Lemon Garlic Grilled Zucchini
This lemon garlic grilled zucchini is an easy, flavourful side dish perfect for grilling season. When you grill zucchini, magic happens!
What better way to celebrate summer grilling season than with this lemon garlic grilled zucchini? Not only is zucchini one of the best veggies to grill, it’s also a staple in summer gardens and farmers markets.
Something about the smokiness of the grill and the direct heat seems to really bring this veggie alive. The beautifully charred edges and grill marks are my favourite part of grilling zucchini instead of just roasting or sautéing it. Then, of course, comes the lemon garlic marinade. This marinade really takes it to the next level.
The Mediterranean-inspired flavour is absolutely divine and makes this lemon garlic grilled zucchini one of the best grilling side dishes you can make. Finish with some salt and pepper, a sprinkle of parsley, and vegan Parmesan cheese and get ready for a side dish that will steal the show.
Why You’ll Love This Grilled Zucchini
I’m pretty confident this grilled zucchini will be your new favourite summer side! Here’s why:
- Easy. We want our dinners to be effortless on hot summer days, and grilled zucchini qualifies. Just whisk the marinade, let the zucchini soak it up, then throw it on the grill!
- Versatile. The flavours in this recipe mean it pairs well with a wide variety of main dishes, from Grilled Peach, Basil and Vegan “Goat” Cheese Pizza to Lemon Pepper Tofu.
- Delicious. The smokiness of the grill, the bright, garlicky marinade—it all comes together for an absolutely delectable zucchini side.
Notes on Ingredients
Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions.
- Zucchini – Medium zucchini is ideal here; large zucchini usually doesn’t taste as good, while small zucchini is likely to char a little too much.
- Olive oil
- Freshly-squeezed lemon juice – If you’d like, you can zest the lemon before juicing it and reserve the zest for garnish.
- Garlic – I like to use plenty of garlic for lots of flavour!
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper – Add as much or as little as you like.
- Garnishes – I use chopped parsley, lime wedges, and vegan Parmesan cheese.
How to Make Lemon Garlic Grilled Zucchini
While this recipe is simple, you’ll need to plan for the marinating time.
- Make the marinade. Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic cloves, sea salt, and black pepper in a small bowl.
- Marinate the zucchini. Pour the marinade over the zucchini and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate for at least 4 hours, or up to overnight.
- Preheat the grill. Heat your grill to high, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Grill the zucchini. Use grill tongs to arrange all of the zucchini onto the grill. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, or until grill marks begin to form and the zucchini begins to brown. Flip and cook for 4 to 5 minutes more.
- Serve. Place the grilled zucchini onto a serving platter and season with ground sea salt and black pepper. Garnish with chopped parsley and vegan Parmesan cheese and serve with lemon or lime wedges to squeeze over the top.
Tips for Success
This grilled zucchini recipe is easy, but here are some additional tips to help you make sure it turns out perfect.
- Thread it on skewers. For easier flipping, you can cut the zucchini thick and thread the slices onto skewers. (You’ll want the cut sides of the zucchini in contact with the grill, not just the skin.) A grill basket works well too!
- Know your grill. The cooking time will vary based on your grill’s heat, which means you may want to cook the zucchini a little less or a little longer.
- Serve the zucchini right away. I recommend serving the zucchini immediately, as it will wilt slightly as it cools.
You can use store-bought marinades like teriyaki sauce for a different spin on this recipe. Swap the parsley with fresh basil, thyme, or oregano; really, any fresh herbs would be delicious here!
Pair grilled zucchini with Italian-inspired dishes like 20 Minute Vegan Pesto Pasta, One Pot Alfredo Penne Pasta, and Vegan Manicotti. It also works well with Mediterranean flavors—try pairing your grilled zucchini with Crispy Homemade Falafel, Perfect Homemade Hummus, and Baba Ghanoush on a platter with warm pita bread.
How to Store
Refrigerate grilled zucchini in an airtight container for up to 2 days; reheat it in a toaster oven, grill pan, or on the grill.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
Technically speaking, you can freeze grilled zucchini, but the texture will suffer after freezing, thawing, and reheating—it will be very mushy, so I don’t recommend it.
More Vegan Side Dish Ideas
- Jamaican Fried Dumplings
- Herb & Veggie Fregola
- Congri (Cuban Rice and Black Beans)
- Corn Succotash
- Air Fryer Smashed Potatoes
Enjoy friends! If you make this lemon garlic grilled zucchini, please snap a photo and tag #jessicainthekitchen on Instagram! We’d also love it if you would leave a comment below, and give the recipe a rating! Thanks so much!
Lemon Garlic Grilled Zucchini
- 2 medium zucchinis, washed and sliced into ½ inch thick slices
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Chopped parsley, lime wedges and vegan parmesan cheese for garnish
- Add the zucchinis to a bowl. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic cloves, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper together and whisk together until incorporated.
- Add to the container with the zucchini and toss with zucchini until everything is coated. Cover with saran wrap and allow to marinate for a few hours, at least 4 hours. I did mine overnight.
- Heat your grill (according to manufacturer settings) to high heat.
- Using grill tongs, place all of the zucchini onto the grill. Let the zucchini heat for about 4-5 minutes on each side, until grill marks begin to form and the zucchini begins to brown. Flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes. This timing may vary based on your grill’s heat. The zucchini should be completely cooked through.
- Remove from grill and place onto a serving platter. Season again lightly with ground sea salt and black pepper. Garnish with chopped parsley and vegan parmesan cheese and serve with lemon or lime wedges to squeeze over the top.
- This recipe is gluten free and vegan. I recommend serving the zucchini immediately as it will wilt slightly as it cools.
- HOW TO STORE ZUCCHINI: You can store your zucchini in an airtight container in the fridge. I recommend reheating it in a toasted oven, grill pan or on the grill. The zucchini will last about 2 days cooked in your fridge but tastes best fresh.
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