Summer Squash Salad

Evie suspected that when I tried her summer squash salad recipe that I would have to eat my words (no pun intended) regarding my mom being the only one who could prepare squash well. Well, I have eaten my words, and this fabulous salad as well. This is a lovely way to prepare summer squash or zucchini – thinly sliced, marinated briefly with mint in olive oil and lemon juice, tossed with toasted pine nuts, and served with shaved Parmesan. A veritable zucchini carpaccio. I have made one small adjustment to Evie’s original recipe, by increasing the amount of olive oil and lemon juice recommended. I found I needed more to adequately coat all of the squash.

Summer Squash Salad Recipe

  • Yield: Serves 4.


  • 4 small zucchini or mixed yellow and green summer squash (1 lb total)
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed mint leaves
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (1 oz.)
  • Grana Padano, Parmesan or Asagio cheese for shavings
  • Fresh mint sprigs for garnish


1 If you are starting with raw pine nuts, toast them first. Heat a small skillet on medium high heat. Add the pine nuts. Stir gently as the pine nuts start to brown. When slightly browned, remove from heat and let cool.

2 Slice the squash into paper-thin slices using a mandoline or other slicer. Set aside in a bowl.

3 Stack the mint leaves, roll them together lengthwise and slice crosswise to make very thin slivers. Add to squash in bowl.

4 Combine the oil and lemon juice in a small bowl and whisk together. Whisk in the salt and pepper and pour the dressing over the contents of the bowl. Add the pine nuts and toss all together, gently, but thoroughly. Let mixture stand for at least 10 minutes to soften the squash and develop the flavors.

5 Transfer salad to serving dish or to four individual salad plates. Garnish with shavings of cheese made with a vegetable peeler and a few sprigs of fresh mint.

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Many thanks to Chef Evie Lieb for yet another wonderful recipe!


  1. Alanna

    Is this the next food blogger challenge, or the next new blog, Getting Elise to Eat Her Words? Thanks to Evie, thanks to you for eating more summer squash!

  2. Michelle

    That sounds awesome!! I’m going to a party tomorrow night and I think this is what I’ll bring. Do you think I should make the salad and carry it, or prepare the dressing and veggies separately and mix everything once I get there?

  3. Paula

    This comes at such a great time. I bought these beautiful pattypan squashes a few days ago at the farmer’s market and was wondering what to do with them. Their shape lends itself for stuffing but I wanted something quicker and simpler, and I figured if I sliced them the dish would look nice because the slices would have a different shape. I’m going to try them with this recipe to see how they work.

  4. Kalyn

    I just saw a recipe quite similar to this in Salt Lake City Magazine of all places. Only they cut the zucchini in long ribbons on a mandoline and I think this way of cutting it sounds much more appealing. The amount of lemon juice and olive oil you have seems just right to me. I think this is a definite keeper!

  5. Teri

    Wow, I am “eating down” my pantry in preparation for a big move across country (and one border) and I needed a recipe to use up all the pine nuts I’ve been hoarding. This is perfect.

    My goal is to use up a can or jar of something a day. We cannot take any food goods (except our spice cabinet thank goodness) with us. My rule is that I can buy fresh produce, but I cannot buy any more protien until my freezer is bare. Can’t take that stuff either.

    On that note, have you any recipes for dried mushrooms other than risotto?

  6. Elise

    Hi Michele, this is probably too late, but for future reference, I would make it ahead of time except for adding the pine nuts and cheese. Add those right before serving.

    Hi Kalyn, ribbons are certainly a pretty way of doing this salad.

    Hi Teri, you can check out the mushroom soup recipe, or just look up dried mushrooms in the search bar to see what you find.

  7. Allison

    How many hours ahead of time do you think I can make it? Do you think I can make it the night before?

    Note from Elise: If I needed to make this the night before I would slice the zucchini, chop the mint, grate the cheese, and toast the pine nuts, but keep all of the ingredients separate, in tightly packed (no air) plastic bags. Then right before serving I would combine.

  8. Michelle

    Thanks! I ended up making it twice. The first time I made it according to recipe, multiplying by four. I ended up with half of the dressing left over because I didn’t use all the squash, so I put the remaining mint in the dressing and stuck it in the fridge. The second time I made it, I salted the squash to draw out excess water and added a pressed clove of garlic to the dressing. After tossing, I added fresh mint. Everyone liked it better the second time. Excellent recipe!!

  9. Kelly

    Finally, something to do with all my squash other then boil it!

    Thank you for such a good recipe!

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