While some zucchini recipes for the air fryer can be kind of blah or just plain boring, our air fryer zucchini fries recipe is sure to knock your socks off. These fries have the most exquisite crunchy exterior that is equaled only to its soft, squishy interior. You’ll swear you’re eating a real mozzarella stick!
Free of excess fat, dairy, and all animal products, these fantastic, flavorful zucchini fries cannot be beat. It’s time to treat yourself to this alluring new appetizer that is purely plant-based and worth every moment of preparation. You can even make up a batch in advance, store them in a sealed container, and air fry the next day.
Raise your hand if you’re ready to put down that martini and air fry some zucchini!
Why You’ll Love This Zucchini Air Fryer Recipe
Air fryer zucchini is where it’s at, if you’re lucky to own one of these super helpful cooking machines. Once you give this recipe a try, you’ll be completely hooked and a lot less hungry.
- A great substitute for mozzarella sticks, only healthy!
- Savory and delicious snack
- Low calorie and low carb
- Plant-based and vegetarian
- Dairy-free, nut-free, soy-free
Star Ingredient – The Zestful Zucchini
This summer garden staple is not only easy to grow, but it’s also pretty prolific. When you have tons of extra zucchini that even zoodles cannot cover, consider preparing zucchini in the air fryer. Here are all of the reasons why we love zucchini zo much.
- Low sodium
- Low calorie
- Low carb
- Great source of vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, B6, and potassium
How To Serve Up Your Air Fryer Zucchini Sticks
Fried zucchini in the air fryer will soon become one of your favorite appetizers or snacks when family and friends come to visit. You can dazzle them with the magic of vegan zucchini fries. Feel free to vary the recipe to your own taste by making a few culinary adjustments. Here are a few appetizing approaches:
- Cinnamon Sugar Sticks – Make the tastiest sweet treat by substituting the cornstarch in the flour mixture for powdered cane sugar and eliminating the spices. Add 3 teaspoons of ground cinnamon and 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar to the breadcrumbs and follow the same cooking instructions. You’ll have mini cinnamon sticks in no time! Serve with coconut whipped cream, dairy-free ice cream, or drizzle with a warmed, vegan-friendly icing or cream sauce. Superb!
- Savory Sauce Suggestions – These fries are very similar to mozzarella sticks in both texture and flavor. We recommend serving them with a sweet, thick marinara sauce, creamy dill dressing, vegan mayo, cheese dip, hot sauce, hummus, or spicy ketchup.
- Bulk Up A Burger – Swap out sweet potato fries for fried zucchini in the the air fryer for a savory side. Our barbecue black bean burger or vegan pizza burger would make the perfect pairing!
How Do You Cut Zucchini For French Fries?
To create the right shape for making air fryer zucchini, the key is to pay attention to the thickness. Less than ½” seems to work the best. Any thicker and the zucchini is too juicy and not crisp enough, while a thinner slice creates a tough texture that no longer resembles a plant-based mozzarella stick.
For zucchini chips, simply slice the zucchini into rounds that are approximately ⅜” thick. If you’d rather have zucchini sticks (or zucchini fries), slice the zucchini in half from top to bottom lengthwise and then in half again. Do this twice more until you have the correct thickness. Finally, cut the lengths in halves (or thirds, if you have a long pieces) so that the pieces are around 2″ long.
Frequently Asked Questions About Air Fried Zucchini
They sure are! Especially if you’re comparing our zucchini fries in an air fryer compared to deep fried potato fries. Zucchini is not only lower in calories than potatoes, but they have more fiber as well.
Usually they are made with four ingredients––zucchini, flour (or cornstarch), a binder (we used a flax egg), and breading. The zucchini is dredged in seasoned flour, dipped in the binder, and then the breading (usually bread crumbs) is added for a crispy crust.
The answer to that is easy. Don’t cut the chips too thickly and, when they’re done, eat them while they’re still warm. If your chips are too thick, they hold onto more moisture while cooking. Like normal homemade chips or fries, the texture will wilt and become soggy soon after cooling. You can always reheat the air fryer vegetables in the oven or air fryer to get them crisp again.
More Satisfying and Simple Vegan Air Fryer Recipes to Try:
- Air Fryer Spaghetti Squash
- Chipotle Air Fryer Corn Ribs
- Easy Air Fryer Broccoli
- Frozen Sweet Potato Fries in the Air Fryer
- Herbed Vegan Air Fryer Kabocha Squash
- Nutritional Yeast Encrusted Air Fryer Tofu Cubes
- Ultimate Thanksgiving Sandwich in the Air Fryer
If you have suggestions for more air fryer recipes, let us know! Make sure to check out our round-up of the best vegan air fryer recipes from all over the internet! If you’re not sure what to make in your air fryer, no need to fuss or fret. Your constantly cooking vegan food bloggers have got you covered!
