A big bowl of pasta is hard to refuse, but it's sometimes harder to stop yourself from feeling any post-meal regrets: the meal was too heavy, too lacking in veggies, too much. However, substituting the pasta for zoodles — a.k.a., zucchini noodles — provides the perfect solution for a lighter "pasta'" dish that is still full of flavor. Crank the zucchini through a trendy spiralizer to create long shoestring "noodles," and then sauté the strands in hot olive oil. The slightly al dente zoodles, mixed with a thick and savory marinara sauce, is a scrumptious combination that you'll want to taste immediately. And when the bowl is empty, you'll simply feel satisfied.
Things You'll Need
3-4 zucchini, spiralized
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 white onion, finely diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 teaspoons fresh basil, chiffonade, plus additional for garnish
4 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Salt and pepper, to taste
Shredded parmesan, for garnish
Spiralizer or julienne peeler
Step 1: Spiralize the Zucchini
Using a spiralizer, create noodles out of the zucchini by twisting the vegetable with your hand on the top or middle part of the tool (depending on what kind you have). Repeat this process with the rest of the zucchini. Place all of the zoodles in a bowl and set aside.
Step 2: Sauté the Onion and Garlic
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add diced onion and cook it until it's translucent and aromatic, or for about 3 to 4 minutes. Next, add the minced garlic and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes.
Step 3: Add the Tomatoes and Herbs
Pour the cans of diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of tomato paste into the pan and mix. Next, add the basil, parsley and oregano. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.
Step 4: Thicken the Sauce
Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook marinara sauce for an additional 30 to 45 minutes, until it's thickened.
Step 5: Sauté the Zoodles
When the sauce is almost done cooking, heat a drizzle of olive oil in a medium or large sauté skillet. Once the oil is hot, add the zoodles and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until they're slightly softened. Remove from heat immediately.
Step 6: Mix Together and Serve
Add the zoodles to the marinara sauce and toss together. Serve the zoodles hot, and garnish with Parmesan and a pinch of basil.