1 Cheap Eats: Zucchini Pasta for One | The Billfold

Cheap Eats: Zucchini Pasta for One

This is the best for cooking for one; few ingredients, easy, cheap (so cheap!), somewhat healthy, not that much washing up. I’ll give quantities to feed one, but can just increase for however many you want.

No salt is added to the sauce because the zucchini is already salted to help bring out some of the moisture. Also, timing matters, please pay attention.


• Spaghetti for one, this is subjective unless you get one of these

• 1 medium zucchini (courgette?)

• 1 and a 1/3 teaspoon salt

• 1 teaspoon butter and a splash of olive oil

• 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced (not chopped, sliced)

• a pinch of chili flakes

• ground pepper

• 1 tablespoon chopped parsley (or a mix of parsley and mint if you have it)
• 1 tablespoon crumbled feta cheese


Fill your biggest pot with lots of water and put it over high heat on the stove with one teaspoon of salt in the water.

Grate the zucchini then lightly salt it. Leave for 5 minutes.

Slice half a clove of garlic into fine slices. Chop parsley and mint. Squeeze excess water from the zucchini with your hands over a bowl or sink. Just squeeze it like Play Doh, don’t worry about getting all the water out.

Once the pasta water is on a rolling boil (has been boiling for more than a few seconds, the water is moving energetically around the pot), put the spaghetti in. Give the spaghetti a quick stir to stop it from sticking.

When spaghetti has cooked for 5 minutes, put the teaspoon of butter and the oil in a fry pan with the garlic over low heat. Cook for 20 seconds, don’t let the garlic brown.

Turn heat up to medium-high and add the zucchini. Fry the zucchini for 1 minute, it shouldn’t brown, in fact, it will continue to look raw. It will actually be juicy and sweet and so great. Turn the heat off, add chili flakes, pepper, crumbled feta, herbs and two teaspoons of the water from the pasta.

Drain the pasta once it is al dente, mix it into the zucchini in the pan.

Eat in bed while watching YouTube videos of David Mitchell talking about food.


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Cat McInnis is a food blogger and a recently-employed publishing assistant-type-person in Melbourne, Australia.


7 Comments / Post A Comment

Megano! (#124)

This looks good, Imma try and make it sometime!

Sounds great except I would use a handful of chopped parsley, 3-5 cloves of garlic, and as much feta as you can stand. i’m nothing if not excessive with my use of toppings/flavors. I might have a problem.

darklingplain (#938)

The recipe sounds fast and tasty, but I do have one disagreement. I know telling people to use their largest pots to cook pasta is a food-writer tic, but it’s a little ridiculous, both because my largest pot is a four gallon lobster pot and because if you’re only making one serving of pasta you really don’t need more than two quarts of boiling water.

JitterBug (#1,972)

Looks delicious and I am totally making this soon (zucchini is in season-yay!).

However, I am actually commenting because I really really want that spaghetti measurer thingy! I want people to come over for pasta for dinner so I can say “How hungry are you-one horsie or two?”. But I won’t buy it because I’m pretty sure spending money on ridiculous albeit adorable kitchen gadgets is against the actual point of the Billfold…

Poppy (#1,438)

@JitterBug I once lived in a place that had one of those! We cooked spaghetti all the time, and it didn’t get used once. Not once. I’m now very against the idea of anyone buying one!

selenana (#673)

This sounds good. I will make it. But lately I have been making my pasta by a tip I read somewhere on the internet (maybe hairpin comments?): Put the pasta in the water, cover, bring to a boil, then turn the heat off and let it sit in the water for the recommended amount of time (for example, if it says on the rotini package to cook it for eight minutes, it sits for eight minutes). Seems to work just fine and probably saves a bit of gas.

ghechr (#596)

I made this last night and I can verify that it is GOOD! I was cooking for 3 people and I overdid it on the noodles so the pasta to zuke ratio was a little off. But even with my noodley mistake, it was delicious and I got raves.

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