As our society generally shifts towards more health-conscious life choices, like eating healthy, whole food and exercising often, it only makes sense that more methods, knowledge and tools to help reach these goals make their ways into many people’s lives. Everything from the latest fitness fads, to a much larger emphasis on cooking your own meals at home as a healthier alternative to take-out, we’re all beginning to have a much broader conversation about our health, and an essential part of our health is what we eat. You’ll often see people trying to sell miraculous fat-burning pills, or crash diet programs, or preaching one of hundreds of other lifestyle trends that tend to be unproven. However, in the end, one of the best and easiest ways to maintain a good diet and nutrition is to prepare your food at home using whole foods, like fresh vegetables.
There are so many healthy choices available to most of us, but not all of them are fully recognized by the majority of people as good alternatives, and sometimes even substitutes, to some of the less-than-healthy choices we make. Today, we’re going to be discussing one of those options, and one of the tools to help us with it that has entered the mainstream in the past few years. Often underappreciated, I’m of course talking about the Zucchini and the convenient slicers you can buy to help you prepare them! Zucchinis do not come up as often as many other whole foods when people talk about eating well, but they are incredibly important in a healthy diet, because they are so incredibly vitamin-rich, helps to promote eye health, and are delicious when prepared properly! So, to help our diets and our dishes, let’s take a look at the tools you can use to slice your Zucchinis, and how you can use them! The tools we’ll be looking at will be slicers, spiralizers, and even vegetable pasta makers! Then we’ll take a look at some good models you can get online at Amazon, as well as a recipe idea involving zucchinis which turns out to be a very creative way to swap out other, less-healthy ingredients for Zucchinis! Let’s get started!
What are These Machines and What Do They Do?
There are three types of these machines we’ll be looking at that you could use with any Zucchinis: A vegetable, spiralizer, a normal vegetable slicer, and a vegetable pasta maker. Each of these can be found in almost any kitchen store, but many kitchen still lack these handy and convenient tools and machines. Most people don’t believe that they would use these tools enough to justify buying them, but I disagree! In addition to making routine kitchen tasks much easier, they also open up opportunities to prepare meals that would be incredibly difficult without them. So, if you’re the type who likes to always try new recipes, these will give you access to a great many more!
Firstly, we’re going to take a look at the vegetable spiralizer. It’s a unique, fun and handy tool for quickly and easily creating fancy-looking, beautiful dishes. These machines are typically smaller, made of plastic, and fairly lightweight. They typically work by inserting the vegetable you want to spiralize into an apparatus on the front of the machine, and then using a hand-crank on the back of the machine in order to rotate the vegetable, and as it rotates, a blade that resembles a peeler runs along the length of your food, slowly cutting it into beautiful, aesthetically-pleasing spirals. These are great for juliennes, salads, or just for decorating your dishes to make your meals look more appealing! Many of these spiralizers also work for more solid fruits as well, such as apples or pears, making them a very versatile choice for any kitchen!
Up next, we have your average, run-of-the-mill vegetable slicer. Most of these are operated by hand, although some variations you can see will be mechanical. These tend to also be very lightweight, almost every model available being made of plastic, except for the blades. The most common model is incredibly simple to use: place food on the plate with the slicing blades, and use the other part of the machine to slice it. It can’t get simpler than that. These are incredibly helpful, because they allow you to chop a large volume of fruits and veggies quickly without having to use one of your knives, which would be a much slower process anyways. So not only is this easier and more convenient, it also saves you time! If you need diced strawberries or cucumbers for salads, platters or anything else, this is the tool you need for your kitchen!
Lastly, there is the vegetable pasta maker. This tool has gotten a lot more attention recently, especially as things like the Keto diet has caught on, because it is a healthy, nutritious and relatively carb-free version of normal pasta that can taste just as good. It does exactly what it says in the title: It takes devious, amazing veggies, and turns them into pasta-like strands that you can boil for a very similar consistency and texture to regular pasta noodles. They’re terrific for people trying to lose a bit of weight, since having vegetable pasta in the place of actual pasta allows you to keep off carbs and have fun doing it! You can even decide to use a variety of different vegetables, such as carrots, Zucchini, and others to make a very colorful, diverse pasta! These add the opportunity for a lot of diversity and color in your meals, and will definitely liven up any pasta night you have.
So, now that you know what these things can do for you and your kitchen, let’s look around on Amazon.com for some good, high-quality and cost-effective models!
What are Some Good Ones to Buy?
