Who loves gluten?? No? Me neither. And when I went gluten free back in 2009, I made it my mission to find and/or create substitutions in my diet that were both satisfying and delicious. It just so happened that it was around that same time that I began to seriously dabble in the raw food world. And discovering zucchini noodles was like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. These nutritious pasta replacement not only hold up well to many types of sauce, but they also have a neutral enough flavor as not to overwhelm, and they also have that just right al dente toothsome texture.
Nowadays, I still avoid gluten, all processed foods, and like to include as much green food like zucchini, as possible at every meal. I have a neat-o spiralizer machine that makes quick work of the squash, easily transforming it into a soft, pasta-like flavor vessel. But if you don’t have one of those at home, you can also make thicker zucchini “ribbons” simply be using your standard vegetable peeler. Here, yet another green food to top this green food; basil kale pesto. Yum-o.
Gluten Free Zucchini Pesto Pasta
- 1/3 C firmly packed fresh organic basil*
- 5-6 organic kale leaves, washed, trimmed, and torn into pieces*
- 2-4 garlic cloves, depending on your tolerance!
- 1/3 C walnuts (raw, or toasted for a denser flavor)
- 1/4 C nutritional yeast***
- 2-3 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1.5 t sea salt
- 1/4 C extra virgin olive oil to start, adding more as needed
- 1-2 zucchini, made into “noodles”
*Feel free to substitute any local organic herbs (cilantro, parsley) or leafy green (spinach, arugula) that you prefer or have on hand. The flavor combos are endless, but I like the mix of the kale and basil.
- In a blender or small food processor, add all ingredients and puree until smooth, scraping down blender jar or processor bowl with spatulas as necessary.
- Continue drizzling additional olive oil as needed to reach desired consistency.