Vegetable cakes are one of my favorite ways to use up veggies I have in the refrigerator. Grated zucchini, broccoli and spinach form the base of these veggie patties with a handful of peas tossed in for sweetness. A bit of chopped parsley and mint give these vegetable cakes even more flavor!
Learn how easy it is to make veggie cakes yourself instead of buying them. You can customize your veggie cakes to suit your tastes or simply to use up what you already have. Once you get the hang of it, the possibilities are endless.
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Green Vegetable Cakes
I am always looking for different ways to get green veggies into my diet. Let’s face it, eating a baked potato or corn on the cob slathered with butter is no hardship, but getting certain people to eat green vegetables can be a challenge.
If you have picky eaters (big or small) at your house, this is a tasty way to get them to eat their greens. The original veggie cakes post has instructions and photos to show you the recipe step by step. If you are new to cooking, or new to vegetable cakes, pop over to that post and check it out.
These fluffy vegetable cakes are also great for breakfast with a sunny side up egg perched on top of them. I would even tuck them into a small roll for a veggie sandwich on the go. There are so many ways you could eat them.
Vegetable Cakes Recipe
I was a bit ambitious with my vegetable purchases a few weeks ago. I thought we could eat it, I really did. But then, I quickly realized after a few days that it just wasn’t happening. I am not one to waste food and I also know that if I cook down certain vegetables (hello, spinach, I’m looking at you) their volume is decreased to almost nothing.
And that’s how we arrived here. I had a few zucchini that hadn’t been eaten, some spinach and a bunch of broccoli. That would be the base of these green veggie cakes.
Prep your veggies
The first thing we need to do is take care of the watery vegetables, specifically zucchini and spinach. Those two veggies release a TON of liquid and that will make our vegetable cake recipe a wet, watery mess if we don’t squeeze out the water.
The easiest way to handle this is to use your food processor to grate the zucchini. Then set the zucchini in a fine mesh strainer over a bowl to catch the liquid. Place a small plate with a heavy can (like a 28 oz can of tomatoes) on top of the plate to weigh it down. This helps to press the liquid out.
After it has drained for at least thirty minutes, you can wrap the zucchini in a clean kitchen towel and SQUEEZE. You’ll be shocked at how much liquid comes out of zucchini. This is one of the most important steps and cannot be skipped. Trust me, you will end up with a mess otherwise.
The spinach also needs to be squeezed out. So, whether you are buying frozen chopped spinach or cooking your own, save that towel, because you’ll need to squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the spinach as well.
The last bit of prep is chopping up the broccoli. The food processor takes care of this in just a few minutes. Now we are ready to chop up a few herbs and make our tasty vegetable mixture for this recipe.
The easiest way to make fine ribbons (or chiffonade) of mint is to stack up the leaves, then roll them up tightly like a cigar. Using a sharp knife, cut into thin slices and you’ll have pretty ribbons when you’re done.
Meal prep vegetable cakes
Do you plan out your meals for the week? These are perfect for meal prepping. Pop a couple into your lunches for the week and you’re all set. They also freeze really well, so you can divide them up and freeze half of your batch for later.
This recipe does make a big batch. You can halve the recipe to make 15 instead of 30.
Can I bake these vegetable patties?
Yes! You can absolutely bake them. You have a couple of options – you could spray a muffin tin with non-stick spray and bake them in a muffin tin to keep a nice shape to them, or you can flatten a scoop of the vegetable mixture into a disk and bake them on a parchment-lined baking sheet at 400°F for about 25 minutes.
Bake them under the broiler for a few minutes to brown and crisp the tops.
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Make it a meal:
- Tomato Tart with Goat Cheese – this impressive tart is actually really easy to make and it looks like it took you all day.
- Watermelon Gazpacho – quick and easy, it can be made ahead and put it the refrigerator to chill until ready to serve.
- Honey Chipotle Salmon – sheet pan recipe, ready in under 30 minutes.
- Strawberry Limeade – a sweet and tart thirst quencher.
- No Churn Guinness Chocolate Brownie Ice Cream
- Chocolate Chess Pie
- 1 lb. broccoli, shredded (about 5 cups after shredding)
- 3 large zucchini, grated and drained (about 2 cups)
- 1 lb. spinach, cooked and chopped
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 2 tsp fresh garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup mint, cut into ribbons or finely chopped
- 1 cup parsley, chopped (about 1 bunch)
- 1/2 cup scallions, sliced (green onions)
- 4 eggs
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 cup breadcrumbs, I used panko
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- oil for pan
Prepare zucchini and spinach
1. Grate zucchini, sprinkle with 1 tsp salt and set in a fine mesh strainer. Place a bowl or plate on top of the zucchini and weigh it down.
2. Let it sit for AT LEAST 30 minutes, up to 1 hour. After it has drained, wrap it in a clean kitchen towel or a piece of cheesecloth and SQUEEZE! Even more water will come out, we want it as dry as possible!
3. Set the drained zucchini aside.
4. Wrap spinach in towel and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. You could also put the chopped spinach in the fine mesh strainer and press, if that is easier.
Make the vegetable cakes
1. In a large bowl, mix flour, breadcrumb and cheese together. Add the vegetables and herbs and toss to combine. Make sure to break up the zucchini and spinach if it is in clumps.
2. Crack eggs into a small bowl, give a little whisk and pour over veggie mixture. THOROUGHLY mix to combine.
3. Heat a sauté pan (skillet) over medium-high heat, add a drizzle of oil (a tablespoon or so) and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan.
4. Using a scoop (or a large spoon), drop mixture into the hot pan and flatten out with your fingers to form a patty.
5. Cook for 5 - 6 minutes on each side, turning down the heat if they begin to brown too quickly.
6. Remove from pan to a cooling rack set inside of a sheet pan, or a paper towel lined baking sheet.
7. Repeat until mixture is gone!
If you would prefer to bake these vegetable cakes, bake at 400°F for 25 minutes.
To freeze: place squares of parchment paper between the cakes and wrap tightly in plastic wrap or slide into a freezer zippy bag.
A cast iron skillet works the BEST, but any skillet will do!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 74 Total Fat: 2g Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 26mg Sodium: 291mg Carbohydrates: 11g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 2g Protein: 4g