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May 19, 2016

by Alyssa

Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle + Quinoa Salad

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This pad thai zucchini noodle and quinoa salad is a lightened up version of a takeout staple. Clean ingredients, tons of flavor and packed with nutrients!

PAD THAI ZUCCHINI NOODLE SALAD with a creamy peanut butter sauce and quinoa for extra protein [vegan]

Today I'm remaking one of my favorite take out dishes of all time: Pad Thai!

This noodle dish is traditionally served with rice noodles, egg, some sort of protein and a delicious peanut sauce. It often might feel like a healthier option, but there's a lot of junk hiding inside. The noodles are basically pure starch with zero nutritional value. The sauce usually has sugar, fish sauce and a ton of sodium in it, and the whole thing is finished off with a high-heat saute in vegetable oil.

So…is pad thai healthy? Not really.

But with a few tweaks, we've been able to get rid of all the crappy ingredients and transform this dish into a nourishing, flavorful and veggie-packed salad that requires no cooking and takes about 10 minutes to make.

Cheaper than takeout. Faster than takeout. And healthier than takeout. That's a win in my book.

Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai -- a simple dish that doesn't require any cooking, is totally healthy and SUPER flavorful!

Pad Thai Zucchini Noodles -- arguably the easiest pad thai EVER! with tons of veggies, quinoa for protein and a healthy peanut butter sauce! [vegan + gluten-free]

So it's time to whip out your spiralizer, slice of up some veggies and dig into this healthy pasta dish.

And if you don't have a spiralizer already, the one I'm using in today's video is The Inspiralizer — I've tested out a bunch of different tools and this one is by far the best. I talked about the features I love about it before in this post, but if you are in the market for a spiralizer, I highly recommend this one! Click here to grab an Inspiralizer.

Healthy Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Salad with veggies, quinoa and a creamy peanut butter sauce. So simple and SO flavorful!

Since I'm a big pasta lover and we're getting into zucchini season, I'm planning to use my spiralizer a lot this summer. I'll be sure to share some of my creations on the blog, but I'd also love to hear what your favorite spiralized recipe is!

Your turn…

Do you spiralize? What's your favorite veggie/recipe? Leave a comment below so we can also give each other inspiration for this amazing kitchen gadget!

And if you haven't joined the SQ community on YouTube yet, make sure you subscribe so you don't miss any of my videos (I don't always post them on the blog!)

xo Alyssa

Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Salad! with a creamy peanut butter sauce, crunchy cabbage and fluffy quinoa!

Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle + Quinoa Salad

This pad thai zucchini noodle and quinoa salad is a lightened up version of a takeout staple. Clean ingredients, tons of flavor and packed with nutrients!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 2 Servings
Calories 337kcal
Author Alyssa Rimmer
Print Pin
Pad Thai Zucchini Noodles
4.36 from 45 votes



  • Slice the ends off the zucchini and secure it to your spiralizer. Spiralize the zucchini into long noodles and transfer to a large bowl.
  • Thinly slice the cabbage and pepper, either with a knife or mandolin slicer, and add that to the bowl with the zucchini noodles, along with the scallions, cilantro, quinoa and peanuts.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients. Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it's thin enough to pour -- you're looking for the consistency of a creamy dressing.
  • Pour dressing over the vegetables and toss to coat. Transfer to two bowls, sprinkle with a bit more peanuts and cilantro and enjoy!


Calories: 337kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 478mg | Potassium: 880mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 2850IU | Vitamin C: 149.2mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 3.1mg





Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai -- a simple dish that doesn't require any cooking, is totally healthy and SUPER flavorful!

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About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

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  1. This was delicious!! I didn’t have cabbage but used shredded carrots instead and added shredded chicken for protein! It was a great, easy meal, and tasted good even the next day!

  2. […] Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle and Quinoa Salad | Simply Quinoa […]

  3. How long is fridge life? Is it a meal that has to be eaten the first day or how long does it last?

  4. […] Pad Thai Quinoa Salad | Simply Quinoa Protein: 14g | Carbs: 35g | Fat: […]

  5. HI,
    Can you recommend a spiralizer or two? Really don’t want another large appliance in my kitchen, but one that is smaller/more portable. I need to try this!

    Thanks, the recipe looks so interesting, and I would definitely eat it slightly warmed, esp in the winter!

  6. This was my first-ever attempt at pad thai and I just LOVED it! I too found the dressing too ‘limey’ so wondering if different types of lime express differentamounts of juide? Next time I’d just use one. Mine were super-juicy. So I added more of the other ingredients, and, like another reader below, I added a bit of maple syrup. But the rest of the flavours were a perfect ‘meld’ and the texture of the veggies was fun. I was worried I wouldn’t enjoy it raw and have to heat/cook but I didn’t. My quinoa was warm when I tossed it in and the combo of the warm/cold was amazing. This will be a keeper recipe for me, for sure. Thanks!!!!!

