by Olena

Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto

by Olena

4.9 from 47 reviews

This Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto is delicious 30 minute one pot dinner that will become your family’s favourite! Minimum ingredients and effort with maximum flavour.

Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto

Low carb ground turkey zucchini skillet with pesto is summer must-do! The other day was very-very hot and I just couldn’t bare standing at the stove for more than 15 minutes.

I have originally planned to make zucchini boats but that’s next time when I feel fancy and a thought of oven warming up my kitchen isn’t a death sentence.

I would have loved to feast on cold zucchini noodles but that wouldn’t suffice for any of my boys’ appetite. All of the above mentioned circumstances called for a skillet.

Chop-chop, stir and dinner is served. I love this type of recipes!

Ingredients You Will Need

There is detailed recipe card below.

  • Ground turkey – 2 lbs of lean or extra lean ground turkey or even chicken. Use 1 lb of ground turkey meat for even healthier skillet.
  • Zucchini – 2.5 to 3 lbs dark or light green or yellow zucchini or squash.
  • Tomatoes – I like to use 1 pint of sliced in half grape or cherry tomatoes. Regular tomatoes will work too, they just break down more.
  • Pesto – 3/4 cup store bought or any homemade pesto (hint: kale pesto). This recipe is perfect for using up leftover pesto (hint: Costco size jar).
  • Parmesan cheese and onion.

How to Make Ground Turkey and Zucchini Skillet

  1. Preheat large ceramic non-stick skillet on medium heat and swirl oil to coat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. sauteing diced onions on skillet
  2. Add ground turkey and cook for 5-7 minutes, constantly breaking into pieces and stirring. cooking ground turkey and onion on skillet
  3. Add zucchini, stir and cook for another 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not overcook and stop cooking before you think zucchini is done – helps to avoid mushy squash.zucchini added to ground turkey on skillet
  4. Turn off heat, add tomatoes and pesto, then stir. Garnish with Parmesan cheese.Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto

How to Serve, Store and Reheat Ground Turkey Skillet

Serving low carb: Serve this ground turkey skillet on its own or over a bed of spring mix, shredded lettuce or kale.

Full meal: For all my boys, I cooked young potatoes with dill as low carb isn’t for them. Brown rice, quinoa or whole wheat spaghetti would be good too.

Storing: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days. I do not recommend to freeze this dish as zucchini do not freeze well. If this recipe is too much, cut it in half.

Reheating: Reheat on a skillet with a splash of water while covered. Simmer on low, check and stir every 3 minutes until warmed through.

This 30 minute ground turkey zucchini skillet is delicious, so easy and perfect for zucchini season!

More Low Carb Zucchini Recipes

Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto


Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto

low carb ground turkey zucchini skillet with pesto

4.9 from 47 reviews

This Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto is delicious 30 minute one pot dinner that will become your family’s favourite! Minimum ingredients and effort with maximum flavour.

  • Author: Olena of
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: American Ukrainian


  • 2 lbs lean or extra lean ground turkey
  • 2.53 lbs zucchini, cut into thin slices
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, cut in halves
  • 3/4 cup pesto
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tsp oil


  1. Preheat large ceramic non-stick skillet on medium heat and swirl oil to coat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add ground turkey and cook for 5-7 minutes, constantly breaking into pieces and stirring.
  3. Add zucchini, stir and cook for another 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Turn off heat, add tomatoes and pesto, then stir.
  5. Garnish with Parmesan cheese and serve on its own or over greens for a low carb meal, or with brown rice or quinoa for complete with complex carbs meal.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Do not freeze as zucchini do not freeze well. If this recipe is too much, cut it in half.

Reheating: Reheat on a skillet with a splash of water while covered. Simmer on low, check and stir every 3 minutes until warmed through.


  • Use 1 lb of ground turkey for even healthier skillet.
  • Ground chicken will work too.
  • This recipe is perfect to use up leftover pesto – homemade or Costco size jar haha.
  • Regular size tomatoes that are chopped work. They will break down more and make skillet a bit more saucy which is great. Just like in chicken breast and tomatoes.
  • Don’t overcook zucchini – stop cooking it as per recipe before you think squash is ready. It will continue cooking with residual heat. And no one likes mushy zucchini.
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese is the best!

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

olena osipov in the studio

Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys and a wife to Alex. And this is our healthy family recipes blog. I grew up in Ukraine on real food. As an adult, I tried many diets without results. Now for over 10 years, I cook quick and easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

What You Will Find Here

Healthy family recipes with simple ingredients. Many are inspired by my Ukrainian heritage. I share mostly dinner recipes because it just never ends... I’m obsessed with healthy freezer meals. And more than in love with my Instant Pot.

