How to Make Zucchini Gratin with Yellow Squash

Elevate your vegetable side dish game with “Creamy Comfort: Zucchini Gratin with Yellow Squash.” This delightful gratin combines tender zucchini and yellow squash in a rich, creamy sauce topped with a crispy, cheesy crust. Perfect for family dinners, potlucks, or a special occasion, this gratin is sure to impress with its delicious flavors and beautiful presentation.

Why You’ll Love Zucchini Gratin with Yellow Squash:

  • Creamy and Cheesy: A rich, flavorful sauce and a golden, cheesy crust.
  • Healthy and Nutritious: Packed with fresh vegetables.
  • Versatile: Perfect as a side dish for a variety of main courses.
  • Easy to Make: Simple ingredients and straightforward preparation.

Ingredients Notes For Zucchini Gratin with Yellow Squash:

  • Zucchini: Fresh, sliced into rounds.
  • Yellow Squash: Fresh, sliced into rounds.
  • Onion: Thinly sliced for added flavor.
  • Garlic: Minced for an aromatic boost.
  • Butter: Adds richness to the sauce.
  • Flour: Helps thicken the sauce.
  • Milk or Heavy Cream: Creates a creamy base for the sauce.
  • Cheese: A mix of Gruyère, Parmesan, or cheddar for a rich, cheesy flavor.
  • Breadcrumbs: For a crispy topping.
  • Salt and Pepper: To taste.
  • Nutmeg: Optional, for a subtle depth of flavor.
  • Fresh Herbs: Optional, such as thyme or parsley for garnish.

Recipe Steps:

  1. Preheat the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish or a gratin dish.
  2. Prepare the Vegetables:
    • Slice 2 medium zucchinis and 2 medium yellow squashes into thin rounds. Thinly slice 1 large onion.
  3. Cook the Vegetables:
    • In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add the sliced onion and cook until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and cook for another minute until fragrant.
    • Add the sliced zucchini and yellow squash to the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender, about 5-7 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of nutmeg if desired. Remove from heat.
  4. Make the Sauce:
    • In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Stir in 2 tablespoons of flour and cook for 1-2 minutes until bubbly. Gradually whisk in 1 1/2 cups of milk or heavy cream, continuing to whisk until the sauce thickens and comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and stir in 1 cup of shredded cheese until melted and smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Assemble the Gratin:
    • Transfer the cooked vegetables to the prepared baking dish. Pour the cheese sauce evenly over the vegetables, spreading it with a spatula if needed.
  6. Prepare the Topping:
    • In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs with 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and 1 tablespoon of melted butter. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top of the gratin.
  7. Bake:
    • Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the sauce is bubbly.
  8. Serve:
    • Garnish with fresh herbs like thyme or parsley if desired. Serve hot as a side dish.
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Storage Options:

  • Refrigerate: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheat: Reheat in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) until warmed through, or in the microwave.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium zucchinis thinly sliced
  • 2 medium yellow squashes thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • Fresh parsley chopped (optional, for garnish)

Instructions

Preheat the Oven:

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish or a similar-sized gratin dish.

Prepare the Vegetables:

  • Thinly slice the zucchinis and yellow squashes. You can use a mandoline slicer for even slices.

Sauté the Onion and Garlic:

  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the chopped onion and sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes, until fragrant.

Make the Cream Sauce:

  • Reduce the heat to low and stir in the heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, thyme, basil, salt, and pepper.
  • Simmer gently for about 2-3 minutes, until the sauce begins to thicken.

Assemble the Gratin:

  • Arrange half of the zucchini and yellow squash slices in the bottom of the prepared baking dish, slightly overlapping.
  • Pour half of the cream sauce over the vegetables.
  • Sprinkle with half of the shredded mozzarella cheese.
  • Repeat the layers with the remaining zucchini, yellow squash, cream sauce, and mozzarella cheese.

Prepare the Breadcrumb Topping:

  • In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs with the melted butter. Mix well.

Top and Bake:

  • Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top of the gratin.
  • Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the foil and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the vegetables are tender.

Serve:

  • Let the gratin cool for a few minutes before serving.
  • Garnish with chopped fresh parsley if desired.

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