Creamy Zucchini Casserole: less than 45 cents per serving

Creamy Zucchini Casserole: less than 45 cents per serving

Zucchini is so easy to grow and so prolific that I always have it coming out of my ears. If you grow zucchini, I’m sure you can relate!

After feeding my family all of the zucchini bread, zucchhini brownies, sliced, grilled and sauteed zucchini they could handle, I used to feed it to our livestock and chickens. After awhile, though, the animals also grew sick of it and ignored it.

That was when I thought up this recipe and this recipe! Now, finally, I can keep up with the zucchini!

When I have an abundance of zucchini, I freeze enough to last through the winter.

How to freeze zucchini:

1. Shred the zucchini, using your food processor, into a large bowl. Leave the peel on, and be sure to harvest your zucchini before it is huge and tough. If it is overripe, you will need to remove the skin and the core with the seeds because they will be tough.

2. Sprinkle salt over the zucchini, let stand for 10 minutes and then spread it on a towel and press it, in order to eliminate the excess moisture.

3. Fill a ziploc with about 5 c. zucchini and flatten the bag into the bottom of your favorite casserole dish to freeze, so that it will be the right shape for cooking later.

 

By the end of the summer, you will have dozens of bags of shredded zucchini in your freezer, ready to turn into this scrumptious casserole. Here’s how:

 

Casserole Instructions:

1. Remove the frozen zucchini from the bag and place in your casserole dish.  It should fit well, since you froze it that way, but if it doesn’t, wait an hour for it to thaw a little around the edges and press the zucchini firmly into the pan.

***You could also make this recipe with fresh zucchini. Just skip step 3 above and the first step here, and proceed with the rest of this recipe.

2. Melt 1 cube of butter in a large saucepan. Mix in 16 oz sour cream, 2 c. milk, 1/2 c. parmesan cheese, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper and pour over the frozen zucchini.

3. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, then stir in 2 c. cheddar cheese, smooth the top, top with bread crumbs (or crumbled pork rinds for us gluten-free folks) and bake at 350 for another 20 minutes.

When I have leftover ham, I’ll dice it up and add it this casserole to make it a complete meal, though I don’t feel bad about serving it by itself during the summer, when we aren’t really hungry for anything heavy anyway. And, hey! It’s far more nutritious than a bowl of cereal. Mom win–with or without the ham!

This casserole is very economical, especially if you grow your own zucchini. 

 

 

Cost breakdown:

zucchini: free
16 oz sour cream: $1.29
2 c. whole milk: $0.70
1/2 c. parmesan cheese: $1
2 c. shredded cheese: $0.89
spices and bread crumbs: $0.25
10 large servings
41 cents per serving (81 cents per serving if you have to purchase zucchini)


4 thoughts on “Creamy Zucchini Casserole: less than 45 cents per serving”

  • Maybe I’m missing something. Most, if not all, of your recipes call for a cube of butter. Not sure what that means. A tbsp, what? Thanks

    • Sorry, Ginger! In my mind, a cube of butter is 8 Tbsp. or 1/2 cup, because that’s how cubes are sold in my local grocery stores. I realize they are sold differently, though, in different areas, and I should have clarified. I’ll add that to the recipe. 🙂

  • This looks delicious but maybe I’m missing something because I’m a bit confused on the freezing part. Does the zucchini HAVE to be frozen before being used in the casserole and if so does it need to be thawed out before putting the casserole together? Thank you!

    • I’m sorry, I can see how that was confusing! You can absolutely use fresh zucchini, just shred it then salt it and press it with paper towels to get rid of excess moisture, spread it in the bottom of your pan and proceed with step 2 of the recipe. I’ve edited the post so it will hopefully make sense now. Thanks for alerting me to the confusion!

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