Zucchini Chips with Smoked Paprika

See the zucchini in that picture?  The whole one?  That is the single lone zucchini we got out of our garden this year.  At one point, I despaired of getting any zucchini at all, but it looks like our two surviving zucchini plants decided to go for broke in mid-September and they put out several fruit.  There are still other promising looking mini zucchini on one plant, but it’s far too late in the season and I don’t think they are going to grow much more.  I am not really sure what to do with baby zucchini, as I love the baby version of many other vegetables, I am sure they taste delicious.  Sauteed baby zucchini, anyone?

I do know what to do with whole, adult zucchini, though.  I have about a hundred easy go-to recipes for zucchini, and a hundred more ideas in my head.  It’s a wonderfully versatile vegetable, and it doesn’t have a strong flavour on its own, so it will take on the flavours of whatever you choose to cook it with.  I get at least 3 or 4 zucchini every time I go to the farmer’s market, because it’s so easy to toss in to whatever I am making for dinner.  My kids don’t like it yet, but I am sure they will in time.

I made Eggplant Chips last year and several readers asked if they could substitute zucchini.  I didn’t think zucchini would work very well in that particular recipe because of its higher water content.  But the idea stayed with me and I kept wondering about Zucchini Chips and whether it was possible to get them to dry out and crisp up.  And then that magical world of Pinterest showed me it was indeed possible, when I saw these beautiful chips from Vittles and Bits.  They looked too good, too crisp, too chip-like, to be real.  But I figured it was worth a shot.  Anything to support my snacking habit!

I did make a few small changes to the recipe.  For one thing, I salted the zucchini and let it drain for an hour before baking.  I figured that would help crisp things up.  I also did not use cooking spray, but oiled the parchment and then oiled the zucchini rounds once they were on the pan.  I did not add any additional salt after that, as I know it tends to absorb quite a bit when salted beforehand.  I sprinkled on a little pepper, and then some smoked paprika I was dying to try.  It also turned out that I had to leave the house prior to the end of the baking time, so I simply turned off the oven.  And when I came home, I had some delicious zucchini chips with smoked paprika to snack on!

Zucchini Chips with Smoked Paprika

Yield: 2 servings

Adapted from Vittles and Bits


  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper


  1. Slice zucchini crosswise into 1/4 inch thick slices using a mandolin slicer or a sharp knife.
  2. Place zucchini in layers into a colander or sieve, sprinkling with a little salt with each layer. Let drain one hour.
  3. Preheat oven to 250F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Brush parchment with 1 tsp of oil.
  4. Pat zucchini slices dry with a paper towel and place on prepared baking sheet. Brush tops with remaining oil and sprinkle with paprika and ground pepper.
  5. Bake 45 minutes, then turn off oven and let chips remain inside until crispy, about 1 hour.


Serves 2. Each serving has 3.5 g of carbs and 1 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 2.5 g.


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  1. These look great! I tried to make some similar in August, but it was a major fail. I think I sliced them too thin! I will definitely try these again with the smoked paprika!

  2. We prefer the baby zucchinis. They’re great bite-sized pieces in stir-fry meals.

  3. I didn’t care for the baby zuchs. They were bitter to me. Going to have to hit the market and try these.

  4. These look absolutely incredible.

  5. I frequently sprinkle smoked paprika on my kale chips, so I’ll have to give it a go when I try these zucchini chips!

  6. I’ve been looking forward to trying zucchini chips for months – love the addition of smoked paprika! I’ve found that my kids will eat more vegetables if they’re “chipped” like this. My husband too. :-)

  7. Have you tried kale chips? They are so yummy. I made zucchini chips once, a long time ago, and I didn’t salt the zucchini before hand. It took forever to get a crisp chip.

    • I have tried kale chips…I wasn’t impressed with my first go of them. What I really like to do is saute kale with garlic and chili. Some of it stays soft, but other parts get crisp and I love it!

  8. I make zucchini and eggplant chips a lot in my dehydrator. Especially when they are in season, there is really no better way to use those honkin zucchinis!

  9. What a great idea! I have never made zucchini chips, but I love sweet potato chips and beet chips so I am sure these would be right up my alley, especially considering I have a massive zucchini obsession :) Thanks for sharing.

  10. Did they get as crisp as you hoped? They look delicious and I think sprinkling with them with salt beforehand to sweat them out was brilliant. Dudette doesn’t like zucchini yet either, but I’ll keep chipping away at that. :)

  11. They look amazing Carolyn. I’ve never tried them this way so I need to give this a whirl.

  12. I discovered zucchini chips this summer and they are now up there with my favorite snacks. Next time I make them, I’m going to season them with smoked paprika and try your method of salting them to get the moisture out!

