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These Easy Zucchini Noodles Are So Delicious

Eating something delicious is even better when you're like, "Um, how is this all vegetables?"

The first really cool part of this recipe is making your own pesto. If you have a food processor, it's SO EASY!

If you don't have a food processor, we love the Cuisinart 14-cup food processor. It's an investment, but totally worth it for so many reasons.

We worked some magic so that the food processor ran without a lid, because we wanted to show you all the cool stuff happening inside as clearly as possible. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME. All food processors have built-in safety features so that you can't turn them on without the lid being securely fastened. This is a good thing, since those blades are spinning FAST and could be dangerous.

Pulse kale, basil leaves, and salt in a food processor until it forms a paste.

Then, with the food processor still running, add your olive oil in a slow, steady stream.

Add pine nuts and garlic cloves and pulse again, until all the ingredients are blended and there are no big pieces.

Finally, add the ~CHEESE~, and pulse a couple of times, until everything is combined.

And that's your pesto!

The second really fun thing you get to do is spiralize zucchini.

(Investing in a spiralizer is so, so worth it.)

To cook the noodles, heat olive oil in a large skillet, add pesto, and cook until it smells great. Then, add cherry tomatoes and the zucchini noodles.

Toss everything together and let it cook for a couple minutes, then add Parmesan.

Divide between two plates and top with more pesto and Parmesan.

Zucchini Noodles with Kale Pesto

Makes 2 servings (plus 1½ cups leftover pesto)

For the kale pesto:

3 cups chopped kale leaves

¾ cup packed fresh basil leaves

1 teaspoon kosher salt

⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil

¼ cup pine nuts (toasted or raw)

5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

3 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about ⅔ cup)

For the zucchini noodles:

4 medium zucchini

2 tablespoons olive oil

⅓ cup kale pesto (above), plus more for serving

2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

Salt and pepper

2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about ½ cup), plus more for serving

Grated Parmesan, for serving

For the pesto:

1. Place the kale leaves, basil, and salt in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process until the kale mixture is thoroughly chopped and almost paste-like. While the food processor is still running, drizzle in the olive oil very slowly. When all of the oil is incorporated, turn off the food processor. Add the pine nuts and garlic and pulse until the mixture is combined but still very grainy, 10 to 15 pulses. Add the grated cheese and pulse just to combine, 3 to 5 pulses. You'll need ⅓ cup of pesto for this recipe. Store the rest in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze it for up to 3 months.

For the zucchini noodles:

1. Use a spiralizer to spiralize the zucchini into spaghetti-shaped noodles. If you don't have a spiralizer, you can still make this recipe! Just use a vegetable peeler to peel the zucchini into thin ribbons.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pesto and cook, stirring occasionally, just until the pesto is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add halved tomatoes and zucchini noodles and cook, stirring, until the noodles are coated with the pesto and slightly softened, about a minute. Add the Parmesan and cook, stirring, just until the parmesan is melted.

3. Divide between two serving bowls and top with more pesto and parmesan, if you want!

recipe by Christine Byrne