Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce

August 1, 2014

Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce


Every time I use the spiralizer I feel like a hero.
Same happens when I use the flashlight function on my smartphone, when I do handstand push-ups against the wall, or when I run into the subway as the doors are about to close.
But the spiralizer...the spiralizer is like the Superman’s cape in kitchen gadget form.
The first time I’ve tried it, I was blown away by how easy it is to use. I became hypnotized by the curly noodles spirals of veggies that came out.
I ransacked the fridge and spiralized just about everything that was large enough to fit onto the mechanism - big carrots, zucchini, cucumbers, sweet potatoes, rutabaga, parsnips, and of course my fingers (friendly reminder: it’s important to use a spiralizer safely...these things are SHARP!)
Creating noodles with raw vegetables has to be one of the coolest thing ever and yet, I haven’t posted a single recipe that calls for the use of a spiralizer on TIY.
Frankly because I thought that the spiralizer was a fairly uncommon kitchen gadget. Like the jalapeno corer, the corn kerneler or the bear paw meat handler forks (seriously, who owns those things?)

Spiralizer


That was until I went to a kitchenware store in Amsterdam (as usual, I was looking for photography props) to found that they sold not one, not two, but three different types of spiralizer.
Apparently it’s a much more popular kitchen gadget than I originally thought.
I bought one for my sis — just like the one I have at home. It’s pretty cheap (about $15) and can be easily stored in a kitchen drawer (you can find it on Amazon).
Of course there are fancier ones, such as the Tri-Blade Plastic Spiral Vegetable Slicer.
A regular mandoline can get the job done too, and so does a julienne peeler.
If you really want to, you could chop everything by hand the old fashioned way. Grab a sharp knife and some veggies and start cutting them lengthwise into tiny noodle-sized strips using a grid-like method. I must warn you though, this may take a really long time and will result in consistent widths.
But if you’re serious about spiralizing veggies, do invest $15 into a spiralizer. Money. Well. Spent.
Various blades allow you to cut long, thin, spaghetti-like noodles or windy thin strips. It can be used to make some really pretty salad fixings too.

Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce


Zucchini spaghetti (aka zoodles) are one of the more popular veggie pasta recipes, because it produces such good results. I make it all the time.
Just to be clear, when I talk about zucchini pasta, I mean raw zucchini that has been sliced to look and act like spaghetti. I’m not mimicking a bowl of wheat pasta but I rather create a fresh, creative, and fun vegetable dish that is not just another salad.
It’s also a great way to enjoy your fave pasta sauces in a new way.

Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce


The first time you try zucchini pasta, I strongly suggest you serve it with a good-tasting sauce.
Keep the vegan alfredo, raw beet marinara or avocado-cucumber sauces for the days when you’ll be a hardcore spiralizer.
A toothsome marinara sauce is a good place to start.

Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce

In my opinion, homemade marinara is almost as fast and tastes immeasurably better than even the best supermarket sauce — and it's made with basic pantry ingredients.
It goes really great with zucchini spaghetti. Even the little ones (i.e., my nieces) enjoy this dish quite a bit.
Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce
Zucchini Spaghetti (Zoodles) with Marinara Sauce                                        Print this recipe!

Note. To make the marinara use a skillet instead of the usual saucepan: the water evaporates quickly, so the tomatoes are just cooked through as the sauce becomes thick.

Ingredients
Serves 4

6 zucchini
1 (28 oz / 800 gr) can whole peeled tomatoes (I used Muir Glen)
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves,
1 small dried whole chile, or pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 large fresh basil sprig
Fresh ground pepper to taste

Directions

Using a spiralizer or peeler create zucchini spaghetti (always read the directions for your spiral slicer as they vary by brand.) If you don't have a spiralizer use a regular vegetable peeler to vertically peel long, thin strips of the zucchini. This will form more of a wider "noodle" from the zucchini, like fettuccini.
Transfer zucchini spaghetti to a large bowl and set aside.
Pour tomatoes (including the juice) into a large bowl and crush with your hands.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When it is hot, add garlic. As soon as garlic is sizzling (do not let it brown), add the tomatoes with the juice, whole chile or red pepper flakes (if using) and salt. Stir.
Place basil sprig, including stem, on the surface (like a flower). Let it wilt, then submerge in sauce.
Simmer sauce until thickened, about 15 to 20 minutes. Discard basil and chile (if using). Taste and adjust seasoning.
Add zucchini spaghetti to to skillet and toss. Cook for a few minutes, until all is heated through.
Serve warm!

