How to Store Zucchini Noodles and Spiralized Vegetables

How to Store Spiralized Vegetables

How to Store Spiralized Vegetables

Whether you’re meal prepping for a week of healthy lunches with your spiralizer or you’re making dinner and want leftovers for lunch tomorrow, this information is for you.

How long can I save spiralized vegetables in the refrigerator? Can they be frozen?

Find everything you need to know about spiralized meal prep on this page! On this page, you’ll find information on:

  • Spiralizing for Meal Prep
  • Spiralized Meals That Work Best for Meal Prep
  • Meal Prepping with Zucchini Noodles
  • Some Meal Prep-Friendly Recipes to Get You Started

Spiralizing for Meal Prep

Meal prepping with spiralized veggies is a great way to commit to a healthy week and get your veggies in! Just grab your Inspiralizer and read the below!

Here are the general guidelines for the most common spiralizable veggies, followed by more information on meal prepping with spiralized zucchini (it’s a bit trickier!):

Apple

Raw Storage: Apples instantly brown in the refrigerator, so seal tightly in a Ziploc or airtight container (try to avoid letting much air in), but only expect a couple days in the refrigerator.

Beet

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Bell pepper

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Broccoli

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Butternut Squash

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Cabbage

Raw Storage: Lasts up to 1 week, can be frozen.

Carrot

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 1.5 weeks in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Celeriac

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Chayote

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container over paper towels or napkins, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, shouldn’t be frozen.

Cucumber

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container over paper towels or napkins, lasts up to 2 days in the refrigerator, shouldn’t be frozen.

Daikon

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 10 days in the refrigerator, shouldn’t be frozen.

Jicama

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 7 days in the refrigerator, shouldn’t be frozen.

Kohlrabi

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Onion

Raw Storage: Use as you would normally with a sliced onion.

Parsnip

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 10 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Pear

Raw Storage: Pears instantly brown in the refrigerator, so seal tightly in a Ziploc or airtight container (try to avoid letting much air in), but only expect a couple days in the refrigerator.

PLantain

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 4 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Rutabaga

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 7 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

Sweet potato

Raw Storage: Seal in a bowl covered with ice water, up to 2 days, can be frozen.

Turnip

Raw Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 7 days in the refrigerator, can be frozen.

White Potato

Raw Storage: Seal in a bowl covered with water, up to 2 days (to avoid browning), can be frozen.

Zucchini & Summer Squash

Storage: Seal in an airtight container, lasts up to 5 days in the refrigerator, shouldn’t be frozen.

Spiralized Meals that Work Best for Meal Prep

If you’d like to make the complete meal in advance, these types of meals save the best:

  • “Raw”/cold dishes: If the dish requires no cooking or is better served chilled, it’s a win-win!
  • Spiralized rice: since rice dishes tend to not be made with vegetables that release excess moisture, they’re perfect for prepping completely in advance and reheating. They work well in the freezer, especially!
  • Non-zucchini noodle dishes with ragu-type sauces: If you’re making a bolognese over sweet potato noodles, this can easily be reheated and enjoyed. However, if you’re making a zucchini noodle dish with a bolognese, the water content in the zucchini noodles will thin out the bolognese and take away from its originally delicious flavor.
  • Non-zucchini noodle dishes with sauces: Similar to the ragu-type sauces tip above, any type of sauce can be used with spiralized vegetables and can be reheated for lunch.
  • Dishes with no sauce: If your recipe doesn’t call for a heavy sauce, that’s perfect – it will reheat well. Bonus points for recipes with cheese – the heated cheese will melt nicely into the noodles. This works with zucchini noodles!
  • Pesto pastas: Pesto sauces work well with all vegetables and reheat well. Actually, the olive oil in the pesto works to our advantage with zucchini noodles. Throw in some kale, spinach or another vegetable that will absorb excess moisture, and you’ve got a pesto pasta, fit for lunch!
  • Noodle dishes or soups that don’t call for zucchini noodles: If you make a big batch of a spiralized noodle bowl or soup, you can definitely reheat it for lunch – unless it uses zucchini noodles. I don’t recommend this, since zucchini noodles will again thin out the soup and make it less flavorful altogether. However, it’s total personal preference, at the end of the day.
  • Wraps and sandwiches: any noodle, any ingredient – collard green wraps (or any type of sandwich wraps) work brilliantly! Just wrap tightly in tinfoil or paper and secure with tape when packing for lunch.
  • Spiralized salads: As long as there aren’t any fruit noodles in there, spiralized salads generally work well if they’re pre-made, as long as they don’t include zucchini or cucumber noodles (which can cause a soggy salad!)
  • Casseroles: If you eat hearty lunches, then you’re in luck: non-zucchini noodle casseroles work fabulously when reheated.

