How to Make Zucchini Noodles + 10 Zucchini Noodle Recipes

Zucchini Noodles have been all the rage for quite some time, especially in the low-carb, paleo, gluten-free and weight watchers worlds. If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, you basically make “noodles” out of zucchini or summer squash. This is, essentially, the summertime answer to using spaghetti squash as a base for all things pasta.

There are quite a few ways you can turn zucchini into noodles. Some people use julienne peelers like this one or this one.

I’ve been using my mandoline – I have this one. I just insert the julienne blade and it’s fairly easy to do as long as the zucchini are not too narrow.

The most popular tool with which to make vegetable noodles is this Vegetable Spiralizer. I have been coveting one of these for months and couldn’t bring myself to buy yet another kitchen gadget as I barely have room for all of the stuff I already have. But after months and months of wanting one and hearing so many people rave about how amazing and easy they are to use, I finally broke down and ordered one this week.

I figured I would post a tutorial on how to make zucchini noodles with a mandoline as most people have one and aren’t going to buy a special single-use kitchen gadget just for this, plus there is just a bit more to making them on the mandoline then getting the right shape.

How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.comFor this tutorial, I partnered with my friend Pamela from BOLIG Photography. We spent the day together while our kids played (READ: tore apart her house and backyard), I taught her how to make Zucchini Noodles on her mandoline and she took some gorgeous pictures of the whole process to share with you.

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How to Make Zucchini Noodles + 10 Zucchini Noodle Recipes
 
Prep:
Cook:
Total:
 
Average Serving Size is 2 Medium Zucchini Per Person -- 0 Points Plus
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 4 medium zucchini
  • kosher salt
  • mandoline with julienne blade
  • fine mesh strainer
Instructions
  1. Wash zucchini and trim ends.How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  2. I recommend taking the time to peel each zucchini. The "noodles" look more like pasta when the skin is removed and some zucchini skin can have a bitter taste which some people do not like. With that being said, if I am in a rush, I leave the skin on so do what works for you.How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.comHow to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  3. Fit your mandoline with the julienne blade and be sure to use the safety guard. Never skip using the safety guard - you can really cut yourself bad! How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  4. Proceed to slide the zucchini over the mandoline blades lengthwise to get the longest noodles possible until you are left with a thin sliver that is pretty much impossible to slice.How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.comHow to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.comHow to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  5. You have just made yourself some zucchini pasta!How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  6. Transfer the zucchini noodles to a mesh colander and lightly sprinkle with kosher salt. Toss to distribute and leave colander over a mixing bowl or the sink to drain. Let sit for 20 to 30 minutes, giving an occasional squeeze.How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com
  7. If you leave the skin on, your liquid will be very dark green, if you peeled the zucchini, it will look more like this.Try to get as much water out of the zucchini noodles as possible before cooking.How to Make Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com



Now that you know how to make them, here are 10 clean-ingredient recipes that feature Zucchini Noodles!

Raw Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Olives + Mint from www.gourmandeinthekitchen.com

2.     Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Cream Sauce from Paleo Cupboard

Zucchini Noodles with Fresh Tomato Sauce from www.everydaymaven.com
Zucchini Noodles with Fresh Tomato Sauce from www.everydaymaven.com

4. Vegan Cheezy Zucchini Noodles from Earthsprout

Thai Chicken Zucchini Noodles from www.RunningtoTheKitchen.com

6.     Sriracha Shrimp over Zucchini Noodles from Kettler Cuisine

7.     Creamy Garlic Alfredo with Arugula and Zucchini Linguine from Living Nutrition

Paleo Pesto Meatballs from www.everydaymaven.com
Pesto Meatballs in Sauce over Zucchini Noodles from www.everydaymaven.com

9.      Paleo Pad Thai from Health Bent

Vietnamese Stir Fry from www.SlimPalate.com

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Comments

  1. Stephanie says

    I bought a vegetti about a month ago and I’m totally addicted to ‘zoodles’. I’m a 21 Day Fixer and stick to a strict rule of ‘no carbs after lunch’. So my dinners of meat and veggies can be a little on the boring side…but now I have zoodles with my dinner every night (no matter what protein or what other veggies/sauces I’m making the zoodles go with everything)….I get to ‘feel’ like I’m having pasta but it’s still a no carb meal. I don’t salt and drain mine b/c I don’t like the extra saltiness and I didn’t find that it made any difference once I combined the zoodles with the rest of my meal. I don’t boil my zoodles b/c they will turn to mush in a matter of minutes. I use one of two cooking methods: Easiest – once your meat/veggies or sauce is 99.999% cooked in a saucepan just toss in the zoodles, cover, turn off heat and they will steam to al dente in a few minutes…OR I steam them in my crockwave microwave steamer (another GREAT ‘as seen on TV’ item that is invaluable to people who eat a lot of steamed veggies). Tip for cleaning the blades of the vegetti – use an old toothbrush.

  2. Sarah says

    Thanks for the photos. I’ve been scouring local food shops for what NZers call a zucchini and making do with courgettes. Your photos show “courgettes” so I wonder what Americans call the giant versions that I call zucchini?

