Savory side dishes are a premium around the holidays. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, macaroni, and other starches form the basis for a lot of the sides we know and love.
That's why it's important to have keto-friendly alternatives to serve around the holidays.
Deviating from one meal isn't the end of the world, but since there are no cheat days on keto (for good reason) you should opt for eating delicious, nutritious, and keto-approved dishes.
This keto zucchini fries recipe is made with bacon and cheese and is a savory, salty, and melty side dish that everyone will love.
Why You Need To Try This Keto Zucchini Fries Recipe
Here are three reasons you should ditch the starch and try this recipe this holiday season.
1. Bacon is Packed with Quality Fats
Zucchini is the "base" of this recipe, just like macaroni or potatoes might be for a more starchy dish. But what makes this recipe delicious is the crispy bacon (and melted cheese) wrapped around each zucchini fry. The natural salt infuses into the vegetable, and the high heat and fat help crisp up both the bacon and zucchini. We know you don't need more reasons to love bacon, but hey, we gave you one anyway.
2. Zucchini Fries are Low-Carb
Traditional french fries are made with potatoes, and one large, white baked potato has more than 60 grams of carbs in it . That's 10 more grams than an entire day's worth on a ketogenic diet!
One serving of these fries, on the other hand, has fewer than 6 grams of net carbs—less than 10% of a white potato. Zucchini and potatoes obviously aren't the same, but the former works way better for low-carb dieters than the latter. (See the next section for the top 4 health benefits of zucchini).
3. They’re Ready in Under 20 Minutes
Besides cutting and wrapping the zucchini, this recipe is pretty hands-off. You can do both of these things while you preheat the oven, and by the time you're done, it will be ready to go. That's why this recipe is perfect for a last-minute side dish or a low-carb holiday appetizer.Before we dive into the recipe, let's look at the health benefits of zucchini.
Benefits of Swapping French Fries with Keto Zucchini Fries
There are plenty of good (gourd?) reasons to eat zucchini squash (sorry, couldn't resist the squash pun).
1. Supports Cardiovascular Health
The number one killer of Americans is heart disease , but that number might go down if more people ate zucchini. According to Nutrients, there's an inverse relationship between people who eat veggies such as zucchini squash on a regular basis, and cardiovascular disease . And for all your friends questioning the bacon and cheese (the ones still on the "fat makes you fat" bandwagon), you can tell them that has largely been dunked. Dietary fat hasn't been seen as a major cause of body fat since 2002 .
2. Zucchini is Packed with Vitamin C
Just one cup of zucchini squash contains a third of your daily vitamin C requirements  (trust us, you'll probably eat more than that). Vitamin C plays a large role in curing and preventing sickness and diseases in the body . It also acts as an antioxidant, stabilizing free radicals that can cause cancer if left unchecked .
3. Zucchini is Seasonal
Like many fruits and veggies, you only see zucchini a couple of times a year—usually in the fall and winter. Some areas of the country grow the same veggies year-round, but the fresh stuff is seasonal. This, believe it or not, is actually beneficial to your health. The more variety of fruits and vegetables you eat, the less likely you are to have mineral deficiencies or diet-induced inflammation . Strike while the iron is hot (or in this case, cold), and get your zucchini fix while you can! Not sure about you, but we're sold. Now check out this simple recipe!
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. While the oven preheats, cut each zucchini lengthwise into about six even strips (12 total).
- Repeat the same step with the cheese to make long, thin strips of cheese that wrap around each piece of zucchini.
- Season the zucchini slices with salt and pepper.
- Line a piece of bacon with the strip of cheese and wrap around each slice of zucchini. Try to keep the cheese tucked under the bacon, or it will melt and ooze out.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray avocado oil so the fries don’t stick to the surface.
- Bake the fries until the bacon has become a slightly golden color. If you want a crunchier bacon wrap, broil for 3-5 minutes after cook time. Watch closely to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 6