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Courgette, Tomato and Mozzarella Bake recipe

Courgette, Tomato and Mozzarella Bake recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Diet & lifestyle
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegetarian meals

A wonderful Italian vegetarian dish, which is packed full of flavour. Serve with crusty bread and a green salad.

148 people made this

IngredientsServes: 2

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 courgettes, sliced
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed
  • 115g mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
  • 4 large tomatoes, peeled and sliced
  • 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:45min ›Ready in:1hr

  1. Preheat oven to 190 C / Gas 5. Move oven rack into the top third of the oven.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat and spread the courgette slices into the frying pan in a single layer. If they don't fit, cook them in batches. Sprinkle pieces of garlic over the courgette and cook until the courgette are golden brown on both sides, about 8 minutes per side. Remove from heat.
  3. Arrange the courgette in a 20x30cm glass baking dish, alternating with slices of mozzarella cheese and tomato, so that the slices overlap each other in a neat row pattern. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese and basil over the dish and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until the cheese is melted and brown and the dish is bubbling, about 30 minutes.

Parmesan cheese

Parmesan cheese is not truly vegetarian, as it contains animal rennet. To make this dish 100% vegetarian, omit the cheese or find a suitable vegetarian substitute made without animal rennet. In supermarkets look for the 'parmesan style hard cheeses' which are suitable for vegetarians.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(111)

Reviews in English (88)

I've made this dish a few times now with some tiny variations due to the ingredients at hand. I only had small cherry tomatoes so sliced them in half and made it with a layer of courgette at the bottom, followed by the tomatoes, then the mozzarella. I also mixed a good handful of breadcrumbs with the parmesan on top to give a cripsy top. Lovely! We thought we'd try it with some chicken next time for another variation.-30 Aug 2013

I added 2 finely chopped birdeye chillies as we like heat and gives the courgettes more flavour. I also used half fat mozarrella and bit more of it and more tomato slices. Just had olive ciabatta bake at home rolls with it....delicious-23 Aug 2016

A really quick and easy dish that is really tasty.-23 Feb 2016

Tomato & mozzarella pasta bake recipe

Jessica Dady July 20, 2019 10:00 am

Nutrition per portion

This pasta bake is guaranteed to be a hit with children and a great way of getting some veg into them

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Tomato and courgette bake

Serve this tomato and courgette bake as a side dish with grilled meats or a delicious light lunch with plenty of crusty bread.

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large pan and gently fry the onion and pepper for 10 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and fry for 1 minute. Season.
  2. Heat the oven to 190°C (170°C fan oven) gas mark 5. Put the onion mixture into the base of a greased oven-proof dish. Cover with overlapping layers of tomatoes and courgettes. Season well and drizzle with the remaining oil. Sprinkle with the oregano. Bake for 25 minutes, then sprinkle with cheese and return to the oven for 5 minutes to brown.

Serve this tomato and courgette bake as a side dish with grilled meats or a delicious light lunch with plenty of crusty bread.


  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 red onions, diced
  • 3 peppers, deseeded and diced
  • 1 rounded tsp oregano
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 400 ml (13.5 fl oz) milk
  • 2 tbsp plain flour (use gluten-free if preferred)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 250g (8.8 oz) mozzarella
  • salt and pepper
  • Butter to grease
  • 2 courgettes, sliced into thin ribbons
  • 2 large vine tomatoes, cut into slices

There are three reasons I love it when Alex heads out for the evening:

Alex is a huge meat eater, which many of you will know from previous posts. This means whenever we’re both in and cook for each other, it’s going to be a meat based dish and will also always feature carbs (rice, potatoes or cous cous if I’m lucky). But there are SO many veggie and vegan ideas I have, that I love getting creative when he’s out. I even usually make enough to have for lunch the following couple of days too, being super productive.

The last time I got veggie inventive in the kitchen (haha I do love a pun), I was craving courgette and something Mediterranean which I could add a bit of spice too. Something not too time intensive as it was midweek, but a dish which looked and tasted like a lot of effort and thought had gone into it. Something juicy, packed with flavour and versatile so I could eat it with whatever I fancied and pack it for lunch the next day. And so I settled on a bake.

Layering courgette, fresh tomato, red onion and mozzarella, sprinkling herbs and spices throughout, and topping with chopped tomatoes and more mozzarella, I baked my creation for 40 minutes until the courgette was soft (tested with a knife) and the mozzarella melted.

