Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

gluten freemeat & poultry
Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I eat my “Bikini Bolognese” every other week, at the very least.

It’s what Lu requests for dinner most nights, and since I try to eat primarily plant-based, I like to keep it to every other week, but I must admit, my body does crave it too!

So what’s the difference between my Bikini Bolognese (found in my first cookbook) and this recipe?

Well, this turkey bolognese with zucchini noodles is basically my easy, busy weeknight version. It’s the recipe I make when I literally have 20-30 minutes to make dinner. On a quick night, I can make this dish in 20-25 minutes. When I’m taking a bit more time, it’s more like 30 minutes.

Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

My original Bikini Bolognese (first featured on the blog here and then later improved for my first cookbook) includes making a totally fresh tomato sauce and pureeing the veggies in a food processor. If you do this, the consistency is less chunky, it’s more like a ragu and melts in with the turkey sauce.

As for the fresh tomato sauce, there are so many great jarred tomato sauces these days, it’s not necessary to make your own sauce, unless you have the time. I love Victoria Fine Foods and Rao’s, they’re both my favorite go-tos. The turkey meat and veggies absorb the flavors in the sauce and make a delicious, low-fat meat sauce.

I love both versions. I like the chunky veggies, but I also like the more ragu style pureed veggies. It totally depends on the day, but during the busy weeknights, I’m all about today’s version.

And why did I call it Bikini Bolognese?

Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

Well, when I first started this blog I definitely tried to get a little creative with my blog post titles. Bikini Bolognese meant “it’s so healthy, you can eat it while in a bikini!” Basically, I was trying to say that you won’t feel bloated like you would if you ate a traditional big bowl of spaghetti bolognese. Get it? Clever, but certainly an odd title.

Funny enough, I have some frozen sauce leftover from when I made this dish last week, so I’ll most likely be having this for dinner, with some leftover multi-grain bread my mother brought over for Easter.

Tonight’s dinner will take no more than 10 minutes! Just heat up the sauce in a pot and while it heats up, spiralize the zucchinis, toss them in a non-stick skillet or wok and cook until al dente, about 5 minutes or to your preference. As simple as that!

Watch our video to learn how to make our Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles and subscribe to our YouTube channel to watch more videos:


Nutritional Information & Recipe

Weight Watchers SmartPoints*: 10 points

*These points were calculated using the official Weight Watchers SmartPoints calculator. We are in no way affiliated with Weight Watchers, we are providing this information based on popular demand.

Serves 4

Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

10 minPrep Time

20 minCook Time

30 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 carrots, peeled, diced
  • 1 small red onion, peeled, diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground turkey, lean
  • 2.5 teaspoons oregano flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 24oz jar tomato basil sauce (I like Victoria Fine Foods or Rao’s)
  • 4 large zucchinis (or about 6 medium zucchinis)
  • grated parmesan cheese, to garnish (optional)


  1. Heat the oil a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil is shimmering, add in the carrots, onion, and celery. Cook until the vegetables soften and then add in the red pepper flakes, half of the garlic and let cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant.
  2. Push the veggies to one side of the skillet and then add in the ground turkey, crumbling with a wooden spoon. Season the meat with oregano, salt, pepper, and the rest of the garlic. Cook the meat until browned and then combine the veggies with the meat.
  3. Pour the sauce over the meat and veggie mixture and stir until combined. Season again with salt and pepper. Let cook for 5-7 minutes to let veggies and meat soak up the sauce and the flavors to develop. Reduce heat to low, cover, and keep hot while you continue with the recipe.
  4. Once you add the sauce to the pan, heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Once pan heats, add the zucchini noodles and cook for 5 minutes or until cooked to your preference (3-5 minutes for al dente, 5-7 minutes for a softer noodle.) When done, drain into a colander and pat dry. You may need to do this in batches, if you don’t have a large enough wok/skillet.
  5. Divide the noodles onto plates, top with the turkey meat sauce and garnish with parmesan cheese, if using.


Per serving (1 out of 4) - Calories: 369, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Carbs: 22g, Fiber: 6g, Sugars: 13g, Protein: 40g, Sodium: 608mg

