Sunday, August 31, 2014

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme (Low-Carb, Gluten-Free)

If kids help cut up the zucchini, they might eat this Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme!

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on

(Updated with better photos and step-by-step instructions, August 2014)  One of the wonderful things about having summer squash in your vegetable garden is that soon you'll have so much of it you feel perfectly justified in picking them when they're tiny, similar to the baby squash you get in the fanciest of restaurants. I first posted this wonderful recipe for Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme back on 2007 when I had an abundance of baby squash from my garden, but now that I don't have a garden at the new house (yet!) I buy the packages of baby squash from Costco to make this. If you don't have a garden or a Costco membership you can still make this recipe with larger squash that are cut in strips.  Roasting the squash with fresh thyme concentrates the flavor in vegetables in the most lovely way, but dried thyme will also work fine for this recipe.

I re-did the photos for this recipe with my niece Kara and her adorable four-year-old daughter Quinn.  It had been a long cooking day and Quinn was getting tired of entertaining herself, so I grabbed a kid-safe knife and enlisted her to help cut the baby squash in half.  Quinn has pretty strong food preference, as most kids do at that age, and the whole time we were cutting them up she kept saying "I hate zucchini."  But when the finished dish was ready, she surprisingly agreed to take a bite, and even more surprisingly, she liked it and ate a couple of pieces.  So if you have kids who won't eat their vegetables, maybe getting them to help cook will help!

There are many types of summer squash, and all are grown on bushy plants rather than vines.  If you're only familiar with green zucchini (called courgettes in many parts of the world) try some of the other varieties like Patty Pan Squash, Eight Ball Zucchini, or Golden Zucchini.  Of course this summer-squash treat is my weekly offering for Meatless Monday, and when it's zucchini season I'd happily gobble up a big plate of this and call it dinner.  (To see more Meatless Monday recipes, you can use the label Meatless Monday or check Vegetarian Recipes in the recipe index.  I also have a Meatless Monday Pinterest board and I share a weekly Meatless Monday idea for Meatless Monday at

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Here's the baby summer squash I get at Costco.  It's fairly pricey compared to what you pay for squash at the farmers market, but I love the baby squash.

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Preheat the oven to 400F/200C while you cut up the squash.  Here's how the baby squash looked after Quinn and I had cut the bigger ones in half.  (See recipe below for how to cut up larger squash.)

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Put the squash into a bowl and toss with the olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, fresh or dried thyme, salt, and pepper.

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Spray the baking sheet with oil or non-stick spray, and spread out the squash so they aren't touching each other.  Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until they're done to your liking.  (I like to keep them slightly crisp.)

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
While the squash cooks, crumble up about 1/2 cup of Feta (or a little more if you're a big Feta fan.)

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Here's how the squash looked after about 27 minutes roasting time. Put on a serving dish, season with more salt and fresh-ground black pepper as desired, sprinkle with Feta, and enjoy!

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
And here's the original photo of this recipe from back in 2007, not bad at all for those days!

Easy Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme found on
Roasted Baby Summer Squash with Feta and Thyme
(Makes 4 servings, recipe adapted from Superspark.)

about 2 lbs. baby summer squash, preferably a mixture of yellow squash and zucchini
(use 6 medium sized ones if you don't have access to baby squash)
2 T olive oil
1 T white balsamic vinegar
(I used white balsamic to not change the squash color, but regular balsamic would also work)
1/4 C fresh thyme leaves (or use 1-2 T dried thyme
1/2 C crumbled Feta (I used my favorite Feta)
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400F/200C. Spray a large baking sheet with oil or non-stick spray

Wash squash well and dry. If you have baby squash, cut lengthwise into two pieces. If you have large squash, cut lengthwise into four pieces, then cut away the seed part of each piece and cut into pieces about 3-4 inches long.

In plastic bowl, toss squash with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, thyme leaves, salt, and pepper. Arrange on roasting pan so that the pieces are not touching each other.Roast squash 25-30 minutes, until edges are starting to get quite brown and squash is tender. While the squash roasts, crumble the Feta cheese.

When the squash is as tender as you like it, remove squash from oven, arrange on a serving dish, season with a little more fresh-ground black pepper if desired, and sprinkle with Feta (It won't need more salt because Feta cheese is salty.) Serve hot.

