Baked Chipotle Sweet Potato and Zucchini Fritters

These fritters came to fruition because I had one sweet potato, which I had intended to make soup with, but realized it wasn’t quite enough for soup.

Then I noticed a few small zucchinis that were crying out from the depths of the produce drawer and begging to be used before they turned into limp and lifeless green logs.

Having no idea what I was going to make, I took out my grater and started grating anyway. It’s amazing the pile of green fluff that two small zucchinis produced and that one peeled sweet potato turned into such a beta carotene bonanza.

I could have dirtied my food processor but it wasn’t worth it and grating the stubborn tuber was as close to a bicep workout as I was going to get for the day.


The fritters came together easily by combining the grated sweet potato, zucchini, chipotle seasoning and salt with a couple tablespoons of flour, a little melted butter, and a beaten egg (or flax egg). Then I formed patties and baked them.

‘Forming patties’ does not involve making a traditional hamburger patty or even a crab cake where you slap the protein around in your hands. Loosely mounding up some soggy vegetables into piles with a spoon and putting the piles on baking sheets is more like it. The soggy vegetable status changes while baking.

Start by baking the fritters for 10 minutes at 375F. The salt in the batter caused the zucchini to release water, and between the melted butter and egg also in the mixture, some liquid began to drain from the patties in the first ten minutes of baking. If this happens, just ‘push’ whatever liquids are streaming across your baking tray back into a fritter with a spatula.

Baked Chipotle Sweet Potato and Zucchini Fritters

Lower the oven temperature to 350F and continue to bake for about 15 minutes, and then carefully flip the fritters over and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until they’re sufficiently browned on the edges. I used two spatulas for the flipping process so that I didn’t mutilate the fritters too badly, which I have a tendency to do whenever I flip things, especially eggs, but the two-spatula method worked like a charm.

When I was ready to serve them, I smeared the fritters with a little Spicy Homemade Honey Mustard. Between the spicy mustard and the couple teaspoons of chipotle seasoning in the fritter batter, I was in for a sinus-clearing meal.

As a side note, if you’re not making your own mustard or peanut butter, you may want to work on that. Both are ridiculously easy, the mustard especially is dirt cheap to make – we’re talking nickles here, and you’ll never need to buy it again. Plus, it keeps for eons in the refrigerator. Make some and just stash it away in the fridge for a rainy day. Or for a zucchini fritter.

Without the mustard, the fritters aren’t very spicy and have just a nice amount of heat from the sweet chili and chipotle peppers in the chipotle seasoning. Add as much spice and heat as you desire, including an optional pinch of cayenne or something that really puts hair on your chest, but I didn’t want my 5-year old growing any hair on hers so I kept them on the milder side of the spectrum.

Since zucchini is incredibly flavor-neutral (aka, bland), and can taken in a sweet direction, in Zucchini Banana Bread for example, or taken in a savory direction, this blank vegetable canvas needs a healthy dose of whatever spice is used so that it has some flavor.

The fritters emerge from the oven golden and crisped on the edges but fork-tender in the center. They do crisp up to a point, but remember, they’re baked and not fried.

Scalding hot fry oil really adds to both the crispness level of anything it touches, as well as adding to your waistline and adding to the plaque inside your arteries. Baking instead of frying is a tradeoff, and I never get the same crispness level with baking as with frying, but if I’m going to eat fried food, it’s going to be mini donuts that I then cover in powdered sugar, not zucchini. I mean, come on.

For as tender as they were, the fritters held together remarkably well. Vegetarian patties or burgers of any kind are notorious for falling apart, especially baked ones, and although these aren’t tough as nails, they held their own.

I made seven fritters, and the yield will vary slightly based on the sizes of the sweet potato and zucchini used, and the size the fritters are made, but what we didn’t eat that night for dinner, I wrapped up in plastic and tossed into Scott and Skylar’s lunches the next day.

Scott has never met a potato he didn’t love and I got a text from him the next day saying that he was biting into a fritter and that it was the highlight of his lunch.

