Sautéed Yellow Squash

A crispy panko topping and fresh herbs add bold flavor to this sautéed yellow squash recipe. Easy and delicious, it's a perfect summer side dish.

Sautéed yellow squash

Who else loves yellow squash? Like zucchini, it starts to take over my fridge at this point in the summer, but I really can’t complain. This tender, sunny summer squash is versatile, nourishing, and super easy to cook. I love to grill it, roast it, and even eat it raw, but lately, I’ve been hooked on this sautéed yellow squash recipe.

Yellow squash itself has a mild flavor, so I toss it with a bright herb oil as soon as it comes off the heat. Then, I pile on a savory panko topping for crunch. Just a heads up – this topping is seriously addictive. It’s totally vegan, but thanks to my easy vegan Parmesan, it tastes rich and cheesy. Topped onto the tender, herb-flecked squash, it makes this simple recipe irresistible.

Yellow squash

How to Select Summer Squash

Anytime you’re making a simple, produce-forward recipe, the quality of your ingredients counts. You can’t make a great Caprese salad without sweet, tangy tomatoes, and peach cobbler falls flat without juicy peaches. Here, it pays to use the best yellow squash you can find.

Look for small or medium-sized yellow squash at the farmers market or grocery store. They should have vibrant, glossy skins and be firm to the touch – soft spots are a sign of rot. Avoid buying summer squash that are particularly long or thick. They’re often bland, with a spongy, seedy, and watery texture. When in doubt, choose the smallest squash available. They’ll have a lightly sweet flavor and firm/tender interior.

Vegetables, herb oil, and panko topping

How to Cook Yellow Squash

Right now, sautéing is my favorite method for how to cook yellow squash. I love how the veggies become slightly soft and sweet but still retain a nice bite. Here’s how I do it:

First, slice the squash into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. If your squash is particularly large, cut the rounds into half-moons.

How to cook yellow squash

Then, cook! Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and sauté the squash for 7 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cook until it softens but still has a nice bite. You don’t want it to become mushy!

Finally, season it. Remove the summer squash from the heat and toss it with the herb oil. Sprinkle it with the panko topping and fresh herbs, and enjoy!

Yellow squash in a skillet with herbs and bread crumbs

Yellow Squash Recipe Serving Suggestions

This sautéed yellow squash recipe is a simple, delicious summer side dish. Serve it with your favorite protein, homemade pizza, eggplant Parmesan, or one of these summer pasta recipes:

Round out the meal with homemade focaccia or good crusty bread to sop up any herb oil left on your plate. Enjoy!

Sautéed summer squash recipe

More Favorite Summer Squash Recipes

If you love this sautéed yellow squash, try one of these summer squash recipes next:

Sautéed Yellow Squash

rate this recipe:
4.88 from 41 votes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves 4
This sautéed yellow squash is one of my all-time favorite summer squash recipes! A crispy, nutty panko topping contrasts perfectly with the tender, herb-flecked squash.


  • 3 yellow squash
  • Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • Fresh basil & thyme for garnish, optional

Herb oil

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Bread Crumb Topping

  • ¼ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup Vegan Parmesan
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of red pepper flakes, optional


  • Slice the squash into ¼-inch rounds. If the squash is large, slice the rounds into half-moons.
  • Make the herb oil: In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, parsley, salt, and pepper and shake to combine.
  • Make the topping: In a small bowl, combine the panko, Vegan Parmesan, parsley, salt, several grinds of pepper, and a pinch of red pepper flakes, if desired.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat with a few drizzles of olive oil. Add the squash and sauté for about 7 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so that all sides get cooked. I like to cook mine until it’s soft, yet still has a firm bite, but before it becomes too watery and mushy. Remove from the skillet and toss with the herb oil. Top with the panko mixture, and fresh herbs, if desired.


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Rate this recipe (after making it)

  1. Donna

    5 stars
    Very tasty! Easy to follow instructions!
    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Donna, I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  2. Mike

    5 stars
    Great flavor! Easy to do and so good.

  3. kate

    4 stars
    Family loved this recipe even the squash haters! It is quick and easy and tastes fantastic. I used fresh basil instead of parsley. Yum

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad everyone loved it!

  4. Eric

    5 stars
    Quick, easy, wonderful flavor. Will make many more times.

    Thanks, like heat so added more pepper flakes, nice bite.

    Thank you so much


  5. Nancy

    5 stars
    I’m making this dish with yellow squash and zucchini. We cooked these two vegetables together before and has turned out delicious, so I’m hoping the combo of yellow squash and zucchini along with all these flavorful ingredients is a big hit. I’ll bake in the oven to get the toppings crisp.

  6. Loz

    4 stars
    I didn’t have lemon. Still turned out good. Here is what I did:

    Heat olive oil in will seasoned cast iron pan. Slice yellow squash directly into pan with mandolin slicer. Cover with lid. Mixed olive oil, fresh thyme, dried parsley, and minced jar garlic in measuring cup.
    After turning the yellow squash a couple times until softened, poured olive oil over it in pan and stir to coat. Replace lid for about one minute. Toss plain breadcrumbs on top and then scooped onto plate. Tastey!

  7. Dena Paris

    5 stars
    I sauted the squash in olive oil, then tossed in the herb oil and spread on a baking sheet, covered in the breadcrumb mixture and baked for 10 minutes at 350. It was delicious!!

  8. Kristy Hoffschwelle

    Recipe was delicious, although I chose to undercook the squash a bit and then put it under the broiler for a couple of minutes…something about untoasted breadcrumbs just doesn’t sit well with me, lol!

  9. Shae

    5 stars
    Delicious! My family loved this dish & it’ll definitely be my go to recipe for squash in the future.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Shae, I’m so glad everyone loved it!

  10. Melissa

    4 stars
    Nice, easy, and flavorful. I may have used too much salt.

  11. Shirley Johnson

    do you have recipes for pureeing meals? My husband has trouble swallowing.

  12. Paula Mccarraher

    I just made it and lol it’s gone, so that tells you how good it was🙃

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  13. margaret

    4 stars
    This was really good! Felt decadent. One thing I will mention is that I used three squash which were each about 5″ long and just about an inch in diameter, and it ended up being way too much topping and lemon juice in the herb oil. So, for others reading, make sure to use more or bigger squash than this! I could have gotten by with half of each.

    I really appreciated the discussion about how to pick the best yellow squash in this post, too. I was pleased I had managed to choose the best option at the farmer’s market this morning. 🙂 Thanks!

  14. Debra J

    5 stars
    Outstanding!! This is the first recipe I’ve ever made with yellow squash that we have absolutely loved!

  15. Nicole from conniesuesconfections

    5 stars
    I always make squash too mushy! This was the perfect quick summer lunch for me to make at home. Will be back!! Thank you.

  16. Amy

    5 stars
    Amazingly delicious, thank you for the great recipe!

  17. Lucia

    5 stars
    Super easy and really good

  18. Esther juliet

    4 stars
    Fresh and delicious easy to make.

  19. Ka Davis

    Really good info. I’m going to try a couple of your recipe’s

  20. Lalla

    5 stars
    I made this tonight and it was easy and really good! I added extra red pepper flakes. Preparing the herb oil and the bread crumb topping in advance makes this no stress dish. I will be making this every summer. Thank you, Jeanine!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Lalla, I’m so glad you loved it!

      • Rose

        5 stars
        Loved this recipe. It’s a keeper!

        • Jeanine Donofrio

          I’m so happy to hear!

          • Debbie

            5 stars
            Just tried your recipe.
            Loved it

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.