Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Zucchini Pasta with Red Sauce and Oat-Filled Turkey Meatballs

Do you ever see a really good deal on a cookbook and feel obligated to buy it?  I'm normally not an impulse shopper, but when it comes to certain things, like cookbooks, I am!  Our local grocery store has a giant cookbook sale every once in a while, and last year this book was on sale for two-dollars.  Yes, two-dollars!!

Strangely enough, I've yet to make any of the "skinny desserts" (there is a molten lava cake that I'm planning on making soon), but I have to say I'm pretty proud of the fact that I've even used the cookbook once. I mean, with Pinterest, wonderful blogs and recipe websites, who needs cookbooks anymore?!  Well, as it turns out, I do!  This was actually the second recipe I made from this cookbook, and coincidently the first one I made was also using ground turkey (turkey meatloaf with crimini mushrooms).  Today I want to share with you a lower carbohydrate, fat, and therefore lower calorie way to make "spaghetti and meatballs".

You'll start with the "meatballs"......

Turkey Meatballs With Oats
Makes 12 balls (4 servings)
Modified slightly from a recipe found in Substitute Yourself Skinny, by Chef Susan Irby

1 pound lean ground turkey breast
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
2 egg white
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the turkey, oats, egg, oregano, thyme, basil, salt and pepper.  Mix well.  Roll into 12 meatballs (about 2 heaping tablespoons each).  Spray a heavy ovenproof skillet (or baking sheet) with nonstick spray.  Place the meatballs in skillet and bake for 12 minutes or until done (should reach 165 degrees).

Estimated nutrition facts for 1-serving (3 turkey balls)

And if you want to have a very low calorie and low carbohydrate "pasta", make zucchini noodle pasta (or spaghetti squash is another option).  Simply shred zucchini and boil it for about 5 minutes (I used 4 zucchini for 4 servings).

Step one: shred the zucchini (1small zucchini per person)

Step two: boil water, then add zucchini and allow to simmer for 5 minutes

Step three: strain and put into a bowl 

Step five: add your favorite toppings
If you eat about 1 cup of the zucchini you will only be consuming about 20-30 calories.  Compare that to regular pasta, which is about 180-200 calories in a cup.  Yeah, now you get it!  And this is even husband approved. I reluctantly served this to Nick, but was happy to see (and hear from his "mmmmms") that he enjoyed this dish just as much as I did.  In fact, here is what he said, "What is this?" and I said, "Zucchini!!  Cool huh?!" and he said, "yeah, it's good!".  SCORE!  Now if only our future children can enjoy zucchini pasta....

** NOTE:  If you are following a low FODMAPs diet look for a tomato sauce that is free of onion and garlic.  Or make your own by blending canned tomatoes, some spices, and garlic-infused olive oil.

The meatballs really tasted great, and with the tomato sauce and zucchini pasta, it was the perfect light and refreshing dinner.

QUESTION: Have you ever made zucchini pasta?  What other vegetables have you used as "pasta"?

Thanks for reading!

The Candid Rd

NOTE: I love comments!  But, be sure to come back to read any replies to questions or comments, as they do not go directly to your e-mail.


  1. I'm super impressed! I've not tried zucchini noodles, although I've been meaning to, and so I'm glad to hear they were a hit! I've never heard of oats in meatballs, but that's such a good idea. I know what you mean about cookbooks - even though I get most recipes online, I still have to pick up a good cookbook when I see one :)

  2. I still have not made my own zucchini pasta, but hope to get going on it soon! How can you go wrong with meatballs on anything though? Can you believe I really never made meatballs up until this year, but now they appear regularly on our dinner menu, because everyone loves them. This looks delish!!

  3. I keep seeing this out there, zucchini pasta. I really want to try it and don't think I ever realized exactly how simple it was to do. Great looking recipe!

  4. I usually put shredded or sliced zucchini in my pasta, but have yet to try it just alone as "pasta". Will need to do!

    And I'm glad I'm not the only one who loves buying cookbooks! It is the only thing I collect.

  5. I used to make more zucchini pasta but haven't for a while. We all like it. I really think it's the sauce/topping that makes the dish.

    I recently made meatballs with oats, and they turned out great. It's what I'm going to use from now on!

    1. Nice informative article. thanks for sharing and keep sharing such kind of articles, as these articles really helpful for experienced and new comers..