Whether you’ve harvested the last of your homegrown crop or you’ve just got a craving for summer squash, there’s so much more to zucchini than just slicing it into coins or zoodling it. Ever tried grating your zucchini? The simple preparation makes for a fine addition to any pasta dish or an easy sautéed side and is an essential component to everyone’s favorite quick bread. Here’s exactly how to grate zucchini quickly and cleanly so you can get cooking, stat.
Step 1: Wash Your Zucchini
You don’t have to peel your zucchini to cook or bake with it—as long as you give the thin skin a good scrub, it will do you no harm. (That said, if you don’t like the texture and want to peel it, go right ahead.) Sometimes grocery stores sell zucchini coated in wax as a preservative. If your squash is waxed, you’ll definitely want to remove that coating, either by scrubbing the zucchini under running water with a soft brush or wiping it with a bit of lemon juice or white vinegar.
Step 2: Choose Your Grating Method
No surprise here: There’s more than one way to grate a zucchini. Got a food processor with a grating attachment? Yep, that will grate zucchini in lightning speed. Working with a box grater? That will get the job done too. Pick your poison and set up your grating station (i.e., plug in your food processor or set that box grater up in a bowl or on top of some paper towels). And heads up, you probably don’t want to grate zucchini with a microplane. The final result will be more mushy and pureed than you’re going for (and it will take a long time to get there).
Step 3: Grate Your Zucchini
The moment is here, and you’re so ready for it: It’s time to grate that zucchini. First, trim off the stem if it’s still intact. If you’re using a food processor fitted with a grating attachment, you can then feed the squash lengthwise through the tube with the machine running. If you’re doing it the old-fashioned way, grate the zucchini on the large holes of the box grater like you would with a piece of cheddar cheese. It can also be helpful to slice the zucchini into smaller pieces, especially if it’s a particularly big squash.
And voilà, you’ve got grated zucchini ready for whatever masterpiece you’re whipping up. Need a few ideas to get you started? We like to serve zucchini rice as a simple (but tasty) side dish or low-carb swap for the real stuff. And the water content in that squash will make for the moistest zucchini bread on the block.