Recipe: Summer Squash Gratin

updated Jan 29, 2020
Summer Squash Gratin
This summer squash gratin is the perfect way to use up that bumper crop of zucchini in your garden.


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(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

If there was a summer side dish MVP, I have no doubt it would be awarded to gratins. They’re simple, versatile, and reliable — the kind of dish that’s worth turning on the oven for.

The Best Way to Use That Squash Bumper Crop

Their sheer abundance in the garden and at the market have a way of making summer squash feel totally overwhelming. They’re everywhere, but that’s precisely one of the reasons I love them so much — there are so many varieties, and so many ways to eat them. Yet, again and again I always come back to the humble gratin.

This version is filled with layers of yellow and green squash, complemented with the subtle aroma of lemon and thyme, and topped with a crunchy mixture of panko and Parmesan. It’s the kind of light side that deserves a place on your summertime table from brunch through dinner.

Summer Squash Gratin

This summer squash gratin is the perfect way to use up that bumper crop of zucchini in your garden.

Serves 4

Nutritional Info


  • 4 tablespoons

    olive oil, divided

  • 3/4 cup

    panko breadcrumbs

  • 1/2 cup

    grated Parmesan cheese

  • 2

    medium shallots, thinly sliced

  • 2 cloves

    garlic, minced

  • 2 pounds

    summer squash, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces

  • 1 tablespoon

    fresh thyme leaves

  • Finely grated zest from 1/2 lemon

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to to 400°F. Place 2 tablespoons of the oil, panko, and Parmesan in a medium bowl and mix to combine; set aside.

  2. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 6- to 8-inch oven-safe frying pan or skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.

  3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the squash, thyme, lemon zest, and salt. Season with pepper, stir to combine, and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle the panko mixture evenly over the squash.

  4. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the top is golden-brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for about 5 minutes before serving.