Meal Prepping with Spiralized Zucchini

Please note, spiralized zucchini should not be frozen. When you go to defrost it, it will wilt and become a mushy mess.

It can be tricky to prepare a zucchini noodle dish in advance, due to the vegetable’s high water content (the longer the zucchini sits in a sauce, the more moisture releases and the more watery/mushy the dish will get). This applies for cucumbers as well.

If you’re saving leftovers from a spiralized dish that includes zucchini noodles, here are a few go-to tips:

1. Reserve Some Extra Sauce While Cooking

The best way to make a recipe and save leftovers for the next day is by portioning out some of the sauce, placing it in a container and putting it in the fridge to save. Then, if you’d like to make this for lunch or dinner the next day, just heat up the reserved sauce, cook the zucchini noodles, and pour the sauce over the zucchini noodles.

For example, you could make a big batch of my Gluten-Free Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini Noodles, while reserving a serving of the tomato sauce and meatballs, and then reheat the sauce & meatballs. While the sauce and meatballs heat up, cook the zucchini noodles in a skillet and then pour the sauce and meatballs over the zucchini, once ready.

2. Make it Raw

I have many recipes for yummy meals that don’t require cooking of zucchini noodles. These can be saved in the refrigerator for later and don’t require reheating and therefore, the noodles won’t release too much water. For example, my Avocado and Tomato Zucchini Noodle Salad with Basil Vinaigrette.

3. Bring seasonings if you’re having a soup

If you just made a delicious zucchini noodle soup, like the Minestrone from Inspiralize Everything or this Bacon and White Bean Zoodle Soup,  here’s a tip: pack extra seasonings. As the zucchini sits in the soup, its moisture will dilute the broth, making it less flavorful. For example, if you’re making my Vegan Zucchini Noodle Ramen, add an extra dash of soy sauce before serving. Other seasonings that can be appropriate are salt, pepper, spices, hot sauce, etc.

Some meal-prep friendly spiralized recipes to get you started…

Meal Planning

If you’d like us to do the work for you, we’ve got you covered! Check out our Spiralized Meal Plans, here.

Happy, healthy planning!

Inspiralizer

ALSO for your easy access, I’ve created a list of all common spiralizable vegetables. On this list, I’ve included how to prepare each vegetable, how to cook it, what its best uses are, which blade works best and most importantly, best practices for storage. To access this list, click here.

FYI: zucchini and cucumber noodles do not freeze well.

Which spiralized vegetables work best for prepared lunches?

All vegetables work best for prepared lunches. However, there are a few tips to keep in mind with certain vegetables:

  • Zucchini & Cucumbers: if using these vegetables, make sure that the noodles are separate from any sauce or dressing. By separating, you avoid excess moisture building up and making a soggy mess. If you really want to use zucchini noodles, try adding elements that will soak up that moisture (such as leafy greens – ie kale, cheese, etc)
  • Apples & Pears: fruits brown quickly and lose their crispness, so unless you’re planning on eating the meal that day or you don’t mind a little browning and soft fruit noodles, avoid spiralizing these in advance.
  • Kohlrabi, Jicama, Daikon Radishes: if you’re using these raw and fitting them into a container, beware: they’ll snap easily when packed tightly.
  • Beets: Beets are messy raw and less messy when cooked, so when packing in advance – keep this in mind and plan accordingly (wouldn’t want to ruin those slacks or that crisp white blouse at your desk, would you?)
  • Butternut Squash: If you haven’t noticed yet, butternut squashes tend to over-soften quickly when cooked – they break up easily and aren’t the sturdiest (but are dang delicious!) Keep this in mind, in case you had your heart set on a full pasta-like experience for lunch.

In general:

    • Raw
      • Zucchini (separated from sauce/dressing)
      • Cucumber (separated from sauce/dressing)
      • Onion
      • Chayote
      • Kohlrabi
      • Jicama
      • Carrot
    • Cooked
      • Potatoes (all kind)
      • Parsnip
      • Rutabaga
      • Kohlrabi
      • Daikon Radish
      • Celeriac
      • Carrot
      • Broccoli stem

What are the best containers for saving prepared spiralized lunches?

