Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin

While I was at BlogHer Food, I was lucky enough to finally meet in person some of the people I’ve known online for years. That’s the beauty of conferences like this–your imaginary friends take on flesh and bone and prove themselves to be real people after all! One such gem of a lady is Jane of The Heritage Cook. Jane took me under her wing, helping me connect with new bloggers and guiding me through the various events. When I started feeling ill on Saturday, she scooped me up and took care of me, ensuring I wouldn’t be alone that night. On Sunday, when the world’s spinning became too much for me, succumbing at last to the vertigo that was making itself more obvious, she invited me back to her hotel room to rest, away from the hum and buzz of it all. I am eternally grateful for all her love and care–I don’t know what I would have done without her!

view from Jane's room

the view from Jane’s room was captivating–though looking down made the world spin

In our conversations back in her room on Sunday, we talked shop a lot. What do you expect? It was a blogging conference, after all, and it was nice to be surrounded by others who not only wouldn’t be bored by your droning on and on about the difficulties of capturing the perfect photo and how to grow without burning out, but who were also excited to participate in the conversation and can absolutely relate exactly to your problems. Jane aided me in working through some ideas on what the next steps will be with this blog and had some great suggestions for me, including getting in touch with the Food Network about their summer program: Summer Soirée. Summer Soirée is a weekly gathering of bloggers with a theme selected by a Food Network editor every week. It would give me the opportunity to connect with more bloggers, allow me to offer a greater variety of dishes for YOU to enjoy, and, of course, it’s Food Network!

Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole - poet in the pantry


So here we are: the first post in the Food Network Summer Soirée series. This week’s theme was summer casseroles and all I could think of was a gratin with zucchini and yellow summer squash. I was a woman obsessed! It didn’t matter how many times I tried to investigate other options–this was the only one that stuck. So I riffed off of my macaroni and cheese recipe that I’ve been making forever and it worked! This is ooey, gooey, cheesy–no doubt about that! Definitely not lighter fare. But that’s okay with me! Sometimes you want a prim steamed squash–and sometimes you want a super indulgent treat. Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin is just that treat! It can stand alone as the main course or stretch further as a side dish. My grandparents’ cottage is the scene for weekly potluck gatherings; a place where everyone brings a dish to share while they soak up some rays and swim the summer days away. I promise: this Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin will be making an appearance there this summer!

Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole - poet in the pantry


5.0 from 1 reviews
Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This zucchini and summer squash gratin is like a glorified mac-and-cheese...without the mac.
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 8
  • 14 ounces (about 3 small) zucchini, washed, sliced, and patted dry
  • 14 ounces (about 3 small) yellow summer squash, washed, sliced, and patted dry
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1½ cups organic half-and-half
  • 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1¼ cups shredded Parmesan, divided
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup Japanese Style Panko breadcrumbs, plain
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Prepare your zucchini and squash and set aside.
  3. In a 3-1/2 quart oval enameled cast iron pot, heat the olive oil over medium to medium-high heat.
  4. Add the zucchini and squash and stir to coat evenly. Sprinkle the pepper and salt over that and stir again.
  5. Stir frequently to cook to about al dente doneness, about 10 minutes (yes, the pot will be crowded--this is okay).
  6. Add the half-and-half and sprinkle the flour over the squash. Stir to mix well and heat until thickened, about 3-4 minutes.
  7. Add the garlic powder and 1 cup of the shredded Parmesan; stir and remove from heat.
  8. Combine the remaining ¼ cup of shredded Parmesan with the melted butter and bread crumbs, then sprinkle over the top of the squash.
  9. Bake for 10 minutes. If the top hasn't browned to your liking, return to the oven under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, or until browned to your liking.
  10. Serve immediately.
Serves 4 as a main dish or 8 as a side dish.

Zucchini and Summer Squash Casserole - poet in the pantry

Check out all the other lovely Summer Soirée dishes here:

Weelicious: Crock Pot Mexican Tortilla Lasagna
The Heritage Cook: Summer Vegetable Gratin (Gluten-Free)
Taste With The Eyes: Colorful Vegetable Casserole with Fresh Herbs and Cured Black Olives
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Summer Eggplant, Squash and Tomato Casserole
Red or Green: Spicy Cauliflower and Peppers Casserole
Domesticate Me: Caprese Quinoa Bake
Devour: 5 Picnic Potluck Ideas
Poet in the Pantry: Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin
The Sensitive Epicure: Zucchini Souffle (Gluten-Free)
Cooking With Elise: Mexican-Style Lasagna
FN Dish: Dig Into Easy Summer Casseroles

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  1. Congratulations! Sounds like such a fun program! This gratin is GORGEOUS! This is one of my favorite ways to use zucchini! Pinning to make as soon as I pick some up! 🙂

    1. I’m really looking forward to a summer filled with great recipes! And thank you!

  2. This looks wonderful! What a great dish…looks so delicious! this dish was an excellent choice for the Summer Soiree. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you! Summer squash is all I can think of during the summer months. So naturally, I drenched it in cheese and cream. 🙂

  3. Hey chick! I didn’t know you were sick on Saturday – hope you’re feeling better now! It was great meeting you at Blogher Food! I hadn’t heard about Summer Soiree, but it sounds like a cool program – what a great addition your gratin is too! Any time you’re mixing zucchini with cheese, I’m pretty much in! ha ha!

    1. I didn’t say much about it because I thought I was hungover (and it probably started that way)–ha! But then that nauseous/world is spinning feeling wouldn’t go away and my ears started to hurt… and down the rabbit hole I went. Finally got a diagnosis this Tuesday (after a misdiagnosis on the prior Monday): TMJ. It’s been a wild ride. So glad I got to meet you at BlogHer Food–what a small world!

    • Gail tourgee on 26 July, 2017 at 1:50 pm
    • Reply

    Just found your blog. Love it sounds like you have great recipes plus great influences. I suffer from a disease that cause vertigo. It’s definitely a salt issue amongst other things for me. I’m curious if you have any low salt ideas.?

    1. Welcome! Unfortunately, I don’t have a low salt focus on here, preferring to go with sea salt as a better alternative to table salt. I feel for you on the vertigo–I’ve had it several times (including a couple weeks ago) and it’s horrible to live with. You could always try cutting the salt in half. It will change the flavor, but it will limit the salt for you, too, without greatly affecting the science of it all.

  1. […] Casserole Domesticate Me: Caprese Quinoa Bake Devour: 5 Picnic Potluck Ideas Poet in the Pantry: Zucchini and Summer Squash Gratin The Sensitive Epicure: Zucchini Souffle (Gluten-Free) Cooking With Elise: Mexican-Style Lasagna […]

  2. […] Zucchini and Squash Gratin from Poet in the Pantry […]

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