A Little More About Me

Originally from Ukraine, I now reside on magic Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada with my family. I started this blog in 2012 when I ended up at home with 2 small kids unemployed and a wee bit chubby.

92 comments on “Low Carb Ground Turkey Zucchini Skillet with Pesto

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  1. Highly recommend this recipe it’s absolutely delicious and the best part it takes the any effort to be made. I enjoyed it with a side of rice and some arugula salad. I had leftovers which I definitely took advantage of that and the next day we had pasta with the leftover toppings.

  2. I’m trying to meal prep and I’m having a hard time getting the right serving size of this dish. Do you have a healthy serving for 1 serving? Like 1cup or 3 1/4cups ?

  3. I made this tonight and was so happy with the result. It was bursting with flavor and color! My son is not a fan of zucchini but he loved it and went back for seconds. I had mine over a bed of microwavable brown rice. It was a quick and fresh meal. So easy. Definitely adding this one to my repertoire and looking forward to trying your other recipes. Thank you for this!

  4. Loved this dish! I followed the steps exactly. You are so right about the cook time for the zucchini. It was perfect. Great flavor. Will make it again and can’t wait to send it to my sister.

  5. WOW!!! So simple, so delicious. A one pot wonder:) We have made this several times now, and at my daughter’s suggestion have also substituted spinach for the zucchini which was also fantastic. We had a small portion of the spinach version leftover and it made fantastic omelets. This will be served regularly at our house and I have shared the recipe with my foodie family and friends. Thank you!

  6. Super fast and yummy. I used Roma tomatoes and extra onion but recipe looked like the picture. All three of my male family members loved it. Super easy clean up. Thx!

  7. This is an excellent dish. I made homemade pesto (have a large plant in my garden) and followed the recipe. The only thing I did different was I sauteed the zucchini in a separate skillet since I had so much of it. Served this over smashed potatoes but rice or pasta would work too (with pasta I would save some pesto to add to it). My husband and I loved it. This is a good “go to” recipe during the summer months when you don’t want to use your oven. Will definitely make again. Thank you Olena!

  8. Great recipe for me to use with all the zucchini I have grown! Thank you again, Olena, for saving my dinner dilemma!

  9. Hello, the other day I found a recipe on your site that I wanted to make. I printed it out and wrote a grocery list but now I cant find the recipe and wonder if you can help me. I found it on the place you have 45 healthy recipes. I threw the recipe I printed out by accident but I believe it had broccoli, green beans and parmesan cheese. I think it was an oven dish. Iv searched your recipes and cannot find it anywhere. I would be appreciative of any help. Thank you very much. It wasnt the recipe I am posing at.

  10. Made a version using this as inspiration and the family loves it. I sautéed onion and sweet peppers with the ground turkey used veggie seasoning and in an separate pan I softened some onion and added the zucchini added 2 tomatoes sliced and a small container of spinach, also used the veggie seasoning. Mixed together, using veggie pesto and lemon juice….

  11. This was a winner. It’s the first time I used ground turkey. The pesto really made it. The one thing I did that was different was to add a small amount of whole wheat orzo. It made it a really complete meal. Loved it.

  12. My family loved it! I served it with GF TJ’s gnocchi. I also pan seared the ground turkey brick in a seperate pan first.

  13. Made this for dinner tonight, it came out pretty good. Turkey came in 1.33lb package so that’s what I used. Four medium squash, zucchini and yellow squash, were about 2.5 pounds. Tomatoes from the garden. The only thing I’d change next time is to pre-salt the squash to release some moisture, I used a turkey baster to remove almost a cup of liquid from the pan and it’s still pretty liquidy.

  14. Delicious!!! I serve it with pasta and the whole family loves it!! Spiral pasta preferably but penne or macaroni if that’s what I have on hand. Really good!! Easy weeknight meal. Two thumbs up for sure!

  15. this is a fantastic recipe! Im trying to cook a bit healthier, and this was a winner! Even my boyfriend loved it, and was excited to eat more for leftovers the next day!

  16. I was having one of those lazy dinner nights and I knew I had zucchini and ground turkey in the fridge, so I simply googled “ground turkey and zucchini recipe” and this one was the first result. I couldn’t be happier with this recipe! So so yummy and even better with a dash of crushed red pepper on top!