Looking around for these items on online, you will find pages upon pages of products you can buy. So, which ones are good, worthwhile purchases? I’ve done the work for you, and here you’ll find a list of three products – one of each of the tools we discussed – that would serve you very well if you were looking to get one for your kitchen! These models will lean on the more inexpensive side, because I believe cooking should be accessible to everybody and price shouldn’t be a barrier to that!
Simple, effective, and beautiful in a nice white color, this slicer comes with stainless steel blades that are incredibly high-quality. As far as options go, this one is a reliable choice, being made from durable, lightweight plastic that will not easily break while you’re chopping your fruits or veggies. This slicer is capable of cutting your vegetables into a nice julienne, so it would be perfect for creating salad, slaws, and other dishes that require your vegetables to be finely-sliced.
- Easy to use
- Surgical – grade blades ensure good slices
- Comes in an easy-to-match white color
- Requires no electricity to use
- Needs to be used manually
- Only capable of slicing to julienne size, so larger sizes may require something else
- Does not fully come apart, making it hard to wash
WonderVeg is a relatively new brand, but their high-quality products oriented towards creating a healthier kitchen by giving you the ability to create more versatile vegetable dishes have customers swearing by them. This particular machine has drawn a lot of attention due to its sheer versatility. This machine, unlike a lot of others, come with three attachments you can use to prepare your veggies almost any way you want! These include: The shredder, which is the traditional way to use the Spiralizer by creating long, thing, almost spaghetti – like strands of vegetables. The second is the chipper, which is used to create straight, thick slices of vegetables. Perfect for making fries, or any healthier alternatives using other veggies! The third is the straight blade, which cuts the vegetables into long, thin and ribbon-like strands, meant to help you make fantastic potato chips! It’s also a very lightweight plastic, and it uses food-grade stainless steel in all of its blades, in addition to being very aesthetically pleasing.
- Versatility with three different slicing attachments
- Requires no electricity to function
- Can only be operated manually
- Can only really be used on veggies, not fruits
- Can be difficult to clean
This one is being mentioned specifically for its ability to make vegetable pasta. This particular machine is a little bulkier than the others, a little heavier, and takes up just a little more space than some of the other machines I’ve mentioned. However, it is still an amazing spiralizer as well! Made with BPA-free, food-grade plastic and it even comes with a small cookbook of all the things that you can make with it! So, if you don’t mind spending a little bit more money on a good option, this could also just as easily replace any spiralizer, as well as making fantastic vegetable pasta, as long as you don’t mind sacrificing a little more space on your counter to achieve that. It also comes with a durable, good-quality ceramic peeler! This one you use by hand like any other peeler, so it’s good for skinning your vegetables before you turn them into pasta or anything else, if you’re not interested in the skin of the vegetable being a part of the meal. Most notably, it also comes with a guide for healthy eating and living! It’s uncommon to see this with most products of its type, but this book is crammed full of ideas, tips and tricks about how to eat healthy and live healthier!
- Comes with a free physical and digital cookbook
- Includes a ceramic peeler
- Made with BPA-Free Plastic
- Comes with a guide to healthy eating
- Takes up more space than other options
- Must be used manually
- More expensive than other options
So, now that you’ve had a look at some of the machines that can help you deal with not only Zucchinis, but almost any vegetable you might want to process, now we’re going to look at a really cool recipe that use Zucchinis so that you can put any of these machines to good use! We’ll be looking at a very simple, basic, yet delicious idea for a dish that you will end up wishing you knew about this sooner! So, we’re going to be taking a fantastic, easy, and delicious recipe you could make for yourself in a little less than 15 minutes!
Low-Carb Zucchini Pasta
This delicious, nutritious pasta is a great replacement for people who want to make their evening meals healthier, are looking to take some carbs out of their diets, or for people who have gluten intolerance such as celiac disease! It’s a delicious recipe that is incredibly simple and easy to make, and could easily become a staple in anyone’s kitchen!
- Two Peeled Zucchinis
- 1/4 cup of water
- One tablespoon Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Simply use your spiralizer to produce long, thin strands of zucchinis by placing them in the apparatus on the front of the machine. Operate your spiralizer using the crank until you’ve produced as many noodles as you’ll need for your meal. Place the Olive Oil over medium heat, then putting your Zucchini noodles into the pan, stirring them and letting them cook for one minute before adding in the water, stirring again, and then letting it cook for 5-7 minutes, or until desired softness is reached. Once they are soft enough, simply use a strainer to strain the liquid from your pasta, then season with salt and pepper to taste, or even top with your choice of pasta sauce!