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it!! And yes, some limes are certainly juicier than others 🙂 Would love you for you leave a star rating if you have a sec as well! xox

  7. I made this two nights ago and it was delicious! My SAD husband wouldn’t touch it once he heard it had quinoa in it. But that made leftovers for me the next day! Next time I will double this recipe because the leftovers were great even cold. It did take me more like an hour to make this.

  8. I must have done something wrong because I see everyone else liked it. I thought it was gross. Juice of 2 limes?? Seems disproportionate to the other ingredients in the sauce. All I could taste was lime.

  9. Alyssa, I tried this recipe and loved. I’m 77 and try to eat a healthy diet, and this is certainly a great recipe. Keep them coming!

  10. Hello
    This looks delicious. I am looking for recipes with no sugar which is how I found you… but this recipe says it has 9g or sugar… that is way higher then I wanted… but I looked at the ingredients and I cant tell where the sugar came from. Where is the sugar coming from in the recipe?? That way I will know which items to switch out.

    • Hi Jen! I’m guessing the sugar is coming from the peppers, the sriracha and potentially the peanut butter 🙂 I can’t control the exact ingredients that the nutrition calculator uses, so sometimes it might be a teeny bit off! That’s why I always recommend that you use your own calculator and plug in the exact ingredients you have at home (it will be much more accurate!). xox

  11. […] Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle and Quinoa Salad | Simply Quinoa […]

  12. […] 21. Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Quinoa Salad […]

  13. […] 21. Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Quinoa Salad […]

  14. […] 21. Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Quinoa Salad […]

  15. […] I always feel super motivated and back on track after our visits, and if that hike showed me anything, it’s that I’ve got some work to do. For me, days are usually easy because I can portion out and pack what I know I should be eating and I have my big mason jars at home and at work that helps me stay hydrated. My trouble time is between 4-6; that time between work and dinner. I find that I have insatiable hunger during this time, and it doesn’t matter how much healthy or crappy food I eat, I still look for a full dinner at 6 o’clock. To combat this, a few months ago Nick and I agreed on a few things: First, Kaitlyn is making dinner as soon as she gets home—hello Early Bird Special! (OK, maybe Nick didn’t “agree” to this) And second, let’s stop having carbs at dinner, that way even if I do end up snacking, dinner is healthy. Pasta, pizza, sandwiches should be occasional rather than the standards they had become. I’m always on the hunt for new recipes that meet these two needs, and I found one that I think you’re going to love: Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai. […]

  16. […] of noodles, I went for a gluten free option and chose quinoa instead, with the inspiration of Simply Quinoa here. You find all the veggies you have in a Pad Thai, but here they are not fried, just served raw […]

  17. […] thought I would share! We’ve been eating a whole lot of zoodles lately (loving this recipe and this one) since zucchini is everywhere but this chicken recipe we will definitely make again! What have […]

  18. What can i do if i want this recipe to be warm (like pad thai) Temperature warm not spicy warm.

  19. Hi! Was wondering what type of mandolin slicer you used? I’ve checked Amazon but the reviews for the ones listed are not great.

  20. […] Zoodle: Pad Thai Zucchini Noodle Quinoa Salad. Such a brilliant way to use zucchini noodles! I love the addition of quinoa for protein […]

  21. I loved the Pad Thai Salad but I missed the hint of sweetness so added a little raw honey to the sauce and it was just perfect. I also added more quinoa. Thanks so much for a great recipe!

  22. You are a genius for this recipe. I just made it and… OH MY GOODNESS! Love it! I forgot the scallion when I was at the store today so I think it will be even better when I make it next time. Which will be immediately when this batch is finished. So good. THANK YOU!!

    • So glad you enjoyed it!! I’ve been craving it all day and need to make it for dinner tomorrow! xo

  23. So you know Ali Mafucci? I follow her too. Did you know you can inspiralize the cabbage and red pepper too? I follow you and Ali for all your great recipes! Glad you two are friends.

    • Most of the time I actually do eat the zucchini noodles raw because I like the crunch, but you can totally cook them! That’s how Matt likes to eat them 🙂

  24. I spiralise loads and use the Inspiralizer. I’m disabled uou won’t recall but this is so much better I fave my Lurch one away with a massive gash in my right index finger knuckle.
    I do bulk spiralising then put everything in bags and freeze in 100g sizes. Not white potato or fruit but everything else uncooked.
    If I see a recipe using cubed veg, wherever I can I spiralise. My go to help is Ali @inspiralised I’ve learned loads, you are both my saviours. Ali shows in spiralising 1st then blend to make rice saved time, power etc.
    So good job.
    I don’t like Chinese or Thai food it’s full of crap as you say. Hubby loves it but rarely gets it…. Asian food lol…. Id cook this with him. He’d be happy + crap free.
    Thanks dear ????

    • Love to hear that Heather! And so happy that you’re enjoying spiralizing. Isn’t Ali the best? She’s a great friend of mine and is such an inspiration. She’s changing the world one pasta lover at a time 😉


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