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Zoodles with Heirloom Tomatoes & Vegan Pesto Sauce

My Go-To Guilt-Free Summer Pasta
Filed Under > 30 Minute Meals

Zoodles with Vegan Pesto Sauce and Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes, recipe by @waitingonmarthaHomemade Zoodles with Cherry Tomatoes, Recipe by @waitingonmartha

If you’re sensing a pattern with my summer cooking, then you’re certainly right; I’m all about simple, easy and seasonal dishes this time of year.  And this zoodles recipe is no exception.  Ever since the team spent the afternoon with Gwyneth Paltrow’s It’s All Easy & Williams-Sonoma, I’ve been #TeamZoodles.  They really are such an easy (emphasis on EASY) and healthy alternative to your grain pasta, and beyond perfect for a summertime, or any time, meal in a pinch.  

If you haven’t tried zoodles yet, let me just make a quick ten second pitch about why you’re missing out.  I’ve stated it numerous times that they’re so easy to make (just get yourself one of THESE), and obviously a lot less calories than your traditional pasta, but let’s talk taste.  The zucchini ribbons take on a deceiving likeness to linguine, but the trick is to not cook them too long.  Zoodles literally only need two minutes of sautéing…just enough to heat them through with your chosen sauce, but you need them to maintain their crunch.  The crunch is key; when you over-cook, or over-sauté zoodles, they can turn to mush (which is no good).

Now when it comes to the sauces, I really believe zoodles pair best with a lighter sauce that has tons of bold flavor; think a spicy red, garlicky olive oil, or my go-to vegan pesto (see below).  As I blogged before, I try to keep dairy out of my diet, and traditional pestos have loads of Parmesan.  But since I love pesto, I set out to create a vegan pesto that didn’t taste vegan.  And friends, I have found it!  Fresh basil, oregano, and cilantro from my garden paired with walnuts, salt, pepper, high quality olive oil and TONS of fresh garlic come together for what I think is better than the original version.  As you read through the recipe note that I prefer my pesto a bit on the chunky side, and very garlicky for that extra kick, but you can easily adjust to reach your desired consistency and taste. See for yourself, and let me know when you do!  Truly, MKR

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Zoodles with Heirloom Tomatoes & Vegan Pesto Sauce
Serves 4
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
25 min
Zoodles
  1. 5-6 Zucchinis, spiralized into zoodles
  2. 1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved
  3. vegan pesto sauce (see instructions below)
  4. Red pepper flakes, optional
  5. Salt & pepper to taste
Vegan Pesto Sauce
  1. 1 cup walnuts
  2. equal parts oregano and cilantro, but double that in basil (I like mine really garlicky so I use 5-6 fresh garlic cloves)
  3. Salt and pepper, to taste
  4. 1/2-3/4 cup olive oil
  5. 5-6 large fresh garlic cloves
Instructions
  1. For the vegan pesto sauce...
  2. Combine fresh basil, fresh oregano, fresh cilantro, walnuts, salt, pepper, 1/2 cup of olive oil and fresh garlic cloves in a mixer and blend. Keep adding olive oil to reach your desired consistency, and add salt and pepper to taste. (I like my pesto on the chunky side.)
  3. For the Zoodles...
  4. In a large saute pan, add the zoodles and pesto sauce and cook until just warm and combined (approximately 2-4 minutes). You don't want to over cook because you want to keep your zucchini noodles crisp.
  5. Top with fresh heirloom tomatoes and red pepper flakes and serve.
Waiting on Martha http://waitingonmartha.com/
 

ADDITIONAL CREDITS:

Photography, Rustic White for Waiting on Martha

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