This zucchini and squash casserole makes the perfect side dish to accompany your next family dinner!
This zucchini and squash casserole uses a few minimal ingredients and requires little prep time, making it a perfect weeknight dish! And the cheese on top is a sure crowd pleaser!
What is yellow squash?
You will usually find yellow squash next to zucchini on the produce shelves in your local grocery store. The two vegetables look very similar. Yellow squash, however has a light yellow color and more of a curve than the vibrant green and straight shape of zucchini.
Leaving the skin of zucchini and yellow squash on instead of peeling will add fiber to this squash and zucchini casserole recipe.
Why use cottage cheese in this healthy squash and zucchini casserole?
Cottage cheese makes a great staple item in baking creamy dishes in place of sour cream since cottage cheese is packed with calcium, protein, and vitamin B12. Alternatively, plain Greek yogurt could also be used in place of the cottage cheese in this layered squash and zucchini casserole.
What to serve with squash casserole?
There are several delicious dishes to serve with squash casserole. For instance, this casserole can be prepared as a side dish to accompany a delicious salmon recipe, simple no fuss air fryer drumsticks, or cinnamon ginger pork chops.
How to boost the protein in this squash and zucchini casserole recipe?
You could incorporate protein within the baked zucchini and squash casserole by mixing shredded rotisserie chicken with the zucchini cheese mixture before baking. For a plant-based protein, try adding 1 cup of white beans with the zucchini cheese mixture before placing it in the oven for baking.
How to cut zucchini and squash for casserole?
Cutting zucchini and squash for this casserole is super simple! After rinsing the produce items, you’ll slice the top and bottom off to remove the rigid stem component. Next, you’ll place the zucchini (or squash) longwise on your cutting board and cut it in half. Then use the rule of halves. Keep slicing the zucchini (or squash) in half until you yield consistent 1-inch pieces.
How to make a squash and zucchini casserole?
You need a few simple ingredients and some standard kitchen equipment to make a squash and zucchini casserole. First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, begin to dice the sweet onion and chop the zucchini and yellow squash into 1-inch pieces. Once these are diced and chopped, you will start sauteing the sweet onions, zucchini, and yellow squash over medium heat.
Depending on what you have on hand, this sauteing can be done in a medium frying pan or a cast-iron skillet. The cast-iron skillet can act as our casserole dish and reduce the number of dishes to clean in the end. But if you do not have a cast-iron skillet, no worries, an 8×8 square baking pan or 8-inch diameter round baking dish will also work perfectly.
So let the onion and squash mixture continue to cook until the onions become translucent and the squash and zucchini start to become tender.
After the onions are translucent and aromatic, turn off the heat. Whisk the cottage cheese, shredded cheese, egg, and black pepper in a small mixing bowl. If you are using a cast-iron skillet, pour the cottage cheese mixture into the cast iron and mix until all the squash and zucchini mixture is coated. If you are using a different baking dish, grease the sides of the pan with cooking oil or butter. Add the cottage cheese mixture into the squash mixture and then transfer it into the greased baking dish.
Now for the fun part! Place your crackers of choice in a ziplock bag and crush them up. Pour them over the casserole mixture and place the pan in the oven.
This will bake for 25 minutes. The top will turn golden, and the cheesy mixture will bubble. Let the dish cool for 5 to 10 minutes, and serve!
Tips for making cheesy zucchini and squash casserole:
- Swap cottage cheese for sour cream, cream cheese, or plain Greek yogurt if you do not have any. Note that the fat and protein content in all of these will vary.
- Add in 1 cup of cooked whole grain for additional protein and fiber, such as cooked brown rice or quinoa.
- If you’re a vegetable lover, don’t be shy! Try adding chopped mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes, or even spinach. Add up to 1 cup extra veggies and sauté with the onions, zucchini, and squash.
- Instead of a potluck-style casserole, try making these individually in small ramekins. Cut the baking time in half to avoid overcooking.
Looking for other family favorite casserole and pasta dishes to make? Check out these:
- Healthy Baked Chicken Fajita Casserole
- Cheesy Beef & Kale Pasta Bake
- Cheesy Ground Lamb and Spinach Pasta Bake
- Artichoke Lemon Pesto Chickpea Pasta
Cheesy Baked Zucchini and Yellow Squash Casserole
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- 1 ½ lbs mixture of zucchini and yellow squash
- 1 large sweet onion
- 2 Tbsp Avocado oil
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese shredded (or monterey jack or Mexican blend)
- 1 egg
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1 cup crackers of choice
- Preheat your oven to 350*F
- Rinse the zucchini and yellow squash. Slice them into 1-inch pieces. Set aside.
- Dice the sweet onion.
- Place the diced sweet onion in a cast-iron skillet or medium frying pan. Add 2 tbsp. Avocado oil, ¼ tsp salt, and sliced zucchini and squash into the pan. Place over medium-high heat on the stove. Saute for 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent and zucchini and squash become soft. Remove the pan from the heat and set it aside.
- Mix the 1 cup cottage cheese, 1 1/2 cups shredded cheese, egg, and pepper in a small bowl. Mix until combined.
- Add the cottage cheese mixture into the cast iron skillet with the onion and squash mixture. If you are not using a cast iron skillet for baking this and are using a different baking dish, grease the sides of either an 8×8 square or 8-inch round baking dish with cooking oil or butter. Add the cottage cheese mixture into the squash mixture and then transfer it into the greased baking dish.
- Place the 1 cup grain-free crackers into a plastic bag. Beat with a rolling pin to crush crackers into crumb size pieces. Sprinkle cracker crumbs on top of the cheesy squash mixture.
- Place your pan in the oven and bake for 25 minutes or until golden on top.
- Serve warm, and enjoy!
- If you do not have a cast-iron skillet, use a medium frying pan to saute the onion and squash mixture. Grease an 8×8 square pan or an 8-inch diameter round baking dish to pour cheesy squash mixture into the oven to bake.
- Try plain Greek yogurt or sour cream if you do not have cottage cheese.
- If you only have yellow squash or only have zucchini, using only one completely also works well in this recipe.
- Try making individual size servings in ramekins instead of a large casserole.