So I asked a few weeks ago if you ladies would be interested in me doing a little meal prepping series for you, and you seemed pretty excited about it — so here’s our very first post in the series.
This one isn’t really a recipe — it’s more of a “how-to” on one of my favorite healthy ingredient swaps — zucchini noodles!
If you haven’t gotten on board with the veggie noodle trend yet, you are seriously missing out!
Veggie noodles are a fantastic way to not only get more veggies into your diet, but it’s also a great way to still enjoy some of your favorite meals.
If you know me, or have been reading for a long time, you’ll know that Nik makes homemade pasta AND homemade tomato sauce pretty frequently. So, to say that we love Italian food it a bit of an understatement…
But, since I usually try to limit my carbs later on at night, I like choosing veggie noodles during the week most of the time — and save my actual pasta meals for special occasions or weekends.
Since we almost always have some tomato sauce and meatballs in our freezer — this makes zucchini noodles a PERFECT thing to meal prep each week.
I also love how easy it is to throw together a quick meal after a long day, or to get creative with things like Pineapple Shrimp Teriyaki too!
Zucchini noodles are simple enough to make and store.
The main thing you’ll need is obviously a spiralizer….there are a few different kinds, but I like the Paderno Spiralizer (the one shown in this post), but you can also get a smaller one if you have less storage space in your cabinets.
After you have the spiralizer and make your noodles, storing them are pretty simple too.
The trick is to NOT cook them before you store them — yes, that’s right you DON’T cook them.
I know that seems rather counter-intuitive since we are talking about meal-prepping…but zucchini hold quite a bit of water and when you cook them before storing, they get REALLY watery and soggy.
And since cooking them only take about 2 minutes — I feel like it’s just about the same amount of time it would take to heat up the microwave anyway — in fact you can warm up your tomato sauce while you are cooking your noodles and BAM dinner is served in 3 minutes flat! 😉
I like storing my zoodles in these Pyrex glass containers — they are the absolute perfect size and can be microwaved without having to worry about yucky, toxic plastic.
My preferred way of cooking my zoodles is to sauté them in a nonstick skillet with a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil for 2 minutes, BUT if you want you can cook them in the microwave for about 2 minutes as well. SO EASY!
I’ve even put my raw noodles, tomato sauce, and turkey meatballs in the container and heat it all up together if I need to take my meal to go — this is PERFECT for those of you ladies that want to take this meal to work!
You can also use these prepped zoodles for a tasty raw salad too! The possibilities are endless!
- Use your spiralizer to spiral slice your zucchini into noodles.
- Divide your noodles into individual serving sizes and store in air tight containers.
- Use these prepared raw noodles in raw salads or cook for a warm meal.
- When you're ready to cook your zoodles, heat a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté your zoodles for 2-3 minutes until your noodles are tender, but not mushy. Add any desired sauce or toppings.
- Keep your zoodles in a microwave safe container and cover -- the meal prep containers are perfect for this! Microwave for about 2 minutes until your noodles are tender, but not mushy. Add any desired toppings.
- The prepared raw zoodles will keep about 4 days. I would NOT recommend trying to freeze them at all, as they will get pretty soggy once you thaw them out.
Keep an eye out next week for a meaty tomato sauce to go with these zoodles!! 😉