Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Pesto and Chicken

Zoodles with Avocado Pesto

This week has been dedicated to low-carb veggie-based dinners. I actually didn’t even plan it that way, it’s just what sounded good to me this week. My dinners have consisted of Crockpot Taco Soup [I know it’s summer and Crockpot Taco Soup doesn’t sound very “summery,” but this July in Seattle has been less than warm and sunny!], Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Spaghetti Squash, Chicken and Veggie Curry served over Cauliflower Rice, and Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Pesto [recipe below!]. It’s amazing how delicious and filling these veggie based meals can be!

As I sit here writing this post, it’s drizzly and gray outside but I kind of like it. The baby’s napping, I can hear the hum of the baby monitor in the background and I’m so at peace because I have some “me time” to get back to the blog. I have to admit that it’s been really tough to keep up blogging since having my daughter who is now eight months old. But you know what? Having Nutritiously Rooted as my creative outlet where I can write whatever I want, share recipes and help others along their health journeys through nutrition coaching, I’d have to say that I’m pretty dang lucky to be in my position. I’m so fortunate to get to do something I love and stay at home to raise my little one. It’s the absolute best!

But back to food! I love all kinds of food from super healthy to not-so-healthy. I know how healthy food makes me feel and I like that feeling. Feeding your body with wholesome ingredients that nourish is an amazing feeling that I want you to feel too. If you’re like many people who desperately want to start eating better but just don’t know where to start, I have some advice for you. Start today. Start by picking one of my many healthy recipes and try one new recipe a week. Just one recipe a week can be a fairly easy task, but it will get you out of your comfort zone and trying new things! New things that you will probably love!

What are zucchini noodles?

They are just that. Noodles made solely from zucchini. I know what you may be thinking. How can zucchini resemble noodles? Trust me, they can! Zucchini is a very mild vegetable that can really take on any flavors that you pair with it, which is why my bold and flavorful Avocado Pesto Sauce is the perfect accompaniment. In order to make noodles out of zucchini you can use a couple of different tools, a mandolin or a spiralizer. I’ve used both, and I more recently invested in this spiralizer that has been life changing! I’ve been making zucchini noodles weekly with this baby because I love it so much and I love the texture of the zucchini has when using it. It literally makes the zucchini seem so similar to spaghetti noodles! The best!

What to do with zucchini noodles.

You can really pair any of your favorite sauces with zucchini noodles, from marinara and meatballs to pesto or even make a leftover veggie bowl by adding leftovers to some spiralized zucchini. I did that the other day for leftovers. We had ground turkey tacos with bell peppers, onions, black beans, salsa and guac. So to add a little more oomph to my lunch, I started with some zucchini noodles and topped them off with my leftover taco goodies. It was so tasty! Usually I’ll add my leftovers to salad greens, but I decided to change it up this time, and boy I’m glad I did!

Avocado Pesto and Spiralized Zucchini
Check out the recipe + full directions below for my Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Pesto and Chicken!

 

Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Pesto and Chicken

servings: about 4

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 large zucchini, spiralized
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • juice from ½ lemon
  • ¼ cup raw cashews
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 pound chicken thighs, chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tbsp olive oil [to cook chicken]

DIRECTIONS

Using a spiralizer or mandolin, spiralize your zucchini. Set aside. For the sauce: in a food processor add avocados, lemon juice, cashews, basil, garlic, sea salt and pepper. Run the food processor until all ingredients are combined and the mixture is finely chopped. Next, while the food processor is running, add in ¼ cup olive oil and run until your pesto is thick and creamy. You may need to stop the food processor and wipe down the sides with a spatula to make sure all ingredients are well combined. For the chicken: add 1 tbsp olive oil to skillet on medium heat. Add chicken and season with sea salt and pepper. Cook until chicken is no longer pink and is cooked through. To combine dish, add zucchini noodles and pesto to skillet with chicken and stir to combine all ingredients and heat the dish through [this should only take a minute or 2]. Be sure not to cook the zucchini noodles too long or they will become mushy.

Zucchini Noodles

Zucchini Noodles with Avocado Pesto and Chicken
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 3 large zucchini, spiralized
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • juice from ½ lemon
  • ¼ cup raw cashews
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 pound chicken thighs, chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tbsp olive oil [to cook chicken]
Instructions
  1. Using a spiralizer or mandolin, spiralize your zucchini. Set aside.
  2. For the sauce: in a food processor add avocados, lemon juice, cashews, basil, garlic, sea salt and pepper.
  3. Run the food processor until all ingredients are combined and the mixture is finely chopped.
  4. Next, while the food processor is running, add in ¼ cup olive oil and run until your pesto is thick and creamy. You may need to stop the food processor and wipe down the sides with a spatula to make sure all ingredients are well combined.
  5. For the chicken: add 1 tbsp olive oil to skillet on medium heat. Add chicken and season with sea salt and pepper. Cook until chicken is no longer pink and is cooked through.
  6. To combine dish, add zucchini noodles and pesto to skillet with chicken and stir to combine all ingredients and heat the dish through [this should only take a minute or 2].
  7. Be sure not to cook the zucchini noodles too long or they will become mushy.

 

Have you tried zucchini noodles before? Have you tried this recipe? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

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Angela Freed

2 Comments

  1. I made this tonight and while the pesto had a really great flavor, it made a TON of sauce and two large zucchini were not nearly enough for the amount of sauce. Next time I will use more like 4-5 zucchini because this time it was just like eating a bowl of pesto.

    • Yes it definitely does make a lot of sauce! Last time I actually used the extra sauce and froze it so the next time I made it all I had to do was spiralize my zucchini and top it with my pre-made sauce 🙂

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