    • Susan says

      Big zucchini (over 12″ long) are the boon or bain of home veggie gardeners. I don’t know if they’d be full of seeds (down the center) but certainly they’d work great for zucchini noodles.
      Roberta, the last time I made the zoodles I cooked them for only 2 minutes or so in boiling water. It wasn’t a full rolling boil; I was afraid I’d break them up. But the point is they don’t need a ton of cooking.
      As for overly salty, if I want to get out the bitterness I salt them only as much as I would when eating, so it’s a light touch. Let them drain in a colander in the sink for about 15 minutes. Then press down on them lightly to squeeze out the bitter juices. Then cook.

  3. Roberta says

    Thank you for your site! I am going to make the Paleo Pesto Meatballs with the zucchini noodles. I was just wondering how you recommend to cook the zucchini noodles? Sorry if it is here somewhere. I think I must have missed it somehow. Thanks!

  4. Jennifer says

    PS I believe mine were overly salted due to the fact of the sea salt I use is hard to see if it’s coming out or not and I over compensated, plus I wasn’t aware of your technique of salting and draining. :)

  5. Jennifer says

    I picked up a vegetti at our local Dollar General store yesterday after reading a lot of posts about this type of veggie pasta; mine came out slightly under cooked and over salted but your directions defantly helped. Thank you so much! I see your posts are dated 2 years ago, I hope you’re still around!!

    • says

      I’m still here Jennifer! Next time, use a touch less salt. The salt is to help release some of the moisture so the zucchini noodles don’t get too watery. Thanks for commenting :)

  6. Christina says

    Is it possible to freeze zucchini or zucchini pasta? I am single and I often find I end up with a lot more than I can consume in a week. Many thanks!

  7. Julz says

    I have recently started making zucchini noodles (or zucchetti as I like to call it) and I never realised that I was supposed to remove the juices! I will have to try it this way :)

    Btw – I have only just come across your site and I am loving it!!

    • EverydayMaven says

      I like “Zucchetti” – that is cute! Yes, try it after you salt out the water and let me know what you think :)

  8. Susan says

    I’ve over salted a zucchini recipe when working the ‘water’ out of the veggie. Just use a light hand (salt less than you think you need to) when doing it & you’ll find it works wonders.

    • EverydayMaven says

      I’ve done it myself with Eggplant too many times to count! I just updated the recipe to say, “…lightly salt” thanks ladies!

  9. Lianne MacGregor says

    I bought a spiralizer over the summer and I’ve used it a lot already. I’m not a kitchen gadget person, but this is one gadget that’s worth the space it takes up in my cupboard (when it’s not being used, that is). With regard to getting the excess moisture out of the zucchini noodles – any thoughts on using a salad spinner? I might give this a try tonight.

    • EverydayMaven says

      I know what you mean – I love it so much! I think soaking with a bit of salt and then squeezing out is probably the best way as you want the moisture to release from inside the cell wall of the vegetable itself and the salad spinner removes excess moisture from the exterior or surface of a vegetable.

    • EverydayMaven says

      That sucks! It sounds like you probably put way too much salt on the “noodles” before cooking. Just a couple sprinkles is usually enough to draw out the moisture!

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Richinda,

      Yes, you do! I like to saute them in a frying pan with a touch of olive oil or butter for about 4 to 5 min.

  10. says

    This is a great and very timely posting – I just stumbled across the idea of zucchini pasta by accident. I love pasta but my girlfriend is not so keen on it, so this looks like a great compromise. I’m also reluctant to introduce another kitchen gadget (especially one with such limited uses) but your remarks + the avalanche of glowing reviews on Amazon + a video on YouTube force me to reconsider. Nobody else (incl. Food52 cooks) suggests salting/draining the zuke first – thanks for that tip. Curious now if you think purchasing the spiralizer was the right move? Thanks again for the post and recipes. Good job.

    • EverydayMaven says

      Hi Lee,
      I LOVE the spiralizer – it is 100% worth every penny if you are going to be making vegetable “noodles”. Have a great weekend :)

  11. Susan says

    I just saw a rather large spiralizer on Amazon for 22.99 which looks wonderful! I’ve eaten these ‘noodles’ at CousCous Mediterranean Cafe in Salt Lake City. They are scrumptious!

  12. says

    Good stuff! I have one of this big stainless French mandolines, and even with the safety guard the thing scares me. I should try one like you have. I’ve made zucchini noodles before, and they’re fun (not to mention tasty). Great way to use all the zucchini at this time of the year.
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    • EverydayMaven says

      Tianna – if you need to buy a new kitchen tool and think you will make veg “noodles” frequently, I highly recommend the spiralizer instead of the mandoline!

    • EverydayMaven says

      Definitely Harrison! I also love spaghetti squash but it’s really hard to find them here in the warm months so I stick with zucchini and summer squash :)

  13. Lianne MacGregor says

    Very timely! I ate at an amazing “raw food” restaurant in Toronto on the weekend (Aura in Port Credit) and had a wonderful dish made with zucchini noodles. I asked the chef what type of gadget is used to make the noodles and he said, “A spiralizer. We sell them here.” I was so impressed with the meal I’d just eaten I broke down and bought the spiralizer on the spot. I haven’t used it yet, but your recipes have inspired me to take it out of the box. Thanks for the encouragement (and recipes).

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