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lighter summer squash casserole

★★★★★ 1
a recipe by
Diana Perry
Martinez, GA

Yesterday I had a new recipe I wanted to try but was not in the mood to shop for ingredients. This recipe was created with leftover items and things in my pantry. We loved it so much I'm putting it here so I can duplicate it again. It is a take-off from an older recipe with much more fat. There is still some fat involved, but it is greatly reduced. It simmers on the stove for a while before going in the oven just long enough to brown the Panko bread crumbs and melt the reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese.

Blue Ribbon Recipe

This lightened-up casserole is the perfect way to use summer squash. It's very flavorful with a mix of fresh onions and bell peppers. Topped with crispy Panko crumbs and gooey melted cheese, it's the perfect balance of texture and taste. A great side dish for summer.

— The Test Kitchen @kitchencrew
★★★★★ 1
serves 8
prep time 10 Min
cook time 45 Min
method Bake

Ingredients For lighter summer squash casserole

  • 5 c
    chopped yellow or summer squash
  • 1 md
    vidalia (or other sweet) onion, chopped
  • 1/2 md
    sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 md
    sweet yellow pepper, chopped
  • 5 slice
    turkey bacon, diced
  • 2 tsp
    olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp
    light butter
  • 2 tsp
    bacon fat (optional)
  • 1 tsp
    Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb Seasoning
  • 1 tsp
    granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c
    no-sodium, reduced fat chicken broth
  • 2/3 c
    Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 c
    reduced fat sharp cheddar cheese

How To Make lighter summer squash casserole

Test Kitchen Tips
This could easily be a one-pan meal if prepped in an oven-safe pan. For appearances, we spread it into a 2.5 quart baking dish before sprinkling the Panko crumbs and cheese.
  • Browning turkey bacon.
    Heat Dutch oven, or deep pan, over medium heat. Spray with olive oil, or use about 2 teaspoons to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. Brown the turkey bacon. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
  • Sauteeing onions and peppers.
    Add the light butter and some bacon fat if desired. Saute the onion and red and orange peppers until soft.
  • Adding sugar and seasoning.
    Add the sugar and Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb seasoning.
  • Adding squash and chicken stock.
    Add the squash and the chicken broth.
  • Cooking until squash is tender.
    Stir to combine all ingredients. Cover the pan and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until the squash is tender.
  • Adding turkey bacon to the squash.
    Remove the lid and simmer til almost all liquid has evaporated. Add diced bacon to the mixture.
  • Panko crumbs sprinkled over the squash.
    Heat oven to 350 degrees. Scatter bread crumbs over vegetables. Bake for about 10 minutes or til the crumbs are well browned.
  • Cheese sprinkled over the squash.
    Put cheese evenly over the browned crumbs. Return to oven until cheese is melted, but not browned.