Serving for dinner with another fave veg, tenderstem, and cous cous it made for a delicious wholesome dinner.

For those who aren’t big fans of cous cous, or fancy trying out the recipe and switching up the sides so you have a bit of variation over the few days yours eating it, It would also work well with boiled potatoes, roasties, bulgur wheat or a simple salad too!

It keeps well for packed lunch if you have a microwave in the office to reheat, but do keep it refrigerated. I had mine for lunch for the following three days and I did not get bored.

Recipe is below if you fancy giving it a whirl. Let me know how you like to serve yours or if you have a favourite veggie dish in the comments section below.

Baked pasta with tomatoes & mozzarella (Pasta al forno con pomodori e mozzarella)

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400ºF/gas 6 and put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Heat a couple of lugs of extra virgin olive oil in an appropriately sized pan. Add your onion, garlic and chilli and slowly fry for about 10 minutes on a medium to low heat until softened but without any colour. If you’re using fresh tomatoes, remove the core with the tip of a small knife, plunge them into the boiling water for about 40 seconds until their skin starts to come away, then remove with a slotted spoon or sieve and remove the pan from the heat.

Put the tomatoes into a bowl and run cold water over them, then slide the skins off, squeeze out the seeds, and roughly chop. Add your fresh or canned tomatoes to the onion and garlic, with a small glass of water. Bring to the boil and simmer for around 20 minutes. Now put them through a food processor or blender to make a loose sauce. Tear your basil leaves into the sauce and correct the seasoning with salt, pepper and a little swig of red wine vinegar.

When the sauce tastes perfect, bring the water back to the boil. Add the orecchiette to the water and cook according to the packet instructions, then drain and toss with half of the tomato sauce and a handful of Parmesan. Get yourself an appropriately sized baking pan or earthenware dish and rub it with a little olive oil. Layer a little pasta in the pan, followed by some tomato sauce, a handful of grated Parmesan and 1 sliced-up mozzarella ball, then repeat these layers until you’ve used all the ingredients, ending with a good layer of cheese on top. Pop it into the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until golden, crisp and bubbling. Italians seem happy to eat this dish at room temperature or quite cold, but I prefer to eat mine hot.

Crispy courgette and ricotta bake (above)

This is somewhere in parmigiana territory, but a little lighter and with no tomato. I have made this successfully for my vegan brother using a vegan, soft-style cheese in place of the ricotta and a vegan parmesan, and leaving out the mozzarella.

Prep 30 min
Cook 1 hr 10 min
Serves 6

200ml extra-virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 unwaxed lemons
Salt and pepper
A few sprigs oregano, leaves picked
1 bunch basil, leaves picked
6 medium courgettes, cut on a mandoline into roughly 1cm slices
100g parmesan (I use a vegetarian one)
500g ricotta
150g breadcrumbs
200g ball buffalo mozzarella

Heat the oven to 210C (190C fan)/410F/gas 6½. In a medium-sized frying pan, add half the olive oil, the garlic, chopped onions and chilli, and fry for five minutes over a medium heat, until soft and lightly golden. Grate in the zest of one lemon, season well, remove from the heat and tip into a large bowl.

Pour the remaining oil into a 20cm x 25cm roasting dish, squeeze in the juice of both lemons, then add the oregano and basil leaves (this will be the marinade).

In batches, char the courgettes for two minutes on each side in the frying pan, then put them in the baking tray, giving them a good toss in the marinade each time.

Once the onion mixture has cooled slightly, grate in the parmesan, stir through the ricotta and season well. Lift the courgettes out of the baking tray and tip the excess marinade into a small bowl.

Now put your bake together: cover the base of the baking dish with a layer of courgettes, top with a layer of the ricotta mixture followed by another layer of courgettes. Keep layering until you’ve used everything up, finishing with a layer of courgettes.

Toss the breadcrumbs with the remaining courgette marinade. Tear the mozzarella over the bake, top with the breadcrumbs and drizzle well with olive oil. Bake for 50 minutes, or until crisp and bubbling. Serve with a crisp, lemon-dressed salad.

How to make it

Full recipe with detailed steps in the recipe card at the end of this post.

