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Air Fryer “Fried” Zucchini

It’s hard to believe these didn’t come out of a fryer.

Before I even got an air fryer, I knew the first thing I wanted to make in it – fried zucchini. Or “fried” zucchini, rather, since the beauty of an air fryer is that you can get the same taste and texture of your favorite fried foods without all of that oil. And fried zucchini is definitely one of my favorite fried foods! It seemed too good to be true that the air fryer could truly replicate them, but this recipe definitely succeeds in turning out crispy, crunchy coins of zucchini with a tender, flavorful interior.

If you’ve ever breaded anything before, the process here will look familiar. You’re simply dipping these in an egg wash and then into your breading mixture. In this case, the breading mixture is mostly made up of panko breadcrumbs, but it also includes some cornmeal for some added crunch. It really helps add a great texture to these and is definitely worth trying out with other foods!

The coating also includes some Parmesan, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder for flavor and it really replicates that restaurant fried zucchini taste well. To get even cooking and great crispiness, make sure to arrange these in a single layer in your air fryer basket so that air can circulate freely around them. They’ll take about eight minutes on one side and six on the other, but most air fryer models will prompt you to flip halfway through the cooking time if you go ahead and set it to sixteen minutes.

They’re crispy, crunchy, and so delicious and the air fryer makes it so you can enjoy them anytime you want, right at home. (Without worrying about any health consequences!)

Serves 4

5m prep time

15m cook time

Rated 5 out of 5
Rated by 8 reviewers
  • 1 1/4 cups Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons cornmeal
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 1 egg, beaten
  1. Preheat air fryer to 375°F.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together breadcrumbs, cornmeal, parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and salt.
  3. Toss zucchini in beaten egg and allow excess to drip off. Dip into breadcrumb mixture and press gently to coat.
  4. Arrange zucchini in a single layer in air fryer and cook 8 minutes. Flip and cook until crisp, 6-8 minutes.
  5. Repeat with remaining zucchini and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Sustainable Cooks.

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