Zucchini Noodles with Cilantro Lime Chicken

Zucchini noodles, weird and interesting, right?! I will be honest: when I first saw them on Pinterest last year, I was like “Whaaaat?! Why?!”. Pinterest is awesome but it’s full of weird ideas that are not practical. Many recipes look pretty, I agree, but it’s either a very time consuming or an unnecessary idea, in my opinion.

I have seen everyone using this spiralizer to make zucchini noodles but I didn’t have one. Then a few months ago, I discovered my very own mandoline I purchased at Woolies, similar to this one, can make zucchini noodles, two sizes. I had to try it and I did. And I loved zucchini noodles!

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Now, my honest opinion about zucchini noodles. They are awesome but you can make this dish also by chopping zucchini into small chunks or stripes. Really, same taste and idea. Unless you are a huge pasta lover. They are low in carbs but I find I still need to have my complex carbs on a side as well. So, for me, zucchini noodles are not a replacement of certain food but rather a nice addition. I’m a small person with growing muscles who eats a lot, true fact.

Anyways, this dish came out amazing! True light summer quick dinner which is perfect for the days when it’s too hot to cook. Literally takes 20 minutes to prepare with leftovers for tomorrow, if serving only 2 of you.

I sautéed the chicken until golden brown, then added a bit of cumin for that Mexican flavour and set aside. My zucchini noodles were ready to go in the pan for just 1.5 minutes, that’s all it takes. I wanted zucchini to be crunchy and light, rather than soggy and mushy. Top with previously cooked chicken, sprinkle with lots of cilantro, squeeze fresh lime juice on top and you are in heaven!

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Husband couldn’t get enough of this dinner. Zucchini noodles were quite crisp and nice the next day as well. You can use any protein you wish – shrimp, black beans or tofu would go nicely as well. Enjoy! 🙂

Ingredients

3 large zucchini
1.5 lbs boneless & skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ pieces
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt, divided
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp any small hot pepper/jalapeño or to taste, seeded and minced (leave seeds in for very hot version)
1 medium or 1/2 large lime, juice of
3/4 cup cilantro, chopped
Cooking spray

Directions

Using a spiralizer or mandoline, make zucchini noodles, transfer into a large bowl and set aside. You can also chop zucchini into any size pieces, if you don’t have the gadgets for making zucchini noodles.
Preheat large ceramic non-stick skillet on high heat and add chicken. Saute until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Add cumin, 1/2 tsp salt and ground black pepper towards the end, stir and cook for another minute. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Wipe clean or wash and pat dry the skillet and return to the stove on high heat. Spray with cooking spray and add zucchini noodles. Saute for 1.5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and add previously cooked chicken, remaining salt, small hot peppers/jalapeños, lime juice and cilantro. Stir gently and serve hot.

Storage Instructions: Refrigerate covered for up to 48 hours.

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