Nutrition facts

One serving yields 229 calories, 15 grams of fat, 21 grams of carbs and 7 grams of protein.

29 comments :

  1. What a cool gadget! Love using veggies instead of noodles as a base.

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  2. I still don't have a spiralizer, but I do have a julienne peeler - I think the spiralizer might be more time efficient though! Looks delicious, and I love the new bowl, (the prop shopping must have been successful)!

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    1. The julienne peeler works great but the spiralizer is so much better; worth spending $15.
      And yes I bought that bowl in Amsterdam for 0.99 Euros. How cool is that?

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  3. Ha, I would feel the same way Mike. This one is ridiculously awesome, a great way for me to get my boys to eat more veggies too!

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    1. You should totally get a spiralizer Matt, your kids are going to love it!

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  4. I am in LOVE with my zoodler (what I call my spiralizer). Once I discovered this fabulous kitchen tool, I became a zoodle-aholic. ;) But as a paleo/primal gal, zoodles really do provide an awesome base for healthy meals. Ironically, I just instagrammed a pic of zucchini as I had planned on making zoodles tonight. Good timing! :)

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    1. I should check your IG then :)
      The spiralizer is such a cool gadget to have. gets the job done in a blink of an eye!

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  5. I love veggie noodles! I'm not even close to a hard core rawist, so I usually saute mine for a few minutes in some coconut oil. Makes them taste even more legit! :-)

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    1. I have to try that Lauren. Thanks for the tip!

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  6. Mike, that first pic is totally making me hungry!!

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  7. Mike, I am a spiralizer-fanatic! I have the fancy one, you know, the Paderno with the three blades, that thing rocks! Anyway, my favorite way to do the zoodles (loved the name) is having them raw. In a salad style, I blogged about it not too long ago, and make it at least once/week.

    I use the spiralizer a lot, sometimes adding veggies to spaghetti in the final minute of cooking, then draining it all together -

    it is such a great gadget.

    Real men spiralize! (because I said so!)

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    1. AMEN to that Sally! Real men spiralize.

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  8. Ooh I adore Zucchs - and I would take a plate of your "zoodles" over a plate of regular noodles anytime - thanks for the tip to use a skillet to get the sauce to evaporate/thicken.
    I have tried the hand cutting method before - it is most definitely time consuming and one also run the risk of loosing pieces of appendages - a Spiralizer would most definitely be the less gory option! :)

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  9. I've been tempted on a number of occasions to pick up a Spiralizer...but I just haven't done it yet. Perhaps I should have grabbed one in Amsterdam it seems. This looks delicious...as always!

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    1. Go buy one D, it's a life changing kitchen gadget!

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  10. Hi Mike, so nice of you to pick up one for your sister, they have to be enjoying your cooking. Love this!

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  11. Funny, I never tried zucchini noodles with tomato sauce... for some reason, I thought they wouldn't really go good together. Your pictures just proved me wrong. Now I desperately want to give them a try! Man does that look goooooood! I'm drooling all over the place and it's not even 7am yet!

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    1. Zoodles with tomato sauce is the best thing ever. Seriously, I am not kidding!

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  12. I love my spiralizer... it's such a fun gadget. And you are totally right, that thing is crazy sharp! I've almost cut myself plenty a time on that sucker. My spiralizer is currently in one of the many moving boxes waiting to be unpacked... once I find it, I think I need to whip up some zucchini noodles for some good #wolfpackeats

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    1. Dude, find that sucker and start spiralizing the hell out of it!

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  13. Hey Mike! i have a spiralizer but not so satisfied with it (from ebay). I may give a try with this one. What is the name of that store in Amsterdam??

    and zucchini noodles...??!! that sounds interesting.. never tried :)
    Thanks!

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    1. I found it in a shop on Haarlem street (not far from the Railway station). I just looked up on Google and it's called Deksels. It's a tiny shop but there's a LOT of stuff! :)

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  14. Like this cool and that recipe is definitely a good I will be making them!

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  15. Yummy, this looks delicious :) But if you’re making dishes with zucchini you should always buy veggies that are no longer than 8 inches. According to this tip: http://www.listonic.com/protips/get/soeextwjle longer zucchini can be bitter.

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  16. Oh man, just made this tonight and it was AMAZING! Why have I been buying canned sauce this whole time? This was so easy to make and tasted better than any store bought sauce. A couple questions though:
    1) Is it possible to use less oil? I don't really have a problem with the amount, but would feel even better if it could be made with less.
    2) If I wanted to make this a bolognese sauce, would you brown the meat before or after the garlic?

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