Grilled Lemon Butter Zucchini

This week, I’ll be featuring some grilled recipes for Labor Day. It’s the last week of summer, so we must celebrate. If you’re like me, you wish you were going away, but the traffic and craziness has convinced you to stay home. We’ll be having a “staycation,” grilling in our back yard and enjoying these last precious days of summer.

This recipe is one of those simple, tasty dishes that might become a standard on your grill menu, especially if you have a lot of zucchini growing in your garden. The simple basting mixture allows the natural flavor of the zucchini to shine through. The butter and lemon essence play so well together, giving these veggies a wonderful creamy zip. I like to pair them with my Tzatziki sauce and Sephardic Fish Skewers (recipe posting tomorrow).

The zucchini (also known as courgette) is a relatively modern variety of summer squash. Like all squash, zucchini has ancestry in North America. Archaeological evidence suggests that squash may have been first cultivated on the isthmus between North America and South America (known as Mesoamerica) around 10,000 years ago. Squash was one of the three main native crops planted by Native Americans, known as the “Three Sisters”– maize (corn), beans, and squash. After the New World was colonized, squash found its way to Europe. Zucchini as we know it was developed in Italy in the late 1800’s, a distant relative of its Mesoamerican squash ancestors. It was introduced to America by Italian immigrants in the early 1920’s.

Zucchini was bred to be tender, and is best harvested young when the seeds are soft and immature. Their mild flavor compliments a wide variety of dishes. Zucchini blossoms can be stuffed and deep-fried. Zucchini may also be also stuffed and served as a symbolic food for Jewish holidays like Sukkot.

During the summer, I love to grill zucchini; it’s a simple way to enhance the mild flavor of this lovely squash. This recipe makes 4 grilled zucchini (8 halves), but when I photographed it I only had 3 zukes in the fridge. Don’t be confused, there’s enough marinade for 4.

Next week, Rosh Hashanah recipes begin… yay! I’ve got some really fun ideas to share with you all. Can’t wait!! :)


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Grilled Lemon Butter Zucchini


  • 4 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise
  • 3 tbsp melted unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon zest
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • Fresh lemon wedges and chopped parsley for garnish (optional)
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 25 Minutes
Servings: 8 grilled zuchini halves
Kosher Key: Dairy
  • Preheat your grill. Score the fleshy cut side of the zucchini halves with a few small shallow slits. This will help the butter sauce to penetrate the veggies; it will also make them cook quicker and more evenly. Place the zucchini slices skin side down, cut side up on a plate.
  • Whisk together melted butter, parsley, lemon juice, lemon zest, white pepper, salt and garlic.
  • Baste the cut side of the zucchini generously with the melted butter sauce.
  • Place the zucchini on a medium hot grill, green sides down, basted sides up.
  • Grill the zucchini for 6 minutes, then flip. Continue to grill for another 6-8 minutes till tender.
  • Serve garnished with fresh lemon wedges and chopped parsley, if desired. Goes great with tzatziki sauce.


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Category: Dairy, Healthy, In the Kitchen, Nut Free, Recipes, Shavuot, Side Dishes, Slide Show, Tomato Free, Vegetarian

Comments (20)Post a Comment

  1. Lisa Ruminski says:

    That looks incredible…and the zuchinni plants in my garden are loaded! Thanks for a great idea!

  2. Tanya says:

    Looks good…yummy! Will you have Lamb with that?

  3. Kelly says:

    Very nice Tori. Particularly like the addition of parsley and lemon to this grilled zucchini. Great illustrations too (as always!)

  4. Bunny Marks says:

    Looks great -can’t wait to try it this weekend!

  5. I love grilled vegetables…they look fantastic! Love the tip on scoring, nice :)

  6. Ilke says:

    I can’t believe summer is gone! And I have not worn my white jeans even once, now it will be too late :)
    Grilled zucchinis look delicious, by the way. I tried to find the blossoms to stuff, but I was told that I was too late at those instances. There is always next year :)

  7. Kim Bee says:

    These look so yummy Tori. Great job on grilling them to perfection. We are staying home for the holiday weekend. But we are taking a day trip tomorrow. Should be fun. I still can’t get over how clean your grill is. Lol!

  8. Stephanie says:

    this sounds fabulous! I think lemon and butter make everything better! A great way to end the summer!

  9. Beautiful grill marks – this is one of the most delicious ways to serve zucchini, especially this time of year. Bravo!

  10. Ann says:

    Hi Tori! Beautiful zucchini….I’ve grilled it, but I never thought to use lemon! I love it….

  11. newlywed says:

    Yum! I love grilled zucchini and gobble it up…but always just make it plain with a little olive oil. The lemon butter sounds incredible.

  12. RavieNomNoms says:

    This is seriously amazing!! I love the flavors you have going on…

  13. Pingback: The Shiksa Picks – Tori’s Favorite Web Finds 9.2.11

  14. These look beautiful AND delicious. I’ve grilled zucchini in the past, but have never thought of using lemon on them. Thanks for the idea!

  15. Natalie says:

    I have tons of Zucchini from my garden and out of ideas, thanks for the tip!

  16. Kristy says:

    There’s those beautiful grill marks again! My zucchini did not turn out quite right the last time we tried to grill them. I think I’m going to revisit the idea though. The picture tutorial will be very helpful – I especially love the idea of scoring the zucchini first.

  17. Sharon says:

    I have always cut it into rounds and marinate it overnight in olive oil and spices. This with it cut lengthwise with butter and parsley sounds even better and alot more manageable as well, (no little slices falling between the grates!)
    Congrats on the separate food history site, I have always loved reading the stories! You’re the best!

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