What Are Zoodles?

Zoodles are zucchini noodles. The spaghetti is made from the summer squash instead of traditional pasta. Zoodles are also similar to spaghetti squash, which is also made from a type of squash.

Many people choose zoodles because they are a fresh and healthier alternative to pasta. While one cup of spaghetti typically has 221 calories, a zucchini typically contains 33 calories. The vegetable also has significantly fewer carbohydrates than pasta, making the substitute a good choice for low-carb diets such as the keto diet.

raw zucchinis next to a white bowl filled with zoodles
Megan Betteridge/Shutterstock

How Do You Make Zoodles?

With spaghetti squash, the interior meat becomes stringy on its own as its cooked. But the process is not the same with zucchinis, so how do you turn the vegetable into long strands of noodles?

There are a couple different methods you can use when creating the zucchini noodles. An easy way to achieve zoodles is to use a spiralizer tool to produce a pasta look with no hassle. To use a spiralizer, simply trim the ends of the zucchini so they're flat, place it on the spiralizer and crank the handle. You can also use a julienne peeler to peel the vegetable into spaghetti-like strands.

If you don't have any of these tools, you can simply peel the zucchini with a normal peeler to create strands resembling ribbon noodles or shred the vegetable finely with a grater.

three bowls filled with differently cut zoodles
Karpenkov Denis/Shutterstock

How Do You Cook Zoodles?

Zoodles are as versatile as real pasta and there are numerous ways to prepare them. They can be boiled or baked, but sautéing them is the most common method. Zoodles are great in pesto dishes, spaghetti and meatballs, and pad thai. Here is a foolproof way to prepare the base of your zoodle dish:

  • Using coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil or another type of oil that works well for sautéing, heat a skillet over medium heat
  • Cook for 4-6 minutes until tender
  • Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss
  • Serve as part of your desired recipe

When cooking, be mindful of the texture of the zoodles. You should only cook the zoodles for a few minutes because they will quickly become mushy if overcooked. Also be mindful of overcrowding the pan and cook your zoodles in batches if need be.

plate of cooked zoodle dish
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