Ok, so the other day someone shared their shock that I had never made zoodles.  Let’s face it though, I’m pretty minimalist in the kitchen.  I usually figure that if it takes another tool… or another 2 minutes, it’s gotta be worth it.  But I have been a little intrigued by zoodles so after that interaction I did a quick search for a recipe and then I found this recipe and I must admit, another person in the kitchen with my same minimalist philosophy certainly showed how zoodles are worth it here.

Dana at minimalistbaker.com did it again!  This is an amazing recipe full of antioxidant and mineral rich ingredients. The zoodles are super fun too! The lentils add a great flavor, nice complex carbohydrate and some protein. Even the kids loved these added in.   I believe my family needs good, red meat occasionally, so I added a pound of grass-fed, grass-finished ground beef that I source from Intermountain Farms to the red sauce and vegetables.  I also made homemade marinara sauce and you can too.

http://minimalistbaker.com/zucchini-pasta-with-lentil-bolognese/

ZUCCHINI PASTA WITH LENTIL BOLOGNESE

Prep time: 5 mins.  Cook time: 25 mins.  Total time: 30 mins

A hearty red sauce with lentils and carrots over zucchini noodles! A flavorful, healthy, 30-minute plant-based meal.

PASTA

  • 1 Tbsp (15 ml) olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (2 Tbsp or 12 g)
  • 2-3 carrots, finely shredded (1 cup or 110 g | I use the grater attachment on a food processor)
  • Pinch sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 26 ounces (737 g) favorite marinara sauce
  • Pinch red pepper flake
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) water
  • 3/4 cup (144 g) red lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 2 medium zucchini, rinsed and both ends sliced off

FOR SERVING optional

Instructions

  1. Heat a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add oil, shallot, and garlic. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until slightly softened and fragrant. Turn down heat if browning.
  2. Add carrots and a pinch of salt and stir. Cook for 3-4 minutes more, then add marinara sauce and stir to coat.
  3. Add red pepper flake, basil, oregano, coconut sugar, water, and lentils. Increase heat slightly and bring mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat to low/medium-low and continue cooking until lentils are tender – stirring occasionally – about 17-20 minutes. Add a bit more water if mixture gets too thick.
  4. Once lentils are cooked, taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more salt to taste, coconut sugar for sweetness, red pepper flake for heat, or herbs for flavor balance.
  5. While the sauce is cooking, spiralize your zucchini into noodles using a tool such as this or this. Alternatively you can use a mandolin or vegetable peeler, or simply cook up your favorite pasta.
  6. Serve the pasta over noodles of choice (I opted for raw zucchini noodles – so good!) and garnish with desired toppings – I prefer Vegan Parmesan Cheese and red pepper flake.
  7. Sauce will keep in the refrigerator up to 3 days, or in the freezer 1 month.