Loaded Zucchini Skins take everything you love about the classic potato skin appetizer up a notch. Topped with the standard add-ons – crisp bacon, melted cheese, sour cream, and green onions – you won’t miss the potato!

overhead shot of cheesy zucchini skins

You know I love zucchini. Zucchini tacos, zucchini brownies, zucchini fries, zucchini cookies, zucchini bread…I like to use it whenever I can.

I’m not trying to replace potatoes, I just love zucchini, but if you are watching carbs, zucchini is a great swap. The mild flavor, soft texture, and “skin” make them very potato-like in this case.

Though traditionally thought of as an appetizer, I think these loaded zucchini skins are perfect as a side dish or even a main course. They only take about a half hour to make so you can whip them up whenever a craving hits.

loaded zucchini skins topped with sour cream and green onions

Tools you’ll need

  • Baking Sheet – I like to use a baking sheet with a lip so things don’t slide off.
  • Wire Cooling Rack – Not just for cookies, I like to bake my bacon on a cooling rack so the grease drips off.
  • Colander – I find a colander with a handle super handy.


Below is a list of the ingredients you’ll need to gather to make this recipe, why you need them, and possible substitutions. Scroll all the way down for the full recipe card with measurements.

  • Zucchini – Size is subjective with zucchini, but you’ll want decently sized zucchini, unless you’re making a small batch.
  • Bacon – I opt for nitrate free, uncured bacon. Sometimes I go with turkey bacon. Use your favorite.
  • Olive Oil – Choose a light, high quality olive oil for the best taste.
  • Salt & Pepper – You’ll use salt to both “sweat” the zucchini to remove excess moisture and to season.
  • Chili Powder – Chili powder is generally pretty mild in heat but gives great flavor.
  • Cumin – Ground cumin is rich and hearty and adds great depth.
  • Shredded Cheddar – I use cheddar but pepper jack would be a great alternative.
  • Sour Cream – For topping/dipping. Or you can use Greek yogurt for a very similar taste and texture but more protein.
  • Green Onions – For garnish. They’re fresh and mellow in flavor.
overhead shot of ingredients laid out to make loaded zucchini skins

Can you eat zucchini skin?

You can absolutely eat zucchini skin. It is soft, thin, and totally edible. The skin holds all the nutrients so don’t peel it away! (that goes for all baked goods that call for zucchini, too)

Are these keto friendly?

Yep, these zucchini skins are low carb and keto friendly. I promise you won’t miss the potato.

sliced zucchini on a baking sheet

How many servings does this make?

Zucchinis greatly vary in size. How many servings you’ll get will depend on the size you start with and how generous you cut the slices. For this batch, I used four large zucchini and it made 16 servings.

How to cook bacon in the oven

You’ll want crispy bacon to sprinkle on the skins and my preferred cooking method is baking it in the oven. No grease splatters, it’s hands-off, it cooks evenly, and its easy.

To do it, line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Lay a wire cooling rack on top of the foil, spray with non-stick spray, and lay out the bacon in a single layer. (If you don’t have a cooling rack, you can lay the bacon strips directly onto the foil.)

Without preheating the oven, turn it to 400 degrees, and place the pan in. Cook for 12-15 minutes until it reaches your perfect level of crisp. Remove from the rack and lay on paper towel to soak up any excess grease.

Click for the full “how to cook bacon in the oven” tutorial.

hand sprinkling bacon on zucchini skins

Zucchini Skins

Need more zucchini recipes in your life? Try these:

overhead shot of cheesy loaded zucchini skins with text overlay
overhead shot of cheesy zucchini skins
5 from 2 votes

Loaded Zucchini Skins

Servings: 16 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Loaded Zucchini Skins take everything you love about the classic potato skin appetizer up a notch. Topped with the standard add-ons – crisp bacon, melted cheese, sour cream, and green onions – you won't miss the potato!


  • ½ pound bacon cooked until crisp, then chopped
  • 4 large zucchini
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar
  • green onions optional
  • sour cream optional


  • Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with foil. Set aside.
  • Cook bacon using your preferred method and chop into small pieces. Set aside.
  • Cut zucchinis in half lengthwise. Using a large metal spoon, scoop out seeds from the insides, then cut each half into chunks.
  • Place zucchini pieces into a colander & sprinkle with salt to draw out excess moisture for about 5 minutes.
  • Transfer zucchini to the prepared baking sheet and toss with olive oil. Season with chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper.
  • Bake until slightly tender, about 5 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and top each piece of zucchini with cheese and bacon.
  • Return to oven and bake until cheese is bubbly and zucchini is tender, about 10 minutes more.
  • Garnish with sour cream and green onions before serving.


Store leftovers covered in the fridge for up to 3 days. 
If making ahead of time, prep the pieces and assemble when ready to eat.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 146kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 335mg | Potassium: 257mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 348IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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  1. I’m confused about the zucchini pieces that are cut up and roasted? Or are the boats roasted empty? The photos don’t seem to be filled with roasted chunks