Equipment You’ll Need To Make Air Fryer Zucchini Fries
Although it may seem like there’s a lot to collect to create this recipe, it’s actually pretty simple once you have them assembled. Just measure out your ingredients and set out a station with three bowls, three forks, and your veggie pieces. Whether you’re aiming to make air fryer zucchini chips, zucchini sticks, or courgette fries (another name for zucchini), they’ll all come out amazing in the air fryer.Print
Crispy, crunchy fries that are actually healthy! You won’t believe how delicious these zucchini fries can be until you’ve made them in the air fryer. The texture is totally spot on. Just like mozzarella sticks, only better! Savory, addictive, and animal-free!
1 medium zucchini
2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed
6 tablespoons of water
¼ cup of cornstarch (or arrowroot powder)
¼ cup of flour
½ teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of salt (or to your taste)
1 teaspoon of black pepper
½ teaspoon of garlic powder
½ teaspoon of onion powder
¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 cup of dairy-free panko breadcrumbs (or ½ cup each panko and plain)
Spray Oil (We used avocado, but olive oil would also work.)
For this recipe, we are air frying batches of 20. You can keep making more batches or save the rest in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days. If making the entire batch, make sure to double (or triple) the dry coating ingredients so that you’ll have enough.
- Rinse and peel the zucchini.
- Cut the ends off of the zucchini and slice in half lengthwise into 2 even sections. Slice each section again lengthwise so that you have 4 sections. Cut each of the 4 sections in half lengthwise two more times so that you have a total of 16 thin lengths of zucchini. Cut each of these 16 slices in half widthwise two times so that each of the 16 slices has 4 pieces. 64 pieces total. Each fry should be approximately 2” long and ⅜” thick.
- In a shallow bowl, add in the ground flaxseed and water. Mix well with a fork and set aside for 5 minutes until it slightly thickens.
- Measure out the cornstarch, flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. Add to a shallow bowl or high-edged plate. Mix well with a fork. Put aside for now.
- Measure out the breadcrumbs and also place in a shallow bowl. Keep the last fork handy to use with this bowl. Keep each fork with its own mixture for applying the coating.
- Line up the bowls so that you have the flour mixture first, then the flaxseed mixture, and then the breadcrumbs. Place a plate in the fourth spot.
- Place 2-4 fries into the flour mixture, making sure that every side is coated. Using the fork, take the fries out and lower into the flax “egg”. Using a different fork, moisten all sides of each fry with this flaxseed mixture. Lastly, drop each fry into the breadcrumb mixture. Using that fork, cover all sides with breadcrumbs and then place on the plate.
- Once you have all the fries coated, lightly spray with oil. Preheat air fryer at 400 degrees for 5 minutes.
- Using one of the forks, set the fries slightly apart into the air fryer basket and cook at 400 degrees for around 10 minutes, turning gently (with a fork, not hands) halfway through cooking. (See Cooking Time in Notes section.) Enjoy immediately while still warm.
- Cooking Time – Because some air fryers are different, it might take you a little more or less than 10 minutes for the fries to be done. Check on the fries halfway to see how they’re doing. When golden brown and crispy, it’s time to take them out.
- Peeling Is Optional – Peeling is not absolutely necessary, but I found that the batter sticks better when the zucchini is peeled. Keep the peel on if you want some extra nutrition and fiber and don’t mind less coating.
- Size Matters – It’s important to keep the fries a uniform shape and size. I found that fries that measure less than ½” cook more evenly and make the fries the perfect consistency when done. Thicker than this and they will need a few minutes more frying time.
Keywords: dairy-free, air fryer, side, zucchini, fries, soy-free, nut-free
If you try this vegan air fryer zucchini chips recipe, let us know what you think by leaving a comment and rating below! Be sure to follow along on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook for even more vegan recipe inspiration.
Storing Leftover Breaded Zucchini Fries
These zucchini fries in an air fryer are best when eaten fresh right out of the air fryer basket. If you have eaten your fill and just can’t squeeze in any more, you can save them. Our suggestion is to store them in an air-tight container on top of a piece of paper towel or cloth. When you’re ready to give them another go, place them in a pre-heated air fryer (or oven) at 400 degrees for about 5 minutes. Check on them at about the 3 minute mark. Not recommended for freezing.
Are Restaurant Zucchini Fries Usually Vegan?
Zucchini fries are a rarity on restaurant menus, and sadly, when you see them they are typically not vegan. Red Robin makes zucchini fries, and helped popularize the concept, but sadly theirs are not vegan. That’s why making your own at home is such an easy and fun treat!
Are Red Robin Zucchini Fries Vegan?
These zucchini sticks are not cooked in an air fryer, but deep fried. They’re also not vegan because the batter contains both eggs and milk. In this recipe, we’re not only cutting down on the fat content by air frying, but we swapped out the eggs for a flax egg and eliminated the milk. Though, you could use dairy-free milk, if desired.
This article about zucchini chips in an air fryer was written by Gina House. Zucchini in air fryer photography by JJ Steele. Edited by Michelle Cehn. Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which supports our work at World of Vegan.