What Do Zucchini Noodles Taste Like?

Zucchini is a mild tasting summer vegetable.

Spiralized zucchini, a.k.a. “zoodles,” have become a popular pasta replacement. With so many folks gravitating to diets focused on low carb, gluten free and grain free, it is little wonder why they are one of the fastest growing food trends in the last few years. But what do zucchini noodles taste like?

Although you can spiralize lots of different vegetables such as sweet potatoes, squash or carrots, one of the reasons that folks keep coming back to this humble summer gourd is that it has a very mild and delicate flavor that won’t compete with your favorite sauces. Just about any sauce designed to taste great on traditional pasta will find a welcoming home on the plate with spiralized zucchini.


When used raw in cold applications such as slaws or salads, they have a very slight bitter taste that is almost imperceptible. Just a touch of any acid such as flavored vinegar or citrus mellows it right out.


When cooked by methods such as blanching or sautéing, the very slight bitter taste goes away entirely, leaving you with a nearly flavorless pasta substitute.


To boost the flavor of zucchini noodles, try roasting them in the oven. This method of cooking caramelizes the natural sugars in this veggie, bringing some slightly sweet earthy tones to the party.

Flavor Pairings

Because of their mild taste, zoodles pair particularly well with Asian, Mediterranean and Italian flavors. However, feel to experiment with this forgiving veggie. Here are some sample recipes to get you inspired:

Zucchini Patties

Warm and inviting, these fried patties have a crispy exterior and luxuriously soft interior. They lend themselves to just about any combination of cheese and herbs, although this recipe uses feta, parsley and fresh oregano for a Mediterranean inspired dish.


medium fresh zucchini, washed and spiralized

½ cup crumbled feta cheese

2 TBSP fresh parsley, chopped

1 TBSP fresh oregano, chopped

Dash of salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 large egg

2-3 TBSP flour

1 cup bread crumbs

½ cup vegetable oil for frying




  1. If you have very long zucchini spirals, I recommend roughly chopping them so that you will have shorter segments which will make assembly easier.
  2. Combine the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl and mix to distribute all of the ingredients.
  3. Add flour a single tablespoon at a time and mix through. Keep adding it until the consistency of your mixture allows you to form patties that will stay together.
  4. Form 2” balls from the mixture.
  5. Flatten the balls slightly to about ½” thick patties. Dip in the bread crumbs and set on a plate.
  6. Working in small batches so that you will have room to easily flip your patties, fry in oil deep enough to go halfway up the side of each patty over medium heat.
  7. Allow them to achieve a golden brown before trying to flip them, usually 3-4 minutes. You will only want to flip them once because they are delicate.
  8. Move fried patties to a paper towel to drain away any excess fat before serving.


Zucchini Lasagna


Another way to make zucchini pasta if you don’t have a spiralizer is to make wide thin lasagna like noodles by using a simple vegetable peeler. These can be rolled and stuffed like manicotti, or if you are short on time, just layer them like you would with traditional lasagna noodles.



6-8 medium zucchini, washed and sliced using a peeler to make thin strips

6 cups of your favorite tomato-based pasta sauce or canned diced tomatoes

16 Oz. shredded mozzarella cheese


16 Oz. Whole milk Ricotta

½ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

1 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed to drain

½ tsp. garlic powder

Dash of salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 egg

zoodle manciotti



  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.


  1. Mix the ingredients for your filling in a large bowl and set aside.


  1. Prep zucchini strips.


  1. Pour 1/3 of your sauce in the bottom of the pan.


  1. Build a solid layer of zucchini, making sure they slightly overlap.


  1. Use ½ of your filling mixture, spreading evenly.


  1. Top with another layer of zucchini, followed by 1/3 of your sauce.


  1. Top with another layer of zucchini, and the rest of the filling.


  1. Do a final layer of zucchini, topped with sauce, then your cheese.


  1. Bake uncovered until hot and bubbly, 30-40 minutes.



Enjoy being creative with this pasta substitute. Since zucchini pasta tastes so mild, you can make your tasty sauce or dressing the real star of the show!

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