  17. I love so many of your recipes and this was no exception. My 4 year old son loved it too. I used only one zucchini, and threw in a cup of cut green beans, and a whole diced yellow pepper. to add in more veggies my son would like. I also had only 1lb of ground turkey on hand. Delicious. Will add this to my recipe rotation 🙂

  18. Looking for something different. This hit the spot. I added garlic when cooking my onions and kale with zucchini. Loved it!

  19. What a welcomed change to my usual go-to recipes- sadly, the grocery was out of turkey so I replaced it with minced chicken breast and added in white beans. I’ll be making this again, THANKS!

  20. We added feta cheese and lemon juice. (See were feeling greek for dinner) so good! Highly recommend.

      1. Excellent flavour! Something different. Quick and easy to make. Used ground chicken added snap peas cause short on zucchini. Served with saffron basmati rice. Hubbie doesn’t care for zucchini however loved the meal!! It’s a keeper for sure!! Thanks!!

  21. I just made this tonight. This one is a keeper. I am a natural tweaker so I added Shiitake mushrooms that I sautéed on the side and added later. I also did yellow saffron jasmine rice (cooked separately). I grated parmesan reggiano cheese on the top. Next time I will add a sprinkle of pine nuts.

    This is an excellent recipe. Thank you for sharing Olena.

  22. Made this last night and my son loved it. He’s not the most adventurous eater and getting him to eat a variety of vegetables is a challenge. I served it with some rice which made for a great meal. Even great the next day for lunch. Thank for the idea.

  23. My husband and I loved this! I added more salt, about 1 tsp total. I can’t wait to try some of your other recipes!

  24. Absolutely amazing dishes I love all these recipes I don’t have a instant pot but I can make everything without one

  25. Cut the recipe in half for my husband and I. It also made a good lunch for the next day. We enjoyed it and I will definitely be making it again. 1.25 lbs. of zucchini was not too much. It was perfect. As a cheese lover I did add a little extra! ?

  26. This was kid approved in my house. I had a leftover jar of pesto, and lots of zucchini from the farmers market I needed to use and this was the perfect recipe. I wasn’t sure the little ones would like this, but they ate it up.

  27. I pinned this a while ago, but just made it today. Wow! It has all the flavors that I love. Since I pinned it, it is a rare day that I don’t get a notice from Pinterest that “someone” pinned your pin.” Since there are only 2 of us, I made the recipe as is through the point of saute the onions and turkey. I am freezing the other half. I also didn’t have grape tomatoes, so just used the small tomatoes that I had on hand and chopped them. This is a winner! Thank you for posting this recipe!

  28. My family lovedLOVEDloved this recipe! I did serve it over pasta instead of rice/quinoa, but only a small amount of pasta was involved because this recipe is the STAR of the show!

  29. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing this recipe. I made this for my husband and I last night and we had HAPPY taste buds. Who knew pesto and turkey would make such a great combo?!

  30. Made this recipe really enjoyed it. It was fast and tasty. I did half it because it was a little to much for just my boyfriend and I.

  31. Delicious! But I accidentally used Asiago cheese instead of Parmesan! Only 5 WE freestyle smart points per serving!

  32. 2.5 to 3lbs of zucchini? Is that correct? Because that’s a TON of zucchini and I can’t fit all that AND 2lbs of ground beef in a large skillet. Plus your pic shows the zuchinni cut in half, and the recipe only says sliced. I chose this recipe because I knew I’d be making dinner late and wanted something quick. Instead, dinner looks lame and it’s taking way longer than expected. I wish mine looked like yours! What did I do wrong? How many zucchini’s is 2.5 to 3 lbs?

    1. Yes correct. You just need a deeper or bigger skillet like on my pics. Sliced zucchini to size you like and that makes sense. Like if it’s big cut in half and slice. If it’s small just slice. It’s a quick dinner. I’m not sure what is your struggle honestly. Can’t tell you exactly how many zucchini’s because they are ALL different size. Don’t overthink it. Cut recipe in half if it’s too much for you.:)

    1. Mmm, no, don’t worry about it. Sun dried tomatoes have too strong of a taste. You want to add bulky fresh and juicy veggies/fruit. Skip tomatoes together or add snap peas, corn, bell pepper etc. Thawed or fresh.:)

  33. Made this last night for dinner and it was delicious. So easy and light. My family loved it and that was without the cheese. (I forgot to add). Thank you for your fabulous recipes.

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