Tricks of the trade, rules of the land, words to the wise, pointers… whatever you call them, here are my top tips for spiralized cooking. This list will constantly grow, so click the icon on the right hand navigation to check back for more tips and information.
INSPIRALIZED Tips for Spiralized Cooking
Buy a Separate Brush to Clean the Spiralizer
If you can’t seem to get all of a vegetable out of the pointy blades or the plastic teeth, don’t despair. Purchase a rounded brush to use solely for cleaning your spiralizer. Scrape the blades and teeth with the rounded brush, while using soap and running water. This prevents cutting your hands or putting away a dirty spiralizer.
I use this OXO brush. You can fill it with soap!
Cut the Noodles After Spiralizing
If you could continuously spiralize a vegetable, it would yield one extremely long noodle. However, the blades jamming and the uneven shapes of the vegetable prevent this – it slices while spiralizing. Even so, you’ll still get extremely long noodles, and that’s a little tough to serve and portion.
Just take a scissor when you’re done spiralizing the vegetable and cut the noodles before cooking or dressing them. You can go inch by inch or just grab a bunch of noodles and roughly snip. Either way, you’ll get regular-sized noodles that are easier to divide onto plates and eat.
Avoid a Runny Pasta Sauce
Click here for my full guide on avoiding a runny pasta sauce.
Keep in mind though, that you’re cooking vegetables, so your sauce is going to get somewhat watery. The longer the noodles sit in the sauce, the more water will seep out.
Another tip: try cooking the noodles ahead of time in a separate skillet. Take the noodles out with a slotted spoon, pat dry, and set aside for when you’re ready to add them to the sauce.
Don’t Always Cook the Noodles
To truly enjoy the benefits of spiralized cooking, don’t always opt to cook the noodles. One of the best things about spiralizing is that it’s quick and easy. You now know that you can get a bowl of vegetable noodles in 30 seconds. Why add a few more minutes to cook them? Skip that step and just dress the noodles with the sauce or dressing right away!
Raw noodles are crunchy, so simply pour a warmed sauce on top and the noodles will slightly heat and soften. It’s definitely a different texture, but can be more refreshing. Creamy avocado sauces also pair well with raw noodles and won’t result in any watery sauces.
How to Avoid Half Moons and What To Do With Them
You’ve probably noticed by now that the spiralizer slices the vegetable into half moons, while making the noodles. This happens mostly when the vegetable moves off center. To avoid this, reposition the vegetable so that the cylindrical blade keeps centered. You can also flip the vegetable around and center the other end on the blade.
If you have a heaping pile of half moons, don’t throw them out. Keep them and make a pasta salad – their little shapes goes well with salad dressing.
Always Pat Dry Cucumber Noodles
Cucumbers are made up of over 95% water. That’s a lot of water! When you spiralize a cucumber, always remember to pat dry with paper towels. Lay the noodles down on two layers of paper towel, cover with two more layers, and gently lean in and absorb the moisture. You might want to do this twice!
Choose Medium to Large Vegetables To Avoid Half Moons and Yield More Noodles
Spiralizing small vegetables will not only make smaller noodles, it will yield less of them. This applies for every blade. It will be hard to use Blade B with a small zucchini, it will yield mostly half moons.
Aim to use medium to large vegetables, as pictured above. The cucumber to the right of the tooth brush should be the smallest you ever spiralize and the perfect size. The zucchini to the left of the tooth brush is an example of a great vegetable to spiralize – however, it will yield longer, flatter noodles that aren’t as spiral-y.
Check back soon for more tips to make your spiralizing experience the best!
This page was last updated on September 10, 2013.