Zoodles in a Lemon Cream Sauce*

Zucchini Pasta in a Lemon Cream Sauce (recipe via thenovicechefblog.com)

Zucchini Noodles – Zoodles. Don’t run! I swear — this is a real thing. The first time I saw them, they were served raw and it just wasn’t my thing. I blew it off as one of those weird things that I just didn’t get. Then last week I wound up with an abundance of zucchini. I used up as much as I could (and made these cupcakes again), but I still had a bunch leftover.

I had 4 zucchinis that were about to go bad and decided I was going to give Zucchini Pasta another shot. But this time I was going to cook it and serve it up in a sauce that I love on regular pasta. Sure I was still totally skeptical, but how can anything be bad when it’s in a Lemon Cream Sauce?

The only word I can use to describe my first bite: Whoa. Jorge and I both gobbled up our huge bowls and talked about how perfect it would be with some grilled chicken next time. The zucchini was cooked al dente (with a little crisp still in it) and the sauce was the absolute perfect pairing. Jorge and I both said we didn’t miss the traditional pasta at all!

Zucchini Pasta in a Lemon Cream Sauce (recipe via thenovicechefblog.com)

I have made this Lemon Cream Sauce a lot over the years for a quick creamy pasta dinnner. It utilizes Philadelphia Cream Cheese as the creamy ingredient, instead of cream or half & half, which really speeds up the process. Unlike a traditional alfredo sauce, this Lemon Cream Sauce just takes a few minutes in the saute pan…and on a busy week night I know we can all really appreciate a quick homemade sauce.

I like to use Philadelphia Cream Cheese specifically because of their great standards. Philadelphia has been around since 1872 and uses all real fresh ingredients in their cream cheese. It’s all real, fresh, local milk from farms nearby and wholesome cream. I am considering using one of their flavored Spicy Jalapeno cream cheese next time for a little spice. It uses real jalapenos and I like the heat it adds!

Zucchini Pasta in a Lemon Cream Sauce (recipe via thenovicechefblog.com)

It is super easy to make the noodles with a Julienne Peeler (mine was picked up at William Sonoma, but they have a great priced one on Amazon!). I had all 4 zucchini made into noodles in just a few minutes! Then as I said earlier, the sauce also comes together very quickly…then a few minutes for the “noodles” and this dish is done. From start to finish, this dish only took me 20 minutes to make! Perfect for those quick Meatless Monday night dinners!

This recipe uses so few ingredients, that it is important to use quality ingredients. So use fresh lemon juice and some freshly ground black pepper…and garlic that didn’t come out of a jar. The freshness really makes all the flavors POP!


Zoodles in a Lemon Cream Sauce

Yield: 2 large servings (or 4 servings if using as a side)

recipe note: When I make this Lemon Cream Sauce for normal pasta, I add a little chicken broth to the sauce, but all the water in the zucchini makes it unnecessary.


  • 4 medium zucchini, ends trimmed and peeled a julienne peeler into noodles
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 oz Philadelphia Cream Cheese
  • 1 large lemon, juiced
  • kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • a big handful of cherry tomatoes, halved


In a large saute pan over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add garlic, cooking for 30 seconds. Add cream cheese and lemon juice, stirring until cream cheese is melted. Season with salt and pepper.

Add zucchini noodles, tossing to coat in sauce, and cook for 2 - 3 minutes until wilted. You don't want to overcook the noodles -- you want that slightly crisp texture!

Top with cherry tomatoes and serve immediately.

I have been selected by Kraft Foods to be an ambassador for PHILADELPHIA. While I have been compensated for my time, my opinions are my own, and I have not been paid to post positive comments.

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46 Responses to “Zoodles in a Lemon Cream Sauce”

  1. 1

    Belinda @themoonblushbaker — August 12, 2013 @ 2:52 am

    I am not one to normally use pasta subs, but zucchini has a special place in my heart. Totally dinner worthy!

  2. 2

    Monday Links for the Week … Random Bits & Some Recipes … | Our Adventures In The Middle East — August 12, 2013 @ 7:16 am

    […] COURGETTE PASTA WITH LEMON CREAM SAUCE … for those watching your carb intake this is a good pasta alternative … […]

  3. 3

    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — August 12, 2013 @ 7:58 am

    This is so freaking fun! Loving that sauce!

  4. 4

    Stephanie @cookinfanatic — August 12, 2013 @ 8:07 am

    This looks so yummy, the sauce sounds fabulous!!

  5. 5

    Tieghan — August 12, 2013 @ 8:27 am

    I love zucchini noodle that are warm and served in sauce….just like these!! Wow do these look and sound amazing! I cannot wait to make these!

