Zucchini spaghetti tossed in a creamy vegan sauce is a fantastic way to amp up your vegetable intake. The star of this gluten-free recipe is zoodles. The sauce is almost similar to alfredo but sans all the heavy cream. Herby, fresh and mildly spiced, this makes for a delightful meal during summers.
Ever since I bought a spiralizer, my daughter has taken to spiralizing everything. She has subjected almost all veggies to this torture. And cucumbers and zucchini are her favorite.
You can also make the same recipe using regular spaghetti or gluten free noodles. It tastes equally delicious.
How to make zoodles without a spiralizer?
You can make zoodles without a spiralizer too. Use a julienne peeler to peel the zucchini into thin long strips. Or use a julienne blade attachment on a Mandoline.
If you don’t have either of these, then slice the zucchini lengthwise into thin slices. Try and slice them as thinly as possible. Now using a sharp paring knife, make cuts across the length on the thin zucchini slices to make zoodles.
How to use zoodles?
Here are some creative ways to use zoodles-
- The first option is obviously this very recipe in which we will be tossing zoodles in a creamy vegan sauce.
- You can also toss them in pesto sauce or some homemade pasta sauce.
- Use them as a stuffing for Asian style spring rolls instead of the regular rice noodles.
- Make a quick Aglio Olio style spaghetti by tossing the zoodles in a pan with EVOO, garlic and chili flakes. Finish with red chili flakes.
Low carb pasta
This dish is ideal for people who are trying to follow a low carb diet. A cup of zoodles has roughly 33 calories as against regular pasta that has roughly 250 calories in a cup.
While this recipe is high in fat, it can definitely be eaten in small portions by people who are trying to adopt a low carb high fat diet.
- Zucchini – pick firm but tender zucchinis that are not very stout at the bottom. The ones that are stout at the bottom are mature gourds that are fibrous and are not suited for this recipe.
- Raw Cashews– Soak the cashews in hot water. This helps in achieving a smooth and creamy texture in the sauce.
- Olive oil– EVOO is the best for this recipe although a light olive oil will also work here.
- Garlic and onions– These are the base ingredients which will give flavor and body to the sauce. I recommend using white onions for this recipe.
- Herbs– A combination of parsley and mint make this gluten-free dish flavorsome and refreshing.
- Lemon zest– Adds citrussy notes and elevates the taste of the entire dish.
- Unsweetened almond milk– While I prefer almond milk because it is light and nutty, you can also use unsweetened oat milk in this recipe. Unsweetened cashew milk is also great here.
- Lemon juice– Cashews and lemon juice are amazing together. And this recipe is proof of that. The acidic lemon juice cuts through all the creaminess and gives a pleasant mouth feel to this recipe.
- Salt and pepper as required.
- Water for soaking.
- Use other vegetable noodles in place of the zoodles in this recipe. You can also use butternut squash or sweet potato noodles. You will have to steam sweet potato noodles before using them since they are not suited for eating raw.
- Not a fan of zoodles or other spiralized vegetables? No problem. Use gluten free pasta or even regular pasta (if you are not keen on GF) or spaghetti in this recipe.
- Other herbs like sage and thyme also work well in this recipe.
- For a different flavor, season this with salt, pepper and Italian mixed herbs.
- You can add a dash of tamari to the sauce for some Umami in this recipe.
- Toss in some stir fried veggies along with the zucchini for a wholesome and filling meal. Stir fried green beans, sun dried tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms are all great additions to this pasta.
Shelf life and storage
This pasta is best enjoyed fresh. Toss the zoodles with the sauce just a few minutes before serving. If you want to prep this ahead, you can make the zoodles and keep it refrigerated in a covered air tight container.
Zoodles keeps well in the fridge for a day or two at the max. The sauce can also be made ahead and stored in a clean and dry sterilized mason jar. Just before eating, allow the sauce and zoodles to come to room temperature. Toss together and serve.
This easy spaghetti recipe is vegan and gluten-free. It is also free from soy. Since we use almond milk here, it is not nut-free. If you are looking for a nut-free option, then use unsweetened oat or coconut milk here.
- It is very important to soak the cashews to achieve a creamy sauce.
- Use a wooden spoon or salad mixing spoons to toss the zoodles into the sauce to prevent the zoodles from breaking.
Steps 1 and 2
Soak the cashews in hot water for 20 to 30 minutes. While the cashews are getting soaked, spiralize the zucchini. Chop the remaining veggies and keep aside.
Making the sauce
Steps 3 and 4
Heat a sauce pan with olive oil. Toss the garlic in and fry till they begin to brown.
Steps 5 and 6
Now, add the finely chopped white onions.
Steps 7 and 8
Add salt and pepper.
Steps 9 and 10
Mix well. Continue to cook till the onions are soft and translucent. Tip in the herbs next.
Steps 11 and 12
Saute till the herbs are wilted. Add the lemon zest next and stir once to combine.
Steps 13 and 14
Now, add the almond milk and mix everything well. Simmer on low heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
Steps 15 and 16
Transfer the sautéed mixture to a blender. Drain the soaked cashews and add them to the blender. Add the lemon juice to this.
Blend to a smooth and creamy sauce.
Tossing the zoodles in the sauce
Steps 17 and 18
Transfer the zoodles to a large mixing bowl. Add the sauce to this. Mix gently with a pair of tongs or a wooden mixing spoon.
Finish with a few grinds of whole black pepper and garnish with parsley before serving.
- 1 Mixing bowl
- 1 Blender
- 1 set measuring cups and spoons
- 1 spiralizer (Read blog post to know how to make zoodles without spiralizer)
- 1 pair of tongs or mixing spoons
For the zoodles
- 450 grams zucchini (1 lb approximately)
For the sauce
- 1/2 cup raw cashews
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 5 garlic cloves peeled and chopped roughly
- 1 cup finely chopped white onions
- 2 tsp coarsely crushed black pepper
- salt to taste
- 3 tbsp chopped parsley
- 15 fresh mint leaves
- 2 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tbsp lemon juice freshly squeezed
- Soak the cashews in hot water for 20 to 30 minutes. While the cashews are getting soaked, spiralize the zucchini. Chop the remaining veggies and keep aside.
Making the sauce
- Heat a sauce pan with olive oil. Toss the garlic in and fry till they begin to brown.
- Now, add the finely chopped white onions along with salt and pepper.
- Mix well. Continue to cook till the onions are soft and translucent.
- Tip in the herbs and saute till they are wilted.
- Add the lemon zest next and stir once to combine.
- Now, add the almond milk and mix everything well. Simmer on low heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Transfer the sautéed mixture to a blender. Drain the soaked cashews and add them to the blender. Add the lemon juice to this.
- Blend to a smooth and creamy sauce.
Tossing the zoodles in the sauce
- Transfer the zoodles to a large mixing bowl. Add the sauce to this. Mix gently with a pair of tongs or a wooden mixing spoon.
- Finish with a few grinds of whole black pepper and garnish with parsley before serving.
For Instant Pot & Air Fryer Recipes
Instant Pot timings may vary based on your geographic location. Air fryer settings and timings may vary based on the capacity and the model of the Air fryer.
Nutrition values are provided here as a courtesy and are only a rough guide. Please consult a health care provider if you have any concerns.
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