Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Butter Spaghetti

Elevate Your Pasta Game with Culinary Magic: Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Butter Spaghetti Extravaganza

In the realm of culinary marvels, there exists a dish that transcends simplicity and welcomes you to a world of flavors—Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Butter Spaghetti. This delightful creation, born from the genius of Deb Perelman, is a testament to the beauty of seasonal ingredients and the magic that happens when simplicity meets creativity. Join us on a gastronomic journey as we unravel the secrets behind this pasta masterpiece, exploring the nuances of zucchini butter, and learning how to create a dish that will leave you smitten.

Ingredients: For the Zucchini Butter:

  • 2 pounds zucchini, grated for a luscious base
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil for sautéing
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced for savory depth
  • Salt and pepper to taste for seasoning
  • 1 cup unsalted butter for richness
  • Zest of 1 lemon for a burst of freshness
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese for a nutty finish

For the Spaghetti:

  • 1 pound spaghetti for the perfect pasta foundation
  • Salt for boiling water

For Garnish:

  • Freshly chopped basil for a fragrant touch
  • Additional Parmesan cheese for serving


Step 1: Make the Zucchini Butter Begin by grating the zucchini using a box grater or a food processor. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté minced garlic until fragrant. Add the grated zucchini to the skillet, season with salt and pepper, and cook until the zucchini releases its moisture and becomes tender.

Step 2: Add the Butter and Lemon Zest Once the zucchini is tender, add the unsalted butter to the skillet, allowing it to melt and coat the zucchini. Stir in the lemon zest, infusing the dish with a bright and citrusy aroma. Continue cooking until the butter is fully incorporated, creating a luxurious zucchini butter.

Step 3: Cook the Spaghetti In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. Cook the spaghetti according to package instructions until al dente. Reserve a cup of pasta water before draining.

Step 4: Combine and Toss Add the cooked spaghetti to the skillet with the zucchini butter. Toss the pasta, ensuring it’s well coated with the decadent zucchini butter sauce. If needed, add reserved pasta water gradually to achieve the desired consistency.

Step 5: Finish with Parmesan and Basil Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese over the zucchini butter spaghetti, allowing it to melt into the dish. Toss once more to evenly distribute the cheese. Finish by garnishing with freshly chopped basil for a fragrant and herbaceous touch.

Step 6: Serve and Enjoy Plate the Zucchini Butter Spaghetti, ensuring each portion is generously coated with the luscious zucchini butter sauce. Serve with additional Parmesan cheese for those who crave an extra sprinkle of nuttiness.

Cook Notes:

  • Be mindful not to overcook the zucchini; you want it to be tender yet retain a slight bite.
  • Adjust the amount of pasta water added to achieve your preferred sauce consistency.
  • Experiment with different types of cheese, such as Pecorino Romano or Asiago, to customize the flavor profile.


  • Pesto Paradise: *
  • Elevate the dish by swirling in a few tablespoons of fresh basil pesto during the final toss for a burst of herbal goodness.
  • Nutty Delight: *
  • Sprinkle chopped toasted nuts, such as pine nuts or almonds, over the finished dish for added crunch and richness.
  • Roasted Tomato Symphony: *
  • Roast cherry tomatoes until they burst and fold them into the zucchini butter spaghetti for a sweet and juicy flavor explosion.

Keto-Friendly Version:

  • Replace traditional pasta with spiralized zucchini noodles or shirataki noodles for a low-carb alternative.
  • Use a keto-friendly thickening agent, such as xanthan gum, to achieve a creamy sauce without flour.
  • Substitute grated cauliflower for the pasta to create a keto-friendly, vegetable-based version.

Low-Carb Version:

  • Opt for a low-carb pasta alternative made from almond flour or coconut flour.
  • Use a sugar-free, low-carb substitute for the grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Experiment with a blend of low-carb vegetables like spaghetti squash and zucchini for the pasta base.

Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Butter Spaghetti is a celebration of simplicity and the extraordinary flavor that can be coaxed from humble ingredients. From the rich and velvety zucchini butter to the al dente perfection of the spaghetti, each element plays a role in creating a dish that’s both comforting and sophisticated. So, bring this culinary magic to your kitchen, savor the symphony of flavors, and experience the joy that comes from a bowl of pasta that is anything but ordinary. Prepare to be smitten.

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