Baked Zucchini Fries

BY : PUBLISHED : August 11th, 2021 UPDATED: September 22nd, 2021

This oil-free baked zucchini fries recipe yields veggie fries that are wonderfully crisp on the outside with a tender middle, perfect as a healthier alternative to deep-fried fries. Serve as a snack, appetizer, or side! Plus, these homemade zucchini fries are 100% vegan and can be made gluten-free and lower-carb!

several baked zucchini fries on white platter

Crispy Oil-Free Baked Zucchini Fries

Zucchini is a super versatile and budget-friendly veg. We use it to make soup, bake into bread, spiralize into noodles, make into fritters, use for rosemary zucchini tart, hide in muffins and cookies, and enjoy sauteed, baked, fried, etc. This time, we’re using this delicious veg to make crispy, oil-free baked zucchini fries!

I’m not sure if it’s a vegan thing or just a veggie-loving thing, but we love turning veggies into fries here at PBOAB, too. Along with these homemade zucchini fries, we’ve already shared recipes for baked sweet potato fries, green bean fries, and carrot fries. They’re simple, low-budget, and nutritious!

Zucchini not only contain excellent levels of dietary fiber, several vitamins, minerals, and naturally low-carb, but they’re also super low-budget. Even better, during summer, if you grow your own, you’ll probably find that you have tons to use (so along with these fries, why not try some of these top 14 zucchini recipes, too). When combined with egg-free breading, these baked zucchini fries taste like a treat yet are healthy and fairly low-calorie!

Best of all, these oven-baked zucchini fries require just 7 ingredients (plus salt & pepper) and under 10 minutes of hands-on prep! Plus, this recipe can be further adjusted to gluten-free and even lower-carb, AND you can bake these to perfection or adjust this simple recipe to make air fryer zucchini fries! Now that’s versatility! 

The Ingredients and Substitutes

All you need is zucchini and a handful of pantry staples for this oven-baked zucchini fries’ recipe.

ingredients for Baked Zucchini Fries in a white background

  • Zucchini: 1-2 small zucchini are all you need for these baked zucchini fries. You could also use summer squash. 
  • Breadcrumbs: Use whatever you have to hand; regular breadcrumbs, panko (for a lighter crumb), gluten-free if necessary, or even homemade breadcrumbs. 
  • Flour: General all-purpose flour will work well. Alternatively, for a gluten-free option, use rice flour, tapioca starch, or cornstarch. 
  • Milk: Use any unsweetened plant-based milk; almond, coconut, soy, oat, etc.
  • Seasonings: I used a simple combination of paprika, chili powder (reduce for less heat), seasoned salt, and general salt & pepper. 

Optional Add-ins and Variations:

  • ‘Parmesan’ zucchini fries: Add garlic powder, onion powder, and nutritional yeast to the breading. I recommend around 1/2tsp of each spice and 1tbsp of nutritional yeast. You can also boost the flavor further with dairy-free parmesan (just a few tablespoons). 
  • Italian zucchini fries: Combine onion powder, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning. Optionally omit the paprika and reduce the chili. 
  • Other spices/seasonings: There are tons of ways you can experiment when flavoring these easy zucchini fries. Dried oregano, basil, thyme, etc. 
  • Fresh herbs: You can also finely chop fresh herbs to sprinkle over the baked fries, including parsley, basil, oregano, chives, scallions, etc. 
  • Low-carb zucchini fries: You could try this recipe with almond flour for a low-carb breading option. Not super budget-friendly, but great for any low-carb kitchen. We haven’t tried this version, though, so we can’t guarantee results. 

How to Make Baked Zucchini Fries?

Keep scrolling to the recipe card for the complete list of ingredients and recipe instructions!

  1. First, slice the zucchini into long, thin fries. It’s easiest to do this by chopping the ends off the zucchini, then slicing it in half across the middle, then lengthwise. Then slice each of the four pieces into fries.  

The number of wedges/fries you can make will depend on your zucchini’s exact size and shape – so use your best judgment when slicing the zucchini fries. For example, with larger zucchini, I recommend slicing it into three pieces lengthwise before cutting the zucchini fries. 

  1. Once chopped, lay the zucchini fries across a tray and sprinkle with salt – allow them to sit for 20 minutes. During this time, the excess liquid will drain from the zucchini pieces. 
  2. Meanwhile, set up your breading station. First, add the breadcrumbs, paprika, and chili to a bowl. Then, in a separate bowl, add the flour, and in another, add the milk. 
  3. After 20 minutes, preheat the oven to 425F/220C. Then pat down the salted zucchini. Next, lightly coat each piece in flour, followed by milk, and lastly, breadcrumbs. Repeat this twice for each fry until generously coated.
  4. Lay the breaded zucchini fries on a large non-stick baking sheet (or a parchment-lined sheet) and bake for 20 minutes, or until the fries are golden and crispy. Then remove from the oven, allow to cool for a few minutes, and enjoy! 

ingredients for Baked Zucchini Fries in a white backgroundingredients for Baked Zucchini Fries in a white bowl

ingredients for Baked Zucchini Fries in a white bowlprocess for making baked zucchini fries

process for making baked zucchini friesseveral zucchini fries on parchment paper

How to Serve Zucchini Fries?

