Can I admit that these zucchini fries were mildly inspired by Carl’s Jnr’s Zucchini Fries? Should I fess up about that here? On the odd occasion we go to Carl’s, this is always what I get. But they are bad – and the mayo is highly processed (bit yuck) so I thought I’d have a crack at making these for myself, with the king of cheese:  Parmesan. Why add cheese? Well, that’s simple, cheese, in case I haven’t mentioned it is my favourite food – I can’t get enough of it.  Anyhow, back to the fries – so easy, delicious and we scoffed our way through these in front of the rugby, I was disappointed I hadn’t made a bigger batch. Then again, maybe it was just as well I hadn’t…   The addition of a basil pesto dip to accompany the fries is simply stellar.  

Note, if you don’t want to fry these, you can bake ’em. I’ve noted how to do that below the recipe. Enjoy!

zucchini parmesan fries with basil pesto mayo

Zucchini Parmesan Fries with Basil Pesto Mayo


    For the 'fries'
  • 2 medium sized zucchini
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1/2 cup of panko breadcrumbs (check out the international aisle of your supermarket)
  • 1/2 cup of finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt and lots of freshly ground pepper (Original smoked seasoning from Smoke & Spice is brilliant with this!)
  • Oil for frying (I used olive oil)
  • For the basil pesto mayo
  • 1/4 c mayonnaise (have you tried my DIY mayo recipe?!)
  • 1 tablespoon of basil pesto (here's my pesto recipe - just make it with basil, not coriander)


  1. Top and tail the zucchini (i.e. remove the ends and discard). Slice in half crosswise then cut lengthwise into strips to resemble a medium-thick french fry.
  2. In a medium sized bowl beat the egg.
  3. In another medium size bowl toss the breadcrumbs together with the cheese, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper.
  4. Working in batches dredge the zucchini into the egg, coating completely and allowing the excess egg to drip back into the bowl.
  5. Coat the zucchini in the cheese and panko crumbs. Set the zucchini fries to one side on a plate to get ready for frying.
  6. Heath the oil in a frying pan. When the oil is hot, working in batches, fry the zucchini sticks until they are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes is all you need.
  7. When golden remove the zucchini fries from the frying pan with a spatula and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess oil prior to serving.
  8. When all the fries are cooked serve up with the basil pesto mayo in a little dipping dish on the side.
  9. For the dip: Mix the mayo and pesto together (easy!)
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Note: If you aren’t keen on frying these, you can bake them: Simply place the breadcrumb coated fries on a tray lined with baking paper and bake at 180 degrees until golden (25 mins approx).