Baked Chipotle Sweet Potato and Zucchini Fritters (vegan, gluten-free) with Homemade Spicy Honey Mustard (gluten-free with vegan option)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: Makes about 6 to 8 fritters depending on sizes of sweet potato and zucchini
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted (or vegan butter)
  • 1 large egg (or egg replacer or flax egg)
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle seasoning (I use Mrs. Dash Southwest Chipotle)
  • ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (or almond, oat, or a gluten-free flour blend)
  • about 3 cups coarsely grated sweet potato (1 medium to large sweet potato, peeled and grated)
  • about 2 cups coarsely grated zucchini (1 large or 2 small zucchini)
  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line two baking trays with Silpats, parchment paper, or aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray; set aside. I highly recommend lining your baking trays because the fritters will stick badly if you don’t.
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power. To the melted butter, add the egg and beat with a fork to combine. Add the chipotle seasoning, salt, pepper, and stir to combine. Add the flour and stir to combine. Add the sweet potato, zucchini, and toss to combine. Mixture will be loose and a bit soggy. Using a ½-cup measure, form fritters by transferring one heaping half-cup of vegetable mixture from mixing bowl directly to baking trays. My fritters were each about 4-inches in diameter and about 1-inch high and they weren’t traditional well-packed patties; rather I mounded the mixture into loosely packed circular shapes on the baking trays. I baked 4 fritters on one tray, and 3 on the other tray.
  3. Bake fritters for 10 minutes at 375F and if fritters have “leaked” or released any liquids, either from the zucchini releasing water, or the butter-egg mixture, just “push” the liquid back into a fritter using a spatula.
  4. Lower oven temperature to 350F and bake for about 15 minutes. Carefully flip fritters over (they will be soft and delicate; I used two spatulas to scoop-and-flip without breaking them) and bake for about 15 more minutes, or until browned. Fritters will be browned but soft upon removal from oven. Allow them to cool and firm up on the baking trays for at least 10 minutes before moving or serving them.
  5. Serve fritters with Spicy Honey Mustard (gluten-free and to keep vegan, use agave in place of the honey) or a favorite mustard, ketchup, hot sauce, sour cream, salsa, or other favorite condiment. Fritters will keep in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. They can be wrapped individually in plasticwap and make for handy lunchbox food.


Related Recipes:

Corn Chip-Crusted Southwestern Salmon Cakes with Creamy Lemon Chile Sauce (gluten-free) – No breadcrumbs used and in their place crushed corn chips are used. Beans and corn transform a traditional salmon cake (or crab may be used for crab cakes) in a Southwest direction

Zucchini recipes

Vegetable Lasagna Casserole (vegan, GF) – A noodle-less, non-traditional lasagna that’s made using a giant zucchini-carrot ‘noodle’ and lots of veggies and cheese

Raw Pasta Salad with Creamy Lemon & Herb Dressing (raw, vegan, GF) – Using spiralized zucchini as the noodles and the dressing is bright, creamy, and really makes this salad pop

Spiralized Zucchini Pasta with Peanut Sauce (raw, vegan, GF) – Everything is better when slathered with peanut sauce, including zucchini and raw vegetables

Zucchini Banana Bread with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting – Zucchini is not a prominent flavor but it provides some nice texture and this bread blends two of my favorites into one

Sweet Potato recipes

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup (vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, microwave-friendly) – This is my new favorite soup, 3 ingredients, and ready from start to finish in 15 minutes

Caribbean Citrus Roasted Sweet Potatoes – I’ve never met a blend of Mrs. Dash seasoning that I couldn’t put to use, including the Caribbean blend for these potatoes and the Chipotle blend used in the fritters

Roasted Sweet Potato Fries (vegan, GF)

Sweet Potato Graham Cracker “French Toast” Sticks – Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. They won’t win a beauty contest but they are delicious and the coating is crushed graham crackers, brown sugar, and cinnamon and the potatoes taste like French toast sticks

Do you have any favorite sweet potato or zucchini recipes?

Feel free to link up them up.

Thanks for the Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies + KitchenAid Stand Mixer + $200 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card Giveaway entries

147 comments on “Baked Chipotle Sweet Potato and Zucchini Fritters”

  1. These look great! I happen to have sweet potatoes already. But because I am too lazy to leave the house today, what would you think if I subbed in some spaghetti squash I already have in the fridge instead of zucchini? & cajun instead of chipotle? Bastardizing your recipe too much, haha! Anyway, these look awesome!

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  3. The states vegan and gluten free. Just curious how are they gluten free if you are to use flour?

  4. Hi! I’m planning to make these tomorrow, but I was wondering if you think olive oil could be substituted successfully for the butter? My sister is vegan and unfortunately I don’t keep any vegan butter on hand… :( I’ll be sure to report back with results if I try it with olive oil. Thanks, Averie!

    • I’m sure it will be fine! Hope you enjoy!

      • It’s taken me a while to reply, but these are awesome! Sadly, since my sweet potatoes/yams (I still have no idea how to differentiate between the two) were more yellow-ish than orange, they look nowhere as photogenic as yours do in the photos. But looks aside, these do taste wonderful! Thanks so much for the recipe. :)

  5. Just had to tell you that I love your recipe! In fact, I made them three times in the last two weeks. But I had to laugh, I thought the recipe called for carrots. I guess I saw the bright orange in your photo and immediately thought of carrots. It wasn’t until I was looking on my iPhone for the recipe while shopping when I realized you are supposed to use sweet potatoes!!! I am happy to report that they taste delicious with either veggie. But, I kind of got used to the carrots :)

    • Oh that is too funny that you have been using carrots THREE times! Well hey, we know the recipe works now with either carrots or sweet potatoes! That’s great :) Thanks for the awesome feedback!

