Peanut Chicken Zucchini Noodles

Mixing up weeknight dinners with this wildly flavorful and healthy Asian inspired peanut chicken and veggies dish!

peanut chicken zucchini noodles on a white serving tray with a fork

I made a resolution this year to cook more creatively. Meaning, try fresh new flavors and dinners I wouldn’t usually make. So far, I’m hardcore losing. There’s been a lot of chicken chili, cereal, more chicken chili, and leftover chicken chili. Don’t get me wrong, I love chicken chili and honey nut cheerios, but I desperately need to break free of this dinner rut.

Enter: simple, light, refreshing, ready in 40 minutes, wildly flavorful peanut chicken zucchini noodles. Nothing but pure protein, colorful veggies, and the most delectable and savory peanut sauce. Anything but boring, bland, and routine.

peanut chicken zucchini noodles

I think you’ll really love this dish because (1) very easy, (2) pretty healthy, and (3) you can change up the vegetables and protein. We’re replacing regular noodles with zucchini noodles and TRUST ME when I say you won’t even miss regular pasta. The zucchini noodles completely soak up every bit of the savory peanut sauce.

Let’s talk about the vegetables. Have you joined the masses in this crazy amazing incredibly strange yet totally awesome zucchini noodle movement yet? I’ve never been one to love pasta (it’s true!), but I love these zucchini noodles. Aka zoodles! To make the zoodles, I use the spiralizer. I love this contraption! It’s smaller than other spiralizers I’ve seen, but just as handy. To change the settings for different noodle sizes, you don’t have to pull out the blades or anything like that. Rather, you just turn a simple switch. And suctions on the sides help keep it in place on the counter as it’s spiralizing.

If you’re not into zucchini noodles, you can use regular pasta or cut the zucchini into thin strips. See the recipe notes.

2 images of spiralized zucchini and veggies in a skillet

Cook down the vegetables first (keep those zucchini noodles aside for a sec). You can use any vegetables, really, but I like using shredded carrots, cabbage, and thinly sliced pepper. Cook them down with some garlic and sesame oil. The sesame oil is key in this dish; it cannot be skipped! That unmistakable flavor of this dish comes from the sesame oil, so don’t substitute. You can buy it in the Asian section of your grocery store. You’ll also need a little in the peanut sauce.

Once those veggies are cooked down, add the chicken and zucchini noodles. Instead of chicken, you can also use beef, shrimp, salmon, tofu, whatever your heart or diet desires. Use pre-cooked meat to save time. What I do is boil some chicken until cooked through right before I begin the other steps in the meal. Or you can use leftover chicken or buy a rotisserie chicken and shred yourself. So simple.

2 images of peanut sauce in a glass bowl and diced fresh ginger

Warm the chicken and zucchini noodles for a few minutes. Then, pour in that peanut sauce. The peanut sauce is made from only a few imperative ingredients: peanut butter, soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, fresh ginger, and rice vinegar. I like to add a little Sriracha to kick things up a bit. Don’t stray from the ingredients listed. Each one serves a purpose to round out the flavors in this Asian inspired dish. And you’ll definitely be making this meal more than once, so my advice is to keep your pantry stocked with the sauce ingredients!

PS: the peanut sauce made with fresh ginger tastes 3927x better than peanut sauce made with ground ginger.

The peanut sauce is easily the star of the show. It’s obviously flavorful– as you can imagine from the ingredients used– but it’s also sweet, savory, and lightly spicy. You’ll just need to whisk all of the ingredients together on the stove for about 5 minutes until the peanut butter has melted down and the flavors fully combine. I usually do this as the vegetables cook to save some time.

Look at all the colors! And yes, my skillet has hot pink edges.

peanut chicken zucchini noodles in a pink skillet

zoomed in image of peanut chicken zucchini noodles

For a little crunch, let’s add some garnish like sesame seeds, cilantro, crunchy peanuts, and green onion. So good!

