Top 20 ways to use courgettes
Looking to work your way through a glut of courgettes? Discover our favourite ideas for using up this versatile vegetable, from cakes and bakes to soup and courgetti
Nothing signals the start of summer like a bountiful harvest of homegrown courgettes. But if your crop gets out of control, it can take some serious imagination to make the most of your pickings.
From creamy lasagnes to tempting tarts, we have an abundance of recipes that use fresh courgettes. Just remember to pick your bounty before the veg gets too big, as the smaller the courgette, the better the flavour. Courgettes can reach marrow-size surprisingly quickly, but fear not if this happens as we have plenty of serving suggestions in our collection of marrow recipes and top 10 ways to serve marrow.
Check out these ideas for using up courgettes, then also watch our video on how to cook courgettes for three different serving suggestions. We've also got plenty more inspiration in our collection of courgette recipes, from cheesy bakes and cakes to salads and barbecue sides.
Our top ways to use up courgettes
1. Courgette pasta
Who can resist a creamy plate of pasta? Quick, cheap and popular with kids, it's the perfect dish for using up some of your allotment veg. Our carbonara-style courgette & bacon pasta can be whipped up in 30 minutes with a handful of punchy ingredients. Or, if you're looking for something you can bung in the oven, serve up a bubbling pasta bake such as our creamy courgette lasagne or spinach and courgette lasagne. This versatile veg also works wonders with seafood – our lemony prawn & courgette tagliatelle is gloriously light and citrussy, with a subtle kick from chilli.
Discover more courgette pasta recipes
2. Courgette cakes
Courgettes can be used in more than just savoury dishes. This moist courgette & orange cake with cream cheese frosting is a decadent way to prove the point! Or, whip up a rich chocolate cake using grated courgettes. There's also a zesty and fragrant courgette, lemon & thyme cake, or get the kids in the kitchen to help make a batch of courgette muffins with our child-friendly recipe.
Find more courgette cake recipes
3. Courgette salads
Salads are the perfect way to showcase the subtle, delicate flavours of courgette. This courgette & white bean salad is full of fresh herby flavours, while our easy grated courgette salad is ideal for whipping up at the last minute. You'll get a dose of omega-3 with smoked mackerel, courgette & butter bean salad, or enjoy courgettes in thick ribbons with goat's cheese for a filling, summery side. Courgettes also work wonders lightly charred and served in warm salads. Our chunky grilled courgette & halloumi salad is livened up with a tangy caper and lemon dressing, making a delicious lunch or barbecue side.
4. Courgette soup
With our unpredictable British weather, a bright courgette soup could be just the thing to see you through a cooler summer evening. This hearty courgette, potato & cheddar soup is comfort in a bowl. For a lighter option, blitz up a batch of courgette, pea & pesto soup, or our healthy courgette, leek & goat's cheese soup which delivers a whole three of your five-a-day in one bowl.
Have a go at these courgette soup recipes
5. Courgette fritters
Fritters are a popular way to use up courgettes. Crispy, versatile and quick to rustle up, they make the ultimate lazy brunch dish or veggie dinner. Our popular sweetcorn & courgette fritters have a subtle sweetness from chilli sauce and are irresistible served with runny poached eggs. Or try variations on the cheese such as courgette & ricotta fritters with harissa yogurt and sesame, halloumi & courgette fritters with chilli honey drizzle. You can even incorporate this grated veg into batter to make some dainty courgette pancake fritters.
Whip up more flavoursome courgette fritter recipes
6. Courgette brownies
Want to make your brownies even fudgier than normal? Courgettes lend a beautiful moist texture to this rich and chocolatey traybake. Studded with chocolate chips, our courgette brownies are the ultimate indulgent way to celebrate your green garden bounty.
For another veggie bake, make our beetroot brownies.
7. Courgette tarts
Bold, bright and beautiful, courgette tarts make a showstopping main if you're entertaining. Put this vibrant veg centre stage by alternating green and yellow sliced courgettes with tomatoes and aubergines in a colourful ratatouille tart. Or, for another summery crowd-pleaser, try our courgette, tarragon & thyme galette which combines roasted courgettes with fragrant herbs with sweet caramelised onions. Looking for something indulgent? Tom Kerridge's courgette & double cheese quiche makes a satisfying sharing lunch. Our charred courgette, lemon & goat's cheese galette is full of tangy, nutty flavours.
Check out more beautiful vegetable tart recipes
8. Courgette curry
Warm up with a comforting and aromatic veggie courgette curry. We found that scooping out the seeds before slicing and frying the courgettes helps to achieve a firmer texture in this curry, rather than making it watery. The seeds then come in handy for bulking out the sauce. Serve with rice or naan and cooling raita.
9. Courgetti noodles
Use a julienne peeler or spiralizer to cut courgettes into 'courgetti' – a lighter take on traditional pasta. The best part? It only takes 30 seconds to cook! Throw courgetti into a pan with garlic, crème fraîche, lemon zest and seasoning, then serve like spaghetti with meatballs or ragu – try our summer courgetti & meatballs, made with pork mince and cherry tomatoes, courgetti with classic bolognese sauce or veggie meatballs with tomato courgetti.
