Homemade panko breaded zucchini parmigiana layered with marinara sauce and mozzarella sauce on top.

Zucchini Parmigiana

Zucchini parmigiana is a melding together of delicious flavors: There’s the fresh zucchini; the rich marinara; the smooth cheese sauce and the thick layer of crunchy panko breadcrumbs to envelope it all.

It’s crunchy, saucy and flavorful, making it everything an entrée should be. The sauce components can be made ahead so that when dinner rolls around, only the zucchini will need preparation.

How To Make Vegan Zucchini Parmigiana

How To Make The Marinara Sauce

The best tomato sauce to use for this recipe is my Authentic Marinara Sauce. Cook down San Marzano tomatoes, garlic cloves, one onion, fresh basil and vegetable stock until it reduces into a hearty tomato base. To cook the marinara sauce, place a large pot on the stove at medium heat. Pour enough extra virgin olive oil to cover the bottom of the pot and let it heat up. When hot, add the onions and cook until translucent. Next, add the fresh garlic and mix with the onions. Then add the San Marzano tomatoes and stir.

San Marzano tomatoes have less of a canned taste than other canned varieties.

At this time, add the fresh basil, season with salt and pepper and mix everything together. Allow to stew for 15 minutes. You’ll notice the tomatoes will start to release a rich aroma as it begins to break down. To speed up the process, mash the tomatoes with a wooden spatula.

After the tomatoes have stewed, add the 16 oz. of flavored stock or water to the pot. Lower the heat to a low setting. This will give the sauce time to simmer and develop serious flavor. Stir occasionally for the next 25 – 30 minutes so that the sauce does not burn or stick to the bottom of the pan.

When the sauce is finished, remove off the heat and use an emulsion hand blender to create a smooth marinara sauce. If you prefer a chunky and rustic sauce then skip this step altogether.

How To Make Creamy Mozzarella Sauce

The smooth Mozzarella Sauce is creamy and cheesy and pairs well with anything. To make the cheese sauce, simply soak 1 cup of raw cashew nuts in hot water for around ten minutes. Strain the liquid and then place in a blender. To the blender, add lemon juice, water, nutritional yeast and onion powder and whirl together until a smooth sauce is made.

Preparing The Zucchini For Baking

To prepare the zucchini, cut off the ends and slice lengthwise to make long strips of zucchini. Zucchini is a vegetable that retains a lot of moisture. To draw that out, place the slices on papers towels and sprinkle sea salt on both sides. Let this soak in for a few minutes. Next, use the paper towels to blot the surface of the zucchini, absorbing any excess moisture.

Zucchini retains a lot of moisture inside the vegetable, so you’ll have to remove the excess by using a sprinkle of salt and paper towels.

To coat the zucchini with breadcrumbs, you’ll need to prepare two mixtures: a batter and a dry mixture. Simply dunk the zucchini into the batter, making sure to cover the entire surface. Then, press it into the dry mixture, coating both sides. Bread all the zucchini slices and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Spray the tops with avocado oil, or another oil with a high smoke point before placing in an oven set to 425°F.

Bake the breaded zucchini for 10 minutes and then flip over and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Serve zucchini parmigiana immediately to get the best amount of crunchiness. Layer with the delicious Marinara Sauce, Mozzarella Cheese Sauce and dried oregano for the tastiest bite.

The great thing about this parmigiana recipe is that it can be used with a variety of vegetables. Try it with the classic eggplant, yellow potatoes or carrots for an unexpected meal. If you make this recipe, don’t forget to leave a review below and tag @PlantBasedDogGuy on Instagram.

For more delicious dinner ideas, try these recipes:

Homemade panko breaded zucchini parmigiana layered with marinara sauce and mozzarella sauce on top.
Yield: 2 Servings

Zucchini Parmigiana

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes

This oven baked zucchini parmigiana is saucy, fresh, cheesy and crunchy. It's a delicious vegan take on a classic Italian dish.

