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Grilled Chicken glazed with Salsa Negra on top of spiralized calabacitas--a flavorful, Mexican-inspired dinner that makes the most of your zucchini harvest!

Spiralized Calabacitas

Spiralized Calabacitas is technically a side dish; if desired grill some tofu, chicken breasts or pork chops separately, glazed with Salsa Negra, for a complete meal. I used the thickest noodle setting on my spiralizer. Read through the directions completely so that you can adjust cooking times to your zoodle thickness.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Author TheSpicedLife


  • 2 T butter
  • 1 T avocado oil, or any neutral vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, spiralized or thinly sliced (use one of the noodle settings)
  • 6-8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 sweet bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 2 smaller green zucchini, spiralized on a noodle setting
  • 1 smaller yellow squash, spiralized on a noodle setting
  • 2 t ground cumin
  • 1 t ground ancho
  • 2 medium medium tomatoes, chopped and placed in drainer over bowl to capture and reserve juices separately
  • 1 T cider vinegar
  • 2 T cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 T sour cream (preferably full fat)
  • 1-3 t Salsa Negra, heat tolerance depending
  • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack, plus more for garnish

For garnish:

  • chopped cilantro
  • more shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • Salsa Negra


  1. Heat the butter and oil in a large pot or pan with deep sides over medium high heat. Add the onion with a pinch of salt and stir. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the garlic and stir in, cooking for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add the bell peppers, zucchini and yellow squash with a pinch of salt. Stir.
  4. Add the cumin and ancho powder. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes, until the spices are fragrant.
  5. Add the drained juice only from the tomatoes, as well as the cider vinegar. Stir and bring to a boil.
  6. Place a lid on the pan and reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Let the vegetables steam cook this way for 5 minutes (I used the thickest noodle setting on my spiralizer--if your noodles are thinner or if you like crisper zucchini, steam for shorter time or skip step completely).
  7. Remove the lid and raise the heat until the liquid comes to a brisk simmer. Let the liquid evaporate a bit for 5 minutes, stirring if needed.
  8. The zucchini should be tender at this point--if not (and if you want them more tender), cook a while longer.
  9. When the zucchini is cooked, add the cream cheese, whipping cream, Salsa Negra and shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Stir constantly to melt the cheeses, and as soon as that occurs, stir in the chopped tomatoes and remove the pan from the heat. Taste for additional salt.
  10. Serve, topped with protein if desired (see headnote), and garnished with chopped cilantro, shredded cheese and more Salsa Negra if desired.