Zucchini Hushpuppies

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!As I’ve detailed over the years, we love spending time in our garden during the summer.  From smelling the fresh dirt in the spring to seeing the plants produce little buds in the mid-summer, the gardening process is a fun one.  Sure, it takes time.  And truthfully, once you factor in the cost and time, it would probably just be a whole lot easier to buy that produce in the store.  But homegrown fruits and veggies always taste better…in part because they’re homegrown!  Plus, we treat it like a hobby.  You know, for all that spare time we have around here.  

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!Few things make me happier than coming back up to the house with a basket full of produce from our garden.  Well, to be fair, there are several things that make me happier.  Like homemade bread.  And cookies.  But I digress.  On occasion, that basket of produce sometimes gets overloaded with one type of produce.  I still have a ginormous bag of pesto in the freezer.  And I think I deseeded and chopped about 35 jalapenos last Fall right before the first frost.  (If you’ve ever wondered how long it takes to use that many jalapenos, just know it’s a long time.  And we like jalapenos.)

Zucchini Hushpuppies

Zucchini is another one.  We always plant a couple zucchini plants, and by mid-summer they’ve totally taken over their raised bed.  If you’ve ever grown zucchini before, then you know how quickly they grow.  One day you see a little small zuke.  Two days later, that zuke is as big as your arm.  Usually, we just slice zucchinni, rub it with olive oil and Italian seasonings and toss it on the grill along with whatever else is on our dinner menu.  It’s an easy way to use up those extra zukes.  But I decided to take a stab at using extra zucchini in a different way…by turning them into Zucchini Hushpuppies.

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!I’m from the South, and although I might live in upstate New York now, my southern roots remain strong.  What do I mean by this?  Well, frying, of course.  Whenever we have too much of something in the South, we deep fry it.  You think I’m kidding?  I’m not.  And the deep South knows how to fry food.  Fried catfish, fried shrimp, fried hushpuppies…you name it, they know how to fry it!

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!A couple of years ago, I posted my favorite hushpuppies recipe, and a reader asked if I had ever made squash puppies.  At the time, I’d never heard of squash puppies, but I’ve come across this concept a couple of times now.  And Zucchini Hushpuppies are delicious!  You can use either zucchini or yellow squash (summer squash) to make these Zucchini Hushpuppies, too.  I find that the texture is nothing short of delicious!  Even after pressing out as much water as possible, the batter is still rather wet.  But once fried, that yields hushpuppies with a light and airy inside and a crispy outside.

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!This recent batch was served up to a group of friends, and it didn’t last long!  Like any fried food, though, these Zucchini Hushpuppies (or squash puppies if you use yellow squash) are best eaten fresh.  Enjoy that garden and fresh summer produce, my friends!

Looking for some more recipes?  Check out some of my other favorite Southern recipes!

Meatloaf Sandwiches

Buttermilk Chess Pie

Southern Burger with Fried Pickles

Classic Hushpuppies

Pimento Cheese Dip

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!

Zucchini Hushpuppies

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 82kcal

Ingredients

  • 6 medium zucchini or yellow squash
  • ¾ cup yellow cornmeal
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup grated white onion ~1 medium onion
  • ¼ cup green onions chopped
  • {optional} 1 jalapeno seeded and diced
  • canola oil for frying

Instructions

  • Chop squash into 2” pieces and place in a steamer basket. Steam for 16-18 minutes, or until squash is very tender. (Note: Alternatively, you can microwave diced squash for 5-6 minutes, or until very tender.)
  • Transfer cooked squash into a separate bowl and mash using a fork until smooth. Place squash in a large colander and use paper towels to press squash gently but firmly. Try to remove as much excess water as possible.
  • Using a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper).
  • In another bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, grated onion, green onions and (optional) jalapeno. Pour this wet mixture into bowl with dry ingredients. Add mashed squash and stir just until combined. (Note: Do not overmix.) Let mixture stand for 10 minutes.
  • Using a deep fryer or a large Dutch oven, heat the canola or vegetable oil to 375°F. Oil should be ~2-3” deep. (An easy way to check the temperature is to drop a pinch of flour in the oil. If it bubbles up and turns brown quickly, then the oil is ready to go.)
  • Using two spoons or a small ice cream scoop, drop rounded tablespoons of batter into oil. (Tip: Fry these hush puppies in batches of 8-10 to avoid overcrowding pan.)
  • Fry until golden brown (~3-4 minutes).
  • Using a metal slotted spoon, remove hush puppies from the oil and let drain on paper towels or brown paper bags.
  • Salt lightly before serving.

