryer, or pan, with enough oil to cover the zucchini slices (I used vegetable oil) then heat it to 375°F.
- While the oil heats dip each slice of zucchini into the batter, then into the Panko breadcrumbs pressing them into the breadcrumbs to make sure they are well coated on both sides. Set aside on a clean plate until the oil reaches temperature.
- Gently drop 3-4 slices of coated zucchini into the oil and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and crisp.
- Use a slotted spoon or wire basket to lift the fried zucchini out of the oil. Sit finished zucchini chips on a paper towel lined baking sheet to soak up the excess grease. Continue frying the rest of your zucchini.
- Serve with a lemon aioli dipping sauce and enjoy!
This recipe was originally published April 5, 2016. It was republished with updated images on July 31, 2023