  • Serve with the dip of your choice, vegan ranch, mayo, garlic sauce, or marinara. They even pair well with guacamole – delicious!
  • Serve instead of potato fries alongside a burger – like this black bean burger, chickpea quinoa burger, or browse through this list of 9 vegan burgers you need to try!
  • Or as a side to this vegan mushroom steak
  • Make loaded fries with salsa and vegan cheese. 
  • Add to wraps with extra salad veggies (like these BBQ chickpea wraps, or make into lettuce wraps.
  • Enjoy over a bed of salad (use the leafy greens of your choice)
  • As part of a savory breakfast with baked beans, tomatoes, etc. 

Let us know in the comments how else you like to enjoy these oven-baked zucchini fries!

How to Make-Ahead and Store?

These zucchini fries are easy to prepare in advance. Simply slice, salt, and then bread as usual. Then lay the un-baked fries on a parchment-lined tray and refrigerate for several hours until you’re ready to bake. 

Alternatively, freeze until solid. Once frozen, transfer the fries to a freezer-safe container/bag for up to 2 months. Bake the fries from frozen, adding 3-5 minutes to the baking time. 

Once baked, these zucchini fries are best enjoyed immediately for the very best texture. However, leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. They will soften in the fridge, so make sure to reheat them in the oven/air fryer (or on the stovetop with just a drop of oil) until warm and slightly crisped up again. 

baked zucchini fries on a white platter with one showing the inside portion

Top Recipe Tips and FAQs

  • Adjust the fries’ size: Feel free to make smaller/larger baked zucchini fries. Just be aware that the baking time will vary. 
  • For crispier results: If you’re not bothered about using a little oil, I recommend using spray oil. That way, you only need a few spritzes to evenly (and lightly) coat the zucchini fries and encourage crisping more in the oven. ALTERNATIVELY, use the broiler for a couple of minutes at the end of the baking time for extra crunchiness. 
  • Mess-free breading station: I find the process much easier when using one hand for the dry steps and the other for the wet. That way, you don’t end up ‘breading’ your fingers. 
  • To make shoestring fries: You can spiralize the zucchini, cut them down to smaller pieces, and bread and bake. They’ll be crispier than fries and may require a minute or two less in the oven but make for a great crunchy addition to tons of salads and meals. 
  • Can I make air fryer zucchini fries? Unfortunately, we haven’t had a chance to test this method (yet). However, using general air fryer conversion, I’d recommend you try air-frying the zucchini in a single layer (with space between) for 12-15 minutes at 400F/200C. Flip over after 10 minutes. 
  • Cut evensized pieces: It goes without saying that evenly sliced zucchini will bake more evenly. 

More Veggie Side Recipes You’ll Love

You might also like these potato-based baked sesame fries or skillet home fries!

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Vegan Baked Zucchini Fries Plant Based on a Budget 1

Baked Zucchini Fries

Lauren Bossi
This oil-free baked zucchini fries recipe yields veggie fries that are wonderfully crisp on the outside with a tender middle, perfect as a healthier alternative to deep-fried fries. Serve as a snack, appetizer, or side!
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 10 fries
Calories 93 kcal
METHOD Oven
DIET Vegan

Ingredients
  

  • 1 to 2 small zucchinis
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of chili powder
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup of unsweetened plain plant-based milk 
  • ½ teaspoon of seasoned salt
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Slice zucchini into long and thin fries, lay them out on a tray and sprinkle on salt. Let sit for 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, add breadcrumbs, paprika, chili powder to a bowl. In a separate bowl, add flour, and in another bowl add plant-based milk.
  • After the 20 minutes passes, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Bring the slices one at a time through the flour, followed by the milk, and lastly through the bread crumbs. Repeat twice per zucchini fry until generously coated.
  • Lay out breaded fries on a non-stick baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes or until the outside of the fries are crispy.
  • Remove them from heat, allow them to cool, and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 93kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 3gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 216mgPotassium: 74mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 181IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 40mgIron: 1mg
Keyword appetizer, baked, bread crumbs, fries, healthy fries, snack, vegan, vegetarian, zucchini
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedonaBudget! 🙂

About Lauren Bossi

My name is Lauren Bossi; I run Track & Field at the University of Hartford in CT. I've got a passion for running and plant-based eats. When I'm not wandering around the aisles of the grocery store I enjoy cooking, baking, photography, pun-writing and tag-saling.

View all posts by Lauren Bossi