Zucchini noodles are a great low-carb pasta option that’s both delicious and good for you. Today I’m showing you how to make a zucchini noodles plus a delicious recipe that will have your family asking for seconds!
Recipes that the kids will enjoy and help you stick to a grain-free or paleo diet can be hard to come by. That’s why I’m sharing today’s recipe. I love finding ways to help sneak extra veggies into your family’s diet. Especially in finding new ways to add veggies into kid’s meals.
The constant search for new and delicious gluten and grain-free recipes can be very time consuming, not to mention putting together a shopping list and figuring out what to prep ahead to save time- do you even have time for that?
For a done-for-you solution, check out the MOMables Grain-Free Meal Plan. It has everything above and delicious, kid-friendly grain-free recipes you’ll want to make again and again.
What is Zucchini Pasta?
Made from zucchini, these spiralized noodles are a healthy alternative to regular noodles and perfect for anyone who is grain-free or watching their carb intake.
We love zucchini. It’s low in calories and a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, antioxidants, folates, and potassium.
If you’re concerned that the kids won’t be open, you can always start using half zucchini noodles and half spaghetti. Over time they will get them used to the taste and texture, and before long they’ll eat a full serving, no questions asked.
A good sauce also helps with the transition, so keep scrolling to check those ideas out!
How to Make Zucchini Pasta
Cooking zucchini noodles is an option, but I encourage it! The veggies take on all the flavor and a tender texture that is kid-friendly, so I’ll be sharing my favorite way to make zucchini pasta.
You’ll want to start with spiralized zucchini and I show you how to do that in the video below, so if you aren’t sure, watch it first!
If you don’t have a spiralizer, you can also julienne the zucchini, or thinly slice it by hand, or use a potato peeler to slice them into ribbon-size noodles.
How to Cook Zucchini Pasta
You can eat zucchini pasta uncooked, or steamed in the microwave, but my kids prefer it sauteéd in a skillet. I’ll be sharing all three methods below:
1. In a large skillet on the stove, add 1 tablespoon of the oil on medium-high heat. Add the zucchini noodles.
*Make sure not to overcrowd the skillet, work in 2 batches if needed.
2. Add the salt and lemon zest. Toss, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
3. Halfway through cooking add the fresh basil and ½ cup halved cherry tomatoes. Finish cooking until the noodles are soft. Repeat with the second batch of noodles, if necessary.
4. Serve and enjoy
This is an easy and delicious low carb pasta recipe that you can serve with your pasta favorite sauce.
To serve them raw:
Toss uncooked zucchini noodles into a salad or swap for spaghetti in your favorite pasta salad.
To steam zucchini noodles:
Add them to a microwave-safe dish and cook for 1 minute or until the noodles are tender. Season and serve as desired.
Zucchini Pasta Sauce Options
You can serve the zucchini pasta with or without sauce, but for my household, sauce is a must. The recipes below are great with regular pasta as well as this recipe.
- Broccoli pesto– add even more veggies to the mix!
- Alfredo sauce– for a low-carb shrimp and pasta alfredo
- Crockpot Tomato Sauce– perfect for meatballs and zucchini spaghetti
Storing Zucchini Noodles
Spiralizing veggies can yield a lot, but you don’t have to cook them all in one session. You can store the fresh zucchini noodles for up to 4 days and the video shown above shows that process.
I like keeping these on hand to use as a quick side dish or in a salad. One important note- peeling is optional. I prefer the skin on, but if needed you can remove the skin before spiralizing.
How to Pack it for Lunch
Swap the usual pasta salad for a serving of these noodles and you’ll have no regrets. This recipe can be enjoyed at room temperature or heated and packed in a thermos for a hot lunch.
If you’d prefer this recipe hot, in the morning, reheat the zucchini pasta in the microwave and seal in a thermos. That way they’ll stay hot until lunchtime.
Zucchini Pasta Recipe
This zucchini pasta is low carb and gluten-free. This is one veggie “spaghetti” your kids will love!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 4–5 cups 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Skillet
- Diet: Gluten Free
- 3 zucchini or summer squash (6 to 8 inches long)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 to 2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil
- ½ cup halved cherry tomatoes
- Scrub and clean the zucchini. Remove the ends, and discard the core and seeds. Julienne by hand or by using a mandoline.
- In a skillet on the stove, add 1 tablespoon of the oil on medium-high heat. Once heated, add the zucchini noodles. *If needed, cook this in 2 batches.
- Add the salt and lemon zest. Toss, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Halfway through, add the basil and tomatoes. Finish cooking until the noodles are tender.
- Serve immediately with your choice of sauce or toppings.
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 95
- Sugar: 0.4g
- Sodium: 167.6mg
- Fat: 4g
- Saturated Fat: 0.6g
- Carbohydrates: 13.9g
- Fiber: 1.5g
- Protein: 3.2g
- Cholesterol: 0mg