  6. 6

    Cookbook Queen — August 12, 2013 @ 8:36 am

    This is probably the only one you could talk me into trying zucchini noodles ever EVER. This looks so so good!!!

  7. 7

    Eileen — August 12, 2013 @ 3:11 pm

    Yet another excellent reason to get a julienne peeler! I really should do that one of these days… :) This zucchini pasta sounds so good, & definitely perfect for the sumer zucchini harvest.

  8. 8

    Ash- foodfashionparty — August 12, 2013 @ 4:12 pm

    I have never tried this and if it looks this perfect, I will give it a shot very soon. Thanks for sharing this wonderfully easy, healthy noodles.

  9. 9

    danielle — August 12, 2013 @ 4:18 pm

    Could you sub the cream cheese for plain Greek yogurt?

    • Jessica replied: — August 12th, 2013 @ 4:21 pm

      You could, but you would lose a lot of the creaminess. I don’t think it would really taste half as good. And since we already cut out all the carbs and extra calories from the noodles…I think the cream cheese is worth it!

      However, if you really are looking to cut more fat, I would use the 1/3 less fat cream cheese.

  10. 10

    Bobbi — August 12, 2013 @ 6:42 pm

    do you know what the carb count/calorie count is?

    • Jessica replied: — August 12th, 2013 @ 6:45 pm

      No, I did not calculate it – but you can easily do it using SparkRecipes.com!

  11. 11

    Angelyn @ Everyday Desserts — August 12, 2013 @ 7:18 pm

    I’m not a big fan of zucchini, but this look so fabulous that I’d definitely have to try it!!

  12. 12

    Diane {Created by Diane} — August 12, 2013 @ 9:31 pm

    I’m so glad you posted this on facebook, I was heading to the store and just needed to get some zucchini. I just made this and it was DELICIOUS!!!!!
    XOXO I now have a new favorite dinner, I served it with grilled chicken :)

  13. 13

    Joanne — August 12, 2013 @ 9:42 pm

    I love the idea of having veggie noodles with decadent sauces…that way you get half the calories and all the lusciousness.

  14. 14

    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — August 13, 2013 @ 12:17 am

    Holy yum! I want a big bowl of this!

  15. 15

    tuesday things | Inky Twin Eats — August 13, 2013 @ 8:06 am

    […]  This next find isn’t pie, but I’m definitely inspired to make it too.  Zucchini pasta in a lemon cream sauce – uh, yes, everything about this sounds amazing!  If cherry pie sounds like a perfect late […]

  16. 16

    Tina | My Life as a Mrs — August 13, 2013 @ 11:52 am

    You have me wanting to run out to William Sonoma TODAY! This seriously sounds SOOOOOO good.

  17. 17

    Megan {Country Cleaver} — August 13, 2013 @ 12:25 pm

    I have to get one of these peelers and some zukes STAT!!!

  18. 18

    Katie — August 14, 2013 @ 2:39 pm

    Yum! I’ve added Julianne-style zucchini into pasta before and it was awesome. Must give your recipe a try! It looks mouthwatering!

  19. 19

    Ali @ Inspiralized — August 15, 2013 @ 7:13 pm

    I love the spotlight on zucchini pasta!! What a great refreshing sauce.

  20. 20

    Melanie @ Just Some Salt and Pepper — August 16, 2013 @ 1:05 am

    This is a gorgeous recipe and sounds do good!

  21. 21

    Alaina @ Fabtastic Eats — August 21, 2013 @ 8:52 am

    LOVE this! You’ve convinced me. Im trying it!

  22. 22

    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — August 23, 2013 @ 4:43 pm

    I featured this in my “Links I Love” post on Wednesday and made it today for lunch – UNREAL. So delicious, easy and healthy! Loved it!

  23. 23

    Nutmeg Nanny — August 23, 2013 @ 8:29 pm

    I would just love to try this recipe, it looks so full of flavor and so fresh!

  24. 24

    Von Uy — September 2, 2013 @ 11:13 am

    I made this the other day and it was fantastic! Thank you sooooo much!

  25. 25

    Catherine — September 13, 2013 @ 4:55 am

    This does look amazing… Question though – I have had mixed reaction to adding lemon juice to dairy?? I have added it to ideal milk and cream and the cream turns all curdle-ey… Is there a technique in adding this??? But am so keen to try this, am on a low carb eating plan at the moment and getting a bit tired of boring salads! Thanks :)

    • Jessica replied: — September 17th, 2013 @ 11:05 pm

      Hi Catherine!

