Recipes  /   Dinner  /   Zucchini Noodles with Vegan Cashew Basil Pesto
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Zucchini Noodles with Vegan Cashew Basil Pesto

With the increased awareness of celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity, there are tons of new options for those who need to avoid gluten, including gluten-free breads, crackers, cookies, and other snack foods. In the pasta aisle at Earth Fare alone, you can find noodles made from buckwheat, rice, beans, lentils, tofu, and more!

However, one the most popular new gluten-free pasta swaps can't be found in the grains aisle. Instead, just head to the produce section and grab a few zucchini squash to make zucchini noodles, aka zoodles!

The spiralizer has become one of the hottest new kitchen gadgets over the past couple years. It's ability to turn vegetables into thin, noodle-like ribbons is a lot of fun to experiment with. You can turn anything from sweet potatoes to beets to zucchini into noodles, perfect for tossing with your favorite sauce, warmed in a broth to make noodle soup, or flash sautéed and combined with pasta to add bulk, texture, and more nutrients.

Keep in mind, unless you're using sweet potatoes or another type of starchy vegetable to make noodles, you'll want to include another source of carbohydrate in your dish. Think nutrient dense whole grain pasta (a gluten-free variety if needed), beans, fruit, or whole grains like millet, quinoa, or brown rice. This is a fairly light dish, so you may want to add protein with chickpeas, white beans, grilled chicken, or shrimp.

If you'd like to make extra pesto, double up the recipe and freeze the rest with a small layer of olive oil over the top. This will prevent the pesto from browning in the freezer. If there's leftovers, serve it dolloped over eggs, in a sandwich, or with grilled meats.

Be sure to toss the zucchini noodles with pesto immediately before serving. The salt in the pesto will draw water out of the zucchini, so leftovers will turn into a soggy mess. If you'd like to have leftovers, pack the zoodles and pesto separately.

If you use a spiralizer to make vegetable noodles, you'll be left with the small core in the center. To reduce waste, either cut the core into thin strips or compost it.

Serves: 4

Recipe By:
Rachael Hartley
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1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Toss the tomatoes with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and spread evenly on a large baking sheet. Roast 40 minutes until slightly shriveled and some of the juices are released.
2. While the tomatoes are roasting, make the pesto. Place the shallot and garlic in the food processor and pulse until finely minced. Add the cashews, basil, nutritional yeast, and olive oil and blend until creamy. Season with salt and black pepper.
3. Toss zucchini noodles with tomatoes and pesto and serve immediately garnished with hemp seeds.