Savory Turkish Zucchini Pancakes

We’ve got zucchini coming out of our ears!  Well maybe it’s not that bad, but lately we have had a steady stream of zucchini coming in our CSA box.  It started with just one or two small zucchini in the box and now we are getting five or six large ones.   If we were zucchini lovers this won’t be a problem, but unfortunately zucchini doesn’t top our list of favorite vegetables.

However, since we try not to let vegetables go to waste, I’ve been trying to find recipes that use up a lot of zucchini but do not result in tasteless mush on a plate.  So I’ve been hiding zucchini in cookies, under cheese and with today’s recipe, in pancakes!

Pancakes happen to be one of Graham’s favorite foods, but I think he was a little leery of having zucchini pollute the pancake batter.   Nevertheless, in the end both of us thought the pancakes were good and we’re happy that the taste and texture of zucchini did not come through in the cakes.  While I can’t see myself running out and buying zucchini to make this recipe again, it is a good option if more zucchini happen to come our way.

Turkish Zucchini Pancakes

Adapted from Bon Appétit, January 1996

The original recipe calls for about 2/3 of a cup fresh dill and parsley.  I had chives and a little sage on hand, so I used that instead.  To serve, top the pancakes with a little garlic yogurt sauce (Graham also liked a little mustard as a topping—but I’m not so sure).

  • 3 medium zucchini (roughly 1 lb), shredded
  • 1 cup chopped green onions
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 6-7 sage leaves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • olive oil

Garlic Yogurt Sauce:

  • 2/3 cup low fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper

Mix shredded zucchini with about ½ teaspoon of salt and place in a colander.  Let the zucchini drain for about 20-30 minutes and then transfer the zucchini to some paper towels.  Wrap the zucchini in the towels and squeeze out remaining liquid.

In a large bowl, mix together zucchini, green onions, eggs, and salt and pepper.   Slow mix in the flour and continue stirring until it is well incorporated.  Fold in the herbs, cheese and walnuts.

Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet.   When oil is hot, drop heaping tablespoons of the batter several inches apart in the pan.   Fry until golden on one side and flip the pancakes and fry the other side until golden (about 3 minutes per side).   Transfer pancakes onto a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven.

For the yogurt topping, mix together the yogurt, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

Tasty Easy Healthy Green Recipe Ratings:

Recipe Report Card Notes About Recipe Ratings

Tasty Rating


Three Chefs (Average Tastiness)

Graham and I are not zucchini lovers, so we thought this recipe was good, but not great. We were also a little divided on the walnuts in the recipe. Graham thought there were too many, but I thought they added a nice flavor and crunch to the pancakes.

Easy Rating


Three Easy Chairs (Average Difficult)

Not a super difficult recipe, but it does take sometime to prep the vegetables.

Healthy Rating


Three Apples (Average Nutritional Quality)

These pancakes do have a lot of zucchini and onions, but they are pan fried and have added fat from the feta cheese.

Green Rating


Five Leaves (Absolute Green)

The zucchini, eggs and herbs were local and organic and most of the other ingredients were organic.
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