The container that keeps your prepped spiralized veggies, meals and sauces/dressing should be air-tight! I buy a pack of containers that come in various sizes so that I have options, depending on the type of meal I’m making. This Rubbermaid set has all types of sizes, perfect for packaging spiralized veggies, dressings, and sauces.

Lunch Recipe Roundup

If you’re still stumped, I’ve created a Pinterest board full of all of my recipes that can be cooked in advance and reheated for lunch (or dinner!) Click the image below to access the Pinterest board:

Inspiralized Meals for Lunch Meal Planning

Inspiralized

How to Store Zucchini Noodles and Spiralized Vegetables

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173 comments

Now I am going to do my breakfast, once having my breakfast coming over again to read additional news.
Rachel says:
Just for clarity... when you defrost things, did you just set them out on the counter? Or defrost in the microwave? 40 min. seems like a long time for the microwave but I didn't want to assume with the Frozen Swoodles!
Amanda says:
Thanks! Very helpful.
Lauren says:
Super helpful - thank you!
Hi there,I log on to your new stuff named "Ground Rules: Spiralizing & Storing Noodles — Inspiralized" regularly.Your humoristic style is awesome, keep doing what you're doing! And you can look our website about powerful love spells.
Ana Perry says:
have you tried cooking the zucchini noodles before freezing? Not knowing you shouldn't freeze them i cooked our meal and put left overs in the freezer for lunches. I don't remember them being mushy or actually much unlike fresh. I'd like to know if you try it. I hope it wasn't a fluke.
Anonymous says:
Yes this was quite helpful! Saved me from another kitchen fail :)
Joanna says:
Have you tried to dehyrate them in a dehydrator or oven? I'm going to be trying that this week to preserve some zucchini & summer squash noodle.
Amber says:
Personally I'm not big on dehydrated zucchini. About the only way I can think of to use them afterward is to add the dehydrated noodles to a pot of soup to rehydrate in there
Joanna says:
I am planning on making some z-noodles to use as lasagna. This will be my first attempt at dehydrating anything.
Linda says:
Joanna, I am very interested to find out how this worked for you. Please let us know. I am hoping to do some dehydrating so I can use different veggies through the winter.
cora says:
Thanks for the post! What I do with my cut vegetables is to use a mason jar, put a paper towel at the bottom, add the vegetable, add another paper towel, add more vegetable and then top with another paper towel and put on the mason jar lid. Works like a charm. Some vegetables, like onions will last over a week.
Meaghan says:
Thank you for sharing, Cora!
Kit says:
Never heard of sweet potato noodles most seen and eaten zucchini ones and knew acorn squash existed Came to find storing techniques going to try making sweet potato ones
Meaghan says:
You must!! They will change the game.
KIM JONES says:
My usual go-to meal in a hurry is ramen noodles. Thank you for doing the experiments, so I can try preparing in advance, and replace the ramen with something healthy!
Meaghan says:
Of course! You're so welcome!
Britishblueeyes says:
You can probably kill the brittle issue of sweet potato noodles by storing them in a plastic deli container in water. They should last about 5 days in the fridge that way and stay nice and fresh! I would try the same for celery, carrots and butternut squash. You might want to change the water and get them to last even a little longer.
Anonymous says:
Great post thanks. I have been looking into freezing zoodles, and I came across an article that said after you zoodle your zucchini if you put them into a mesh strainer sprinkle them with salt, let them sit for 20-30 minutes letting the moisture drip out that they freeze pretty well. I would need to try it, I thought I would post maybe someone has already tried this method? Great blog.
Meaghan says:
Check out this post! It's all about the best storing methods for each veggie noodle: https://inspiralized.com/meal-prep-with-spiralized-vegetables/
Christie says:
Has anyone tried this method for zucchini noodles yet? "put them into a mesh strainer sprinkle them with salt, let them sit for 20-30 minutes letting the moisture drip out that they freeze pretty well." I saw it posted above but didn't know if it was tried by anyone yet?
Anonymous says:
I have frozen mine in a food saver bag. Thaw in strainer then Saute
Gwen says:
I tried the salt and spiralized zucchini and still ended up with a wet mess after freezing ?
JJ says:
This page https://onceamonthmeals.com/recipes/zoodles-spaghetti-style-noodles/ has *great* information on freezing zucchini noodles. I haven't tried it yet, but I'm pretty confident in it -- make sure you look at the comment about blanching the noodles, too! In summary, it's: - Make the zoodles - Lay in a single layer and sprinkle with 1T salt. Let sit 30 mins. - Turn them over and sprinkle with 1T salt. Let set 30 mins. - Pat dry with paper towel - Blanch (which means, drop in boiling water for 60 seconds) - Let cool, pat dry, flash freeze (in a single layer on a baking sheet) and then put in whatever freezer container you like. Is that a heck of a lot of work? Yes. Is it potentially worth it if you're freezer cooking a few weeks' worth of meals? I think so.
Tia says:
Hi ! I'm new to this way of cooking. I find it fun and easy BUT after I spiralize zucchini or squash and set it aside in the strainer. I find it limp and wet. What happened to the crisp? I sad with my results and want to give up.
Meaghan says:
Hi Tia! Don't give up! We have a super handy video that covers avoiding watery zucchini noodles that might help: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mILFcumUbuk&t=39s
Kathleen says:
Link does not work. Returns "nothing found" or some such.
Anonymous says:
Daikon radish noodles can be frozen w no prep and last for months!
Anonymous says:
It would be nice if the National Center for Food Preservation addressed freezing spiralized veggies. They are at: http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/freeze.html The thing that worries me about this blog is the lack of blanching. Better information is needed about blanching times in regards to freezing veggies this way, for safety. I'd love to put up a lot of a lot of zucchini noodles for the winter, when have zucchini growing in the garden, but would like to know am doing it safely.
sayur says:
I got this site from my friend who informed me about this web page and at the moment this time I am visiting this website and reading very informative articles or reviews at this time.
keygoddess says:
I love all the information provided here on your page and I subscribe to your youtube channel. My only problem here is that I get all the way to the bottom of the page and it is still not finished loading. It even gave me a crash message early on. I know you must include ads to support your page, but with my Chrome browser it has still not finished loading. Some of the ads may not even be seen due to the long load time. All that said, you have a great youtube channel and give excellent info on spiralizing. Keep up the good work and thank you for your insights.

