Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

One of the things I love most about being a woman in the healthy business is the pride you feel when you meet another woman doing something like-minded.

Case in point: Candice Kumai. First off, if you need ab inspiration or a photo to affix to your refrigerator for motivation, it’s Candice’s.

Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

Candice has written many cookbooks (ehem – she’s a New York Times bestseller), but today, I’m sharing a recipe from her latest book: Clean Green Eats.

In this cookbook, she creates simple recipes that are approachable, clean and packed with flavor. Sometimes, healthy cooking can definitely seem complex and it’s hard to know where to start anymore. Should I omit gluten? Dairy? Soy?

Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

Well, in this book, Candice’s main focus is what everyone’s focus should be: eat greener and cleaner. The more veggies, the better. The less processed, even better.

As a pasta-lover, I went to my favorite section: Pastas & Pizzas and chose a pasta recipe to Inspiralize.

I’ve chosen her “Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese” and didn’t change much up except for decreasing the amount of olive oil in the beginning and offering beef broth as a substitute to wine (some people don’t like to cook with wine or don’t have it on hand easily, I figured!)

Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

Instead of spaghetti, I used kohlrabi! Kohlrabi is one of those alien looking vegetables that most people get in their CSA boxes over the summer and don’t know what to do with them. I was one of those people until I discovered the spiralizer.

You’re going to love the lightness of the kohlrabi noodles with the heaviness of the plentiful bolognese, fortified with kale and mushrooms. The kohlrabi has a mild, turnip taste so it’s ideal for heavy sauces that pack big flavor.

Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese

Definitely worth some Sunday meal prep – prepare the bolognese in advance, spiralize the kohlrabi in advance and voila – a 5 minute meal on Monday night.

If you’d like to purchase Candice Kumai’s Clean Green Eats, click here.

Nutritional Information & Recipe

Weight Watchers SmartPoints*: 12 points


Kohlrabi Spaghetti and Kale-Mushroom Bolognese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 celery stalk, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, peeled, finely diced
  • ½ cup cremini mushrooms, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons fabulous red wine (Cabernet works perfectly)
  • ½ pound 80 percent lean ground beef
  • 1 14.5 ounce can organic crushed tomatoes
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup finely chopped kale leaves
  • 2 medium kohlrabis, Blade C, noodles trimmed
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 basil leaves, sliced thinly (for garnish)
  1. In a large stockpot over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes, or until soft. Add the celery and carrot and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and garlic cook for 5 minutes more, or until all the liquid has evaporated.
  2. Add the tomato paste, and stir to coat all the vegetables. Saute for an additional 5 minutes to deepen and develop the flavor. Add the meat, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to break up any large pieces, and sauté for about 10 minutes, until the meat is cooked through.
  3. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the red wine and deglaze the pan. Cook until all the alcohol has evaporated and the brown bits have released from the bottom of the pan, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add the crushed tomatoes and the sea salt. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 35 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Five minutes before the sauce is ready, add the kale to the sauce and then also place a large skillet over medium-high heat and spray with cooking spray. Once heated, add in the kohlrabi noodles, season with salt and pepper and cook for 3-5 minutes for al dente or longer for your preference. Note that you may need to cook the kohlrabi noodles in batches (or use a wok for extra room.)
  6. Divide the kohlrabi noodles into bowls and top with the finished sauce and garnish with basil.


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  1. I am a bit confused. I am not posting this to get into a debate, or create any disharmony, but I am curious. How can you talk about eating cleaner and greener, but use animal products in the recipe? There is nothing green or clean in any stage of mass raising and slaughtering animals for consumption. This has been shown time and again in the media.
    If people raised their own animals and provided meat for their families then I could understand, but most people do not. We rely on a broken system to provide meat.
    It just seems counter-intuitive to talk about cleaner and greener living, but still rely on an industry shown to be at complete odds with that ideal.
    Again, I am not asking this to create a war or debate. I would like a better understanding to a thought process that seems at odds with this post. I see it often on many non-vegetarian and non-vegan sites. It is the same confusion I have when people talk about keeping a paleo house since it is just another Adkins diet. It is just not very logical in my mind.
    The recipe itself looks great albeit the meat, and I have been trying to find a reason to try kohlrabi. I will also tweek the recipe to replace the meat. The pictures are beautiful as always!
    I read your posts/blog, and never comment as I am vegan, and most people consider us militant (which I am not…I believe everyone has the right to eat as they please even if it goes against how I believe), but this post got me thinking and I would like to better understand.
    Thank you for another awesome looking recipe. I do appreciate all your efforts in providing recipes that use veggie ingredients in a new way. That is why I keep getting your posts. I just tweek them to suit our lifestyle.
    Thank you.

    • Tomi – my best advice would be to educate yourself the best you can, believe in those findings and stick to it. All you need to worry about is your own body and your own health – others will have different belief systems and may think that many of the foods you find “healthy” are actually not. Everyone’s different, everyone thinks differently and that’s the beauty of humanity – we all bring these interesting point of views and share them together, positively. For those who eat meat, for instance, it’s important to find humanely raised animal by-products, of course. There’s no “right” or “wrong” way of eating healthy – it’s just what works best for your body and what makes you feel good. Hope that answers your question!

  2. Hi Ali! Two questions…. One, how might I identify kohlrabi in a produce lineup? Two, is there a way on your website to tag recipes? I see they can be pinned. Is that the best way? If so I will try a little harder to do it. Thanks!

    • Yes, you can Pin recipes! And simply Google kohlrabi, you’ll see what it looks like – there are purple and green versions, both are great (although I prefer the purple!)

  3. Hi Ali, just a quick question – can you recommend a meat substitute that would work with the sauce ( ie tempeh or tofu, etc) or is the sauce robust enough to stand on its own without the beef?
    P.s. I just bought your book last week and am really excited to try out some recipes. Keep up the great work! Thanks

  4. woahhhh i’ve never even HEARD of kohlrabi, i’ll have to do some research and then scope it out. thanks for always broadening my horizons!

  5. […] Inspiralized: Kohlrabi spaghetti and kale-mushroom bolognese  […]

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