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Mushroom Zucchini Pasta

$7.59 Recipe/$1.89 Serving

Mushroom zucchini pasta is quick, easy and bursting with flavor! The creamy lemon sauce over fresh zucchini and earthy mushrooms is perfect for spring or summer and this recipe could not be easier to make! Ready in just 20 minutes, this zucchini mushroom pasta will quickly become a family favorite!

Large bowl filled with creamy mushroom zucchini pasta, lemon in background.

Why you will love this recipe

Quick and easy – this recipe comes together so quickly, as you cook the veggies while the pasta cooks. The lemony sauce for the pasta comes together in 30 seconds and is creamy without using any cream or dairy.

Simple ingredients – you can find everything you need to make this mushroom and zucchini pasta in most grocery stores! If you can’t find tahini, you can use soaked cashews or almond butter. See the notes below on how to substitute! This mushroom zucchini pasta is naturally vegan, gluten free and dairy free!

Great for entertaining or simple weeknight meals – this mushroom zucchini pasta recipe is fancy enough for entertaining but simple enough for weeknight meals. Because it comes together so quickly, it’s a great meal to have in your back pocket for when people “pop over” for dinner and you want to serve something healthy, fancy but easy.

Ingredients to make mushroom zucchini pasta in ramekins on marble surface.
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Ingredients

  • Onions and garlic – these help build a base flavor for the pasta. I recommend yellow or white onions for this and do not recommend red onions. If you are reactive to onions, you can use chopped green onion instead.
  • Zucchini – cut zucchini down into half moons or cubes. If you use spaghetti or linguine, you could also spiralize the zucchini into pasta.
  • Mushrooms – mushrooms add an earthiness to the recipe and are packed with flavor. You can use white mushrooms, cremini mushrooms or shitake mushrooms.
  • Frozen Peas – frozen peas pair well with the lemony sauce and is a great pop of color and flavor to the dish.
  • Pasta + pasta water – I prefer to use chickpea or lentil based pasta for my vegan and vegetarian based dishes as it’s packed with protein and fiber making it much more filling.

Creamy lemon sauce

  • Tahini – tahini is made from ground sesame seeds and is the perfect creamy based for lemony creamy pasta. You can also use soaked cashews or almond butter in place of the tahini.
  • Lemon juice – freshly squeezed lemon juice is best in this recipe. If you want an even more intense lemon flavor, you can also add lemon zest.
  • Water – water helps to thin out the sauce. If you want to add more flavor to the dish, you can use vegetable broth in place of the water.
  • Spices: Salt, garlic powder, dried thyme – the thyme pairs so well with the mushrooms. The garlic powder adds umami.

How to make mushroom zucchini pasta

Fill a large pot with water and put it over high heat so it can come up to a boil.

Start by chopping the vegetables, this helps to ensure that nothing burns as the recipe cooks.

Cutting board with chopped onion, garlic, mushrooms and zucchini.

Preheat a large skillet over medium heat.

Once the skillet the hot, spray it with olive oil or avocado oil. Add the onions to the skillet and cook 2-3 minutes. After 2-3 minutes when the onions are starting to turn translucent, add the chopped garlic and cook 1-2 minutes.

Chopped onions in a cast iron skillet.

After 1-2 minutes of cooking the onions and garlic together, push them to the side of the skillet and add the mushrooms. Cook 5-6 minutes, stirring the onions and garlic in after 3-4 minutes. Add ¼ teaspoon of salt to the mushrooms once they start to give off their water.

Cast iron skillet with sliced mushrooms added, cooked onions pushed to the left side.

When the water comes up to a boil, add salt to the water and add the pasta. For chickpea pasta, cook 1 minute less than the box indicates.

Once the mushrooms have started to brown and give off their liquid, push the mushroom and onion mixture to the side and add the zucchini. Cook 4-5 minutes then turn off the heat.

Cast iron skillet with zucchini added, cooked mushrooms pushed to the left side.

While the zucchini is cooking, combine the tahini, lemon juice, water, salt, garlic powder and dried thyme. Note: The mixture will seem like it doesn’t want to come together at first, just keep stirring it.

Before and after stirring together the ingredients of the creamy tahini lemon sauce.

Before you drain the pasta, be sure to reserve at least ½ cup of the cooking liquid to use to thin out the sauce. To do this I typically use a large glass measuring cup.

Add the drained pasta, frozen peas and lemon tahini sauce to the skillet with zucchini and mushrooms. Stir well. Add 2-4 tablespoons of the cooking liquid to the skillet to help thin out the sauce. The starchy water will help the sauce stick to the pasta better.

Lemon tahini sauce, pasta and frozen peas added to skillet with veggies.

Serve hot or at room temperature.