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I’ve got these BUFFALO TOFU WRAPS on the menu for next week - there’s a secret ingredient to make the tofu crisp up in the air fryer (you’ll see in the video!) 🥑🥬🥕⁣

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grab the recipe on the blog! 🙌🏼⁣

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...

ramen is the perfect meal for this season of life. it’s cozy, comforting, filling, and satisfying. 🙏🏼 needless to say, I’ve been eating tons of ramen bowls lately, and I’m extra excited to share this one with you, a take on Japanese miso ramen: Miso Noodles with Smoky Tempeh (using @lightlifefoods Original Tempeh) and Kale. 🥬 🍜 #LightlifePartner⁣

this is kind of like two recipes in one, because this smoky tempeh is good on everything – in sandwiches, on salads, in grain bowls - it’s my go-to flavor when I’m making tempeh (especially for those who aren’t as far along on the tempeh train as I am.) the other recipe is the simplest miso ramen with kale, which you’ll be making over and over again. 👏🏼 also, you can simply sub in @lightlifefoods’ Smoky Tempeh product here, to save time!⁣

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recipe below 👇🏼👇🏼⁣

Miso Ramen with Smoky Tempeh and Kale⁣
Serves: 4⁣

Ingredients⁣
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil⁣
8-ounce package @lightlifefoods Original Tempeh, cubed⁣
¼ cup soy sauce, low sodium⁣
2 tablespoons maple syrup⁣
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika⁣
1 teaspoon liquid smoke⁣
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder⁣
2 garlic cloves, minced⁣
1-inch knob ginger, minced⁣
4 cups vegetable broth⁣
1 tablespoon miso paste⁣
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce⁣
4 cups finely chopped kale⁣
12 ounces ramen noodles⁣

Directions⁣
Heat half the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the tempeh slices and cook for 5 minutes until browned, stirring frequently.⁣

While tempeh cooks, stir together ¼ cup of water, soy sauce, maple syrup, smoked paprika, liquid smoke, and garlic powder. Pour that over the cooked tempeh and stir to coat. Let cook another 5 minutes or until moisture is evaporated and tempeh is browned. Set aside on a parchment lined plate.⁣

Heat the remaining oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Once oil is shimmering, add the garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the broth and 2 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
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