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Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan, Castelvetrano Olives, and Pine Nuts

Difficulty Easy

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan, Castelvetrano Olives, and Pine Nuts

Recipe by thesal28_wpCourse: SALADSDifficulty: Easy


Prep time




Cooking time



If your neighbor just dropped off a grocery bag full of zucchini, then this recipe is for you because each serving size requires 1 whole medium zucchini! In this recipe, the zucchini gets salted and drained to draw out its moisture, which causes it to shrink significantly. Drawing out the zucchini’s moisture also ensures that this salad doesn’t become a watery mess, like so many other raw zucchini salads I’ve tried.


  • 4 medium zucchini, washed and dried

  • 3/4 cup sliced, pitted Castelvetrano olives

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts

  • 1/2 cup shaved Parmesan (about a 3 oz. block of Parmesan if you are shaving it yourself with a vegetable peeler)

  • Kosher Salt

  • Black pepper

  • Dressing
  • 2 oz. fresh lemon juice

  • 1 tbsp capers, drained

  • 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard

  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce 

  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled

  • 2/3 cup grapeseed oil

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • Kosher Salt

  • freshly ground black pepper


  • Using a mandoline slicer, on the thinnest setting, shave zucchini into oval shaped slices and place in a large colander. Toss zucchini with 2 tsp Kosher salt, making sure to separate zucchini slices with your hands and rub salt lightly into slices. Try to coat as much of the zucchini surface area as possible with the salt. Set colander into a large bowl. Let zucchini drain for about an hour. THIS STEP IS VITAL as it ensures that your zucchini salad won’t get watery as it sits.
  • While zucchini drains, make dressing by combining all ingredients except oil and salt and pepper in blender or food processor, and pulse until garlic is chunky and capers finely chopped. With motor running, drizzle in grapeseed oil, then olive oil, and season as desired. 
  • Meanwhile, add pine nuts to a small skillet, and toast over medium heat, shaking pan frequently so that all sides of the pine nuts toast evenly. Remove pan from heat when the pine nuts are light brown and fragrant, as they can burn quickly. As soon as you remove them from the heat, pour the pine nuts out of skillet into a heat safe bowl.
  • Once zucchini have drained for an hour, pat them dry lightly with a few paper towels and place in a large bowl. Add your desired amount of dressing, pine nuts, and olives to bowl, and toss to combine. Add shaved Parmesan to bowl, and toss gently to combine. Plate salad and top with more Parmesan, if desired.

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