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Top tips

  • Prep the veggies in advance so that you don’t have to worry about anything burning.
  • Cook the veggies then move them to the side to allow the next layer of flavor to cook (this helps avoid things getting mushy).
  • Be sure to reserve some of the cooking water before draining the pasta. This helps the sauce stick to the noodles without getting too watery.
  • If you are using chickpea-based pasta, I always recommend that you cook the pasta 1 minute less than the minimum time on the box. Start checking the pasta 2 minute before it’s suppose to be done so that you can ensure the pasta is al dente and not overcooked. Chickpea pasta can get mushy very quickly.
  • Be sure to salt the water before adding pasta, this way the pasta is well seasoned.
  • This recipe is written for chickpea pasta or lentil pasta, which comes in 8 oz boxes. These are much more filling (since they are packed with fiber and protein) so the serving size will be smaller but just as filling.  If you are using traditional pasta, you will only want to use a half a box (check the size of the box) or make double the sauce to compensate for the additional pasta.
Fork resting in bowl filled with zucchini mushroom pasta.

Other additions

Spice: If you like a little heat with your pasta, add some crushed red pepper flakes

Fresh herbs: Add a touch of freshness (especially if your summer garden is blooming) with fresh thyme, flat leaf parsley, basil, rosemary or dill at the end of cooking this recipe.

Protein: If you want to add more protein to this dish (especially if you don’t use a chickpea or lentil based pasta) you can add chickpeas, white beans, shredded chicken or cubed chicken, cooked chicken sausage, shrimp or salmon.

Cheesy taste: If you love a cheesy sauce, you can add shredded parmesan cheese, nutritional yeast, or your favorite dairy free cheese or dairy free cream cheese.

Other veggies you could use

If you don’t have zucchini or mushrooms on hand or don’t love them, you could also use:

  • Broccoli (cut into small florets)
  • Cauliflower (cut into small florets)
  • Asparagus (cut into 1 inch pieces)
  • Bell peppers (thinly sliced)
  • Artichoke hearts (from a can, from a jar or frozen and cooked)
  • Summer squash

What to serve with zucchini mushroom pasta

Mushroom zucchini pasta in cast iron skillet, wooden spoon on the side.

Common questions

What are the best mushrooms to use

White button mushrooms are almost always easy to find and very budget friendly. They are also a bit more mild on the mushroom flavor so if you don’t love that earthy flavor from mushrooms, white button would be best.

If you really love mushroom and want a stronger mushroom flavor, I recommend cremini mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms. Cremini mushrooms are often called baby bella mushrooms, as they look like small portobello mushrooms.

How to make this recipe low carb

Instead of pasta for this recipe, you could use:

What is tahini

Tahini is paste made from ground sesame seeds. Tahini has a similar texture as almond butter or peanut butter and is perfect for making creamy dairy free sauces. Tahini has a nutty flavor (but is nut free).

Tahini is used in many Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes and is often used in hummus.

You can find tahini in most grocery stores, often with the other nut butters but sometimes in the ethnic food section. My favorite brand of tahini is from Trader Joe’s. If you don’t have access to Trader Joe’s, I recommend the Soom brand (can be found online) or Thrive Market (great price).

What are other recipes that use tahini

Fork full of zucchini mushroom pasta over white bowl filled with pasta.

Storing leftovers

  • Fridge: Store leftover zucchini and mushroom pasta in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can reheat the pasta in the microwave or in a small skillet over medium low heat or eat it cold right from the container (it’s delicious cold).
  • Freezer: Although you can freeze pasta, I would not recommend freezing this pasta because the zucchini will get waterlogged and be incredibly soggy when defrosting.

Substitutions

  • Onion and garlic – these help provide a base of flavor for the mushroom zucchini pasta. You can also use chopped green onion in place of the onion and garlic or you can simply omit them.
  • Mushrooms zucchini and frozen peas – see the list of veggies above to find substitutes.
  • Pasta – if you want to make this lower in carbs, you can use spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles or hearts of palm pasta.
  • Tahini – you can substitute tahini with almond butter or ¼ cup of cashews, soaked at least 5 minutes in boiling hot water. If you are using cashews, you will want to drain off the hot water then add the cashews, lemon juice, fresh water and spices to a high speed blender. Blend 1 minute or until creamy.
  • Lemon juice – lemon juice helps to cut through the tahini and also adds a subtle sweetness. You can substitute lemon juice with 2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar if needed.
  • Dried thyme – you can use Italian seasoning, herbs de Provence or fresh thyme (1-2 tablespoons) in place of the dried thyme.

More delicious pasta recipes

Kale Mushroom Pasta

Vegan Red Pepper Pasta Sauce

Creamy Vegan Tomato Pasta

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta

Pesto Tuna Pasta

Pesto Mushroom Pasta

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White bowl filled with zucchini mushroom pasta, fork grabbing a bite.

