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I’m obsessed with this low carb zucchini spaghetti recipe! It has all the flavors of the wheat pasta dish you love, but zucchini noodles spaghetti has a lot fewer carbs. And, I’m a fan of anything that turns veggies into comfort food. Whether you’ve made zoodles a million times or are new to them, I’ll show you how to make zucchini spaghetti the super easy – and low carb! – way.
Spiralized zucchini spaghetti with meatballs is the perfect meal for a low carb or Atkins lifestyle. Pasta is notorious for what Atkins calls the Hidden Sugar Effect. Basically, it means that the carbs we eat are converted into sugar, even if we don’t see it. You might not see the sugar directly in pasta, but your body does. So, I make my own low carb spaghetti alternatives instead.
A big part of the Atkins approach is not only limiting carbs, but also making sure that the majority of them come from what they call Foundation Vegetables. Zucchini is one of my favorites. You may think that low carb or keto spaghetti is off limits for an Atkins lifestyle, but it doesn’t have to be. Just make my delicious zucchini spaghetti recipe!
What Is Zucchini Spaghetti?
Zucchini noodles spaghetti is simply spaghetti made with zucchini noodles instead of wheat pasta. You can make virtually any noodle dish into low carb, Atkins friendly, or keto spaghetti by using zoodles.
Obviously there are lots of ways to make pasta, but spaghetti and meatballs is a total classic. This spiralized zucchini spaghetti with meatballs is a healthier, low carb take on that.
What Does Zucchini Spaghetti Taste Like?
Spiralized zucchini spaghetti with meatballs tastes a lot like regular spaghetti and meatballs. However, of course you can taste the zucchini, too.
How To Cook Zucchini Spaghetti
The first step to making spaghetti with zucchini is spiralizing the zucchini! So, how do you make zucchini spaghetti?
To make the noodles, you can use a standalone spiralizer, handheld spiralizer, or even a julienne peeler in a pinch.
Then, how do you cook zucchini spaghetti? You can do that in a saute pan on the stove or in the oven. I prefer the oven method! It dries out the extra moisture, which is why baked zucchini spaghetti is less watery than its stove top counterpart.
If want more detail on how to make zucchini spaghetti noodles, or want to learn more about the methods for cooking zucchini spaghetti, check out my guide for how to make zucchini noodles here.
How To Make Zucchini Spaghetti and Meatballs
While the zoodles are cooking, you can make the meatballs. Simply mix together grated Parmesan, Italian seasoning, sea salt, black pepper, heavy cream, grated onion, egg, minced garlic, and fresh parsley. Then add in the ground beef and mix together.
TIP: Add the ground beef last, and down over-mix. This makes for meatballs that are tender, not rubbery.
I omitted any low carb flour or breadcrumbs here (to keep this zucchini spaghetti recipe under 10 ingredients!), but you can swap some of the grated Parmesan with almond flour for even better meatballs. They were inspired by my low carb meatballs recipe here.
Pop the meatballs in the oven until they are barely – but not quite! – done. Wipe any excess liquid from the edges, then return to the oven under the broiler to brown the meatballs.
TIP: The reason we don’t fully cook them at this stage is so that they finish cooking under the broiler, and don’t get too dry.
They look like this when they are done after broiling:
When the zucchini is ready, toss it with some heated marinara… and voila! Easy zucchini noodles spaghetti!
To serve, add your meatballs, a bit more marinara, and grated parmesan cheese.
Atkins, Low Carb & Keto Spaghetti Sauce Options
This zucchini spaghetti recipe uses a simple marinara sauce, which is definitely both Atkins and keto friendly but not the lowest carb option out there. I buy organic marinara from the store and make sure there is no added sugar in the ingredients, which I think is great and low carb enough for me.
How Many Carbs In Zucchini Spaghetti?
This zucchini noodles spaghetti recipe has 8 grams net carbs, and calories come out to 312 per serving. It’s suitable for Atkins, low carb, and keto diets.
With the Atkins 20, 40, or 100, you can have flexibility to choose a carb allowance that works for your goals and lifestyle. Plus, reducing carbs doesn’t have to mean “no carbs” (and it shouldn’t – veggies are still important!), but rather making small changes that add up to big results. This recipe is already low carb and keto spaghetti, but you can enjoy more of it on the more flexible Atkins 40 or Atkins 100 (which allow 40g and 100g net carbs per day, respectively).
Can You Freeze Zoodles?
It’s not recommended to freeze zoodles. For best results, make this zucchini spaghetti recipe fresh.
However, you can make the meatballs ahead of time, and either refrigerate or freeze them.
More Low Carb Zucchini Recipes
If you like zucchini, try these other Atkins-friendly low carb zucchini recipes:
- Zucchini Pizza Crust
- One Pot Cajun Shrimp Zucchini Pasta
- Low Carb Zucchini Lasagna
- Low Carb Fried Squash and Zucchini
Tools To Make Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti and Meatballs:
Click the links below to see the items used to make this recipe.
- Spiralizer – This is my favorite for making spiralized zucchini spaghetti.
- Sheet pan – The silicone coating is perfect for cooking zucchini spaghetti and also for the meatballs, too.
More Low Carb Recipes To Love
Keto Spiralized Zucchini Spaghetti Recipe With Meatballs
How to make zucchini spaghetti with meatballs = the BEST keto spaghetti ever! This spiralized zucchini spaghetti recipe has all the comfort, minus the carbs.
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- 40 oz Zucchini (about 8 medium)
More TIPS about this recipe in the post above!
VIDEO + NUTRITION INFO + RECIPE NOTES below!
Make zucchini noodles like this (oven method).
Meanwhile, make the meatballs. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
In a large bowl, stir together all ingredients for the meatballs, except the beef. Add the beef and mix until just combined. (Don't over-mix.)
Form the mixture into 1 in (2.5 cm) meatballs and place onto the baking sheet. A small cookie scoop is recommended to avoid overheating the meat with your hands, which makes tougher meatballs.
When the zucchini noodles are done baking, remove from the oven and increase oven temperature to 425 degrees F (218 degrees C). Let it preheat for a few minutes to the increased temperature.
Bake the meatballs in the oven for about 10 minutes, until just barely done. Use a paper towel to wipe any excess liquid around the sides of the meatballs.
Set the oven to broil and place the meatballs on the top rack under the broiler for about 2 minutes, until golden.
Heat the marinara sauce on the stove or in the microwave.
Place the zucchini noodles into a large bowl. Toss with 3/4 cup (96 g) of the marinara sauce.
Place the zoodles on plates and add meatballs, about 1 cup zoodles and 6 meatballs per plate. Top the meatballs on each plate with 2 tablespoons (28 g) marinara sauce, using up what was left. Sprinkle or sift grated parmesan on top.
Serving size: 1 cup zucchini spaghetti + 4 meatballs with sauce
NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database. You can find individual ingredient carb counts we use in the Low Carb & Keto Food List. Carb count excludes sugar alcohols. Net carb count excludes both fiber and sugar alcohols, because these do not affect blood sugar in most people. We try to be accurate, but feel free to make your own calculations.
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