A healthy living blog from Marshfield Clinic Health System

What is spiralizing? A veggie trend to try

Spiralizing is one of the latest cooking trends. People are spiralizing to increase vegetable intake, interest kids in vegetables, cut down on pasta and create delicious recipes.

What will be your reason to try it?

Spiralizing is using a kitchen tool to make vegetables into ribbons or noodles,” said Shelly Wildenberg, a registered dietitian with Marshfield Clinic. “It’s such a fun and simple way to increase vegetables in our diet.”

Types of spiralizers

Spiralizers come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Some are specific to one vegetable, like “zoodlers” meant for zucchinis, while others have attachments and numerous blades to do everything from making carrots into fine spirals to turning potatoes into curly fries.

Shop for general spiralizers by looking for a “vegetable spiralizer” or “vegetable spiral slicer.”

Spiralizer cost and alternatives

You can probably find a basic, working spiralizer for less than $15 at your local grocery or department store, Wildenberg said.

“Use a veggie peeler when you don’t have access to a spiralizer. You’ll get more of a ribbon-like effect than noodle-like, but it does the job, and the veggies are just as tasty,” Wildenberg said.

Another option for a noodle-like replacement is spaghetti squash.

“This truly depends on your recipe. Spaghetti squash is very noodle-like when cooked and could be substituted in some recipes calling for spiralized vegetables.”

When starting out, you may wish to only replace some of the noodles in your recipes with veggie noodles. Recipes can be very helpful for those new to spiralizing.

Veggies for spiralizing

It’s exciting to experiment with vegetables, or fruit, to find what works. This can be a great way to introduce kids to healthy eating and get them more involved in the kitchen,” Wildenberg said.

For a comprehensive list, Wildenberg turns to the cookbook Inspiralized by Ali Maffucci. The author provides a list on her blog of vegetables you can spiralize:

Zucchini, Strawberry, Avocado Salad - Spiralizing

Spiralizing can help you increase vegetable intake, interest kids in vegetables and cut down on pasta.

  • Apples
  • Beets
  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli stalks
  • Butternut squash
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Celeriac
  • Chayote
  • Cucumbers
  • Daikon radishes
  • Jicama
  • Kohlrabi
  • Onions
  • Parsnips
  • Pears
  • Plantain
  • Radishes, black
  • Rutabaga
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Taro root
  • Turnips
  • White potatoes
  • Zucchini (or summer squash)

Try this recipe

Start spiralizing with this zucchini, avocado and strawberries salad.

“It’s so fresh. Perfect for a summer cookout or potluck and it doesn’t take too many ingredients to put it together,” Wildenberg said.

Zucchini, Avocado and Strawberry Salad

(Gluten free)

Prep time: 25 minutes

Servings: 4-6 (1 serving = 1 cup)


  • 2 medium zucchinis
  • 1-1/2 cups hulled and chopped fresh strawberries
  • 1 ripe avocado, diced
  • A few sprigs of roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1 small jalapeño (optional)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
  • Juice of 1/2 lime or 2 tablespoons


Spiralize zucchini to make large zucchini noodles. Roughly chop to reduce length of noodles. Use a vegetable peeler as an alternative to a veggie spiralizer for creating zucchini strips.

In a large bowl, combine zucchini noodles, strawberries, avocado, cilantro, jalapeño and red onion.

In a small bowl, whisk together maple syrup and lime juice. Add salt and pepper if desired.

Pour small bowl of dressing over the large bowl of salad and toss to combine. Serve as a side salad.

Prep notes: If you’re preparing this salad in advance, add your zucchini noodles at the last minute to prevent them from getting soggy.

For a hearty salad: Use 2 avocados.

Nutrition information

Each serving (1 cup) contains: 90 calories; 2 g protein; 5 g fat; 4 g fiber; 14 g carbohydrate; 7 g sugar; 7 mg sodium. 

Source: Recipe adapted from book Inspiralized by Ali Maffucci

Download salad recipe
  1. Jul 27, 2017
    • Jul 28, 2017

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

View our comment policy