THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO MAKE ZUCCHINI NOODLES: THE BEST ZOODLES GUIDE
Zucchini noodles are fabulous. You will learn how to make zucchini noodles perfectly here! You will learn how to avoid watery zoodles, cooking methods, storage, tips, spiralizer comparison, and more, along with a recipe.
I have been making the noodles for over ten years now, so it was about time to make a post about it. This blog is the ultimate guide to zoodles!
You will find out what zoodles are, how to make them, what equipment to use, and how to cook them perfectly (al dente, not watery!).
WHAT ARE ZUCCHINI NOODLES?
Zucchini noodles are zucchini that is spiralized. Spiralizing turns them into a different noodle shape. You can extend the basic zucchini noodle recipe to make your favorite low-carb pasta! Zucchini noodles are also called zoodles. Try these gluten-free noodles with alfredo sauce noodles instead if you prefer a more traditional pasta flavor and texture!
WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS ZUCCHINI NOODLES RECIPE
- Very easy to make
- Different spiralizing options
- Low carb
- Full of vitamins and minerals
- Not watery!
- Two methods for cooking zoodles
Here is how to make zucchini noodles:
TYPES OF SPIRALIZERS FOR ZOODLES
There are three essential tools to choose from when making zucchini noodles:
- Julienne Peeler – First, it is a solution to avoid buying a different tool, but it is time-consuming and tedious. The zoodles usually come out to be shorter. This one I use, and it very works well.
- Handheld Spiralizer – It is a decent option, and it is small, so it requires more effort to make them. The zoodles come out thinner. You can try this one I used.
- Counter Top Spiralizer – The best and worth investing in, but you need to find some space in your kitchen to store additional equipment. This method is super fast and makes perfect zoodles. I'm using this countertop spiralizer in my kitchen, which is the highest quality I've seen. Unlike others that are made very cheap, and the plastic breaks fast.
MAKING ZUCCHINI NOODLES WITHOUT A SPIRALIZER
Suppose you don't want to invest in or you don't have space in your kitchen for a countertop spiralizer (shown above). In that case, you can try a hand-held spiralizer or a julienne peeler and see how you like it first (you can always buy the countertop spiralizer later).
- How to use a hand-held spiralizer: Wash the zucchini and cut off the ends. Insert zucchini into the spiralizer and twist the zucchini with one hand holding the spiralizer steady with the other.
- To use a julienne peeler: Run it across the zucchini length-wise, creating noodles. This is my least favorite method, but it works. The noodles dont come out as lovely as when you use a spiralizer (they are uneven, can break them, and are shorter).
MAKING ZUCCHINI NOODLES WITH A SPIRALIZER
Using a spiralizer is my favorite method of making zucchini noodles and the easiest one.
- Cut off the ends of the zucchini.
- Put your spiralizer on the clean counter. Use the suction cup(s) on the bottom to attach it to the counter.
- Insert the zucchini. Pierce one end to the side of the spiralizer with a handle, then skewer the other end into the side with the blade.
- Crank the handle repeatedly, constantly pushing the zucchini toward the blade. The noodles will come out the other side.
TIPS FOR USING A SPIRALIZER TO MAKE ZUCCHINI NOODLES
- The spiralizer should have a "strong" suction cup on the bottom. It will help you keep the spiralizer in place, which is very important. Trust me; you dont want one that keeps moving around. It will save your sanity. This spiralizer has the best suction cup on the bottom. My favorite from many I have tried!
- Center the zuchcini on the spiralizer. It will help you to get the best zucchini noodles. Even long and with the skin on that isn't mushy.
- Always spiralize the zucchini raw before cooking and do not peel them.
- Choose similar size zucchini with a smaller diameter. It makes zoodles more even and helps keep a similar texture while cooking.
- What to do with the leftover core? Toss it in a smoothie, soup, or vegetable stir-fry.
