Have you tried zoodles yet? Zoodles are simply noodles made from zucchini, and if you haven't made them before, I highly recommend them! Even those who don't like zucchini typically love zoodles, as they really take on the flavor of whatever sauce or dish you serve them with. Zoodles can be substituted in any traditional pasta dish, making it super easy to get an extra serving of veggies in! Plus, they're absolutely delicious!
I often get questions about how to prepare zoodles, store them, and how to make it so that they won't create a ton of water when mixed with a sauce. In this post I'll go over all things zoodles, and you'll see just how easy it is to create "noodles" using a healthy vegetable! Whether you want to peel the zucchini or not before you make them into zoodles is entirely up to you, I personally prefer to leave it with the skin on.
How To Prepare Zoodles
Spiralizer – I've been using my Paderno World Cuisine Spiralizer for nearly 3 years now, and I absolutely love it! The one I have costs around $25 and is well worth it, as I haven't had a single issue with it. It comes with 3 different blade attachments to make different zoodle shapes, from thin or thick spaghetti "noodles," to wide fettuccine-type noodles. This creates very long zoodles, which can easily be cut so they're shorter, if you prefer.
My Verdict – The spiralizer is hands down my favorite way to make zoodles!
Julienne Peeler – A julienne peeler is a great option for saving space, as it's not much larger than a regular vegetable peeler. It also creates short zoodles, which are only as long as the zucchini.
My Verdict – Although a julienne peeler won't create long & curly noodles, it still gets the job done and is a great option if you don't have much kitchen storage space!
Hand Held Spiralizer – I haven't actually used a hand held spiralizer myself, but I have friends who use it regularly and like it.
My Verdict – The only downside I really see is that it won't fit some of the larger zucchini, but smaller ones would work.
Vegetable Peeler – A regular vegetable peeler will create thin, wide zoodles, which creates more of a fettuccine type "noodle."
My Verdict – A vegetable peeler works great in a pinch, and I've even used it to create the zucchini noodles for my Beef Stroganoff!
How To Store Zoodles
Refrigerator – Store your zoodles in the fridge in a covered container lined with paper towels. The zoodles will release moisture as they sit in the container in your fridge, and the paper towels will not only absorb the moisture, but it will make your zoodles last much longer as they won't become soggy. If you're storing them in the fridge for more than a day or two, you may want to switch out the paper towels as they become damp.
My Verdict – This is the best (and really only) way to store zoodles. They'll last about 4-5 days in the fridge.
Freezer – Unfortunately my method for freezing zoodles didn't work, but I've read about other freezing methods that do work great, which would be worth trying yourself! For this post I tried freezing my freshly made zoodles in a zip top bag. I took them out of the bag and set them on paper towels to defrost. They were left very mushy and sitting in a ton of water. So definitely don't go with my method, and instead try this method of boiling the zoodles to defrost them.
My Verdict – I haven't tried it myself yet, but boiling the zoodles to defrost them seems to work for others!
How To Release Moisture
Make Ahead – This way of getting the moisture out of zoodles also happens to be the easiest. If you have the time, I highly recommend making your zoodles the day before you plan to serve them. I'll often make a batch of zoodles for random meals throughout the week, and making them ahead of time allows them to dry out so that they won't have much moisture left when you're ready to use them! To do this, follow my directions above for storing zoodles in the fridge.
My Verdict – Hands down my favorite way to get the moisture out of zoodles!
Salting – Place the zoodles on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Sprinkle the zoodles with sea salt and allow them to sit for at least 20-30 minutes. I typically do this as I'm preparing the rest of my dinner. After the zoodles have sat out for at least 20-30 minutes, gently press the zoodles with paper towels or a clean dishrag to release any remaining moisture. This process will change the texture of the zoodles, making them more like spaghetti noodles. You can heat them up if you'd like, or serve them as is, pouring a sauce on top.
My Verdict – If you don't have time to make your zoodles ahead of time, this is another great way to get the moisture out! Your zoodles won't be salty, as the salt is released with the moisture. Be careful not to squeeze or press the zoodles too much, as they'll become mushy.
Baking – Another alternative is to bake your zoodles at a very low heat to help release the moisture. To do this, preheat your oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with paper towels and then place the zoodles on top of the paper towels. Sprinkle the zoodles with sea salt and then place them in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and gently press them with paper towels or a clean dishrag to release any remaining moisture. This process will change the texture, making them more like spaghetti noodles. You can heat them up if you'd like, or serve them as is, pouring a sauce on top.
My Verdict – I didn't find that this baking method left the zoodles any different than just salting them, however, it is good for slightly warming them up.
Here are all of my favorite zoodle recipes from my website! Feel free to get creative on your own, as the options are endless!
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