Zucchini Ricotta Toast


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Zucchini Ricotta Toast is the fast, vegetable-topped lunch you didn’t know you needed. Until now! To make it, pan-seared toast is topped with creamy ricotta, tender zucchini, and caramelized shallots. 

zucchini ricotta toast on a white plate

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Fancy toast is one of the best lunches around, but I’m hard pressed to even call this one fancy. If you’ve got 30 minutes, you can make this vegetarian lunch with protein from ricotta and so much color and flavor from the tender zucchini on top. 

This crispy, crunchy, flavor-packed toast deserves a spot in your lunch rotation. Move over avocado toast – you’ve got competition! Zucchini Ricotta Toast is great just on its own, but it’s also good with a simple salad tossed in balsamic vinaigrette or apple cider vinaigrette, or even a lentil salad.

Before we dive in, let’s get a few things out of the way.

Do you have to whip the ricotta?

No. Whipped ricotta (ricotta that is blended in a food processor until smooth) is having a moment, but there’s no need to take that extra step here. Just spread the toast with fresh whole milk ricotta and you’re good to go. You’ll get great layers of texture from the crunchy bread, creamy ricotta, and tender zucchini on top.

sprinkling salt on roasted zucchini slices in a round baking dish

How to make Zucchini Ricotta Toast

  1. Pan-fry the bread. This is the key for making great ricotta toast! You want the toast to be beautifully crisp, golden, and lightly flavored with butter. Fry it in a little butter in a large nonstick skillet before you cook the zucchini.
  2. Sear the zucchini. Sear the zucchini until golden brown and tender. Season it with some salt. Transfer to a large bowl. 
  3. Caramelize the shallots. These add so much flavor. Saute thinly sliced shallots in the skillet and add a splash of red wine vinegar to build flavor. 
  4. Assemble. Build the toast by spreading the bread with ricotta. Top it with parmesan cheese, lemon zest, zucchini, and shallots. 
  5. Enjoy! You’re going to love this.
cooked zucchini in a white dish

Ingredients for Zucchini Ricotta Toast

  • Zucchini – You can use any zucchini or summer squash for this recipe. I used mini zucchini from Trader Joe’s – they’re available year round. 
  • Shallots with Red Wine Vinegar – Saute the shallots in a little red wine vinegar to caramelize them and give them great tart flavor. Thinly sliced red or yellow onions work just fine too. 
  • Bread – I love this with a thick-sliced whole grain bread, but any bread works. 
  • Butter and Olive Oil – Butter for the bread, olive oil for the zucchini. 
  • Ricotta – I strongly recommend whole milk ricotta here for the creamiest texture, but any ricotta is just fine. 
  • Parmesan Cheese and Lemon – These add lots of extra flavor. 
  • Kosher Salt and Black Pepper  – Of course! Don’t forget these. 
stirring roasted zucchini slices and spices in a clear glass bowl


  • Add some spice – Sprinkle some red pepper flakes over the finished dish or drizzle with Sriracha or chili crisp. 
  • Add herbs – This is great with any fresh herbs you have on hand. I love it with fresh parsley, fresh mint, fresh thyme, or even with green onions. 
  • Change the cheese – If you don’t have ricotta, any other cheese with a creamy texture will work. Goat cheese would be great here!
  • Add some sweetness – Try a drizzle of honey over top, or better yet, try hot honey!


Do you have to strain or whip the ricotta?

No. Just buy fresh whole milk ricotta from the grocery store, and it’s ready to go. 

Can I make this ahead?

It’s best served right away, but you can cook the zucchini and shallots ahead of time and store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Warm them back up before using. 

More Easy Vegetarian Recipes

zucchini ricotta toast on a white plate

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zucchini ricotta toast on a white plate
5 from 1 vote

Zucchini Ricotta Toast

Zucchini Ricotta Toast is made with pan-fried bread topped with creamy ricotta cheese, parmesan, lemon zest, and perfectly tender zucchini. Add in caramelized shallots and this a “fancy toast” to compete with all other fancy toasts.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 2


  • Mixing Bowls
  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Nonstick Pan


  • 12 ounces zucchini or summer squash (I used the mini zucchini from Trader Joe's)
  • 2 cloves shallot
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 2 thick pieces whole grain bread
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 2/3 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • zest one lemon (about 1/2 teaspoon of lemon zest)
  • black pepper


  • If using small zucchini or summer squash, slice them into ¼-inch rounds. If using larger zucchini or summer squash, chop them into bite-sized pieces. Thinly slice the shallot (you should have about ¼ cup of thin slices).
  • In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. When the butter is melted, add the bread and toast it on both sides until golden brown and crisp. Set each slice of bread on a serving plate.
  • To the skillet, add 2 teaspoons of olive oil and then the zucchini. Saute until the zucchini is very tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with the salt. Transfer the zucchini to a bowl.
  • Return the skillet to medium heat and add the remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil and the shallots. Saute until the shallots are tender and transparent, 2 to 4 minutes. Add the vinegar and cook until the shallots have soaked it up, about 1 minute more. Stir the shallots into the zucchini.
  • Spread the ricotta over the bread. Top with the parmesan cheese, lemon zest, and then zucchini-shallot mixture. Finish with a few twists of black pepper.


Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 53mg | Sodium: 889mg | Potassium: 561mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 816IU | Vitamin C: 31mg | Calcium: 310mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $6.00
Calories: 231
Keyword: easy recipe, easy roasted vegetables, vegetarian
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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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