Overwhelmed with zucchini from the garden?  These Zucchini Hushpuppies are a fun and tasty way to use those extra zukes!

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26 Comments

  1. I know you’re not kidding about the deep frying because I watched Paula Deen deep fry butter on TV years ago. I have no interest in eating deep fried butter but I could totally go for a few zucchini hush puppies! I LOVE hush puppies and I especially love that when you add zucchini they’re magically a health food :). Or at least that’s what I’ll tell myself as I eat a whole batch!

    1. Wait. Deep fried butter? Ok, even I have to draw the line somewhere…and that line is at deep fried butter. That sounds terrible! Did she just eat it like that? Wait. Don’t answer that question. I don’t want to know. But these hush puppies? So fun! And the zucchini flavor really comes through, too. I could’ve eaten the whole batch, but I somehow restrained myself. Haha! Thanks so much, Kelsie!

  2. I think next year I’d like to try growing more things and zucchini would be lovely! Last year we had a planter on our patio with cilantro in it. At the end of the season, we took it out. Funny thing, some of the seedlings must have blown down into our big planter and, voila, this year we are growing cilantro again. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a hushpuppy, but would love to try! Plus, they’re made with veggies so it’s basically a health food, right 😉 ??

    1. Yes! I had the same thing happen with cilantro seeds a couple years ago. And fun fact: you probably already know this, but cilantro seeds are coriander. It’s true! I didn’t realize that for the longest time. I definitely support your goal of planting zucchini next year. Just make sure to give them a lot of space to grow…they’re huge plants!

      So hushpuppies are a classic southern food here in the US. They’re often served up with fried fish. Basically it’s a bit of savory dough fried until crispy. The zucchini version is a slight twist on the classic, but it’s a fun one. And the zukes keep the inside of these hushpuppies nice and moist. I had fun making these for sure. Thanks so much, my friend!

  3. Hushpuppies! I love them! Ad with zucchini, I could almost consider it a vegetable dish, right? If you could send me a few homegrown ones, I’ll fry these up right away! I agree, homegrown tastes better. But I guess I’ll just have to get some at my local grocery. I love this recipe, thanks!

    1. Haha…you can almost consider this a vegetable dish. Almost. 🙂 Zucchini are plentiful in the stores right now, too. Or you should plant some of your own next year, Laura!

  4. I always discover new words with your blog, David! First, that was a “zuke” a couple of years back, and now it’s hushpuppies. I swear, I didn’t hear it before (or at least didn’t pay attention). What a fun word! But the recipe itself isn’t funny at all. I love this way of treating zucchini, and I must try it one day (Not during this sweltering summer, though) 😉 Nice one!

    1. Haha! Well, to be fair, I made up the word ‘zuke.’ It’s just so much easier that zucchini. 🙂 But I didn’t make up hushpuppies. That’s an old classic southern recipe. (In fact, check out the link in the post to classic hushpuppies…I talked about the origin of the word in that post!) I agree that this summer is way too hot for anything but ice cream. Speaking of ice cream, I hear you have some delicious ice cream…how about sending some down to me??

  5. David, I couldn’t agree more “homegrown fruits and veggies always taste better” ALWAYS! Lil Shashi and I would compare our homegrown tomatoes side by side with store bought ones and those homegrown ones always won! This post has me missing my yard more than ever! Next year am gonna have to TRY and grow zucchini on this little shady balcony and see what happens… or, maybe I should send my drone up there to retrieve some of yours? Better yet, that drone needs to bring some of these bad boys down to the south! These sound so good – I don’t eat fried food often but I do love it, then again, I live down here in the South – and speaking of the south and deep fried.. have you ever had a deep fried twinkie before? Lil Shashi introduced me to this podcast https://www.stuffyoushouldknow.com/podcasts/how-twinkies-work.htm on one of our long drives and I thought I’d share….

    1. So as much as we grow in the garden, I don’t know if we’ve ever done a side-by-side comparison. I’ll have to do that sometime soon! We’ve been eating bruschetta for lunch lately as a way to use up all of the garden tomatoes. Basically yummy Italian bread topped with chopped tomatoes and drizzled with a good olive oil. So good!!