Turkey Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles

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Joie Foster says:
Haha that's so funny, as I had made the Bikini Bolognese last week and we had leftover turkey/sauce that I'd frozen-- and then last night we defrosted it, heated it up, and spiralized & sauteed some fresh zucchini! Accidentally in sync :)
Ali Maffucci says:
Haha love it - that's because it's just so easy! !
Claire Bibbee says:
This is the best, made it last night for sinner as well.
Claire Bibbee says:
I meant Dinner :)
Elina Bystritskaya says:
Ali, After reading several books (Bone to Pick, Eating Animals) about the quality of factory-farmed meat, I'm trying to eat almost/entirely plant based as well. Where do you purchase your turkey/chicken/eggs/animal protein, and is the source reputable enough that you feel comfortable eating it?
Ali Maffucci says:
Elina, I usually buy all of my meats/seafoods/poultry at Whole Foods and make sure it's 100% organic. Hope that helps!
kevi says:
This is one of my favorites as well. It's crazy simple, so I was surprised by how fantastic it tastes. I use ground chicken instead of turkey and definitely quadruple the recipe for leftovers.
Mary Beth says:
I've been wanting to make this for a long time, but balked at the 10 WW points. I fed this into the WW recipe builder with just two substitutions: Pam instead of 1 T EVOO, and canned tomato sauce, instead of jarred (which probably has some sugar). I calculated using 93% lean ground turkey and 1 ounce of grated parm. Result? ONLY 5 WW SmartPoints per serving! (I would also add some basil to make up for using the canned tomato sauce instead of jarred.) One of the reasons I love your recipes, Ali, is that they're almost always very easy to tweak to fit my needs! So, just thought I'd share, and thanks for all you do!
Ali Maffucci says:
We calculate the points off the nutritional information, not off the list of ingredients itself, so the points are always off!
Mary Beth says:
Your points were correct per the Recipe Builder, I just didn't want so many! Really, 10 points isn't terrible, but as any WW member will tell you, 5 is waaaay better. PS: I'm really enjoying making my way through your wonderful "Inspiralize Everything" cookbook!
Nancy says:
This is one of my favorite recipes and I also make it frequently, always with extra so I can bring it for lunch the rest of the week! Thanks for continuing to promote healthy and delicious eating. I still share your website with my patients as I've tried to encourage a plant based, low carb, low sugar diet for them.
Ali Maffucci says:
Thank you for the support, Nancy!
Kate says:
This is the recipe that really converted my husband to spiralizing. He was actually shocked at how delicious it tasted! Now we cook up a few batches and freeze them for "emergency" quick dinners. No excuses to order out! Thanks Ali :)
Helen says:
This isn't an original idea, but it's one I've found useful. When I spiralize zucchini, unless I want all the moisture from the zucchini in whatever I'm making, I wrap the zoodles in a clean cotton dishtowel, squeeze the bundle a bit, then leave it to sit for several minutes. The process takes a lot of the moisture out of the zucchini and makes my sauces less watery.
Carole says:
Thank you!! I made this yesterday and my husband and I loved it! I did it with lean beef as it's the only thing I had. I am planning on making a few more batches of it and freeze it.
Torry says:
I just bought red lentil pasta from trader joe's to try....I think I am going to make the sauce with it!
JJC says:
Holy delicious-ness!!! I used Newmans organic marinara (v.little sugar) and fresh oregano. This is absolutely going into the general rotation! It was AMAZING, easy, and my husband declared it "very tasty" -praise from Caesar, believe me. Thanks, Ali! Another home run!
Kim Lee says:
Just made this, Ali. So good! I will definitely be adding it to my weekly dinner rotation!
Julie says:
We are in week 5 of our kitchen remodel and needed something super easy for Sunday dinner. I made it in the slow cooker using the browning feature and added extra meat and veggies since my hubby isn't crazy about tomato sauce - I love Rao's. Heated the zucchini noodles on the bbq. Amazing.
Renee Jarusinsky says:
Hi Ali - I love this recipe. Can you please add the red pepper flakes and how much you are supposed to use to the list of ingredients? They are missing. Also - adding a little red wine to the sauce while it's simmering adds some nice flavor. I also like to add a little cinnamon and nutmeg. Thanks!
Renee Jarusinsky says:
One more thing. Can you also include which blade you recommend for the zucchini noodles? Thanks!
Patty says:
Why doesn't this recipe tell me what blade to use to inspiralize the zucchini? I'm new to this and want to try this tonight.
Newsbloggers, first, are actually completing where traditional news print media are neglecting. A small number of you might be confused at that point about how my outwards bound links became inward bound links without the other action. They will pay out a lot of money to analyze a website or possibly a product to the owner.
Leah says:
Just made this - it was SOOO good!!!! Can't wait to make this once a week, it's the perfect winter dinner!!!
Suzanne says:
Holy Smokes this is delicious! I've been missing and craving pasta while on the Whole30. Wow does this hit the spot. So good. This is even better than flour pasta in my opinion. I added a few handfuls of spinach and arugula for even more veggies. Spiralized Zucchini Turkey Bolognese where have you been all my life?! Thank you Ali!
bedroom says:
With havin so much content do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement? My blog has a lot of unique content I've either authored myself or outsourced but it appears a lot of it is popping it up all over the internet without my authorization. Do you know any techniques to help protect against content from being stolen? I'd certainly appreciate it.

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