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peanut chicken zucchini noodles on a white serving tray with a fork

Peanut Chicken Zucchini Noodles

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: Thai


Mixing up weeknight dinners with this wildly flavorful and healthy Asian inspired peanut chicken and veggies dish! Keep in mind that the sauce ingredients are each important for the flavor. I do not recommend substitutions.


  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil (you’ll need more for the peanut sauce below)*
  • 2 teaspoons minced or chopped garlic
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 cup thinly sliced cabbage (I use red)
  • 1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced (I use red)
  • 3 large zucchini, spiralized into noodles*
  • 2 large chicken breasts, cooked & shredded (about 23 cups)*
  • Toppings: 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds, handful of cilantro, 1/2 cup peanuts, chopped green onion

Peanut Sauce

  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil*
  • 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar*
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 12 teaspoons Sriracha or any hot chile sauce


  1. Heat 2 Tablespoons of sesame oil and the garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the carrots, cabbage, and pepper slices. Cook for about 5 minutes until the vegetables are a little tender. (I usually begin the peanut sauce, step 2, during this time.) Once tender, add the zucchini noodles and shredded chicken to the skillet. Cook and stir for about 3 minutes until the zucchini is a little softer and chicken is warm. Turn off the stove and remove from heat. Set aside. (*If your skillet isn’t quite big enough, you can do this step in batches.)
  2. Combine all of the peanut sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk constantly until the peanut butter has melted and everything is combined. I usually use 2 teaspoons of Sriracha, but use the amount of heat you like.
  3. Once the sauce is heated through, pour over chicken/vegetables. Toss everything around until combined. Place on a serving dish (or not!) and top with sesame seeds, cilantro, peanuts, and green onion. Serve immediately.
  4. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a few days. Reheat to your liking.


  1. Sesame Oil: The KEY in the signature flavor of this dish. I highly advise against using any other oil; the recipe will not taste the same. You can find it in the Asian section of grocery stores.
  2. Chicken: I simply boiled chicken until cooked through– about 12-15 minutes, then shredded it. If you have leftover shredded, chicken from another recipe, use that! Or buy a rotisserie chicken from the store and shred the meat.
  3. Rice Vinegar: Also KEY in the signature flavor of this dish. It’s a sweet and delicate vinegar you can find in the Asian section of your grocery. Do not use white wine or white vinegar– they’re much too harsh. Rather, you can use cider vinegar because it is more mild but your sauce will not taste the same. Again, rice vinegar is best.
  4. Spiralizer: I love this spiralizer! If you do not have a spiralizer, just cut the zucchini into super thin strips instead. Or use 1 pound pasta. If using regular pasta, you’ll want to cook it before using.

Keywords: peanut chicken zucchini noodles, thai chicken zoodles

Happy new meal-ing to us all.

overhead image of peanut chicken zucchini noodles on a white serving tray


  1. This made an awesome dinner. I prrsonsally used the bagged cole slaw for this the cabbage and carrots are already shredded for you amazing flavors in this dish

  2. This was awesome! But I had a question- When I made it, it turned out a bit soupy. Like real soupy. I think it might have been the zucchini noodles? I squeezed some of the liquid out with paper towels but maybe not enough? I ended up just using a serrated spoon, which worked fine, but I’m wondering if I did something wrong?

    1. Mine turned out the same way! Next time I might drain the cooked vegetables before adding the peanut sauce.

    2. Maybe try sweating the zucchini before cooking it – sprinkle it with a little salt to help leach out the moisture and let it sit for a bit before squeezing/dabbing as much water out as you can. Though I’ve heard that sometimes removing too much of the water can lead to mushier noodles, so it might take trial and error to get everything just right for your personal tastes.

    3. Dianne Bishop says:

      After spiraling the zucchini place in a strainer and sprinkle with salt for about 20 minutes. Rinse well with cold water and pat dry in a tea towel before adding to pan. Heat for about 2-3 minutes and it will reduce the amount of water in your dish. I hope this helps.

  3. Very delicious and I didn’t didn’t even have the essential sesame oil (although I will try it next time). I did add corn startch to the sauce before I put it in, to thicken it up (since many people said it was soupy). We served it over a bed of rice. Mmmm!

