Zoodles with chicken and pesto

Zoodles with chicken and pesto

Dinner Like A Boss
4 people
30 mins
Cooking time
12 mins
Benito Martin

Zucchini noodles or ‘zoodles’ are a great alternative to pasta, made by spiralising zucchini. I’ve included three different pesto recipes, including a dairy-free one, all of which can be used in multiple recipes. If you have kids who are adamant they don’t like zucchini, why not peel the zucchini before making the zoodles so then they are white. This way it’s highly unlikely they will realise they are zucchini – just a devious mum thought!


Quantity Ingredient
600g boneless, skinless chicken breast, preferably free-range
finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
80ml olive oil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
190g see method for ingredients
or see method for ingredients
or see method for ingredients
or store-bought pesto
250g cherry tomatoes, quartered
basil leaves, to serve, optional
carrot and/or cucumber batons, to serve, optional


  1. Cut each chicken breast into two thinner steaks. To do this, place your hand flat on top of the chicken and use a sharp knife to slice through, horizontally.
  2. Combine the lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and the oregano in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and turn to coat. Set aside to marinate.
  3. Trim the ends of the zucchini, then use a spiraliser to cut the zucchini into ‘zoodles’ (or see the note on page 65 on how to hand-cut them). Put the zoodles between layers of paper towel and pat them dry, pressing down firmly to remove any excess water. Set aside on paper towel.
  4. If you are making your own pesto, prepare it now.
  5. Heat a large frying pan over a medium–high heat and dry-fry the chicken, in batches if necessary, for 3–4 minutes on each side, or until cooked through. Transfer to a plate and pour over the lemon juice. Turn the chicken to coat. Set the chicken aside and keep it warm.
  6. Wipe out the pan and heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the same pan over a high heat. Once the oil is hot, add half the zoodles and cook for 2 minutes, moving them about with tongs, being careful not to break them. Put them in a large bowl and cook the remaining zoodles with an extra tablespoon of oil. Add them to the bowl, add the pesto and cherry tomatoes and toss gently to combine.
  7. Thinly slice the chicken. Divide the zoodles between bowls and top with the chicken. Scatter over the basil leaves (if using) and serve the carrot and/or cucumber batons on the side, if desired. Serve the zoodles immediately or they can become soggy.


  • You can buy a spiraliser tool fairly cheaply, but you can also use a handheld shredder – the tool that is the shape of a wide peeler, but produces long thin strips rather than one wide peel. Or you can make zoodles using a good old-fashioned knife. Thinly slice the zucchini lengthwise, then stack the slices on top of one another, and thinly slice these to get strips. Try to use medium-sized zucchini, as larger ones may have lots of seeds and be quite watery.
Family food
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