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Sauteed Zucchini with Onions

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Sauteed zucchini and onions: a simple and delicious way of cooking zucchini in the pan. Serve as a side dish or light main meal.

how to saute zucchini

An easy and wonderful recipe for sauteed zucchini with onions! I was so impressed by it the first time I’ve cooked it, that I couldn’t stop telling about it to just about anyone around me for several days. And I cooked the dish 3 times during that same week.

Mind you, I had lots of zucchini from a friend’s garden… so I kept throwing them in just about anything I’ve cooked lately, including cakes… Or this super delicious vegan zucchini curry.

Recipe ingredients

The list of ingredients might seem long for just a simple recipe, but don’t let that put you off from cooking the dish. They are all ingredients you probably have in your cupboard anyway, basic things like garlic, raisins, and almonds.


  • Smaller, thinner ones would be perfect, due to the fact that they are thin, you will be able to cut them into pretty rounds and the dish will look just stunning at the end. If using young ones, removing the seeds is definitely not necessary.
  • But if all you have are larger ones from the garden, don’t worry about it, the dish will taste just as amazing.
  • In this case, halve them lengthwise, scoop out the seeds with the help of a teaspoon (if necessary, if there are too many of them and too many of them making the middle of the vegetable soft and mealy), and slice the halves into half-moons.


  • The original recipe calls for pine nuts. However, pine nuts are an item that I don’t usually have in my pantry. They are rather expensive and have a rather short shelf life, so I prefer to buy them fresh when I need them.
  • So, I used almonds instead and didn’t regret it, they were just wonderful.
  • But if you like, do use pine nuts, I am sure they would be delicious.


  • The original recipe also calls for mint. I would have had some in the garden, but somehow I just didn’t feel like it, so I used parsley. Do use whatever you like best.

And talking about the original recipe, I’ve learned how to saute zucchini with onions and raisins from Diane Henry’s book Food From Plenty. (Amazon affiliate link)

I have discovered Diane Henry’s books only recently, I bought the kindle edition of her poultry book A Bird in the Hand: Chicken recipes for every day and every mood and liked it so much that I’ve bought almost all of her other books in a matter of days… (Amazon affiliate link)

how to saute zucchini

Step-by-step instructions

  • Roast almonds in a dry pan.
  • Soak raisins.
  • Slice zucchini into rounds.
  • Fry zucchini on one side until golden. Flip and fry the other side. Repeat with the second batch. Transfer vegetables to a bowl.
  • Cook sliced onions until soft, add sliced garlic and saute shortly. Transfer to the bowl containing the zucchini slices.
  • Add raisins, lemon juice, and herbs.
  • Adjust the taste and toss gently.
  • Sprinkle with the roasted almonds.

Expert tips

  • If the zucchini are very large, make sure to remove the seeds.
  • Start with roasting the almonds in the clean pan, without adding any fat. Keep a close eye on them, as they can burn very quickly. Once roasted transfer to a large plate and let cool.
  • I prefer to cook the veggie slices in a large skillet or large non-stick pan and in batches, if necessary, not crowding the pan too much.
  • Sautee in two batches, it ensures that they are perfectly cooked and golden on both sides.

Recipe FAQ

How to serve?

You can serve the sauteed zucchini with onions either warm or at room temperature, I have actually had it at room temperature more often than not.
The recipe makes a great side dish for chicken breast, for instance. However, I have had them most of the time on their own with a slice of crusty bread or, my favorite version, with a very large dollop of hummus or fava bean dip. Soooooo goooood!

How many servings?

The nutrition is calculated for 2 servings if the dish is intended to be the main meal. If serving as a side dish, the quantities should be enough for 4 people.

How to store?

Refrigerate the leftovers in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
Keep the almonds in a separate container at room temperature.
You can reheat the leftovers, but it’s not mandatory, they taste amazing at room temperature.
The dish is not suitable for freezing.

how to saute zucchini

 More zucchini in the pan

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bowl of zucchini with a spoon

Sauteed Zucchini with Onions

Learn how to saute zucchini with onions in a simple and delicious way.
4.50 from 6 votes
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Course: Side Dishes
Cuisine: Middle East
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2 -4
Calories: 375kcal
Author: Adina


  • 2 tablespoons chopped almonds See note 1
  • 30 g/ 1 oz/ scant ¼ cup raisins
  • 500 g/ 1.1 lbs zucchini about 2 or 3 medium zucchini (See note 2)
  • 2 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • small bunch of parsley See note 3


  • Chop the almonds roughly. Heat a large skillet or non-stick pan without adding any fat and roast the almonds until golden and fragrant. Stand by the pan and shake it often to avoid the almonds from burning. Transfer the almonds to a large plate and leave to cool while you continue with the recipe. Pine nuts can be used instead and roasted in the same way.
  • Place the raisins into a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Let soak until needed.
  • If using medium zucchini slice them into rounds about 3 mm/ 0.10 inch thick. If using large zucchini, halve them, remove the seeds with the help of a teaspoon and slice the halves.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in the skillet or nonstick pan you used for roasting the almonds. Add about half of the zucchini and fry until golden on the underside. Flip with a spatula and continue frying them until golden on the other side as well.
  • Transfer the sauteed zucchini to a serving bowl. Add another tablespoon olive oil to the pan and fry the second batch of zucchini exactly the same way. Transfer to the bowl as well.
  • In the meantime, halve the red onion and slice the halves. Slice the garlic cloves as well, but keep the two vegetables separate.
  • Add another ½ tablespoon olive oil to the pan. Cook the onions until very soft. Add the garlic and continue cooking for another minute or two, stirring, until the garlic is golden and fragrant. Transfer the onions and garlic to the bowl of zucchini.
  • Drain the raisins well and add them to the bowl. Add the lemon juice and the chopped parsley (or mint). Toss carefully and adjust the taste with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice, if necessary.
  • Sprinkle the almonds on top just before serving. Serve as suggested above.


  1. The same amount of pine nuts can be used instead.
  2. If using large garden zucchini, you will have to halve them and remove the mealy interior containing the seeds. Do that with the help of a teaspoon, scraping out the soft insides and leaving only the crunchy zucchini flesh. After removing the seeds, slice the halves.
  3. You can use a few sprigs of fresh mint instead, if you like it.


Serving: 1/2 of the dish | Calories: 375kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 18g | Sodium: 127mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 31g
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @adinabeck or tag #WhereIsMySpoon!

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Recipe Rating


Wednesday 26th of September 2018

You know Adina - your recipe are never boring. A summer squash dish with almonds and raisins? Very creative and one I need to try. We're growing yellow zucchini which I would think would still work with this dish. Sounds so good!


Thursday 20th of September 2018

Hi Adina! You are so blessed to have friends that share their produce! I'm thinking about this zucchini, but also the blackberries from a recent recipe. So generous. I have never tried zucchini prepared this way, but this looks so flavorful. I love the red onions and can imagine the almonds give a lovely crunch to it all. I can understand why the children might not request this, but I would have to be thinking... then more for me!! Wahoo! :) Thanks for sharing this beautiful recipes, I always love seeing what is going on in your amazing kitchen. XO