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Zesty Zucchini and Corn Casserole

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Elevate Your Dinner Table with Zesty Zucchini and Corn Casserole

Are you searching for a vibrant and flavorful dish that celebrates the bounties of summer produce? Look no further than our Zesty Zucchini and Corn Casserole! Bursting with the freshness of zucchini, the sweetness of corn, and the zing of jalapeño, this casserole is a delightful blend of textures and flavors. Whether you’re serving it as a side dish or a main course, this recipe is sure to become a new family favorite. Let’s dive into the details and learn how to make this mouthwatering casserole that’s perfect for any occasion.

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Ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups shredded zucchini, well-drained
  • 1 diced white onion
  • 16 ounces shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 diced jalapeño (de-seed for a milder spice)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 (8.5 oz) box corn muffin mix

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set it aside.
  2. Prepare the Zucchini:
    • Place the shredded zucchini in a clean kitchen towel or cheesecloth and squeeze out as much excess moisture as possible. Transfer the drained zucchini to a large mixing bowl.
  3. Combine Ingredients:
    • To the bowl with the zucchini, add the diced onion, half of the shredded cheddar cheese, thawed corn, diced jalapeño, eggs, garlic powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper. Mix until well combined.
  4. Add Corn Muffin Mix:
    • Sprinkle the corn muffin mix over the zucchini mixture and stir until everything is evenly incorporated.
  5. Transfer to Baking Dish:
    • Pour the zucchini and corn mixture into the prepared baking dish and spread it out evenly.
  6. Bake:
    • Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the casserole is set and golden brown around the edges.
  7. Add Remaining Cheese:
    • Remove the casserole from the oven and sprinkle the remaining shredded cheddar cheese over the top. Return it to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  8. Serve and Enjoy:
    • Allow the casserole to cool slightly before slicing and serving. Garnish with fresh herbs like chopped cilantro or green onions, if desired.

Cook’s Notes and Variations:

  • Make it Vegetarian: Omit the jalapeño or adjust the amount according to your spice preference. You can also add other vegetables like bell peppers or spinach for extra flavor and nutrients.
  • Dairy-Free Option: Substitute the cheddar cheese with your favorite dairy-free cheese alternative.
  • Gluten-Free Variation: Use a gluten-free corn muffin mix to make this casserole gluten-free.

FAQs:

Q: Can I use fresh corn instead of frozen? A: Absolutely! Fresh corn kernels can be used instead of frozen. Simply remove the kernels from the cob and add them directly to the casserole mixture.

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Q: Can I prepare this casserole ahead of time? A: Yes, you can assemble the casserole ahead of time and refrigerate it, covered, until you’re ready to bake. Just be sure to adjust the baking time accordingly if baking it straight from the refrigerator.

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Q: Can I freeze leftovers? A: Yes, this casserole freezes well. Once cooled, cut it into individual portions and wrap them tightly in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Store them in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating in the oven or microwave.

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Q: Is this dish keto-friendly or low-carb? A: Unfortunately, this casserole is not suitable for a keto or low-carb diet due to the inclusion of corn muffin mix. However, you can make a keto-friendly version by omitting the corn muffin mix and adjusting the seasoning to your taste.

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Keto and Low-Carb Versions:

Keto Version:

  • Omit the corn muffin mix and adjust the seasoning to your preference.
  • Increase the amount of shredded cheese or add in keto-friendly cheese like cream cheese or grated Parmesan for added richness.
  • Serve with a side of roasted vegetables or a crisp green salad for a complete keto meal.

Low-Carb Version:

  • Follow the keto version instructions, adjusting ingredients to fit your specific low-carb dietary needs.
  • Incorporate low-carb vegetables like cauliflower or broccoli florets for added texture and flavor.

In conclusion, Zesty Zucchini and Corn Casserole is a delightful dish that celebrates the vibrant flavors of summer produce. With its combination of shredded zucchini, sweet corn, and zesty jalapeño, this casserole is a true crowd-pleaser. Whether you’re serving it as a side dish or a main course, it’s sure to impress with its bold flavors and comforting appeal. So why wait? Gather your ingredients and give this recipe a try today for a taste of summer in every bite!

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