Zucchini Noodles with Arrabbiata Sauce
Here is a really satisfying meal you can feel good about serving! This recipe replaces traditional pasta with healthy and delicious fresh zucchini noodles, so you can indulge in it often without any guilt.
All’arrabbiata is a spicy Italian red sauce made with red pepper flakes. It is traditionally served with rigatoni or penne noodles, but here it is paired with crisp-tender spaghetti-like zucchini noodles.
If you’d like to save a little time, you can use prepared arrabbiata sauce. However, you can make your own from scratch in less than half an hour or you can make large batches in advance, and freeze the rest for easy weeknight meals.
Yield: 4 servings
Total Prep Time:40 minutes
4 large firm zucchini, peeled
3 T. extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
salt and pepper, to taste
3 T.. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
½ T. crushed red-pepper flakes
½ c. tomato paste
2 c. fresh tomatoes, chopped and seeds removed
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. garlic powder
salt and pepper, to taste
fresh basil, washed, dried and cut into thin slices
Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Special equipment: vegetable spiral slicer, such as the Paderno World Cuisine Tri-Blade Vegetable Spiral Slicer or the OXO Spiral Vegetable Slicer.
Prepare the sauce by heating olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the crushed red pepper flakes and heat until fragrant. Reduce heat to medium-low, then add tomato paste, tomatoes, oregano, and garlic powder. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Simmer until sauce is slightly reduced, approximately 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
While the sauce is cooking, slice zucchini into thin, long noodles with a spiral slicer. (If using the Paderno Tri-Blade Vegetable Spiral Slicer, use the small “shredder” blade to create spaghetti-like strands).
Cut the noodles with kitchen scissors once they reach 10-12” long. Place cut noodles on paper or clean kitchen towels to absorb excess moisture and set aside.
Heat olive oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the garlic turns golden brown, about 4-5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium and remove garlic from the pan with a slotted spoon or fork and discard. Add zucchini noodles to skillet and sauté for approximately 2 minutes. While cooking, use tongs to flip the noodles to ensure they are warmed on each side. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and set aside.
Remove from heat and toss with warm arrabbiata sauce. Transfer to a serving dish and top with sliced basil and freshly grated Parmesan cheese, if desired. Serve immediately.
If you’d like to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your family’s diet, consider adding a spiral slicer to your arsenal of kitchen tools. These handy and versatile gadgets make it easy to create delicious, nutritious dishes your entire family will love. Before you know it, you’ll replace traditional pasta noodles with intriguing alternatives made from farm-fresh favorites, including zucchini, cucumbers, apples, pears, and sweet potatoes. In the process, you’ll trade gut-busting gluten and starchy carbs for plenty of vitamins, minerals, and other important nutrients.
Spiral slicers are not just some new, trendy fad, however. In fact, one of the leading products in this category, the Paderno World Cuisine Tri-Blade Vegetable Spiral Slicer, has been on the market for more than 15 years. Since then, this model has earned a loyal following of happy customers who rave about its merits.
If you are tight on cabinet space, storage is another thing to consider before buying this unit. It measures 12” long x 6” wide x 8 ¾“ high, so it takes up a bit of space when not in use. If this is a concern for you, you may want to check out the OXO Spiral Vegetable Slicer instead. This lower-cost, hand-held device is much more compact (3.1” x 3.1” x 3.6) than the Paderno model, but it is a little more challenging to use and it lacks the versatility of the three-blade design.