This Easy Shakshuka with Marinara and Zucchini is a hearty vegetarian dish of eggs poached in a deliciously spiced tomato sauce along with zucchini, onion, peppers, cherry tomatoes and swiss chard. Plus, it’s gluten-free and keto-friendly! A one skillet meal perfect for any time of day!
If you’ve never heard of shakshuka, I’m happy to introduce you to this Middle Eastern/North African dish. There are Israeli, Egyptian, Yemeni, Jordanian and Moroccan versions, but the basic foundation is eggs cooked in a spicy tomato sauce, similar to the Italian eggs in purgatory. The sauce can be thick or thin, include a variety of vegetables, topped with cheese, and may or may not have meat. Regardless, it will be delicious no matter how you customize it.
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What You Need to Make Shakshuka with Marinara and Zucchini
Shakshuka is another one of those dishes everyone likes to put their own spin on and can go in a number of different directions. And, there’s a really good chance you already have the main components in your pantry and fridge. Plus, you can customize it based on whatever you have on hand.
- Eggs or No Eggs – Can shakshuka be made vegan? Absolutely! Omit the cheese and replace eggs with chickpeas, white beans, lentils or tofu.
- Tomatoes – It’s so easy to open a jar of your favorite marinara sauce as I did here or use homemade. Many recipes call for canned crushed or diced tomatoes but be sure to add some tomato paste as a thickener.
- Vegetables – Onion, peppers and garlic are pretty standard in shakshuka. We really liked zucchini, swiss chard and cherry tomatoes together, but other legit options are spinach, kale, artichoke hearts, mushrooms and eggplant.
- Meat – I kept things vegetarian, but you can certainly add beef, lamb, sausage, ham or any combination thereof.
- Cheese – I topped off the shakshuka with goat cheese, but feta is commonly used as well. You may also use blue cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, and cheddar. Whatever you like most!
- Spices – I think practically every shakshuka recipe calls for paprika and cumin, and you can dial the heat up or down with crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne. Feel free to add a dash of coriander, turmeric or chili powder too.
How to Make Shakshuka with Marinara and Zucchini
Once you have all your ingredients ready, preheat the oven, grab a large cast iron or ovenproof skillet, and fire up the stove. The veggies are caramelized first, then the garlic and spices go in and become really fragrant. I de-glazed the pan with a good splash of white wine before adding the marinara and tomatoes.
After the sauce simmers for a few minutes, you can start to wilt in the swiss chard, spinach or kale, if you decide to go that route.
Tips for Making Foolproof Shakshuka
Now that you have a rich, thickened veggie-loaded sauce, you can nestle in the eggs. Keep these tips in mind:
- Make sure your eggs are at room temperature! This way they won’t cool down the sauce and it will take less time to bake in the oven.
- Make shallow indentations in the sauce and move the vegetables around to try to create barriers so the egg whites don’t completely run into each other.
- Crack the eggs one at a time into a coffee mug or ramekin, then slide them into place to ensure no broken yolks.
Once the eggs are in place, very carefully get the skillet in the oven. Your work is now done except for warming up some bread for dipping.
We like the eggs slightly runny, but cook them to your liking. When ready, top off this beautiful, healthy and tasty skillet with your cheese of choice and fresh herbs. Serve up in shallow bowls and let that golden lava flow!😊
Here are more Egg-celent Recipes!😉
- Skillet Breakfast Pesto Pizza
- Poached Eggs Garlicky Mushrooms & Spinach
- Cherry Tomato & Pancetta Mini Quiches
- Sweet Potato Hash with Baked Eggs
- Cheesy Veggie Brunch Casserole
- Baked Zucchini Bites
- Puff Pastry Smoked Salmon Quiche (by Olive & Mango)
Easy Shakshuka with Marinara and Zucchini
- Cast iron or oven-proof skillet
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced in half moons
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced strips
- 1 medium zucchini, 1/2-inch slices on diagonal
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ¼ – ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 3 cups store-bought or homemade marinara sauce
- 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
- ¾ cup jarred roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
- 2 cups red swiss chard, stemmed and cut into ¾-inch wide strips
- 1 ½ tablespoons each fresh parsley and oregano, chopped plus extra for garnish
- 6-8 large eggs, room temperature
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- ½ cup crumbled goat cheese or feta
- Naan or crusty bread for dipping
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Heat olive oil in a 12-inch cast iron or other oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat.
- When oil begins to shimmer, add the onion, bell pepper and zucchini. Cook vegetables until beginning to soften and caramelize, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Next, stir in garlic, cumin, paprika and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
- Stir in wine to deglaze the pan. Cook 2 minutes.
- Turn heat to medium and add marinara sauce, cherry tomatoes, parsley and oregano. Let mixture come to a low simmer and cook 5 minutes.
- Wilt in swiss chard by the handful until all is incorporated. Remove skillet from heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Make 6-8 indentations in the sauce mixture. Crack the eggs into a ramekin or coffee mug one at a time and gently slide the egg into one of the indentations. Sprinkle the eggs with salt and pepper.
- Place skillet in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes depending on how you like your eggs. The center of the eggs should still be a just slightly jiggly.
- When done to your liking, remove skillet from oven, sprinkle on goat cheese, extra parsley and oregano.
- Serve hot with naan or crusty bread. Enjoy!
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