Start by bringing a large pot of water to boil (remember, turn the heat up to HIGH and put a lid on it so it boils quick!) and throw in a small handful of salt to flavor the noodles. You can choose any type of spaghetti shaped pasta you like; they now make brown rice pasta, chickpea pasta, black pean pasta, quinoa pasta, etc. The bean varieties add an especially great bump of protein. While the water comes to a boil, spiralize the yellow squash (or zucchini, or carrots or sweet potato or any other vegetable you so desire!)
Then saute a few cloves of garlic in olive oil (you can slice, mince or use my favorite method; a microplane!) and try not to get distracted and let it get too brown like mine did. Add your pasta to the boiling water and give it a stir.
Add the veggie noodles to your garlic and oil with a pinch of salt and turn the pan off! Sounds weird but those veggie noodles are delicate and you don’t want them to over cook!
When your pasta is cooked, drain it and add the pasta to the veggie noodles and mix together (your pan is still off. The heat of the pasta and residual heat from the pan will be enough!)
Top with Mama Jess Garden Good Pasta Sauce and a sprinkling of chopped olives. You could absolutely add basil or parmesan or pine nuts, but that would require having those items on hand and I did not. It was still great.
For the toddlers in your house go ahead and use your kitchen shears to chop theirs up tiny. This ensures that they don’t choke, can feed themselves, and can’t spit out the veggies. Win-win-win.
There is one more amazing thing about this recipe. You know veggie noodles create a gross and undesired vegetable juice pool under your lovely plate of spaghetti to further remind you that you are not actually eating real spaghetti? That is because the cooked vegetables are releasing their water, and they have a lot of it. I’ve tried a few different cooking techniques (low and slow, hot and fast, even in the oven) but they still always left a watery juice on my plate. Unless you’re going to eat raw veggie noodles (which sometimes I do because zoodle juice is terrible) there’s no avoiding it. UNLESS. By mixing the al dente pasta and the veggie noodle in the sauté pan for a minute you ensure that any veggie noodle juice is being absorbed by the pasta. And voila! No more watery vegetable juice. We can all sleep soundly tonight (or at least I can).
It seems obvious but is worth noting that this would also be a great recipe to serve alongside a leftover protein if you have it, some quickly sautéed shrimp or a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store. But honestly, we didn’t and it was still a delicious and easy dinner. Leave well enough alone, right?
If you make this meal, in any of its variations, please let us know in the comments below! Or come say hi on Instagram @mamajessfounder or on Facebook.