Ingredients

Marinara Sauce

  • 56 oz. / 2 Cans San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 6 Cloves Garlic
  • 15 Fresh Basil Leaves
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper (To Taste)
  • 2 Teaspoons Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base or other flavored base (optional) + 16 oz. Hot Water

Mozzarella Cheese Sauce

  • 1 Cup Raw Cashews
  • 2 Heaping Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Cup + 1/8 Cup Water
  • Juice of 1 Lemon

Batter Mixture

  • 1 Cup Oat Milk (Or Other Vegan Milk)
  • 1 Cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Follow Your Heart Vegan Ranch
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt

Dry Mixture

  • 2 Cups Panko Breadcrumbs With Italian Seasoning (I Recommend Flora Bread Crumbs Panko Seasoned)
  • 1 Teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 4 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 2 Zucchini

Instructions

HOW TO MAKE MARINARA SAUCE

CHOP

  1. Evenly chop the yellow onion, fresh garlic cloves and fresh basil leaves.

PREPARE

  1. Open the 2 cans of San Marzano tomatoes and set aside.
  2. Boil 16 oz of water. If you are using Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base, mix 2 teaspoons with the hot water and stir. If you are omitting the flavored stock then set aside 16 oz of hot water.

COOK

  1. Place a large pot on the stove at medium heat. Add enough extra virgin olive oil to cover the bottom of the pot.
  2. When heated, add the onions and cook until translucent
  3. Add the fresh garlic to the pot and mix with the onions, cooking for only 45 seconds to 1 minute.
  4. Add the San Marzano tomatoes to the pot and stir. At this time, add the fresh basil and season with salt and pepper and mix everything together. Allow to stew for 15 minutes. You'll notice the tomatoes will start to release a rich aroma as it begins to break down. To speed up the process, mash the tomatoes with a wooden spatula.
  5. After the tomatoes have stewed, add the 16 oz. of flavored stock or water to the pot. Lower the heat to a low setting. This will give the sauce time to simmer and develop serious flavor. Stir occasionally for the next 25 - 30 minutes so that the sauce does not burn or stick to the bottom of the pan.
  6. When the sauce is finished, remove off the heat and use an emulsion hand blender to create a smooth marinara sauce. If you prefer a chunky and rustic sauce then skip this step altogether.

HOW TO MAKE VEGAN MOZZARELLA SAUCE

  1. In a blender, combine all the ingredients and blend on high until a smooth sauce is made. This should take around 2 minutes.

HOW TO PREPARE THE ZUCCHINI

  1. Preheat and oven set to 425°F.
  2. To prepare the zucchini, cut off the ends and slice lengthwise to make long strips of zucchini.
  3. Zucchini is a vegetable that retains a lot of moisture. To draw that out, place the slices on papers towels and sprinkle sea salt on both sides. Let this soak in for a few minutes. Next, use the paper towels to blot the surface of the zucchini, absorbing any excess moisture.
  4. Prepare the batter and dry mixtures. Whisk the ingredients listed above in two separate bowls.
  5. To coat the zucchini, simply dunk the slices into the batter, making sure to cover the entire surface. Then, press into the dry mixture, coating both sides.
  6. Continue to bread all the zucchini slices and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Spray the tops with avocado oil, or another oil with a high smoke point before placing in an oven.
  7. Baked for 10 minutes and then flip over and bake for an additional 10 minutes.

ASSEMBLING ZUCCHINI PARMIGIANA

  1. Serve zucchini parmigiana immediately to get the best amount of crunchiness.
  2. Layer with the delicious Marinara Sauce, Mozzarella Cheese Sauce and dried oregano for the tastiest bite.

Notes

  • When making the marinara sauce use San Marzano tomatoes as they have less of a canned taste than other canned varieties.
  • Store leftover marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese in the fridge for later use.
  • Zucchini retains a lot of moisture inside the vegetable, so you'll have to remove the excess by using a sprinkle of salt and paper towels.

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Nutrition Information

Yield

2

Serving Size

1 Zucchini

Amount Per Serving Calories 335Total Fat 8.5gSaturated Fat 1gSodium 363mgCarbohydrates 5gFiber 4gSugar 9gProtein 11g

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