This recipe was my very first time working with zucchini noodles (zoodles). It’s Spicy Drunken Zucchini Noodles with Chicken: inspired by pad kee mao (Drunken Noodles), the immensely popular stir-fried Thai dish.
In place of the broad rice noodles used in pad kee mao, I opted for zoodles. The result is a flavorful dish with far fewer calories. For comparison, 100g of rice noodles is equivalent to 109 calories, while the same quantity of zoodles only has 17 calories and the same amount of fiber (1g). Now, I am always a bit wary of doing calorie comparisons since there is more to health than counting calories. However, if you are looking for ways to improve the QUALITY of your calories, you may want to use more vegetables in place of some of the refined carbohydrate products you eat.
Let’s cook! Try this recipe and let me know what you think. The main vegetables you will see here are zucchini and red bell peppers. However, you can add a wide variety of other vegetables including carrots, broccoli, string beans and bean sprouts.
Cooking tip: Add a little salt to the zucchini noodles and let them rest for about 20-30 minutes before cooking. The salt helps the zucchini to release some excess liquid.
Prep Time: 10 minutes . Cook Time: 10 minutes . Yield: Serves 5
1 Lbs Zucchini Noodles
1 Lb Boneless Chicken, cut into chunks
1 Cup Fresh Basil Leaves
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
3 Stalks of Green Onions, chopped
1 Jalapeno Pepper, sliced
1 Red Bell Pepper, sliced
1 Yellow Onion, sliced
1/2 Tbsp Fresh Ginger, minced
1 Tbsp Peanut Oil (or any high smoke point oil)
Salt, Black and/or White Pepper to taste
1 Tbsp Reduced-Sodium Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp Hoisin Sauce
1 Tbsp Oyster Sauce
1 Tbsp Sriracha
1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
1/2 Tbsp Fish Sauce
1/2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
Juice from 1 Lime
1. Combine sauce ingredients in small bowl; mix well and set aside.
2. Lightly salt zucchini noodles and set aside; this step will help the zucchini release some excess water.
3. Pat chicken dry if necessary, and season with pepper; let marinate for a few minutes. In a large non-stick skillet or wok, heat oil 1/2 tablespoon over medium-high heat; add chicken and cook for about 5 minutes until chicken is about 90% done. Remove chicken from pot.
4. If desired, wipe pan. Increase heat to high and add remaining oil. Add onions, garlic and ginger. Cook for about 2 minutes; stir occasionally. Add chopped jalapeno and bell peppers; cook for about 1 minute. Stir in basil and cook for 1 more minute.
5. Return chicken to pan and add sauce and green onions.Simmer for about 1-2 minutes until chicken is fully cooked; stir occasionally.
6. Switch off heat; stir in zucchini noodles. Toss zoodles so that they’re covered with sauce and well mixed with other ingredients; the heat from the pan will be enough to cook the zoodles. Serve warm.