Cauliflower pasta sauce with zoodles is an easy vegan dinner recipe the whole family will enjoy—it’s even toddler-approved!
How often do you eat a meatless meal?
A year ago, I’d say maybe once a day, most likely at breakfast. But even then, I’d be adding in regular or turkey bacon to pair with my eggs and toast.
Now I eat far less than one meal a day WITH meat. I’ll go days without eating meat. And you know what? I’m kinda loving it.
Of course there are some days when I am straight up craving a grilled chicken breast—which has actually happened quite a few times since hitting third trimester. And that’s okay. A 100% vegan lifestyle is never going to be realistic for me. But I really like the fact that I can put together solid meals that keep me super full that are entirely plant-based.
My eating habits these days is focused on MORE plants, rather than LESS meat. When you do that, the less meat part kinda just comes naturally, but it doesn’t make you feel like eating meat is bad. Because it’s definitely not. Unless you eat leftover grilled hotdogs for four days in a row after the Fourth of July and start to feel really crappy. (Been there, just did that.)
My recent processed meat hangover is what prompted me to finish off this cauliflower pasta sauce with zoodles recipe! I don’t know why I always forget about cauliflower (actually I know why, because I kinda hate chopping up a head of cauliflower and I don’t like to buy pre-cut produce because it’s expensive and has extra plastic waste) but it goes so well in so many recipes. Super delicious in soups, pureed like mashed potatoes, substituted for rice, and in fresh salads!
I also have to say, I was totally pumped when I found out Brooklyn LOVED this recipe. I’ve made it twice now and she’s asked for additional servings each time! It’s always a win when you can find a recipe your kids love that is also loaded with veggies. 🙂
Cauliflower Pasta Sauce with Zoodles Grocery List
Next time you head to the grocery, make sure you have these on your list! Chickpeas are optional if you want to use them as a topping, but it’s good on it’s own. Feel free to add your other favorite pasta toppings as well…like, cheese?
- Red Onion
- Tomato Sauce
- Diced Tomatoes
- Minced Garlic
- Olive Oil
- Garlic Salt
- Onion Powder
You can absolutely make this with a regular pasta, or my new favorite chickpea pasta from Eat Banza! Sometimes I even like to mix zoodles into regular pasta to get the extra veggies when I am craving something a little more carb heavy.
Food Prep Tip
This recipes comes together pretty easily if you want to just chop up your cauliflower and onion ahead of time, but the sauce also reheats well if you make it on the weekend for dinners later in the week.
I wouldn’t, however, spiralize too much zucchini before hand. Once it is cooked it isn’t really good reheated at all, in my opinion. And uncooked spiralized zucchini stays good in the fridge only for a couple of days.
Cauliflower Pasta Sauce with Zoodles
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- two 16 oz cans of tomato sauce
- one 16 oz can of diced tomatoes
- 2.5 teaspoons basil
- 2.5 teaspoons oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- enough zucchini to make as many zoodles as you want to eat
Roasted Chickpeas (optional)
- 1 16 oz can chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper
To Roast Chickpeas
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Rinse chickpeas. Add to a bowl and toss with olive oil.
- Spread on a roasting pan and sprinkle salt and pepper.
- Roast for 25 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes.
Sauce and Zoodles
- Chop cauliflower into small pieces. I pulled apart the head so the cauliflower and chopped any remaining stems into smaller pieces.
- Chop onion.
- Place a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add oil, minced garlic and red onion. Saute until onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes.
- Add cauliflower and saute additional 5 minutes.
- Add sauce, tomatoes and spices. Mix well. Cover, then lower heat to simmer for 10-15 minutes until cauilflower is soft.
- While sauce is cooking, spiralize zucchini.
- Place a second pan on medium heat. Add zucchini and cook for 2-3 minutes, then remove from heat.