Zucchini Noodles with Chicken, cilantro and lime is a delicious 20 minute dinner idea that’s light, healthy, and gluten-free.

For other zucchini noodle recipes check out this zoodle pad Thai!

Zucchini noodles with chicken, grape tomatoes and cilantro in white skillet.

Why You Will Love This Recipe

  • Keeps kitchen cool: Zucchini noodles with chicken is a true light and quick summer dinner that’s perfect for days when it’s too hot to cook.
  • Low carb: Zucchini spirals make the perfect pasta substitute.
  • Tasty: Takes on whatever flavors you are cooking with.
  • Perfect for meal prep: Chicken and zucchini noodles keeps fresh for a few days.
  • Crowd pleaser: This easy recipe pairs zoodles with chicken, and tomatoes for a protein-packed meal everyone will enjoy.

Ingredients for Zucchini Noodles with Chicken

You’ll need a small handful of main ingredients and simple seasonings to make zucchini noodles with chicken.

Zucchini, chicken breasts, hot sauce, oil, cilantro, grape tomatoes, lime, cumin, salt and pepper.
  • Zucchini: You’ll need 2 large zucchinis.
  • Grape tomatoes: Adds a sweet taste and pop of color. You can also use cherry tomatoes.
  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts: They don’t have to be even in size because we will be cutting them into bite-sized pieces. Boneless skinless chicken thighs work too.
  • Oil: For sautéing. I prefer extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil, but you can use any oil of choice.
  • Seasoning: Cumin, salt and pepper.
  • Lime juice: Fresh lime juice is best but bottled can be used in a pinch.
  • Fresh herbs: Fresh cilantro adds a citrusy taste. Fresh basil or fresh parsley is another excellent option.
  • Hot sauce: For taste! Add as much as you like. You can also add red pepper flakes for a bigger punch.

How to Make Chicken and Zucchini Noodles

Chicken and zucchini noodles are super easy to make. Here is a quick overview with step-by-step instructions, there is also a full recipe card below.

Step by step process how to make zucchini noodles, saute chicken and mix it all together.
  • Spiralize zucchini: Make zucchini noodles using a spiralizer or simply chop zucchini into small chunks or stripes. Transfer zoodles to a large bowl and set aside.
  • Cook chicken: To a hot non-stick skillet, add 1 tablespoon of oil and swirl to coat. Add cubed chicken, then sprinkle with cumin, salt and pepper. I sautéed chicken until golden brown, then added a bit more cumin for that Mexican flavor. Transfer to a plate.
  • Sauté vegetables: To the same large skillet, add remaining oil, zucchini noodles and tomatoes. Sauté on medium-high, stirring frequently. My zucchini noodles were ready after just 2 minutes, that’s all it takes. I wanted zucchini to be crunchy and light, rather than soggy and mushy.
  • Finish chicken and zoodles: Remove pan from heat, top with previously cooked chicken, sprinkle with lots of cilantro, squeeze fresh lime juice on top and you are in heaven!

Tips for Best Results and Variations

Here are my secret tips for making the best zucchini noodles recipe!

  • Don’t overcook zucchini noodles: Just like pasta, zucchini noodles should be cooked al dente with a bit of crunch and firm texture.
  • If you don’t have a spiralizer: Don’t worry! You can chop your zucchini in chunks or stripes, but will need to sauté a bit longer.
  • Skip tomatoes: I used to make this recipe without tomatoes and it is just as yummy.
  • Use leftover chicken: You could even skip making chicken and use leftover diced air fryer chicken tenders or air fryer chicken breast!
  • Add Parmesan: Fresh Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top adds a salty creaminess.
  • Add more protein: Use 1.5 pounds of chicken instead of 1 pound.
Chicken and zucchini noodles served on a plate with a fork. Lime and linen napkin on a countertop.

What to Serve Chicken Zucchini Noodles with?

Zucchini noodles with chicken is a low carb, filling meal on its own but you could pair it with a leafy green salad like simple spring mix salad or even a quinoa salad like Jennifer Aniston salad for a heartier meal. Then add a side of garlic bread as a special treat.

How to Store

Store: Place leftovers in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Zucchini noodles were quite crisp and not soggy the next day as well.

Freeze: You can try and freeze leftovers for up to a month, I would remove the tomatoes first. I personally do not freeze them because the flavor and texture changes once thawed.


How do you keep zucchini noodles from getting mushy and soggy?

Overcooked zucchini noodles will become mushy and soggy. You can also sprinkle the spiralized noodles with a bit of salt, let them sit in a colander for a few minutes to remove excess moisture, then cook.

Do zucchini noodles taste like pasta?

Zucchini noodles have a neutral taste like pasta. It will absorb the flavor of the sauces and spices you use.

How many calories in a cup of zucchini spaghetti?

One cup of zucchini spaghetti, or “zoodles”, has 35 calories.

Should I dry out zucchini noodles?

You can but you don’t have to. Just use paper towel to pat the zucchini noodles dry before cooking. Zucchini releases juices when it cooks and because we only sauté it for a few minutes, I don’t find the need to dry it out for this recipe.

More Zucchini Recipes to Try

Browse this list of 45 healthy zucchini recipes!

Close up of zucchini noodles with chicken and grape tomatoes.
Zucchini noodles with chicken and grape tomatoes in white skillet and linen napkin nearby.

Zucchini Noodles with Chicken, Cilantro and Lime

Zucchini Noodles with Chicken, Cilantro and Lime is delicious 20 minute, healthy and gluten free dinner idea. If you don’t have a spiralizer, just chop zucchini.
4.97 from 27 votes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 247
Diet Gluten Free
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes



  • 2 large zucchini
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes cut in halves
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 medium lime juice of
  • 3/4 cup cilantro finely chopped
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided


  • Using a spiralizer, make zucchini noodles, transfer to a large bowl and set aside. You can also chop zucchini into any size pieces instead and cook a bit longer.
  • Preheat large non-stick skillet on medium-high heat and swirl 1 tablespoon of oil to coat. Add chicken and sprinkle it with cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt and ground black pepper. Saute for 5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring just a few times and allowing crust to develop. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  • Return skillet to the stove, add remaining tablespoon of oil and add zucchini noodles and tomatoes. Saute for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Remove from heat and add previously cooked chicken, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, lime juice, cilantro and hot sauce. Stir gently and serve hot.


  • Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 2 days.


Serving: 2cups | Calories: 247kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 443mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: North American
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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  1. 5 stars
    Small corner of the internet as I am also from Vancouver Island 🙂 had to adjust some of the ingredients from food sensitivities but this was great and very inspired! I did a quick sauce which was soy mixed with apple cider vinegar and oil to replace the lime juice and chili peppers and wow! Thank you for the inspo

  2. 5 stars
    SO good! We added red pepper flakes and subbed garlic salt for regular salt. Definitely adding to a regular rotation!

  3. 5 stars
    It was a really good and fairly easy meal. I loved the flavors of everything together. I was a little doubtful at first because it only said two reviews at the top, but it turned out to be an amazing meal for my family.

    1. Glad you gave it a try! 2 reviews because we installed the review feature way after I published teh recipe. So there is way more positive reviews, just no stars.:)

  4. 5 stars
    I loved this! So fresh and flavorful. I added just a little bit of cumin to the cooking zucchini in addition to what was called for on the chicken.

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