Zucchini noodles are tossed in a quick tomato-basil sauce with savory mushrooms and crunchy walnuts to create this healthy and super-easy summer meal.
I finally bought a tabletop sprializer. This is the one I went with. The funny thing is, I bought it so I could spiralize sweet potatoes, only to discover I don't think I like sweet potato noodles. I know, weird right? I love sweet potatoes, I love noodles, and I really love peanut sauce, which is what I tried dressing my sweet potato noodles in, but together, I wasn't into the dish at all. I might give them another shot. We'll see. If anyone has a good sweet potato noodle recipe that you think will win me over, let me know.
I'm happy to have gotten a more versatile spiralizer out of the deal though. I'd been using this little hand-held guy, which worked okay for zucchini, but I didn't think there was any way I was getting a sweet potato through it. Fortunately, the new spiralizer does a better job of spiralizing zucchinni, and it gives me nice fat, curly noodles, which make me happy.
I decided to go with something simple and classic-ish for my first zoodle experience with my new spiralizier. Tomato sauce is pretty typical, but walnuts and mushrooms give some substance to this light, summery dish. This was no less satisfying than a big plate of spaghetti, but without the post-meal carb slump, even after eating a big old plate of it, which I did, because was pretty addictive too. Zucchini noodles require a lot of pushing around and twirling on the plate during photographing, and I think I ate a pretty substantial portion of the batch during that whole process (always a good sign). That's a lot of (zucchini) pasta. It turned out to be lunch, but I felt great after eating it.
It just got hot out, so satisfying but not overly filling meals are the way to go. Who wants to feel all weighed down by dinner in the 90+ degree heat? Not I. Zucchini is about to be everywhere too, so it all works out.
Easy Walnut & Mushroom Zucchini Noodles
- 2 tbsp. olive oil divided
- 12 oz. cremini mushrooms, stemmed, cleaned and sliced
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2-14 oz. cans diced tomatoes
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 3 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 4 medium zucchinis, spiralized (about 6 cups zucchini noodles)
- ½ cup fresh basil leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
Coat the bottom of a large pot with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and place over medium heat. Add mushrooms in a single layer. Cook about 5 minutes, until browned on bottoms. Flip and cook 5 minutes more on opposite sides. Remove from pot and transfer to a plate.
Add remaining tablespoon of oil to pot. When oil is hot, add onion onion and sauté until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute more, until very fragrant.
Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste and balsamic vinegar, and return mushrooms to the pot. Stir a few times and bring to a simmer. Allow to simmer for about 5 minutes, until sauce thickens up a bit. Stir in walnuts and zucchini noodles. Cook up to 2 minutes, depending on how tender you like your zucchini noodles (or if you like them very firm, remove from heat immediately). Stir in basil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide onto plates and serve.