  4. Love!!!!! May be my new favorite. I did have to make a couple of substitutions but minor ones. I did use dry ginger 1/2 tsp., and a pinch of red pepper flakes since we don’t keep sriracha on hand. Also I didn’t have chicken on hand but I do keep Kirklands canned chicken on hand and used that. It was fabulous! Mine was a little juicy but not bad. If I was making it for others I may make some rice so if they had to have some carbs to think their meal was complete they could and that would soak up some of the wonderful sauce.

  5. I just made this dish and it turned out amazing! First time trying zucchini noodles and they tasted almost like lo mein. Our grocery store even had them so I didn’t even have to spiralize my own. I used a rotisserie chicken and shredded it up. I also added some sweet onion to the veggies. The sauce is perfect and flavorful. I will definitely make this again!

  6. This was absolutely amazing!!!! I finished a whole30 and reintroduction not too long ago, so I subbed coconut aminos for the soy sauce and used 1/4 cup of honey. Personally, I thought it was too sweet, so I’ll reduce the honey next time. I also threw in a couple handfuls of kale and used red onion instead of red cabbage. Hubs loved it! Kids didn’t give it a chance, their loss!

  7. Is there something you could substitute for the honey? I try to limit my carbs in the evening but the honey seems key to the sauce having some thickness.

    1. Stephanie Takacs says:

      I used rice malt syrup! It was amazing!

  8. WOW this dish is awesome! I recently got a Kitchenaid Spiralizer reached for some recipes and came across this blog.  
    I messed up and combined my spiralized sweet potato  with my zucchini (zoodles)so had to cook longer.    Also didn’t have any cabbage so at the end just threw in some bean sprouts instead.  Despite the overcooked/soggy noodles it turned out amazing.  One of my fav dishes reminds me so much of a lighted up Pad Thai.  Thank You

  9. SHUT UP with that sauce! So good. My husband was worried there wouldn’t be enough for the veggies because he kept tasting it with the spoon. We added red pepper flakes and crushed peanuts for fun and texture before pouring on the veggies. Also, zoodle-ing is the funniest thing ever. I felt like a kid again making this recipe! 

  10. Such a wonderful dish, love that it’s full of veggies (and gives me another way use up summer zucchini from the garden!). The sauce is the star of the show! Will definitely be making this again! Thank you, Sally! 🙂

  11. Yummy! Easy to make and my family loved it.

  12. Robin Goroski says:

    If I use a rotisserie chicken from the store, how many days can I wait to use it for this recipe?

    1. Hi Robin! I would use your best judgement for that.

  13. Sally! We love this recipe. I wish you had more like this! Maybe a new side project- haha just kidding!

  14. Hi Cindy! I don’t. Calorie counting calculators online can often be inaccurate (different brands/products/etc) and I would hate to publish wrong information on my website. Sometimes I share an estimate, but feel free to calculate the recipe only our own!

  15. Sally,

    I love the recipe but I had a hard time melting my peanut butter . So it made the sauce thick. I did use natural kind because I I don’t like using the reg bands with the trans fat. Any advise.

    1. Hi Nancy! I never have luck melting natural style peanut butter either. I wish I had advice for you! But once the sauce is mixed with the warm noodles, it should thin out.

      1. I didn’t have any issues melting my natural peanut butter. I did whisk everything together and that seemed to really help incorporate all the liquids.
        my only issue with this recipe is that the zucchini gave off way too much water, causing it to be watery.
        It taste-wise, it was good, but I can’t get over how watery it was. Not a fan of that texture.

  16. This is one of the best recipes EVER! An immediate hit, and it’s definitely going into our regular rotation. Super simple and SO delicious. We don’t have a spiralizer so I used a potato peeler to make long thin “zoodles” and it worked great!

    1. I’m so glad it’s such a hit with your family! Vegetable peelers work well also – they just take a bit more time!

  17. has anyone eaten cold the next day??

