Sautéed Zucchini Ribbons with lemon zest, garlic and chili flakes. A quick and simple side dish- delicious with grilled protein for dinner or try it with eggs for breakfast. Keep it vegan or jazz it up with cheese.
Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each. ~ Henry David Thoreau
This recipe for Sautéed Zucchini Ribbons with lemon, garlic, and red pepper flakes is an easy side dish or light lunch. Boasting satisfying texture and savory bright flavors. Make it as spicy as you want, add strips of pecorino or chunks of feta, sprinkle with pine nuts or toasted walnuts, top with sweet cherry tomatoes… whatever inspires you!
Fortunately, abundant zucchini squash is also incredibly adaptable! Mild and willing, zucchini provides a beautiful structure and medium for flavor and spice. It is fascinating to me how something just merely cut in a particular way can taste different. Every growing season provides us with a fun challenge to play with! 😉
Here we are going for simple peeled ribbon strips that take just minutes to make. Sautéed up with one of the best flavor combinations: olive oil, garlic, lemon, and red pepper flakes. Keeps it easy, healthy, and tasty!
How to make Sautéed Zucchini Ribbons:
Step one: Medium to small zucchini squash works best. Slice zucchini with a peeler. Discard the middle as you get to the seedy part of the squash. Peel one side until you reach the seedy center, turn zucchini over and repeat on all four “sides”. (The center breaks down faster and can get mushy. Save these parts for scrambles and stirfrys.)
Step two: Sauté chopped garlic and chili flakes in olive oil until just softened, about 1-2 minutes.
This time of year, I love getting this seasons fresh garlic from the farmers market. Before it is fully cured, it is known as wet garlic. Crisp, juicy, and lively, it has a sweeter, milder taste than dried garlic. But either works! Increase garlic amount to taste.
Step three: Add ribbons and lemon zest, sautéing over medium heat until just wilted. Just about 1 minute.
More zucchini recipes you may enjoy:
I am beginning to feel hints of autumn approaching. The smell of decaying leaves, the cooler evenings, the shifting angle of the sun become more noticeable as the darkness edges in. The season feels wildly short here on San Juan Island.
Part of me is already mourning the end of summer even though we most likely have a few weeks left. The other part of me is ready for the shift and all the gifts that the darkness holds. Summer brings the feeling of producing, harvesting, get it while you can, fuel up, play, do and enjoy enough! It is intense!
As this transition time approaches, I find it an incredibly valuable opportunity to reassess, be intentional, and take stock of all enriching experiences (good and “bad”) and let them seep into my bones, soaking up what feels potent and soul-nourishing. I want to allow myself the grace to simultaneously feel any loss of the yesterdays and also be in the wonderment of what the future may hold.
With aspiring awareness, intention and grace,
Sauteed Zucchini Ribbons with lemon zest and chili flakes. A quick and simple side dish! Delicious with eggs for breakfast or grilled protein for dinner. Keep it vegan or jazz it up with cheese.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2–3 large cloves of garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes, adjust to taste
- 2–3 medium zucchini, ribboned with a peeler, about 1 pound of ribbons
- zest of 1 lemon
- 1/4–1/2 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
- a squeeze of lemon juice
- black pepper to taste
top with basil ribbons, cherry tomatoes, feta or pecorino and toasted nuts if desired!
- Saute’ garlic and red pepper flakes for 1 minute on medium heat until just softening.
- Add zucchini ribbons and cook 1-2 minutes more until just slightly wilted.
- Toss in zest and sea salt. Mix gently.
- Add a squeeze of lemon juice and a few grinds of black pepper.
- Optional garnish suggestions: basil, cherry tomatoes, feta, pecorino, pinenuts, or toasted nuts
Medium to small zucchini squash works best.
Slice zucchini with a vegetable peeler. Discard the middle as you get to the seedy part of the squash. Peel one side until you reach the seedy center, turn squash over and repeat peeling on all four “sides”. (The center breaks down faster and can get mushy. Save these parts for scrambles and stirfrys.)
- Serving Size: 1 cup
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