Summer is almost in full swing, and if you’re the gardening type your summer squash and zucchini are likely ready to harvest.
These types of vegetables typically produce in abundance. And if you find yourself with more zucchini than recipe ideas, you’re in luck.
Today we’re sharing a delightful zucchini mini-pizza recipe, inspired by Sunny Anderson with Food Network (1). This makes the perfect snack for kid’s sleepovers, cookouts, or simply a way to mix it up at the dinner table.
Super easy, super quick, this recipe is a winner no matter is a winner no matter what your age is!
But first, why zucchini?
Health Benefits of Zucchini
What makes zucchini such a great choice when it comes to healthy eating?
Turns out, there are lots of health benefits to zucchini, like:
- Supports healthy digestion: Most people aren’t taking in enough water and fiber. Both are necessary for breaking down food, taking nutrients out, and getting rid of the rest. Zucchini has both soluble and insoluble fibers, which can feed the good bacteria in your gut (2).
- Anti-cancer effect: Because it contains a lot of antioxidants, zucchini also holds tumor-reducing properties that may help prevent DNA damage that could become cancer (3).
- May help lower blood sugar levels: Carbohydrates break down into sugars, which raises your blood sugar levels. That’s why eating a high carb diet contributes to diabetic issues today. Zucchini noodles are a low carb, high fiber pasta alternative, which can help prevent spikes in blood sugars levels (5).
- Packed with nutrients: This long, dark-green vegetable is filled with helpful vitamins and minerals. One cup of cooked zucchini give 40% of your daily Vitamin A, 14% of your daily Vitamin C, Potassium, Magnesium, Vitamin K, and more (6).
- Supports healthy vision: Eating zucchini can help you keep your vision sharp. How? The power lies in the antioxidants. Lutein and zeaxanthin are antioxidants that can build up in your retinas, offering protection against age-related eye diseases (7).
- May help your heart: Issues like high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol levels contribute a great deal to heart disease. The potassium found in zucchini can help dilate blood vessel, the pectin can help reduce bad cholesterol levels, and the carotenoids can all work together to keep your heart healthy (8, 10, 11)
- Thyroid health: Your thyroid hormones are crucial for overall health. Animal studies show that zucchini peel extract may help support healthy thyroid function (4).
- Weight loss: Studies show that eating fiber-rich fruits and vegetables can help you stay fuller, longer. Zucchini’s low-calorie and high water profile makes them a great choice if you’re trying to lose weight (9).
Now that you’re convinced zucchini is pretty amazing, time to get down to business. Let’s make some zucchini mini-pizzas!
Total time: 30 mins
Servings: 24 zucchini bites
This recipe doesn’t take a lot. Here are the basics:
- 2 medium zucchini
- Salt (preferably kosher or sea salt)
- 1/8 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp onion powder
- ½ cup marinara sauce
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella or colby jack cheese*
Alternative: You can find dairy-free cheese options at select health stores. Garlic and onion powders are also optional, but will definitely add a zing of flavor to the dish.
- Preheat your oven 400˚F. Lightly coat a baking sheet with olive oil or plant based butter.
- Cut the zucchini into slices about ¼ inch thick.
- Arrange zucchini slices on baking sheet, side by side.
- Sprinkle zucchini slices with salt, garlic, and onion seasonings.
- Dollop 1/2 teaspoon marinara sauce onto each zucchini slice. Top with 1 teaspoon mozzarella or selected cheese mix.
- Pop into the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, between 5-10 minutes.
Serve warm – enjoy!
Side options: You can pair this dish with a fresh fruit salad, buttered parmesan pasta, or vegan Mediterranean quinoa salad (12).
Summer gardens have a lot to offer. And if you’ve never cared for zucchini, perhaps you just haven’t found a recipe you liked yet.
This dark green veggie is loaded with nutrients that can help you stay healthy and happy. Full of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, eating zucchini regularly can help keep your heart, blood sugar levels, prostrate health, and thyroid health in good conditions. It may also help with your weight loss efforts by being a low calorie option.
This tasty zucchini mini-pizza recipe is quick, easy, and lots of fun to make. If you have 30 minutes and these ingredients on hand, there’s no reason not to try it!
Is your mouth watering yet? Be sure to share this recipe with friends and family. And let us know how you like it!
✝✝This noted statement is based on independent research and is not necessarily the opinion of the author