      So I think you can grow zucchini on your balcony. Those things grow like crazy! You might have to rig a way for it to climb up instead of out, but I’m sure that can be done with some fencing. In fact, I saw a cool garden idea where someone mounted deer fencing at like a 45° angle. The vines grew up the fencing, but the zucchini (or whatever) hung down below it. I’ve been wanting to try that!

      So I’ve seen the deep-fried twinkies at fairs and whatnot, but I can’t say I’ve ever had one. But you know that they’ll fry anything in the south! Kelsie just said she saw an episode of Paula Deen where she deep fried butter. Uh, what? Haha!

  6. You hit my soft spot with this one. Like you, I was raised amongst all things fried. Really great sounding hushpuppy recipe. And, zucchini is in abundance in the garden just now. Interesting for me, zucchini grow much slower over here. Takes 4-5 days for one of those lovelies to make it to harvest. Ever tried okra in hushpuppies??

    1. I do love fried food, Ron! But with that said, we try to space it out now. Fried food isn’t exactly the healthiest option, but sometimes you just need something fried, right? 🙂 To be fair, it probably does take 4-5 days for the zucchini to grow here, too. I usually notice them on day 2 or 3, so that’s why I say it only takes a couple of days! And okra in hushpuppies!? No…but now I’m really intrigued! Okrapuppies?

    1. You’re telling me, Kathy! Laura and I have started reminding each other when we see a zucchini getting close. There’s nothing worse than forgetting about it for a day or two and going out to find a monster of a zuke! And I’ve gotta say that hushpuppies (squashpuppies) are indeed a fun way to use extra zucchini. Thanks so much, my friend!

  7. Ah the garden. I’m still getting garden envie here David! I still haven’t managed to find the time to get started on the garden here. There’s been that many overdue jobs in the house to get on with. I swear I had more time when I was back working full time! Ha ha! But when I do eventually get round to the garden, zucchini (or courgettes as we call them 🙂 ) are definitely something I want to grow. So you’ve given me another recipe here to stick in my Pinterest until then! These remind me of Pakoras. Which I love. 🙂

    1. Man, every time I talk about the garden, I make you jealous, Neil. I promise I’m not doing it on purpose! It’s more out of necessity as the garden goes into full steam production mode this time of the year. We have to find creative ways to use the produce. As soon as the first frosty night comes along (usually mid-September), the garden is done for the year. Ooo…good point about the similarity between these squashpuppies and pakoras! Thanks, my friend!

  8. This is yet another reason growing an abundance of zucchini in the summer is a good idea! There’s so such thing as too much. 🙂 These look absolutely divine.

    1. Haha! I never set out to grow an abundance of zucchini, but it just seems to happen every year. Usually we just slice ’em and grill ’em up, but I decided to play around and have a bit of fun with the extra zukes this year. Thanks so much, Valentina!

    1. Good point about zucchini fries! These squashpuppies are indeed pretty similar. I grew up eating hushpuppies (love those things!), and these are definitely similar. Gotta be careful since they’re fried, but everything is ok in moderation, right? 🙂 Thanks, Nicole!

    1. Yes! I love a good hushpuppy, and these squashpuppies are definitely similar. They’re really only good when they’re fresh, though. We did slice up some leftovers and toasted them in the toaster oven…that’s ok, but still not as good as fresh. I hope you enjoy these, Dawn! Thank you!

  9. Is there a more versatile vegetable than, zucchini? It’s just so darn good. Love the idea of hushpuppies – I’ve only had the cornmeal variety, but I think I’d like these even more!

    BTW, did you know that today (8/8) is National “Sneak Some Zucchini Into Your Neighbor’s Porch Day”…lol, I guess there’s a day for everything. 🙂

    1. You know, you are totally right about the versatility of zucchini, Marissa. It can pretty much be used in any way imaginable. Grill it. Bake it. Fry it. It all works! And wait…what? “Sneak Some Zucchini Into Your Neighbor’s Porch Day”?? How did I miss that one?? It’s going on the calendar for next year! That sounds like something that’s right up my alley!

  10. My, these do look good! Remind me a lot of those Neapolitan zucchini fritters I love, but I imagine the cornmeal gives this a different flavor. Want to give this a go!

    1. Thanks so much, Frank! I suspect the cornmeal is what changes these from a fritter to a hushpuppy. Cornmeal is a requirement when frying southern (US) recipes! Thanks so much, my friend!

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