Healthy, Baked Zucchini Fritters (Vegan)
These flavourful and healthy zucchini fritters are made with nutrient-dense chickpea flour, and baked instead of fried so they’re super healthy. They have a light and crisp shelling and melting texture inside. Enjoy them as a snack, a sandwich filling or side dish.
Zucchini doesn’t get nearly enough praise for its crazy versatility – and its abundance. If you’ve ever grown zucchini, you know! These baked zucchini fritters are the perfect way to use up extra zucchini. It takes 4 cups of zucchini to make 6 fritters. So it can handle any zucchini surplus you’ve got on hand!
These fritters are vegan, gluten free and super healthy…all without sacrificing flavour. In fact, the combination of earthy cumin, with fragrant basil and lemon is totally swoon-worthy.
The texture is also special – the crust gets golden and crisp, while the inside is silky and literally melts in your mouth. I don’t know…I guess I’m pretty pleased with how these turned out, ha!
Health Benefits of Zucchini
There is no one right way to eat for every single person on the planet. However, eating more vegetables is the one constant that we can all depend on. When you eat more vegetables, you’re flooding your body with plant power.
- Vegetables increase your intake of filling high water, high fibre foods that keep you full and satisfied longer, elongating your blood sugar curve.
- The water content improves cellular hydration
- Vegetables help support optimal digestive function with their fibre.
- They also contain important anti-inflammatory phytochemicals along with vitamins and minerals to support cellular function.
Zucchini doesn’t get a lot of credit like the ‘superfoods’ kale or broccoli but it comes with plenty of its own benefits.
- It has ample amounts of vitamin A to support skin and immune health.
- Zucchini boasts plenty of energizing manganese, copper and magnesium.
- It contains small amounts of gut-soothing, microbiome-boosting soluble fibre.
- Zucchini is also rich in anti-inflammatory carotenoids…try to eat it with it’s dark-coloured skin whenever possible for the most benefits!
The Secret to Healthy Gluten-Free Zucchini Fritters
Many fritters are fried, which can be hard on irritable guts and it adds a lot of extra fat. Baking these fritters helps keep the fat content down and makes them lighter on digestion. What’s more, we have added a bunch of anti-inflammatory plants to boost nutrition. Garlic and green onions contain sulfur-based compounds which support liver health and fight inflammation. Ground flax contains omega 3 fatty acids; basil is packed with anti-inflammatory phytochemicals…and chickpea flour boosts protein and fibre.
Health Benefits of Chickpea Flour
If you’ve cracked open Eat More Plants Cookbook, you know how much I love chickpea flour. It’s high in protein and fibre: a half cup of chickpea flour contains 10g of protein and 10g of fibre. Many gluten free flours are little more than starch, which spikes your blood sugar and isn’t such a hot pick for an anti-inflammatory diet. It’s also really good for your gut health and your microbiome…chickpeas contain both insoluble and soluble fibres for better digestion. It also makes an excellent and absorbent base for these fritters.
More Zucchini Recipes
- Try this bright summer zucchini noodle pasta dish for dinner
- Get adventurous and add some zucchini to your green smoothie
- These zucchini muffins hit the spot for a healthy snack
I love eating these fritters as a snack or side dish with a nice tomato soup. They could also make a great brunch, as the base for a benedict or alongside a scramble. I totally recommend doubling the recipe!
Baked Zucchini Fritters with Lemon and Basil
- 4 cups grated zucchini
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 3/4 cup chickpea flour
- 4 green onions, dark green parts only
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons ground flax
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 lemon, zested
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425° Fahrenheit (220° Celsius) and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Toss grated zucchini with 1 teaspoon (5ml) salt in a fine metal sieve, placed over a bowl or the sink. Let sit for 10 minutes so the zucchini releases water.
- In a small dish, mix ground flax with a 1/4 cup of warm water and set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the chickpea flour, baking powder, cumin and remaining 1/2 teaspoon (2.5ml) salt. Then stir in green onions, basil, olive oil, garlic, lemon and black pepper.
- Rinse zucchini to remove excess salt, and gently squeeze handfuls of zucchini over sink to remove liquid and place squeezed zucchini in the bowl with the chickpea mixture. Add gelled flax to zucchini mixture and mix well to combine.
- Gently drop scant 1/2 cup of batter onto parchment lined baking sheet, pressing with fingers to form a 4 inch (10 cm) patty. Batter should yield 6 patties.
- Bake for 15 minutes, carefully flip and bake for 15 minutes more. Let rest on cookie sheet for five minutes before serving.