Published on 31 May 2024

Summer Squash Casserole Recipe | The Leaf

Welcome to your new go-to recipe for every summer gathering: the Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole. This simple yet elegant side dish perfectly captures the essence of seasonal summer ingredients, making it an ideal choice for family dinners, summer barbecues and even upscale garden parties.

Featuring thinly sliced zucchini and yellow squash, combined with the subtle flavors of shallots, garlic and olive oil, this casserole not only delights the senses but also adds a touch of sophistication to any meal. Topped with a crispy layer of multigrain sourdough breadcrumbs and a rich blend of shredded Italian cheese and Parmesan, this casserole is the perfect complement to any main course, whether you’re grilling outdoors or enjoying a cozy meal inside.

This Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole is a celebration of summer’s bounty, easy to prepare with readily available ingredients. Join us as we delve into the recipe below – it’s sure to become a highlight at your dining table, offering a delicious way to enjoy the season’s best flavors!

How to Make Summer Squash Casserole: A Healthy, Seasonal Side Dish

Introducing our delightful Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole recipe, designed to bring the freshness of summer right to your table. This recipe serves eight, making it perfect for family gatherings or sharing with friends at your next barbecue. Each serving contains just 109 calories, aligning with the Nutrisystem program. Each serving counts as half of a PowerFuel, one Extra and one Vegetable serving.

Simple Ingredients

The casserole is crafted from simple, wholesome ingredients. Begin with two slices of multigrain sourdough bread and one clove of garlic, which are pulsed together in a food processor until they reach a coarse breadcrumb consistency.

The base of the dish includes three sliced yellow squashes and one zucchini, tossed with two teaspoons of olive oil, chopped shallot, and a dash of black pepper for seasoning. Half of the breadcrumb mixture is then added to these vegetables.

Easy Preparation for Any Occasion

To assemble, the squash and zucchini mix is spread into a greased baking dish, layered with shredded Italian cheese blend, and then baked covered at 375 degrees for 50 minutes.

After this initial bake, the casserole is uncovered and topped with the remaining breadcrumbs, more Italian cheese, and some grated Parmesan cheese. It’s returned to the oven for another 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese is beautifully melted and golden brown.

Perfectly Garnished and Ready to Serve

The final touch is a garnish of freshly chopped basil, adding a burst of color and flavor that enhances the summery vibe of this dish. This Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole is not just a meal; it’s a celebration of seasonal produce and simple cooking, ideal for any occasion from a casual dinner to a festive outdoor feast.

Customizing Your Summer Casserole

This versatile casserole can easily be tailored to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs, making it a perfect dish to experiment with. Here are some creative ideas for customizing the recipe:

1. Experiment with Different Cheeses

While the recipe calls for an Italian cheese blend and Parmesan, you can personalize the cheese layer to adjust the flavor and texture. Try using mozzarella for a milder taste, or add some sharp cheddar for a bolder taste. For those who enjoy a bit of tang, incorporating crumbled feta or goat cheese can add a delightful twist.

2. Add More Vegetables

To increase the nutritional value and add more color and variety, consider incorporating other vegetables into your casserole. Bell peppers, spinach or mushrooms can be thinly sliced and mixed in with the squash and zucchini. This not only makes the dish more substantial but also allows you to use up whatever veggies you have on hand.

3. Include Protein

For a heartier dish, you can add protein to make this casserole a complete meal. Grilled chicken or ground turkey can be added to the vegetable mixture before baking. This is a great way to turn the side dish into a satisfying main course.

4. Change Up the Herbs

While basil offers a fresh, summery aroma, other herbs can complement the flavors beautifully. Consider adding oregano, thyme or rosemary for a different profile. A hint of these dried herbs can be mixed into the breadcrumb topping or sprinkled over the casserole before serving.

5. Spice It Up

If you enjoy a little heat, adding some red pepper flakes to the oil while sautéing the shallots and garlic can infuse the casserole with a subtle kick. Alternatively, a dash of cayenne pepper mixed into the breadcrumb topping can add another layer of flavor.

By making these adjustments and referring to the Nutrisystem Grocery Guide for guidance, you can keep the casserole exciting and perfectly aligned with your preferences. Whether you stick to the recipe or add your own twist, this Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole is sure to be a delightful addition to your meal rotation.

Looking for more delicious ways to cook up your summer squash? You’ll love this Yellow Summer Squash Frittata recipe!

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