HOW TO COOK ZUCCHINI NOODLES
It is essential to learn how to cook the zoodles so they don't get soggy and mushy.
My favorite cooking method is to stir-fry them or cook them in the oven.
Different methods of cooking the zoodles:
Stir-fry zoodles – One of my favorite methods. Make sure that you drain the moisture. I salt them in a colander and let them sit for 20 minutes. Squeeze them gently and dry the noodles with a paper towel. Then stir fry the zoodles for about 3 minutes over medium-high heat.
I would avoid cooking the noodles with sauce. They break and will become mushy. Just warm up the sauce separately and pour it over the stir-fry noodles.
Oven method (my favorite!) – I've tried them all and found out that the oven method is best! It is even easier than the stir-fry method because you don’t have to drain them, yet the zoodles still turn out pretty dry.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, place the noodles on a large baking sheet and sprinkle them with salt.
TIP: Do not crowd the noodles. Make sure that layer is thin. If you want less clean-up, line your pan with parchment paper.
- Bake. Put the zoodles in the oven for 15 minutes, or until they are a bit crispy or al dente. If the noodles are too soft, place them in the range for longer.
- Pat dry. Pat dry with paper towels to remove any remaining moisture. Toss them with sauce or stir-fry veggies and serve!
Eat them raw – You don’t always have to cook the noodle. You can enjoy them raw and make a salad. The noodles are delicious this way as well.
I don’t recommend boiling or blanching zucchini noodles. They come out watery and mushy. I also like to add raw noodles to the soup, so they don't lose their crunchiness.
HOW TO AVOID WATERY ZUCCHINI NOODLES
- Pat -dry zoodles with paper towels after spiralizing them.
- Always cook on lower heat if you use the stir-fry method to help with evaporation.
- Don't overcrowd the pan. It's ideal for cooking in batches, giving you enough space for the noodles. They will cook this way evenly and won't become mushy.
- Do not use the lid during cooking. You want to avoid the moisture.
- Do not add more salt to the pan. Salt helps release water. You can always add salt later if needed.
- Don't overcook the zoodles. You don't want them mushy but al dente! The cooking time is usually just 3 - 4 minutes! Then transfer them from the hot pan to a plate immediately to avoid residual heat and overcook the noodles.
- Always pat the noodles dry after you cook them in the oven. Essential step!
HOW TO STORE ZUCCHINI NOODLES
- To store leftovers: Place leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, separate from any sauce.
- Do not cook ahead: They will be watery and mushy.
- Do not freeze: Technically, you can do it, but they will come out mushy and broken again.
WHAT SAUCES TO USE FOR ZUCCHINI NOODLES
The best sauce to use is a thick sauce. It will help to keep the noodle intact.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH ZUCCHINI NOODLES?
- As a side dish
- In the soup
- With fish, steak, chicken
- Vegan meal with a healthy plant-based meal
SIMPLE ZUCCHINI NOODLES RECIPE
- 2 tbsp ghee - melted or olive oil
- 3 large zucchini
- Himalayan salt
- Spiralize zucchini with a spiralizer. (Check the post above for helpful tips)
COOKING ZUCCHINI NOODLES ON THE STOVE:
- Put the zoodles in the colander. Sprinkle with sea salt and mix it. Let the zoodles sit for 20 minutes to drain.
- After they are ready, squeeze the noodles gently and tap dry with a paper towel.
- Heat the ghee in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. After the ghee is melted, mix in the zucchini and stir fry for around 4 minutes, until al dente. Add sea salt and black pepper to taste.
MAKING ZUCCHINI NOODLES IN THE OVEN:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Place a parchment paper on an extra-large sheet for baking and oil up with olive oil.
- Spread the zucchini on the baking sheet. Ensure that the layer is thin and that the noodles have enough space. Sprinkle with sea salt and toss.
- Bake until al dente.
- Melt the ghee.
- After the noodles are done, dry them with paper towels.
- Toss with ghee, salt, and black pepper to taste.
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