Mushroom Zucchini Pasta

$7.59 Recipe/$1.89 Serving
Creamy zucchini mushroom pasta is the perfect quick and easy weeknight meal! It's fancy enough for entertaining but easy enough for weeknight dinners! Naturally vegan, gluten free and dairy free this healthy mushroom zucchini pasta is ready in just 20 minutes and so delicious.
Print Pin Save Rate
Course: dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: mushroom and zucchini pasta, mushroom zucchini pasta, zucchini mushroom pasta
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion - $0.33
  • 4 cloves garlic - $0.24
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into half moon shapes - $0.99
  • 8 oz white button mushrooms - $1.29
  • 1/4 tsp salt - $0.01
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas - $0.25
  • 8 oz pasta (chickpea or lentil is preferred) - $2.99

Creamy Lemon Tahini Sauce

  • 1/4 cup tahini - $0.82
  • 1/4 cup water - $0.00
  • 1 large lemon, juiced (about 2 tablespoons) - $0.42
  • 1 tsp salt - $0.05
  • 1 tsp garlic powder - $0.10
  • 1 tsp dried thyme - $0.10
  • 2-4 tbsp. cooking water from pasta - $0.00

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat.
  • While water is coming to a boil, chop the veggies. Finely chop the onion and garlic. Cut the zucchini into half moon shapes and slice the mushrooms.
  • Preheat a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, spray with non-stick spray (I use avocado oil or olive oil spray) and add the onions. Cook 2-3 minutes.
  • After 2-3 minutes, add the garlic and cook 1-2 minutes.
  • Push the onion and garlic mixture to the side of the pan and add the mushrooms. Cook 5-6 minutes. After 3 minutes of cooking, you can mix in the onions and garlic.
  • While mushrooms are cooking, add pasta to the boiling water and cook 1 minute less than the package indicates.
  • Sprinkle the mushrooms with 1/4 tsp. salt then push them to the side of the skillet. Add the zucchini and cook 3-4 minutes. After 3-4 minutes, turn off the heat.
  • While zucchini are cooking, combine the ingredients for the creamy lemon tahini sauce in a bowl: tahini, 1/4 cup water, lemon juice, salt, garlic powder and dried thyme. Stir well until fully incorporated and smooth (may take 30-60 seconds of stirring).
  • When the pasta is done cooking, take a mug or glass measuring cup and save 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid before draining.
  • Drain the pasta and add it directly to the pan with the veggies along with the frozen peas, the lemon tahini sauce at 2 tablespoons of cooking liquid. Stir well.
  • Check the consistency of the sauce and add 1-2 more tablespoons of cooking liquid if needed.

Notes

Top tips
  • Prep the veggies in advance so that you don’t have to worry about anything burning.
  • Cook the veggies then move them to the side to allow the next layer of flavor to cook (this helps avoid things getting mushy).
  • Be sure to reserve some of the cooking water before draining the pasta. This helps the sauce stick to the noodles without getting too watery.
  • If you are using chickpea-based pasta, I always recommend cooking 1 minute less than the minimum time on the box. I find it gets too mushy otherwise.
  • Be sure to salt the water before adding pasta, this way the pasta is well seasoned.
  • This recipe is written for chickpea pasta or lentil pasta, which comes in 8 oz boxes. These are much more filling (since they are packed with fiber and protein) so the serving size will be smaller but just as filling.  If you are using traditional pasta, you will only want to use a half a box (check the size of the box) or make double the sauce to compensate for the additional pasta.
Storing leftovers:
  • Fridge: Store leftover zucchini and mushroom pasta in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can reheat the pasta in the microwave or in a small skillet over medium low heat or eat it cold right from the container (it’s delicious cold).
  • Freezer: Although you can freeze pasta, I would not recommend freezing this pasta because the zucchini will get waterlogged and be incredibly soggy when defrosting.
: Store leftover zucchini and mushroom pasta in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can reheat the pasta in the microwave or in a small skillet over medium low heat or eat it cold right from the container (it’s delicious cold).
Freezer: Although you can freeze pasta, I would not recommend freezing this pasta because the zucchini will get waterlogged and be incredibly soggy when defrosting.
: Store leftover zucchini and mushroom pasta in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can reheat the pasta in the microwave or in a small skillet over medium low heat or eat it cold right from the container (it’s delicious cold).
Freezer: Although you can freeze pasta, I would not recommend freezing this pasta because the zucchini will get waterlogged and be incredibly soggy when defrosting.
See how I calculate food cost.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories
348
Fat
 
12
g
Carbohydrates
 
49
g
Fiber
 
13
g
Sugar
 
11
g
Protein
 
21
g
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.
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