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Grilled Italian Panini with Zucchini, Summer Squash & Basil {Vegetarian}

Grilled Italian Panini with Zucchini, Summer Squash & Basil {Vegetarian}

by Dara 44 Comments

These tasty (and easy!) vegetarian grilled sandwiches are filled with fresh summer veggies. 276 calories and 8 Weight Watchers Freestyle SP

Grilled Italian Panini Recipe {Vegetarian}

I have this little problem that crops up whenever I cook for other people. I am perpetually trying to convince them how easy it is to make a certain dish. Part of it is an “Aww gee, shucks” kind of reaction when they compliment my cooking. But mostly it’s because I want my friends to understand how is easy it can be to put healthy, tasty meals on the table. That’s how everything went down when I made these grilled vegetarian panini at my friends’ Fourth of July party.



As I churned out the sandwiches, the compliments kept floating into the kitchen and I responded to each with, “Seriously, they’re so easy. Let me show you how to make them.” I then broke into an impromptu cooking lesson, receiving the “deer in headlight” looks from several people who just wanted to get back to their sandwiches, pasta salads and ice cream pies. What do you mean not everyone likes to cook as much as I do?

Are these really as I easy as I claim? Well, let me ask you this: Can you toss some sliced veggies in olive oil and balsamic vinegar and grill them for just a few minutes? (Check out How to: Grill Like a Girl for some tips.) How about layering those veggies on some ciabatta bread with a dollop of tomato sauce, slices of mozzarella cheese and some basil leaves? Besides throwing them in a panini press (or on the grill), that’s all there is to it.

If you make these for your family, I promise I’ll spare you the cooking lesson if we’re ever at the same party. Honest engine.

The recipe:

Preheat grill or grill pan to medium heat.

Cut the zucchini and yellow squash in half crosswise, then cut each into 1/4-inch lengthwise slices.

In a large bowl, toss the zucchini, yellow squash and red bell pepper with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.

Place the vegetables on the grill and cook until tender, about 2 minutes for side for the zucchini and squash, and 3 minutes per side for the red bell pepper.

Preheat a panini press.

Spread 1 tablespoon of the tomato sauce on each cut side of the ciabatta rolls.

Divide the zucchini, yellow squash and red bell pepper pieces evenly between the 4 rolls. Top with fresh mozzarella and basil, and close the sandwiches.

Place the sandwiches on the panini press (this may need to be done in two batches). Alternatively, you can lay a heavy pan or foil-covered brick on the sandwiches, on the grill.

Grill until the bread is toasted and the cheese is melted. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.

Other summertime grilled panini recipes:

Cookin’ Canuck’s Panini with Grilled Chicken, Summer Squash & Red Pepper-Cilantro Pesto

Cookin’ Canuck’s Grilled Chicken & Spinach-Chive Pesto Panini

Mountain Mama Cooks’ Grilled Cheese with Spicy Havarti, Cilantro Pesto & Roast Tomatoes

Panini Happy’s Heirloom Tomato Panini

The Perfect Pantry’s Kale Pesto, Tomato & Fontina Sandwich

Grilled Italian Panini with Zucchini, Summer Squash & Basil Recipe

These tasty (and easy!) grilled sandwiches are filled with fresh summer veggies. 276 calories and 8 Weight Watchers Freestyle SP

Print Pin Rate

Course: Entrees, Sandwiches

Cuisine: Italian

Keyword: Vegetarian

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Total Time: 27 minutes

Servings: 4 Sandwhiches

Calories: 275.7kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1 medium yellow squash
  • 2 red bell peppers quartered
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 4 whole wheat ciabatta rolls cut in half crosswise
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce your favorite kind
  • 4 ounces fresh mozzarella thinly sliced
  • 8 fresh basil leaves thinly sliced

Instructions

  • Preheat grill or grill pan to medium heat.

  • Cut the zucchini and yellow squash in half crosswise, then cut each into ¼-inch lengthwise slices.

  • In a large bowl, toss the zucchini, yellow squash and red bell pepper with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.

  • Place the vegetables on the grill and cook until tender, about 2 minutes for side for the zucchini and squash, and 3 minutes per side for the red bell pepper.

  • Preheat a panini press.

  • Spread 1 tablespoon of the tomoato sauce on each cut side of the ciabatta rolls.

  • Divide the zucchini, yellow squash and red bell pepper pieces evenly between the 4 rolls. Top with fresh mozzarella and basil, and close the sandwiches.

  • Place the sandwiches on the panini press (this may need to be done in two batches). Alternatively, you can lay a heavy pan or foil-covered brick on the sandwiches, on the grill.

  • Grill until the bread is toasted and the cheese is melted. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.

Notes

Weight Watchers Points: 8 (Freestyle SmartPoints)

Nutrition

Serving: 1Sandwich | Calories: 275.7kcal | Carbohydrates: 9.3g | Protein: 10.6g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4.5g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 613.2mg | Potassium: 406.7mg | Fiber: 3.7g | Sugar: 3g

Tried this recipe?If you make this recipe, I’d love to see it on Instagram! Just use the hashtag #COOKINCANUCK and I’ll be sure to find it.

Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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