Spaghetti and Spiralized Zucchini with Lemony Pesto

Spaghetti and spiralized zucchini with pesto on a plate with fork

Recognize this? I shared it on My Week in Food a few months ago when I first began experimenting with my then brand new Spiralizer.  This was a dinner that sprang from a late-in-the-day spin in the supermarket. I wanted something that I could bang out in no time, that the kids would like, and that wasn’t too heavy, as pasta often is. I settled on a spaghetti al pesto with a heavy dose of zucchini “noodles” subbed in for some of the pasta.  The result is lighter on the appetite and in calories with the added benefit of two large zucchini stirred seamlessly into your bowl. It was a hit; Spaghetti and  Spiralized Zucchini with Pesto is now a regular in our highly irregular rotation of meals.

Note: If you don’t own a Spiralizer and are on the fence about whether or not you want one, I’ve found it to be a happy addition to my kitchen. Whether or not it gets heavy use a year or two from now remains to be seen, but for moment, we are having fun with it. You might find this recent review of good-for-you gadgets from Food and Wine or this from Cooking Light useful in deciding whether or not you want to bite the bullet.

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Spaghetti and Spiralized Zucchini with Lemony Pesto

Using a large volume of spiralized zucchini in lieu of some of the spaghetti here adds flavor, texture, and color to this pasta. It also makes it a little lighter on the appetite (not to mention the calories). Using store-bought pesto embellished with a generous squeeze of Meyer lemon is an easy way to deliver flavor to this quick weekday dish.
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 2 large zucchini
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons pesto (homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 Meyer lemon (or conventional lemon)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parmesan cheese to pass at the table

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to boil. Cook the spaghetti until al dente. Just before draining, scoop out 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water and set aside.
  2. While the pasta cooks, use the thinnest setting to spiralize the zucchini.
  3. Set a colander in the sink and drain the pasta.
  4. Immediately put the spiralized zucchini into the empty pasta cooking pot and dump the hot spaghetti on top (the heat of the pot and pasta will soften the zucchini). Toss well. Add the pasta cooking water and pesto (adjusting the amount according to taste). Add a generous squeeze of lemon juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve immediately with Parmesan to pass at the table.

 

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Comments

03.01.2016 at 9:07 AM #

Julie

I bought one a WHILE ago and didn’t use. I’m going to give this a try–thanks Katie!

03.01.2016 at 9:07 AM #

katiemorford

Oh good. We’ve also been spiralizing sweet potatoes and then roasting them in a hot oven. They come out like crispy shoestring sweet potatoes and make a tasty snack (or dinner side dish)

03.04.2016 at 11:39 AM #

Deanna Segrave-Daly

Thanks for links to the reviews – and the main reason I’m hesitating is I wonder if I’ll use it for a month and then it will collect dust. But I do love the idea of mixing “zoodles” into my noodles. I bet I’ll finally invest in one come summer when I have zukes coming out of my ears!

03.07.2016 at 8:31 PM #

Alison

This recipe was delicious! I have a few zucchini-shy family members but it was a unanimous hit. And so easy to make! Adding to the rotation.
Thanks!

03.07.2016 at 8:31 PM #

katiemorford

I’m so pleased it went over so well…even among the zucchini averse. Thanks for taking the time to comment. Most appreciated.

07.29.2019 at 6:12 PM #

Amabelle Sze

loved this! the mixture of texture in the noodles/zucchini was just right! we used homemade noodles (using our philips machine), and bi-rite pesto. so good! thanks for the recipe!

07.29.2019 at 6:12 PM #

katiemorford

Wow…sounds like a next level version of the recipe. Glad you like it 🙂

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