The word zoodles has been spreading the internet for a while now, and I never was that fond of them as being categorized as an alternative to pasta. They have their own distinctive taste, texture and bite but they do meld together very well to certain flavors like pesto or sundried tomato flavors. If you pair them with the right flavors you will feel like you are eating a type of pasta that just has a lot less carbs and isn’t refined. For people like myself who enjoy pasta but don’t want to have it often, I do suggest trying these zoodles out.
I don’t have a spiralizer but I have used vegetable peelers in the past to make flatter wide zoodles or you could make a bit thicker of a zoodle that is long like fettuccine with just a knife. In this picture I did at first try the peeler but then realized I wanted a thicker cut, so I cut the zucchini in those halves shown and thinly sliced down to make long strands.
I almost had no idea what I was going to make with them. First I thought maybe a fresh tomato sauce, but then the idea of pesto sounded better…until I realized we had no basil. However there was a lot of fresh mint and parsley and I have made pesto with parsley before that tasted just as fresh and delicious. So I made the mint and parsley pesto in a blender along with walnuts since I didn’t have the traditional pine nuts. You can even make it vegan and replace the grated parmesan for nutritional yeast (or put no cheese at all-it still tastes good). I had it with leftover chicken but it would be fine on its own or with a salad. If you have any vegan meats, you can crisp them up and throw it into the zoodles at the end.
Mint Pesto Zoodles With Fresh Tomatoes
Servings: 2 entree servings, or 3-4 side servings
Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
- 2 large zucchini
- 1/2 cup packed parsley leaves
- 1/2 cup packed mint leaves
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 2 medium garlic cloves
- 3-4 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tomatoes
- salt and pepper to taste
- Either use a spiralizer to make the zucchini noodles or thinly cut them in strands with a knife. Also, remove the seeds of the tomatoes and dice. Put them to the side as you make the pesto.
- In a blender or food processor add together the parsley leaves, mint leaves, cheese, lemon juice and zest, walnuts and garlic cloves. As it is blending together, slowly add in the oil until smooth. You may need more or less olive oil to reach the consistency you want if you like it thinner or thicker. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- In a saucepan, saute the zoodles for about 2 minutes on medium-low, constantly stirring with tongs and separating the noodles. Add in the tomatoes for 1 more minute and make sure not to make the zucchini noodles get too soft or mushy. They should still have some crunch to them. Finally add in the desired amount of pesto sauce (there may be some leftover) and combine in the pan with the zoodles and tomatoes. Enjoy on its own or with the protein of your choice (you can add more cheese on top too).