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South Beach/Low-Carb Suggestions:
This would be a perfect side dish or meatless main dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet or any other type of low-carb eating plan.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

10 More Meatless Recipes for Summer Squash
(Recipes from other blogs may or may not be South Beach Diet friendly, check ingredients.)
Grilled Zucchini Caprese Stacks with Basil VinaigretteKalyn's Kitchen
Roasted Zucchini with Garlic ~ Simply Recipes
Roasted Balsamic Zucchini and Mushrooms with Feta and Thyme ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Zucchini Pie ~ The Perfect Pantry
Roasted Zucchini with Green Onions, Feta Cheese, and Basil ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Oven-Roasted Ratatouille ~ Chocolate and Zucchini
Zucchini-Crust Vegetarian Pizza Margherita ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Tuscan Summer Zucchini with Fresh Garlic and Oregano ~ Jul's Kitchen
Vegetarian Stuffed Zucchini with Brown Rice, Black Beans, Chiles, Cheddar, and Cotija Cheese ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Roasted Zucchini with Lemons ~ A Veggie Venture

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This recipe was first posted for Weekend Herb Blogging, hosted by the talented Melissa from Cooking Diva
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  1. A delicious way to serve squash. Some of my favourite flavours with feta and thyme!!!

  2. Another great idea for the bounty of summer squash that's now starting to appear on my porch via well-meaning gardening friends!

  3. Yum!! Feta and Thyme, what great flavors for the squash!!

  4. Wow, amazing dish, AND it's super simple too! My favorite kind.

  5. Wow, great minds think alike I just posted about summer squash too. It is so fabulous this time of year. I love teh addition of crumbled feta.

  6. That looks tasty and really easy to make.

  7. Gracias Kalyn! I just love baby squash---what a delicious idea to add feta. I prepare zucchini muffins with feta or parmesan, eggs, bacon and a little garlic sometimes. Since it has no flour it is perfect for low carb diets :D

  8. I love roasted squash! This looks delicious! It's great that you can just pick them from your garden. :)

  9. I'm so glad people like the sound of this recipe. Sometimes I wonder if my "what I made out of my garden veggies" style of cooking is just boring for people who don't have a garden. This would be truly delicious with fresh zucchini and summer squash no matter how you get them!

  10. Thanks for the shout out, Kalyn! Glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  11. This recipe sure is another winner, I got hungry reading it!
    When my mum started complaining about the zucchini crop taking over the garden, I suggested she use them while still in their toddler stage. No more monster zucchini in her garden. :-)

  12. That's a nice treatment (and infinitely variable).
    Oh! You just reminded me, I better go out and see how big the zukes grew overnight. :D

  13. Always, always, always can use more courgette recipes. This one looks yummy - I'll probably wait a few weeks and do it in my oven...
    And when I'm ready to pick the babies....

  14. This sounds wonderful and perfect for South Beach! I may have to extened Wednesdays zucchini day to zucchini week!

  15. Emily, you're welcome. I loved it.

    Merisi, I am all in favor of toddler zucchini.

    CC, better keep an eye on them!

    Katie, were you proud of me that I remembered to mention that they're called courgettes in Europe!

    Mrs. L, I think I might be having zucchini month!

  16. Oh zucchini, a blessing. I love them all, as you have seen on my pictures! I definitely need to grow them! Great recipe Kalyn!

  17. To answer your concern, Kalyn, I think that your 'what I made out of my garden veggie' is inspiring. Speaking for myself, it has cheered me up in the long weeks of waiting for my garden to come up with something. So yesterday I harvested the first pattypan squash and the first zucchina: nothing to show off as a proud parent, but quite satisfying. Last night I had roasted them together with some companions I bought at the farmers' market. No feta on them, just a mix of herbs from the garden, thyme included, like a sort of vegetable toast to you, your fabulous blog and your successful, almost 2-year old event.

  18. Bea, you must grow some next year if you have a sunny spot at your house. They're ridiculously easy to grow and the little ones are so tasty.

    Karina, I saw your grilled veggies, and I love, love the idea of grilled cabbage chunks. Just brilliant.

    Simona, thanks so much for reassuring me that my garden experiments aren't boring. It's fun hearing that you're getting to cook some veggies from your own garden. I'm still thinking of ideas for the two year event, but the idea of a personal "challenge" is a great one. I think it's going to be a lot of fun.

  19. Yum! I love summer squash. I actually grilled some last week, but never got it in on time for WHB....Looks great!

  20. Yummy as ever. I love gourgette and do them often; so it´s another way to try them. Thanks Kalyn!! :)

  21. Kalyn, your post coincided with the first time I've ever seen baby summer squash for sale at my local market. Great timing! We'll try this tonight.

  22. I love those baby squash, especially the patty pans. And your niece is a great cutter-upper! Thanks for linking to one of my recipes.

  23. Thanks Lydia! Quinn was so cute when she did it. She didn't quite get the angle of the knife, but not bad for 4 years old!


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