Jennie Cook's Zucchini Butter

Raven Higheagle


Whenever you come home a bundle of squash, this is the best, purest way you can distill it.

It turns out zucchini wants to be butter. Grated fine, it cooks down quickly, pooling into a soft, freckly green pile. Spread it on toast in place of actual butter. Cake a thick layer in a sandwich with salted tomatoes or soft cheese. Sauce a grilled pizza. Consider it a side dish. Or just eat a big heap of it, right out of the pan, like we did.

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Makes About 2 Cups
5 Min
15 Min
Stove Top


2 lb
zucchini or assorted summer squash (feel free to use less or add extra -- cooking times will vary)
1/4 c
olive oil or butter
minced shallots, garlic, or combination of both
salt and pepper


1Coarsely grate the zucchini.
2Let it drain in a colander for 3 to 4 minutes or until you are ready to begin cooking.
3To hasten cooking time, squeeze the water out of the zucchini by wringing it in a clean cloth towel.
4In a deep skillet, heat the olive oil/butter.
5Sauté the shallots or garlic briefly. (I use both)
6Add the zucchini and toss.
7Cook and stir over medium to medium-high heat until the zucchini reaches a spreadable consistency, about 15 minutes.
8If you scorch the bottom, turn the flame down! (And scrape those delicious bits into the butter for added flavor -- you can splash in a little water to help deglaze the pan.)
9The zucchini will hold its bright green color and slowly caramelize into a nice vegetable jam.
10Store in a tightly sealed mason jar in the refrigerator. Warm slightly in the microwave or allow to come to room temperature when ready to use.
11Enjoy on toast, or as a side dish all year long!