Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Cucumber Noodles with a Raw Pumpkin Seed Pesto Sauce (dairy-free, nut-free, grain-free)

If you are looking for more ways to use up the last of the lovely basil growing in your garden this season, then try making a pesto sauce! It can be frozen and then thawed in the wintertime for a taste of summer. We've been using this sauce tossed with raw cucumber noodles, cooked quinoa noodles, or to top baked wild salmon!

To make cucumber noodles, you will need a spiralizer. This handy kitchen tool makes noodles out of vegetables....zucchini, carrots, kohlrabi, sweet potatoes, beets, cucumbers! You can watch this short video I posted to Instagram a few weeks ago of me making noodles from yellow summer squash. You can order one here. If you don't have a spiralizer, then just enjoy this sauce tossed with cooked noodles, drizzled over baked chicken or cooked winter squash...or? Leave a comment below with more ways you are using it!

Cucumber Noodles with a Raw Pumpkin Seed Pesto Sauce

I prefer using the middle eastern or english cucumbers for making noodles as they don't have as many seeds! My children love this pesto sauce and think it tastes "cheesy." Enjoy! 

4 medium cucumbers (middle eastern or english)

1 cup raw pumpkin seeds, soaked 
1 cup water
½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 to 3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 teaspoon sea salt
4 cups fresh basil, packed
½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Other Ingredients:
3 to 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
nasturtium flowers (or other edible flowers)
fresh basil leaves

To make the sauce, place pumpkin seeds into a bowl and cover with filtered water. Soak for about 6 hours. Then drain and rinse.

Place pumpkin seeds, water, lemon juice, garlic, and salt into a blender and blend until smooth. Then add the fresh basil and blend again. Add the olive oil and blend on low speed until combined. Taste and add more salt if necessary. 

Use your spiralizer to make the cucumber noodles. Place them into a bowl and toss with about 1 cup of the pesto sauce. Add any additional ingredients. Serve immediately. Place extra sauce in the refrigerator for up to a week (or freeze in ice cube trays). Yield: about 4 servings

More Nourishing Sauce Recipes:
Mustard Green-Lime Pesto
Tomato-Basil Marinara Sauce
Blueberry Syrup

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About the Author

Alissa Segersten holds a Bachelor's of Science in Nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the founder of Whole Life Nutrition, the mother of five children, a whole foods cooking instructor, professional recipe developer, and cookbook author. She is passionate about helping others find a diet that will truly nourish them, and offers elimination diet recipes, healthy gluten-free recipes, paleo and vegan recipes, as well as tips for feeding your family a nourishing, whole foods diet. Alissa is the author of two very popular gluten-free, whole foods cookbooks and guidebooks: The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and Nourishing Meals. She is also the co-author of The Elimination Diet book. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!


  1. Sounds delicious! Would you please clarify: Does "raw pumpkin seeds" mean without the shell?

    Thank you for all of your wonderful sharing!


    1. Tanya- Yes raw pumpkin seeds without the shell. They are often called pepitas and have a green color. You should be able to find them in the bulk section of your local health food store. :-)

  2. Sounds yummy, will definitely have to try it out! I don't have a spiralizer (yet) but I take my veggie peeler and peel zucchini and basically just keep peeling until I reach the seeds and it makes fettucine-like noodles that you can steam or sautee and I actually prefer them over regular pasta. I also just found a black bean pasta that was pretty good too and full of protein. I think they'd both be fantastic with this sauce :)

    1. Great idea! Thanks for sharing Nicole. What's the brand of the black bean pasta you found? Thanks! :)

  3. Ah, this looks great. I've been eating a lot of cucumbers lately so the spiralizer sounds perfect. Thanks for sharing about the summits going on, as well.


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