Zucchini Noodle Carbonara with Pancetta & Egg

I’m back on the healthy eating route after a fun weekend away, and last night I set out to try another spiralized recipe – Healthy Zucchini Noodle Carbonara from the Inspiralized food blog. At this point I’m fairly certain that I’m going to like most zucchini noodle recipes, and this one was no exception.

This particular recipe had me at the picture of the egg on top. Runny yolks are soooo yummy on foods, and eggs are such a great source of protein!


This recipe also called for cubed pancetta, however when I did my grocery shopping for the week, last night, my local grocery store I frequent only had pancetta slices, so I had to cut up the pancetta. For the record, Target carries cubed pancetta. I saw it last week and thought to myself that I should buy it for this particular recipe, and am kicking myself that I didn’t. But none-the-less, it was still delicious!

Light, but filling on flavor, I was very impressed with this dish. The pancetta, onion and garlic gave it a great, light flavor, which was perfect for me after a weekend of eating unhealthy and filling food.

Also, a big timesaver that I’ve got a lot better at is going through the ingredients and getting everything out, and everything prepped that I can (i.e. dicing the onions, spiralizing the vegetable, etc.). It makes cooking go so fast and easy, instead of running around the kitchen trying to get things out and ready in the middle of cooking.

 

 

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Zucchini Noodle Carbonara with Crispy Pancetta & Egg (Recipe adapted from Inspiralized)
INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 c. diced red onion
  • 1/2 c. cubed pancetta
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 zucchini’s, Blade C
  • 1/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

 

DIRECTIONS:
1. Place a large skillet over medium heat and add in the olive oil. Once the oil heats, add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook the garlic for 30 seconds, add in the onion and cook for 2-3 minutes or until the onion softens.
2. Add in the pancetta, stirring often, until cooking through – about 5 minutes.
3. Once the pancetta is done cooking, add a medium skillet over heat and crack two eggs. Let them cook until the egg whites set.
4. While your eggs are cooking, add the zucchini noodles to the pancetta, season with salt and pepper and toss to combine.
5. Stirring frequently, let cook for 2-3 minutes and then add in the Parmesan cheese. Toss the noodles with the cheese and then plate into bowls. Top each bowl with one of the eggs.
Cheers!
Heather
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Chicken & Chickpea Broccoli Noodle Salad with Feta & Lemon Dressing

I swear that with each new spiralizing recipe I try, I fall more in love with spiralizing. I feel like a broken record – constantly proclaiming that I’ve ‘found the best recipe yet!’ as we’re eating dinner. Things get even more interesting on the evenings that I spiralize a new vegetable for the first time, and it’s successful. Last night was no exception!


I have many recipes on deck to try from my main go-to food blog, Inspiralized, but I pulled this one to the front of the mix when a girlfriend of mine cooked it and couldn’t stop singing it’s praises – Chicken and Chickpea Broccoli Salad. I have been having a chickpea craving, so this was a perfect light dish to make before I head out of town for the weekend, where I will inevitably eat and drink way too much.

I had never spiralized broccoli before so I made sure to read through not only the recipe, but the section of the Inspiralized blog that talks about how-to spiralize broccoli. It seemed pretty common sense since I’ve been spiralizing for a few months now, but why wouldn’t I read what the expert has to say, and make sure that I’m doing it right?

Side note: I am a BIG fan of creating your own recipes, or variations of your favorites, however I consider myself wise enough to know it’s important to make sure you know what you’re doing first, then have fun!

I listed the recipe below and linked to the original, as I usually do, but wanted to note a few differences from my experience:

– I grilled the chicken for this recipe since the weather was still so nice out, but however you prefer to cook your chicken is fine.

– I had two big broccoli stems and didn’t feel it gave me quite enough noodles for two people, so I spiralized a small zucchini I had and tossed it in with the broccoli and peas to cook for 2-3 minutes (See step 2 below). It worked great, gave me a little more ‘noodles’, and is great filler if you don’t think you have quite enough broccoli.

– The original recipe called for shallots, which I did not have, so I used 1/2 cup of green onion instead. The dressing was AMAZING!

– I cooked all of these things simultaneously so that the meal was warm. I have this thing that a cold pasta salad = side dish, and can’t quite wrap head around it being the whole meal.

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Chicken & Chickpea Broccoli Noodles with Feta & Lemon Dressing (Recipe adapted from Inspiralized)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 boneless chicken breast (approximately 1 lb)
  • 3-4 big broccoli stems, spiralized using Blade C
  • 3/4 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup cooked green peas
  • Salt and pepper to taste

    For the dressing…

  • 2 tbsp basil, chopped
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese
  • 1/2 shallot or 1/2 c green onions
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
DIRECTIONS:
1. Season chicken with salt and pepper and grill until chicken is cooked through, dice, and set aside.
2. Place a medium pot filled halfway with water over high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, add in the broccoli noodles, peas, and chickpeas and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the broccoli noodles are softened and cooked al dente. Drain and set aside.
3. Place all of the ingredients for the feta dressing into a food processor and pulse until creamy.
4. Place the noodles, peas and chicken in a big bowl, then add in the dressing. Toss to combine and enjoy!

Cheers!
Heather

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Lemon-Dill Zucchini Pasta with Shrimp

I want to pause for a second and acknowledge the amazingness that is spiralizing. Some of you are probably asking ‘What in the hell is spiralizing?!’ – which is fair. You’ve likely heard of zucchini noodles, at it’s most basic level, right? I had, and I’d tried to make them, and FAILED miserably on many occasions. Until I discovered the spiralizer. This little contraption has busted the doors wide open on my healthy eating.

I don’t recall exactly what I was searching for when I stumbled upon the food blog Inspiralized, but I thank the food gods that I did. Endless healthy and EASY dishes, using a simple, $35 contraption, from Amazon. With very little hesitation I bought this item, and the rest has been history for me. 
I encourage you to do two things – 
1. Buy a spiralizer. All you have to do is follow this link to Amazon, and BAM! You’re welcome.
2. Head over to the food blog Inspiralized, and start planning your meals.
So last night I tackled another recipe from the Inspiralized blog – Lemon-Dill Zucchini Pasta with Shrimp. The blog added capers, I didn’t, but you know tomato-tom-ah-to. 
Talk about such an easy, light, and refreshing recipe to make. In 20 minutes I had prepped and cooked this zoodle dish, and it was one of the best so far! 

I pretty much followed the recipe to a tee – which I highly recommend, as making zucchini noodles is much different than regular noodles, but because I’m not always the best at following the rules, especially when it comes to cooking, I made a few changes. Besides no capers, I used A LOT of garlic. I mean three huge spoonfuls of garlic and I had to restrain myself. And I used a lot lemon juice. I was happy with both decisions, and would do it again in a heartbeat! 
Don’t be afraid to follow your own path and have fun the more you become comfortable with cooking; it’s what makes cooking fun!
You can find the whole recipe, along with full nutrition facts, here – Lemon-Dill Zucchini Pasta with Shrimp.  
Happy spiralizing!
Heather
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