Spain on a Fork > All Recipes > Tapas > Spanish Garlic Zucchini | A Dish you Won´t be Able to Resist
All Recipes, Tapas / April 7, 2021

Spanish Garlic Zucchini | A Dish you Won´t be Able to Resist

This Spanish Garlic Zucchini, known in Spain as Calabacin al Ajillo, is possibly one of the greatest zucchini dishes ever. It´s packed with flavor, easy to make and the zucchini has the most incredible texture.

Spanish Garlic Zucchini
You can serve this dish as a tapas appetizer or even as a side dish. It works great next to some classic Spanish potatoes and your favorite protein. Either way, this dish is so good, it will become your go-to zucchini dish.

Spanish Garlic Zucchini
The secret to giving the zucchini a great texture, is to season it with sea salt after you cut it and letting it sit for 30 minutes. This helps release some of the water in the zucchini. That way when you fry it, it doesn´t absorb as much oil and it keeps its incredible texture.

Spanish Garlic Zucchini
TIPS & TRICKS to Make this Recipe: You want to cut the zucchini into thick slices. I went for 1/2 inch which is about 1.25 cm. You don´t want to go any thinner. When you heat the pan to fry the zucchini, don´t add any fat into the pan. Just let it heat until it´s hot, then add the fat and the zucchini.

Spanish Garlic Zucchini

Key Ingredients & Cookware I used in this Recipe:
MY SWISS DIAMON FRYING PANS
EXTRA VIRGIN SPANISH OLIVE OIL
SPANISH SEA SALT

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Watch the Video Below on How to Make Spanish Garlic Zucchini

4.94 from 15 votes
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Spanish Garlic Zucchini | Calabacin al Ajillo Recipe

Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine Spanish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Albert Bevia @ Spain on a Fork

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 45 ml
  • 2 zucchini
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley 15 grams
  • sea salt & black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut 2 zucchinis (washed & patted dry) into thick rounds that are 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) thick, season the zucchini rounds with sea salt on both sides, then add to a colander, let them rest for 30 minutes

  2. Meanwhile, roughly chop 6 cloves garlic and add to a mortar, roughly chop 1/4 cup (15 grams) fresh parsley and add to the mortar, season with a little sea salt and using a pestle pound down until well combined, set aside

  3. After 30 minutes, transfer the zucchini slices into some paper towels (in a single layer) and pat completely dry, season with black pepper just on one side

  4. Heat a fry pan with a medium-high heat, after 3 minutes add in 2 tbsp (30 ml) extra virgin olive oil and start adding the slices of zucchini, in a single layer, so cook in batches, after 2 1/2 minutes flip the slices of zucchini to fry the other side, after a total cooking time of 5 minutes, remove the zucchini from the pan and transfer into a dish with paper towels, continue to cook in batches until done

  5. Once all the zucchini is done, transfer to a serving dish, then using the same pan, lower the fire to a low-medium heat, add in 1 tbsp (15 ml) extra virgin olive oil and the garlic & parsley mixture, mix and cook for 25 to 30 seconds, then eveny spread the garlic & parsley mixture over the zucchini, enjoy!

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60 Comments

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    […] FULL RECIPE HERE: https://www.spainonafork.com/spanish-garlic-zucchini-a-dish-you-wont-be-able-to-resist/ […]

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  4. Johanna

    What woul work as a substitute to parsley? Thanks

    31 . Dec . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      You can use any herb you like, such as basil or chives 🙂 much love

      31 . Dec . 2021
  5. Tiffany

    5 stars
    Holy Calabacin al Ajillo!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is the ABSOLUTE BEST zucchini dish I have ever had! Perfectly seasoned, garlicky, sweet yet no sugar added, firm zucchini. I ate the entire amount in one sitting….I just couldn’t stop. Good thing I only cook for one!

    07 . Oct . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      07 . Oct . 2021
  6. Roger R. Lloyd

    5 stars
    Can’t add the extra salt, (low sodium diet) But, I love my zucchini and was able to let them sit on a couple paper towels and patted them on top. I was amazed how well they cooked up.
    Thanks once again, for some inspired cooking 🔪.

    19 . Sep . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      21 . Sep . 2021
  7. Spanish Garlic Zucchini | A Dish you Won´t be Able to Resist – Afro-delicious

    […] FULL RECIPE HERE: https://spainonafork.wpengine.com/spanish-garlic-zucchini-a-dish-you-wont-be-able-to-resist/ […]

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  8. Jason

    5 stars
    Wow! This recipe was utterly fantastic. Even my kids, who resist zucchini in any form said it was fantastic. This dish along with your patatas bravas were complete wins!

    28 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I am so happy to hear that! thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      30 . Jul . 2021
  9. Бекки Джин

    5 stars
    Outstanding in flavor and simplicity! Thanks for sharing!

    I didn’t have fresh parsley, but I had fresh basil, so I subbed that. Looking forward to trying it with the parsley one day. 😉

    18 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      19 . Jul . 2021
  10. Debbie

    I shy away from eating and cooking zucchini as it’s always soggy. You explained so well why that happens. I made it last night and it is everything you described. Easy to make! Can’t wait to try more of your recipes!

    16 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      17 . Jul . 2021
  11. Chit

    Zucchini was so good! Superb! Never
    Again will I have it any other way! Thank you. I am
    Enjoying your recipes in utube! Stumbled upon it only 3days ago…am so excited to try them all! May you be inspired!

