These zucchini noodles with creamy roasted tomato basil sauce are the perfect way to enjoy fresh summer produce.
I won a radio contest last month. Here’s the funny thing about it though…
1. I hardly ever even listen to the radio. I drive to CrossFit and the grocery store 99% of the time I’m in the car and both are within two miles of my house.
2. When I do listen to the radio, I don’t ever listen to the station I won the contest from.
3. Ulysses is the one who heard about it, came home and was like “there’s this radio contest where all you have to do is submit a ‘real food recipe’ to enter.”
Real food recipe? I think I might have a few things that would qualify for that…
So I grabbed this zucchini noodles with avocado cream sauce from last summer because it’s the one recipe that epitomizes summer + real food in my mind and it’s one of the most popular ones on this site, sent it in and forgot about it.
Three days later, I was on the phone with Chris Marino and his cheesy radio DJ voice (in case you were wondering if radio DJs talk like total tools off air, they do) telling me I won.
So in addition to a gift card to a local restaurant, a recipe reader and a credit to Plated, I won a 4-day trip to NYC.
Sounds glamorous, but I’ve lived an hour away from NYC almost all my life so I think the trip was a lot cooler to the 20 other people that won from their respective clear channel stations and got flown in from all over the country than the person who lives in the suburbs of the city.
But, I wasn’t about to pass up a car service to the city, spending money, hotel accommodations and a trip to Brooklyn Grange.
So Brandy and I spent last weekend eating, eating, walking a bit, eating, seeing Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill (<–amazing) and eating some more.
Wanna know what we ate? Tomatoes, burrata, tomatoes, zucchini, burrata, tomatoes and some more tomatoes…
Then I came home, decided I still wanted more tomatoes and zucchini and made these zucchini noodles with creamy roasted tomato basil sauce as a spin off of last years zucchini noodles recipe that won me the contest.
Zucchini noodles have become somewhat of an obsession lately for me.
They seem to be all the rage in the healthy eating world so if you’re looking for more zucchini noodle recipes try Chinese chicken zucchini noodles, Thai chicken zucchini noodles or these simple basil and mint squash noodles.
How To Make The Zucchini Noodles
I break down the difference between the two in the recipe for zucchini noodles with avocado cream sauce but use whichever tool you have. If you’re looking to invest in one or the other, check out that post for some specifics.
You can even freeze zoodles and use them once thawed for this recipe if preferred. Our guide on how to freeze zucchini can be helpful for dealing with an overload of summer produce.
Do I Have To Roast The Tomatoes?
I highly recommend roasting the tomatoes for the creamy tomato basil sauce in this recipe but it’s not totally necessary.
If you have really delicious, summer ripe, garden fresh tomatoes and want to add them straight to the food processor, go ahead.
I like roasting the tomatoes because it gives a certain depth to the flavor even the ripest fresh tomato doesn’t have. It brings out their natural sweetness and complements the grated parmesan.
How Do You Get The Sauce Creamy?
The secret to the creaminess in the this tomato basil sauce is a little bit of cream cheese!
Equally delicious options would be ricotta or even cottage cheese.
In fact, I’ve done the combination of zucchini noodles before in this zucchini noodles with sausage, cherries and ricotta recipe, it’s a lovely sweet and savory combo!
I know that sounds weird but cottage cheese is one of those things people freak out about texturally but in a recipe like this where it’s being blended in a food processor, I promise it’d be fine.
And if you want a similar recipe to these creamy tomato basil zucchini noodles, try this tomato basil eggplant noodle recipe. It’s another great one for summer!
Zucchini Noodles with Creamy Roasted Tomato Basil Sauce
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Toss tomatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper on a baking sheet.
- Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes until the tomatoes start to brown and blister.
- Remove the tomatoes from the oven and transfer to a food processor.
- Add the cream cheese, basil, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to taste and process until smooth.
- Place zucchini noodles in a large bowl. Add the tomato sauce to the bowl and toss until all the noodles are coated.
- Serve with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.