  18. Bomb dot com. Do people still say that? This was so good. I was looking for a chicken satay recipe and stumbled on this little gem. I didn’t do the zucchini noodles, but decided to serve it over rice. I love your recipes. They always work. I have all three of your cookbooks and I’m waiting for that dinner cookbook that I just know you’re going to put out at some point. Your recipes are simple and easy to follow but include all of the flavors and the science that backs the ingredients. Thank you.

    1. Haha – Siobhan, I’m glad you enjoyed this so much!! Thanks for such a kind comment 🙂

  19. I’m not even a good cook and this dish came out absolutely amazing. The sauce was incredible and I appreciate the easy to follow instructions.

  20. Becky McBro says:

    Hey Sally! I love this recipe and make it all the time. In your opinion, could I use the sauce here as a salad dressing? Would it be too heavy? Would you make any changes?

    1. Hi Becky! I LOVE this sauce and actually always put it on salads! It’s a little thick but I love it. 🙂

  21. I made this tonight and WOW, this recipe is a keeper; the printout made it into my baking binder instead of the recycling bin! My picky 2 year-old loved the “noonoos” (“noodles”) and my husband and I enjoyed the flavor, texture and uniqueness of this dish. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! It’s perfect as-is.

  22. My husband hates zucchini, so alas no zoodles for us – instead when the dish almost done, I throw in bagged shredded broccoli (intended for broccoli-slaw) instead of rice. We call this riceless stirfry, and my husband also asks for seconds. This is a delicious easy week night meal that I make often. Thanks Sally for the great sauce recipe!

  23. Happy to find this recipe to change up my spiralizer veggies. I prepped everything early and it’s a bit of work assembling everything. I salted and drained my zucchini after spiraling, but the dish did come out watery??? The peanut sauce is one of the best ever! Even watery. It’s super tasty. Looking forward to the cold leftovers! If I could solve the watery issue it would be amazingly perfect!

  24. I love this recipe! It’s great just the way it is… I made a quick meal using the peanut sauce and it was awesome and I wanted to share. Spiralized sweet potato and sauted it in olive oil. Added cooked shrimp, cilantro a little peanut sauce until cooked. Tossed with roasted peanuts, fresh mango and remaining peanut sauce. It was so easy and very delicious. You could add vegies or what ever! EVERYTHING tastes great in this peanut sauce.

  25. OH MY GOODNESS! Soooooooo tasty. I absolutely love this recipe. My parents and I truly enjoyed this. THANK YOU.

    1. You are welcome, Anna! I’m so happy that you all enjoyed it!

  26. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! My husband and I absolutely loved it. I added some sliced zucchini and used whole wheat spaghetti, which I think may have helped with the soupy situation some other people seemed to have? I did simmer the sauce for 2 min instead of just warming it, and that seemed to do the trick! I also highly recommend chili garlic sauce for the heat factor, and I acted on someone else’s comment about using shredded coleslaw mix… such a good idea!!! I added edamame too, do try!

  27. Made this tonight with my 4 year old. A new family favorite!

  28. Delicious! I forgot to buy ginger but it was still awesome and not soupy. I think I used extra veggies and chicken so maybe that stopped some up. Loved it!!!

  29. I made this last night. I used shrimp instead of chicken, and white onion instead of cabbage. it was delicious, however it turned out realllyy soupy. Very liquidy and i thought that there was too much peanut sauce for the amount that i made (which added to the soupyness, however thats also a personal preference that i don’t like a lot of sauce on things).

    Over all though it was delicious! Next time i will definitely drain all of the water that the vegetables give off before when they are cooked before adding the peanut sauce and do less peanut sauce!

  30. Hi. I loved this recipe and have already shared the link to some family members. I have tried lots of your sweet and bread recipes, but am definitely going to try more of the savoury ones. My husband said it was one of the best things I have ever made, and that he thought about having more but was full. Like others, I used bagged coleslaw instead of shredded cabbage. I also chopped up some snap peas and added them a little later so they were still on the crisper side. Delicious!

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