- Zucchini, also known as summer squash, consists of multiple varieties.
- Zucchini belongs to the Cucurbitaceae botanical family, which also consists of a squash, pumpkin and gourds.
- Zucchini is an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of vitamin B6 and manganese.
- Vitamin C aids in the absorption of iron, which helps to heal wounds and form scar tissue.
- Vitamin B6 is involved in protein metabolism as well as brain and immune function during pregnancy and infancy.
- Manganese helps the body to form connective tissue, bones, and blood clotting factors.
Selecting, Storing and Preparing
- Choose slender zucchinis that are heavy for their size with a smooth, shiny skin and a bright green or yellow color. Avoid zucchinis that have soft spots or are blemished.
- Zucchini can be eaten raw or cooked, and is best when young and tender, about six to eight inches long.
- Larger zucchinis become tough but can be used to grate for zucchini bread – just scoop out the seeds prior to grating.
- Use raw by shredding the zucchini into salads or bread recipes or cut into spears and use on a vegetable platter with your favorite veggie dip.
- Steam, sauté, grill, or bake for your favorite dishes.
- Spiralize zucchini to reduce carbohydrates in your favorite pasta dishes.
- You can store zucchini in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to one week, but it’s at its best quality if eaten within 3 to 4 days.
- Wash prior to preparing.
- The skin is edible, so no need to peel it off if the zucchini is young and tender.
1 cup zucchini, sliced, raw
Calories: 19 | Protein: 1.4 g | Fat: 0.4 g | Carbohydrate: 3.5 g | Fiber: 1.1 g | Calcium: 18.1 mg | Magnesium: 20.3 mg | Potassium: 295 mg | Folate: 27.1 µg | Vitamin A: 226 IU | Vitamin C: 20.2 mg |