Quick Zucchini Noodle Dinner
Zucchini noodles — zoodles, are a great way to mimic a traditional pasta dish but one that is low carb with a nutritional punch.
Vegetables are a big part of the Mediterranean Lifestyle, and I find that varying the cuts and preparation of veggies, keeps me from getting bored with them. Spiralizing veggies is a fun, and different way to include zucchini, beetroot, butternut squash and more into your menu rotation.
Another key to the Mediterranean Diet is using meat to flavor vegetables as I have in this recipe – a small amount of bacon lends a smoky, meaty essence to a vegetable dish preventing you from craving a whole 8 oz of the protein. So BE BRAVE as you try this technique of adding small amounts of meat to flavor your vegetables.
Zucchini noodles are a great way to reduce calorie intake, add another serving or more of vegetables to your day, and still say full for longer. BE BRAVE with how you serve them too, — a splash of flavorful oil and vinegar; a marinara sauce or meat sauce; or as I have here, a delicious basil pesto.
I use the Oil & Vinegar brand Pesto alla Genovese– a delicious pesto that uses the traditional Genovese basil, olive oil, pine nuts, and garlic, but substitutes the parmesan cheese with crushed cashew nuts making it a vegan pesto. Brilliant!! You can also make your own pesto if you wish, but I am hooked on the taste of this one.
Savor these end of summer flavors in this easy, weeknight meal
Zucchini Noodles with Pesto
2 medium zucchini, julienned thin, or spiralized
3 slices bacon, chopped (optional) **
¼ cup green onions cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup broccoli florets
1 cup cherry tomatoes
2-3 tablespoons Oil & Vinegar Pesto alla Genovese *
Oil & Vinegar Basil EVOO *
Salt & Pepper to taste
Fresh Parmesan cheese for garnish (optional) **
Cook bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove onto a stack of paper towels to drain. Drain off any excess fat leaving about 1 tablespoon in the skillet.
Return the pan to the heat, add a little Basil EVOO if needed, then add the green onions, and broccoli. Cook 3-5 minutes until crisp tender.
Add zucchini, cherry tomatoes and 2 tablespoons Pesto alla Genovese. Stir to combine all ingredients. Taste, and add more pesto if needed. 2-3 minutes is all you need.
Serve topped with bacon crumbles and shaved parmesan cheese (if using)
Total time: 20 minutes
* The Basil EVOO adds another layer of basil flavor but you can also use a plain EVOO instead. I LOVE the Pesto alla Genovese, but feel free to make your own home-made pesto or use another store-bought brand. Just remember the better the ingredients, the healthier and tastier the outcome/dish.
If you would like, you can also email me for a home-made recipe for Basil Pesto.
** You can easily eliminate both the bacon and the cheese to make this vegan – it still tastes absolutely delicious!
Categories: Vegetarian-Option, Vegan-Option, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Zoodles, Zucchini Noodles, Pesto, Pesto alla Genovese, Basil EVOO, Broccoli, Cherry Tomatoes, Bacon, Mediterranean Diet, Week Night Dinner, 30 Minute Meal, Plant-Based