  13. I have yet to harvest any zucchini in my garden so at least you got one good lookin one! These chips sound fantastic! MMM!

  14. Yes please! What an awesome idea!

  15. I love zucchini, this is such a great way to use it. Definitely need to keep this in mind for zucchini next year.

    • I have a convection microwave so I used the combined crisp/microwave function. Crisp, crunchy chips in approx 27 minutes with the Whirlpool convection microwave. Yum. I have scoffed about six zucchinis. No problems getting my five serve of veges today! Now for some popcorn cauliflower!

  16. Sommer@ASP says:

    What a fantastic snack!

  17. These look fantastic Carolyn! My kids don’t like squishy squash, but I know they’d love zucchini in chip form.

  18. My turn, trying this now…hope I can get them to come out all crispy! I don’t have smoked paprika…hopefully regular will taste just as good.

  19. another fabulous idea! keep them coming

  20. CitchenKhemist says:

    Do you think this would work with cucumbers also?

    • No, I really don’t. Cucumber has a much higher moisture content and I don’t think they would dry out properly. Sorry!

  21. have you tried the recipe using a dehydrator?

  22. Francine says:

    How many chips are 1 serving.

    • Depends on how big your zucchini is. I’d say I got 40 or 50 chips out of mine, so half of that would be 20 to 25.

  23. Thanks, it looks yummy! (Just like all your posts!) I’m a bit confused about the 1/4 inch slices though (6.3mm?), as it sounds thick and the ones in your picture look a lot thinner… more like 2mm… Is the instructions correct?

  24. These sounded so good. But I couldn’t get them to crisp for anything. Salted and sweated. Cooked for about 3+ hrs and even raised temp to 300. They shriveled but remained soggy. :(

    • I haven’t made these in ages but was going to try them again this week. I will see if I can identify the problem but it could just be some very moist zucchini! Did you use parchment underneath?

  25. Since I didn’t read through every single response to your invitation to sautéed baby zucchini, I will just state my feelings about “baby” zucchini. If you can tell, my married last name is Italian and my green-card-carrying Tuscan husband insists on buying the smallest zucchini we can find at the store. In Tuscany, they would throw anything larger than 3/4 inch in diameter in the compost. If it’s as large as a kindergartner’s forearm, too big. I find the “medium” zucchinis to be very tender and usable. I just don’t let my husband see me cooking. In my humble layman’s opinion, a bitter baby zucchini is an unpollinated zucchini. That also sounds like why you had a late harvest. Maybe the plant wasn’t getting pollination. That also happened to me (I now grow my own zukes and can control how big I harvest them). I had to go out and pollinate them with a q-tip to get them started. After a couple of days of early morning pollinating, the plant just started to go. Baby zucchini are the best for delicate egg dishes and cream sauces. They can be cut into discs and they are so pretty, especially at a brunch or in a company’s-a-comin’ casserole.

    • Carolyn says:

      You should see me this year, I am out every morning with a q-tip pollinating the females. So far I have harvested 2 nice sized zuke with 3 more growing well. We spaced them out SO much more this year and they are doing fabulously. I hope we get over-run with zucchini. I hope!

  26. Chiming in again…I read a lot of complaints about soggy or uncrispy chips. It has been my experience that too many veggies on the tray crowd the tray and steam the oven to death. Fewer veggies per tray allows the dry heat to surround the chips and deal with the humidity coming from the veggie. So you can only roast so many per batch but at least 3 hours will give you the same yield if, as one commenter shared, you were involved for that amount of time. Ping-ping…2 cents…..

  27. I know I’m a late chime in, but…

    I have never baked them. We always fry ours like when making homemade potato chips. hmmm… will have to give the baking them a try. It would definitely free me up to do other things :)

    As far as baby zucchini, those are the best to eat!!!! All the big ones, that somehow manage to hide when I am picking, get grated or sliced and thrown in the freezer! :)

  28. As a recent convert to low-carbing your site has inspired me no end! Instead of facing a lifetime of salads, bacon and eggs and tins of tuna, you have placed a whole world of culinary creativity before our eyes. Thank you for your tireless efforts so much!

    Back to these zucchini chips. I think I’ll try chucking some of these in the dehydrator to get them really crisp. You could bake them in the oven to get that cooked taste, then when they are cooled enough put them in the dehydrator for a few hours or ovdernight. Then it wouldn’t matter how soggy they were when they were first baked. You probably wouldn’t even need to drain them first. I’m planning on making a heap of these to take on a 5 day kayaking trip later this year.

    • Yes, the dehydrator can definitely help. I only recently got one myself and haven’t tried the chips in there yet but I hear it works.


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