Are you looking for a unique and delicious appetizer to make your next gathering even more special? Give this delectable zucchini bruschetta recipe a try!
A traditional bruschetta recipe will toast bread slices then add a seasoned topping made with fresh tomatoes. But this recipe replaces the toasted bread with healthier zucchini slices.
This dish is the perfect combination of fresh vegetables and savory herbs. It's a delicious and nutritious appetizer perfect for any occasion.
With its excellent balance of flavors, it's sure to be a hit at any party or gathering. Plus, it's incredibly easy to make and requires only a few simple ingredients.
To make the appetizer, you'll need to gather some basic ingredients. If it's summer, you may even have the essentials right in your garden.
Here's what you'll need to make the recipe.
- Grape tomatoes
- Parmesan cheese
- Fresh basil leaves
- Olive oil
See recipe card for quantities.
There is some prep time involved, but you can do most of it while the oven is preheating. You'll need to chop the tomatoes and slice the zucchini on an angle.
Combine the tomatoes, garlic, cheese, basil, a tablespoon of oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl.
Lightly brush the remaining olive oil on the lined sheet and both sides of your zucchini slices.
After baking the zucchini, flipping halfway, add the topping.
Once each baked slice has been topped with the tomato mixture, it's ready to serve.
If desired, you can top off each slice with additional fresh basil and or grated parmesan cheese. You can even add a little grated mozzarella cheese for more flavor.
Here's a few simple ways to change up the recipe.
- Traditional - Replace the zucchini slices with French baguette slices. To make toasted bread in your oven, you can use the broiler. You can even use gluten free bread if you avoid gluten.
- Cheese - Bruschetta with mozzarella has a more complex flavor profile than when you only use Parmesan cheese. You can use fine shreds or sliced fresh mozzarella pearls.
- Tomatoes - Roma tomatoes are typically used so you can use those instead of the smaller grape tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes are a good option too.
- Fresh herbs - Fresh oregano or parsley can be used with or without the basil for a quick change of flavor.
You can try using a different type of vegetable as the base. Yellow squash has a similar texture to zucchini. Eggplant slices would also work.
- You'll get the best flavor when you use fresh garlic cloves. Garlic-infused olive oil will up the flavor even more.
- Freshly ground pepper always tastes much better than peppercorns that have already been ground.
- Remove excess moisture from the zucchini slices by tossing them with a half teaspoon of salt. Then allow them to drain in a colander for about an hour. Excess moisture can also be absorbed with a towel or paper towel.
Zucchini bruschetta is a perfect addition to any appetizer cuisine but works well as a side dish. It goes well with a simple main like grilled chicken or marinated steak. Before serving, each piece can be topped off with additional grated Parmesan cheese.
If you like the taste of Caprese salad, you can add fresh mozzarella and a balsamic glaze drizzle. You could also serve them with a salad or a simple snack like onigiri.
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, place the bruschetta on a baking sheet and heat at 350°F for 5-7 minutes.
You can use a variety of items instead of bread for gluten free bruschetta. Try slices of roasted eggplant, sweet potato, or zucchini. You can also use pita chips, crackers, or crostini. For a gluten-free option, try using slices of bell peppers or cucumbers. Be creative and have fun!
The topping is commonly called a bruschetta topping or bruschetta mix.
Yes, bruschetta can be a healthy snack, especially when you replace the bread with a vegetable. It is typically made with olive oil, tomatoes, garlic and basil which are all nutritious ingredients.
If you need a few more quick snack ideas, check out these recipes.
- Baked tortilla strips are crispy and crunchy.
- Air-fried strawberries take little time to prepare.
- Buttermilk biscuits for two can be made quickly when a bread craving hits.
- Colombian chicken tamales are a special treat to enjoy on holidays.
- 1 cup chopped grape tomatoes
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 medium zucchini
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- In a small bowl, mix together the tomatoes, garlic, Parmesan cheese, basil, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
- Pour the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil into a small cup. Lightly brush the oil onto the parchment paper or baking mat. Cut the zucchini into ¼-inch-thick slices. Place the slices on the baking sheet and brush lightly with oil.
- Bake for 3 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip each zucchini slice. Lightly brush the remaining oil over the tops. Return to the oven and bake for 3 minutes more.
- Remove the zucchini from the oven and top each slice with the tomato mixture. Serve immediately while the zucchini slices are still crisp.