      I have never had a problem with curdling dairy in this recipe. The cream cheese and lemon are very easy to whip up together! Just follow the recipe and it will be just right. 😉

  26. 26

    Robin — September 17, 2013 @ 9:41 am

    looks awesome! I’m going to try this mixed into some fresh pasta. I even have a julienne peeler, which I didn’t realize I even had and never use! haha you know, the drawer filled with gadgets in the kitchen that you collected over the years.

  27. 27

    joel — September 17, 2013 @ 4:49 pm

    this was incredible! love the lemon in it. i had to get used to the new peeler. cut my hand up a little bit trying to get a good technique, but i’ll be making this meal enough to get more practice in. thank you!

  28. 28

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  29. 29

    Robin — October 2, 2013 @ 11:25 pm

    I made this for dinner tonight but changed it a bit. My noodles came out wider than yours, and I just realized I don’t have a julienne peeler but a regular peeler without those jagged edges. But I managed to make 2 8-9″ zucchini’s into “pasta.” I made the sauce not with cream cheese but with 1/2 cup heavy cream (bc I ran out) and 1/2 cup skim milk and 1 whole stick of low fat butter, with caramelized onions and garlic, and the zest and juice from one whole lemon. made one package of fresh fettucini pasta, and mixed it all together with some salt to season as everything cooked. I wanted to add the tomatoes (I think the oval ones would be perfect cut in half) but didn’t have any (tomatoes were used up in last nights salad) my boyfriend loved it! and according to him, lemon is the best fruit to eat nutrition wise! I also want to add in some shrimp next time (if I plan ahead).

  30. 30

    So, How's It Taste? » Zucchini Noodles with Lemon Cream Sauce — October 14, 2013 @ 9:27 am

    […] pasta, so I wasn’t sure I should go messing with it again. After Jessica from The Novice Chef blogged about it and then Georgia from The Comfort of Cooking had it on her blog, I knew I had to try it. Zucchini […]

  31. 31

    Lukatia — March 12, 2014 @ 12:47 am

    I made this last night and both of my girls went back for seconds. It was delicious and filling with a bit of grilled chicken on the side. We had so much fun making the “noodles” with a spiralizer. I will definitely make this one again!

  32. 32

    sonia — June 19, 2014 @ 8:26 pm

    Do you think I could sub ricotta cheese for the cream cheese in this recipe and not compromise the texture?

    • Jessica replied: — July 1st, 2014 @ 1:38 pm

      It would give a different flavor and texture, so I’m not sure if would be very tasty…however, if you try it – I would love to hear your results!

  33. 33

    » Summer Zucchini Noodle Skillet — July 6, 2014 @ 7:04 pm

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  34. 34

    Anne — August 10, 2014 @ 3:40 pm

    Liking this recipe Jessica!

  35. 35

    EnglishMuffin — December 27, 2014 @ 3:33 pm

    This looks lovely, I love anything with garlic, lemon and cream cheese! How much pasta would you use if you were using just the lemon cream sauce? Thanks a lot

  36. 36

    Cooking with Vegetable Pasta – Healthy Recipes – ALL YOU | Deals, coupons, savings, sweepstakes and more… — January 29, 2015 @ 6:12 pm

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  37. 37

    Heather — March 23, 2015 @ 7:55 pm

    Tried this tonight – awesome!!!! Hubs said that it was restaurant-quality! I could eat a ton of this for a main course!!!

  38. 38

    Caitlin — March 30, 2015 @ 8:52 pm

    I just made this tonight! It’s good but I think one large lemon was WAY too much. I wish I only used half a lemon. Still really good though!

  39. 39

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  40. 40

    Jenna — June 15, 2015 @ 12:58 pm

    Do you think the happy cow cheese wedges would work in place of cream cheese?

  41. 41

    The Novice Chef » Chipotle Chicken Zoodle Salad — August 23, 2015 @ 10:23 pm

    […] been about two years since I blogged my only other Zoodle recipe (Zoodles in a Lemon Cream Sauce) and I figured it was time to share another […]

  42. 42

    Laura — October 11, 2015 @ 11:15 pm

    We made this for dinner tonight, subbing a couple of chopped up small tomatoes instead of the grape tomatoes because that was what we had on hand, and adding in about a cup and a half of chopped leftover cooked chicken breast for a protein boost. It was excellent!!!! Really tasty, and so enjoyed it. Thanks for the post. Always nice to have such a guilt free dinner that we can enjoy a tiny piece of cheesecake for dessert….

    Quite a bit left over, too, for lunch tomorrow. *Contented sigh*

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