10. Courgette sides
We love courgettes, but they don't always have to be star of the show. Get a taste of summer with our charred courgettes, runner beans & ricotta side, which will go down a storm at barbecues. Courgettes with mint & ricotta also make a refreshing dish to serve alongside grilled meat and fish, and we can't resist a creamy roasted courgette & tahini dip, dolloped generously over toasted flatbreads. If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to your regular chips, give our courgette fries a go. They’re super simple to prepare, taking only five minutes, and are perfect with a sprinkling of parmesan.
Explore our courgette side recipes
11. Stuffed courgettes
The soft, fleshy texture of courgettes makes them ideal for stuffing with exciting textures and flavours. Sausage & herb stuffed courgettes make a family-friendly midweek meal, combining juicy Cumberland pork sausages with parsley, cheese and breadcrumbs. Looking for meat-free options? Try our cheesy veggie Italian stuffed courgettes with spring onions, sun-dried tomatoes and thyme. Or make it vegan with healthy stuffed baked courgettes, flavoured with garlic and topped with a deliciously crispy layer of herby breadcrumbs and pine nuts.
12. Courgette jam
It may not be the first thing you think of, but this sweet and punchy courgette jam is a great way to use up a load of courgettes. It can then be stored for up to three months in the fridge, so helpful for reducing waste. Flavoured with zingy lemon and ginger, this jam is delicious served with cheese and biscuits or simply spread on toast.
13. Courgette pickle
If you want something a bit sharper than our jam above, try turning your courgettes into a chutney or pickle. Crunchy courgette pickle makes a scrumptious side to cold poached salmon or barbecued burgers. Or, add a bit of punch to your pickle with this courgette & tomato chutney.
14. Courgette pizza
Add a taste of the British summer to this Italian classic with a few veg-packed slices of superhealthy pizza. Or swap the bread base for crispy filo in this speedy frying pan pizza which marries courgettes with a luxurious filling of peas, crème fraîche, butter beans, feta and mint. Want to spice it up a bit? Our hot salami & courgette flatbread ought to do the trick!
15. Courgette loaf
Who can resist a slice of home-baked bread fresh from the oven? Try serving courgette & mushroom bread with salted butter alongside a summer soup. Make something different to the usual loaf with this rustic courgette & cheddar soda bread, or ramp up the spice levels with a flavour-packed cheddar & courgette cornbread. Heading off for a picnic? Arm yourself with a hearty slice of courgette, potato & cheddar flatbread – it's moreish served warm or cold and easy to divide up.
16. Courgette risotto
Stir courgettes through a light, fresh risotto for a winning dinner party dish. Our fresh tomato & courgette risotto should be a hit with everyone, including the kids. Make the most of seasonal produce in a fresh courgette & broad bean risotto with a punchy basil pesto or our zingy courgette & lemon risotto. Looking for a dairy-free option? Make a healthy vegan courgette risotto one-pot, packed with courgettes, tomatoes, peas and more. It's a great way to boost your kids' veg intake.
Use up more seasonal veg in our summer courgette recipes
17. Courgette bakes
Comfort food isn't just for winter! Make the most of seasonal produce in a hearty baked courgette & tomato gratin, complete with oozing mozzarella, fresh basil and a crunchy breadcrumb topping. It's also freezable so you can make several batches and save it for a busy day. Or for something lighter, throw together this baked sweet potato & courgette tortilla in just 10 minutes and let the oven work its magic. Fans of potatoes dauphinoise will also love our summer courgette & tomato gratin which layers thin slices of seasonal veg with gruyère and parmesan cheese.
18. Courgette fries
A lighter alternative to potato chips, these moreish courgette fries can be enjoyed as a side dish or simple snack. Ready in just 30 minutes, scatter them with parmesan before serving.
For a chunkier alternative, try our courgette chips.
This wouldn't be an ode to courgettes without a mention of a classic French Provençal dish. Our classic ratatouille features a colourful medley of sautéed courgettes, aubergines, peppers and tomatoes, delivering a whole four of you five-a-day. Or, for a special twist, try Tommy Banks' cheesy baked ratatouille topped with a layer of melty goat's cheese and courgettes. This dish is also well suited to slow cooking as it allows all the flavours to mingle and intensify. Our herby next level ratatouille uses this technique to achieve a gorgeously jammy consistency, a joy mopped up with crusty sourdough.
Discover more ratatouille recipes.
20. Courgette pancakes
Mix up your breakfast or brunch with a plate of light and crispy gluten-free courgette pancakes. They are also free from dairy, soya and egg, so ideal if you are following a vegan diet or have intolerances. Best served warm with extra maple syrup, a dollop of creamy yogurt and fresh summer berries.
Find more gluten-free breakfast ideas.
Find more tips on cooking with courgettes
Do you have any advice for using up a glut of courgettes? We'd love to hear your recipe ideas...