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  8. Made using a store bought bag of broccoli slaw instead of Zucchini (has carrot/cabbage shreds too). Also had to use cumin & cayenne instead of chipotle seasoning. Still delicious! Served w/honey mustard and ranch dressing for dipping. I’ll use this recipe whenever I have leftover slaw and some sweet potatoes. Thanks!

    • Your idea sounds wonderful on the brock slaw (love that stuff from TJs) and your zucchini variety bag. Glad to hear you’ll make this again and your dips sound great, too!

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  10. I made these tonight and they did not brown up or get crispy in the oven-after 35 minutes they were still soggy. I tried pan frying them but that didn’t work either. They fell apart. I’m bummed because the flavor was AWESOME. (We still ate them even though they looked like a hot mess) Any suggestions on how I can get them to crisp up better in the oven?

    • I would just wring the zucchini and the potatoes out in paper towels right after you grate them. Some veggies (zuke especially) are super high in moisture and it sounds like you had that variety and it was just releasing lots of water. Also, don’t salt it til you’re done. Salting it would also cause the water releasing issue. Glad you loved the flavor and made it work, although messy! I would try the wringing-out technique next time and see how that goes!

  11. Love this! What could i use instead of butter to make this extra healthy? Xx

    • We’re only talking a little bit for the entire batch. You probably will want to keep it in there for browning effects. You can use vegan butter/margarine or possibly an oil? like coconut oil. Not sure how that will work or if it’s ‘healthier’ than the small bit of butter used.

  12. I just made these! Unfortunately some of them fell apart and didn’t brown even though I left them in the oven longer and made them smaller. But they taste really good! I also added cumin, Creole seasoning, paprika etc. I ate them with yogurt. Do you have any suggestion about them being so soft and falling apart? I was thinking I might add more flour or bread crumbs or something. But definitely recommend these!

    • I would wring the moisture out of the shredded veggies with a few paper towels before forming them into patties. Sounds like your veggies were pretty juicy and removing some of the moisture will help them brown up better. Glad you like the flavor and your spices you added sound like a great addition!

  13. I just made these for dinner Averie and they were delicious :-) I used cajun seasoning in the absence of chipotle and served them with harissa mayonnaise. Loved all the crispy edge bits! :-)

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  16. Hi Averie,

    Your delicious recipe has been nominated as one of the “Top 100 Best Potato Fritters Recipes on the Internet”. You can view it and vote for it here: (position #9).

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  18. Have you tried this with Coconut flour? Do you think it will work the same?

    • Coconut flour is not at all the same in texture or behavior as AP flour so I don’t know if it will work. I would guess if you tried you’d need much less since that’s the way coc flour usually is, but I haven’t tried so have no idea if you’d be successful or not with it.

      • Actually, the coconut flour soaks up all those juices you were scooping with a spatula. I did a double batch with half coconut (2Tbs) and half Quinoa (2Tbs) flours. I had no trouble with oozing, or flipping (made them half-size). And for a bonus, my toddler LOVES them! We’ll be making them again soon, I’m sure. Thank you!

      • Perfect! Glad everything worked out great for you guys!!

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  20. Hi Averie! I tried your recipe (with improvisations) today and loved it, and I just shared it on my blog. (: Have a great day!

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  24. Hi nice recipe idea but i am just wondering what purpose/why is butter used here? Im not against butter but it doesnt seem to be needed here and maybe part of the reason you had oozing ?

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  26. Does the fritters bake up crispy all the way through?

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  32. Just thought you’d like to know that I’m about to make some of these for dinner.  I’m going to try some subs (because I’m Katie) and mine will be SUPER spicy, but after looking at a few recipes online, this is definitely the “zucchini fritter” I’m looking for.  All the recipes I’m finding have tons of flour and/or cheese and are really just pancakes with some zucchini grated in.  I’m going for a veggie-based actual fritter, here.  I have some Hatch Green Chili Salsa from TJ’s so I’m going to try to add that and see what happens.

    • I made these years ago and they’ve been a hit with people over the years! Thanks for saying they’re the fritter you’re looking for and super spicy, yeah I hear that :)

      Keep me posted!

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  35. These were fantastic!  We made vegan (no butter or egg) and used cassava (gluten-free) flour.  We used a flax egg and had to add a bit more water.  Didn’t have chipotle seasoning so we went with a chipotle powder/cumin/coriander/ smoked paprika thrown together mix.  Very flavorful and went great with other veggie sides like roasted cauliflower and potatoes, and sauteed onion.  Thanks so much!

  36. These look amazing. I’d probably fry them simply because I live in Bangkok and it’s just too hot to have the oven on for 30 minutes :), but they look fabulous. I’m definitely picking up zucchini tomorrow and trying them with some carrots and sweet potatoes I already have. Thanks for the idea. I’m now looking forward to tomorrow’s dinner :)

    And btw, love your website. Don’t usually comment, but I check in a couple of times a week. Have made a few of your recipes and they’re always great.

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