This Might Be Why Your Zucchini Tastes Bad

Ah, zucchini! To the uninitiated, this succulent squash is merely a slightly more chewy and less juicy version of the noble cucumber, but for the people familiar with its healthiness and texture, it opens a nearly endless world of cool recipes that range from zucchini bread and salad to enchiladas and, of course, zucchini noodles, which the world insists on calling "zoodles" for reasons best unexplored.

However, just because zucchini is highly versatile doesn't mean that it's necessarily easy to cook with. If you for whatever reason end up with a giant surplus of summertime zucchini, it's all too easy to let it all quietly sit until they're (over)ripe for compost, just because you tried one recipe and it tasted like feet. Turns out, there's a very simple reason your zucchini dish might taste less than delightful — and we're here today to find out what it is, and to help you avoid it in the future. Let's take a look at the reason your zucchini might taste bad.

Badly cooked zucchini can be an abomination

As is the case with most anything, zucchini can taste incredibly underwhelming if it's cooked badly. Per Bon Appetitone of the chief things people don't like zucchini — and soft summer squash in general — is that the dishes they've tasted have been of the all-too-familiar under-seasoned, wet variety everyone knows and dreads.

Still, that's not to say zucchini can't be an excellent treat. You just need to remember a few simple things when cooking it. The first and arguably foremost is: Season it like there's no tomorrow. A zucchini's pores are full of water, so it needs a lot of flavor to really stand out. Another one is that a soft zucchini is a delight, but a moist one is a terror.

Simmering is a good way to bring out the best in the squash, since it allows some of the water to cook out and leaves the zucchini with a delightfully silky texture. Grilling the outside is also a thing to consider, since it brings a nice char to the outer layers, and keeps the inside nice and firm. Oh, and there's also the option of eating the well-seasoned zucchini raw, as part of a salad, or maybe making it into a nice, quick salsa.

All in all, the possibilities for zucchini are endless — just remember to season it well and avoid turning it into an unsavory mush.