I wanted to create a simple, fast, easy springtime “pasta” salad that was both filling yet light.
If the warmer weather has you craving lighter meals that are plant-based rather than heavier carby meals or gluten-based pasta, this meal should do the trick.
Raw Pasta Salad with Creamy Lemon & Herb Dressing
For the Salad:
1 zucchini, spiralized
1/2 c mixed vegetables (carrots, broccoli, green beans, cucumber slices, radishes, tomatoes, peapods, bell peppers, whatever you have on hand)
Optional: 1/2 c protein (edamame, diced tofu, garbanzo/white/navy/cannelloni beans, quinoa, etc.)
For the Dressing:
1/4 c mayo (regular, soy, Vegenaise, etc.)
2 – 3 tbsp honey (to keep vegan, use maple syrup, agave, brown rice syrup)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp EVOO
1 tsp basil (fresh or dried)
1/2 tsp dill
1/2 tsp fresh-ground pepper, or to taste
pinch salt, optional
Stir to combine
Spiralize the zucchini. (Spiralizer info, what I have and use, and where to buy one is here)
Add the diced vegetables and protein.
Coat and toss with dressing. Doing this 15-20 minutes prior to eating will allow the dressing to soften the noodles and give them a more cooked taste and texture. Or simply mircowave the entire plate of food for 30 seconds if you want a “hot meal”.
Yields: 2 healthy sized plates of food, or 3 more medium sized plates
Gather your ingredients and spiralize the zucchini.
Make the Dressing
Plate the raw pasta, veggies, and protein…
Add the dressing and toss
For anyone who’s not familiar with zucchini-based pasta, I find it to be very neutral tasting, as zucchinis tend to be for me. It’s the sauce and seasonings that change the flavor.
For instance, my Raw Zucchini Pasta & Raw Marinara Sauce
…is very different from my Raw Zucchini Pasta & Peanut Sauce
…Which is very different from today’s Raw Zucchini Pasta & Creamy Lemon & Herb Dressing.
I’m telling you, it’s all in the sauce.
The flavors of the dill and basil in this sauce, combined with the tartness of the lemon, and balanced with the sweetness from the honey were wonderful. The creaminess imparted from the mayo and olive oil were a treat in my mouth. And in Scott and Skylar’s too. The recipe and dressing got rave reviews from all, including a 4 year old. Success!
And with the right sauce or dressing, no one will miss gluten-based pasta. Or even cooked pasta.
And if they happen to be whining or skeptical about eating raw zucchini in place of real pasta, just nuke their plate of food for 45 seconds. I used to do this for Scott, but now, he happily enjoys it raw. If you’re lucky enough to have a dehydrator, you could also warm the plate of food in it. However, in the spring and warmer weather, I especially love salads of all kinds and wouldn’t warm them.
From my last post about the Drool-worthy recipes I’ve seen around the sphere the past week or so, I am glad you enjoyed my roundup.
And thank you to everyone who chimed in about creating masterpieces in the kitchen. I will admit, sometimes I feel that my recipes are a little Plain Jane compared to some that I see around the blogosphere, but as I mentioned in the post, not everyone has the time, energy, or desire to create “masterpieces”.
And many of you commented that you read my blog because you love my simple, easy, straight-forward recipes; many of which use the microwave, are no-bake, or one-pot meals. Thank you, so much. I really needed that vote of confidence and that simple is good for you, too.
Also, many thanks to new readers and commenters. Thank you for finding my blog and I hope you stick around. Of course, thanks to everyone who reads; new or old readers, lurkers or commenters.
Dessert: Sticking with a raw vegan theme today, Raw Vegan Chocolate Macaroons
Feel free to bake them in the oven, too.
Or just eat the raw “dough” right from the bowl. I won’t tell.
1. Do you have a spiralizer? Do you want one?
If you don’t have a spiralizer, I would suggest using a vegetable peeler and just making zucchini ribbons rather than classic “noodles”.
So please, don’t write saying you’d “love to make this but you don’t have a spiralizer”. Using a 99 cent peeler will work just fine!
2. Have you ever had raw “pasta” such as zucchini noodles, cucumber ribbon noodles, or even raw squash-based noodles? Thoughts?
I linked a couple other raw pasta recipes in the post and raw cucumber wraps are fun, too.
Even if the gluten factor wasn’t a consideration for me, I just never was into cooked pasta. Just not my thing, ever. So that is not something I miss or want. Using vegetables as my noodles or as the “wrap” or “bread” is way more my speed anyway. Plus, you’re getting in extra servings of veggies and omitting servings of carby breads or pasta. A win-win in my book.
Today’s recipe happens to be raw and vegan, but to me, that is not the primary appeal. The primary appeal is that it’s tasty, satisfying yet light, and took me 5 minutes to make!
3. Anything fun or exciting happen for you this week?
It did for me! And with that, I’ll leave you hanging…