  1. Fry a chopped red onion until softened. Add in chopped peppers, courgette, salt, pepper, garlic, tomato puree, oregano and thyme. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add tinned tomatoes and cream, bring to simmer then add cooked pasta and spinach.
  3. Stir everything together, then transfer to a large baking dish.
  4. Top with the cheddar and mozzarella, and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.

Take out of the oven and top with a little fresh parsley before serving.

Baked Tomato Zucchini Casserole

Just remember when you are cooking that this tomato zucchini casserole bake is best to rest (to allow it to solidify a bit after cooking) for about 5-8 minutes, and then cut into serving pieces to prevent toppling.

As far as serving as a side, tomato zucchini casserole is great along side simple baked chicken or even as a vegetarian dinner option alone.

This recipe is delicious, filling and totally as good as a restaurant!

Scroll to the bottom for a printable version of this post, including all measurements and instructions, so you can follow along in your kitchen without being on your phone.

Here is what you need to gather to get started:

  • shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • garlic powder
  • basil
  • oregano
  • salt and pepper
  • zucchini squash
  • tomatoes
  • butter
  • fine bread crumbs (Panko is best)

Courgette (Zucchini) Pasta Bake Recipe

Including plant-based meals into your diet can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. The way I approach it is to learn what foods I enjoy and then adapt recipes to create vegetarian and vegan meals.

Pasta with vegetables is a dish that’s grown on me. I always found standard pasta too heavy, but then alternatives like spelt pasta and brown rice pasta made it to market. Now I have a pasta bowl in my hand on a weekly basis, whether I’m making a healthy lunch or opting for a vegan dinner! It’s a great way to include vegetables in your meal plan.

If you’re stuck on a lunch idea for your kids or you need an easy dinner recipe for your vegan friends, try this vegetarian courgette (zucchini) pasta dish out. It includes a home-made pasta sauce.

Here’s how to make my Courgette (Zucchini) Pasta Bake…

Penne pasta – 225g (75g per person)

1 Courgette/ Zucchini (sliced)

Optional: Cheese – Mozzarella di Bufala & mature cheddar cheese (grated), or vegan cheese

Cooking oil (coconut, olive oil)

5 Cherry/plum tomatoes (diced)

Tomato sauce/ passata sauce – 400g

3-5 Fresh basil leaves or ½ teaspoon dried basil

  1. Heat oil in saucepan on a low heat
  2. Add crushed garlic and follow with tomato puree
  3. Stir and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes
  4. Add diced tomatoes and allow to cook for another 5 minutes, or until soft
  5. Pour tomato sauce and stir altogether
  6. Add basil, chili flakes, salt and pepper and leave to simmer on a low heat
  7. Pre-heat grill at 180 degrees
  8. Place sliced courgette (zucchini), red pepper and black olives into baking tray
  9. Drizzle vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper
  10. Place baking tray in grill and allow to cook for 15-20 minutes, checking every 5 minutes to flip vegetables
  11. Check pasta cooking time and time cooking to coincide with grilled vegetables
  12. Boil water in a pan, add half a teaspoon of salt and cook pasta
  13. Once pasta and vegetables are cooked, mix together in a baking tray with the tomato sauce and add spinach leaves
  14. Optionally, add cheese (dairy or vegan) on top and place in oven at 180 degrees for an additional 15 minutes

If like me you experience a mild wheat intolerance, fortunately there are plenty of alternative pasta options to choose from. I tend to use spelt which is actually from the wheat family, but is said to have higher nutritious value. I find it lighter in texture and easier to digest. Brown rice pasta is also delicious, as are many other gluten-free pasta products.

Distant cousin to wheat and contains gluten, but richer in nutrients such as protein and minerals (copper, iron, zinc, magnesium and phosphorous).

High carb, protein and fibre content Low in fat.

High in soluble fibre which makes it easier to digest for those with a wheat intolerance also lowers blood cholesterol regulates blood sugar levels helping you feel fuller for longer.

Courgette (Zucchini)

High water content and low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium.

Good source of protein and dietary fibre.

Soluble fibre in the skin which slows down digestion and stablises blood sugar and insulin levels.

Vitamins: vitamin A, B3 (niacin), B6, K and an excellent source of vitamin C.

Minerals: phosphorous, iron and magnesium.

Significant levels of potassium, which is key to controlling blood pressure.

I try to include as many vegetarian and vegan meals in my diet as possible. That’s why I opt for a grain as a base and team it with a couple or more vegetables to make it more wholesome.