    13 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      13 . Jul . 2021
  12. Joan

    I’m going to make this tonight for an appetizer. I would love to make it in my air fryer instead of on the stove. What do you think?

    06 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I am sure it will work, as long as you follow the recipe by removing the water from the zucchini 🙂 much love

      07 . Jul . 2021
  13. Julie

    “Season with black pepper just on one side.” Does it matter which side you fry first?

    06 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I always fry on the seasoned side first, but you can go either way 🙂 much love

      07 . Jul . 2021
  14. BN

    4 stars
    I saw this on your YouTube channel yesterday, and I can’t wait to make this. I was looking for something different and this had my mouth watering!

    04 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      Hope you enjoy! Much love 🙂

      04 . Jul . 2021
  15. SK

    This looks amazing; can’t wait to try it. I am not a big fan of parsley – do you think any other herbs would work?

    03 . Jul . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      You can use any herb you like, such as oregano or cilantro 🙂 much love

      04 . Jul . 2021
  16. Melanie

    5 stars
    Made these for dinner tonight, they were amazing! Thank you!

    29 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      30 . Jun . 2021
  17. Steve Pain

    5 stars
    What a superb recipe! I came across it yesterday afternoon and tried it as a side dish to our evening meal. These were the best courgettes I’ve ever cooked. Fab taste and texture. I can’t wait to explore some of the other brilliant recipes Albert has on his website. Thanks Albert!

    20 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I am so happy to hear that Steve! Thanks for the comment ? much love

      20 . Jun . 2021
  18. Andy

    5 stars
    made this 3 or 4 times now, and whatever i serve it with.. the Zucchini is the star on the plate.

    20 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I am so happy to hear that! Thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      20 . Jun . 2021
  19. Edgar Roca

    Made this with my wife. Resounding success!!! Actually doubled the recipe without any problems. Served as side dish with crab cakes; perfect combination!

    19 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      20 . Jun . 2021
  20. nancy law

    Lovely recipe and it turned out great! I sprinkled toasted chopped macadamia nuts on top of everything at the end. My husband told me it made the dish.

    09 . Jun . 2021
  21. Mayo

    Quick question.. if I don’t have extra virgin olive oil on hand could avocado oil ? be used instead? Thanks for sharing your recipes as well as your videos with the rest of the world…? ? ??

    06 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      Yes, you can use any oil you like 🙂 much love!

      06 . Jun . 2021
  22. Cynthia Garofalo

    5 stars
    Excellent! Followed your instructions and they came out perfect. Thanks!

    06 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that Cynthia! Much love 🙂

      06 . Jun . 2021
  23. HELEN C WELCH

    I so enjoyed your explanation of why the dish is prepared and cooked in this particular way. Thank you.

    03 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      Thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      03 . Jun . 2021
  24. laurelie campeau

    5 stars
    Tasty to make and it was utterly delicious!

    02 . Jun . 2021
  25. Gail N

    Haven’t made it yet but enjoy seeing the responses. I see someone asked about taking for potluck. What about taking to family gathering/cookout? Could you make it ahead and wrap it up when cooled, then if you wanted it warm stick it in the packet on the grill just for a bit to get it somewhat warm, or would that mess up the texture that was worked so hard to get? I guess it could be taken at room temperature.

    27 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      If you where to slightly heat them up it will be fine, you just don´t want to heat for too long, otherwise the texture will change 🙂 much love

      27 . May . 2021
  26. Juliet

    5 stars
    Oh my goodness! Love!!!!! Thanks!

    19 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! much love 🙂

      19 . May . 2021
  27. F Marie Haulenbeek

    5 stars
    Loved this. It reminded me of my favorite Spanish restaurant. The zucchini was a great texture done this way. It did not get soggy. The herb and garlic infused it with so much flavor. Easy to follow recipe. Thanks for sharing it.

    17 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      18 . May . 2021
  28. Teregram

    Would like to make this tomorrow and bring to a pot luck. Can it be made in advance?

    14 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      Yes it can be made in advance, as you can serve this zucchini either warm or cold 🙂 much love

      14 . May . 2021
  29. Garry Henkel

    Made this last night — fantastic and so easy to make!

    13 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      14 . May . 2021
  30. Elliot Fisch

    5 stars
    This was fantastic. Easy recipe. Didn’t have mortar and pestle so I used a flat meat tenderizer and covered garlic and parsley with wax paper.

    I had leftovers so I cut slices into quarters and tossed them with some pasta and a touch of oil! So delicious.

    Thanks

    11 . May . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy you enjoyed the dish! much love 🙂

      11 . May . 2021
  31. Diane

    5 stars
    Followed your instructions exactly. Result was absolutely delicious. The texture and the flavor were perfection. Easy to prepare in very little time. Thank you so much for this recipe. I will be making this regularly.

    27 . Apr . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! Much love Diane 🙂

      30 . Apr . 2021
  32. Melissa

    5 stars
    Made this today and it won‘t be the last time. So simple but really tasty and the zucchini had such a nice texture. Thanks! ?

    20 . Apr . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that! thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      20 . Apr . 2021
  33. Ramya

    will be making this soon i never had spanish garlic zucchini before perfect for my office snacks will dm you if i make this and let you know how it goes Thanks Ramya

    07 . Apr . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      Sounds great Ramya! thanks for the comment 🙂 much love

      07 . Apr . 2021

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