Zoodles with Pesto is a deliciously easy way to enjoy a pasta dish without all the carbs! Zoodles (zucchini noodles) make a healthy, low carb alternative to pasta noodles. With a few quick turns of a spiralizer you can enjoy this lighter than pasta, super simple zoodles recipe with red pepper-hazelnut pesto for a delicious, easy and healthy meal.
Like many families with young kids, we have pasta pretty often. It’s something that the kids love and is so quick and easy to make. But sometimes you need a change or could do without the carbs and that’s where Zoodles (zucchini noodles) can be a great alternative. Served with your favorite sauce, like my easy red pepper-hazelnut pesto, you can have a deliciously healthy meal on the dinner table in no time!
Zoodles with Pesto
- You can spiralize many vegetables using a spiralizer to make alternative noodles. Sweet potato, beets and carrots are all good and I’m sure there are many more. You can use them cooked, as I have here, or raw in salads such as in my Rainbow Crab Rice Buddha bowl. Zucchini noodles are far and away the easiest, though. They are softer, so even a less-than-great spiralizer like mine can cope.
- You can cook zucchini noodles in a few ways – steam, microwave, boil, or sauté as I have here. Zoodles are high in water content, so you don’t want to overcook them or they go to mush. I prefer to sauté as they take only a minute or two.
- I’ve called this sauce a pesto as it has that nut, cheese and olive oil combination, but in all honesty the flavors are more like one of my favorite Spanish sauces, romesco sauce. The moist, flavorful roasted peppers mean you don’t need a lot of oil or cheese.
- It takes no time to put the pesto sauce together, then cook your zoodles and add them with the sauce.
- Another delicious pasta alternative is spaghetti squash. Check out our recipe for Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Pesto. It is another easy recipe perfect for any night of the week!
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- 2 medium-large zucchini spiralized
- 1/4 cup hazelnuts or substitute hazelnut flour
- 1/2 cup roasted red peppers from a jar
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan Cheese
- 2 tbsp olive oil divided
Spiralize the zucchini, or julienne into thin strips.
Lightly toast the hazelnuts in a dry skillet, if using whole and they still have a bit of ‘skin’ on them - warm then a minute or two then you’ll be able to rub off the skin.
Put the hazelnuts and peppers in a small food processor or blender - it will need to be fairly strong to break up the hazelnuts, unless using ground/flour then not an issue. Add the parmesan and 1tbsp of olive oil and blend to mix. Set aside.
Warm the remaining oil in a medium skillet and saute the zucchini noodles for a minute or two to gently soften them. Add a little more oil if needed to avoid them sticking. Stir in some of the pesto - you may not need all of it - so that the noodles are nicely coated, being careful not to break them up. Serve with a little more parmesan on top.