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Welcome, food lovers! Today, we’re diving into the enticing world of seafood with a recipe that’s as delightful to the palate as it is beneficial for your health. Allow me to introduce you to our Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops with Zucchini Noodles—a harmonious blend of succulent sea scallops drenched in a tangy and aromatic lemon garlic butter sauce, served atop a bed of fresh and crisp zucchini noodles.
This dish offers a symphony of flavors: the delicate sweetness of the scallops, the bold and savory notes of the garlic butter sauce, and the zesty kick of lemon, all playing off the natural freshness of the zucchini noodles. The result is a meal that is light yet satisfying, simple yet elegant—perfect for a midweek dinner treat or impressing guests at a dinner party.
But this dish isn’t just about flavor—it’s also brimming with health benefits. Scallops are a great source of lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids, while zucchini is packed with fiber, vitamins, and minerals. By swapping traditional pasta for zucchini noodles, we’re making this dish a perfect low-carb, gluten-free option that doesn’t compromise on taste or satisfaction. Whether you’re following a specific diet or simply looking to add more nutritious, wholesome meals to your repertoire, this recipe is a fantastic choice.
Before we get started on our culinary adventure, it’s important to ensure we have all the necessary tools at our disposal. For this Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops with Zucchini Noodles recipe, you’ll need the following kitchen equipment:
- Spiralizer: This handy tool will help us transform our zucchinis into beautiful, spaghetti-like strands. If you don’t own a spiralizer, don’t worry—you can also use a vegetable peeler or a julienne peeler to create thin, noodle-like strips of zucchini.
- Non-stick Skillet or Frying Pan: A quality non-stick skillet is essential for achieving perfectly seared scallops without them sticking to the pan. This tool will also be used for sautéing our garlic and creating our flavorful butter sauce.
- Spatula or Tongs: These will be used for flipping the scallops and stirring the zucchini noodles while cooking.
- Chef’s Knife and Cutting Board: For preparing and mincing the garlic, chopping the parsley, and trimming the zucchini.
- Mixing Bowl: This will be used to toss the zucchini noodles in olive oil, salt, and pepper before sautéing.
- Plates for Serving: To present your beautiful and delicious creation.
- Optional – Zester or Microplane: If you wish to add some extra lemon zest to your dish for added flavor and garnish.
Having the right tools can make the cooking process much smoother and more enjoyable, and it can help you achieve the best possible results with your dish. Now that we’ve gathered our equipment let’s move on to the fun part: cooking our Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops with Zucchini Noodles!
For the Scallops:
- 1 lb (450g) large scallops
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
For the Zucchini Noodles:
- 2 large zucchinis
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Prepare the zucchini noodles: Using a spiralizer, turn your zucchinis into noodles (if you don't have a spiralizer, you can use a vegetable peeler to create thin, noodle-like strips). Set aside.
- Cook the scallops: Pat the scallops dry and season them with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large pan. Once the oil is hot, add the scallops, making sure not to overcrowd the pan, and sear on each side for about 2 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer the cooked scallops to a plate and keep warm.
- Make the garlic butter sauce: In the same pan, melt the butter. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant. Pour in the lemon juice, stirring to combine.
- Combine scallops and sauce: Return the scallops to the pan and toss them in the garlic butter sauce to coat. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
- Cook the zucchini noodles: Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a separate pan. Add the zucchini noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes until tender, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve: Divide the zucchini noodles between plates and top with the scallops and garlic butter sauce. Enjoy!
Garnish with extra parsley and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for extra tanginess.
Tips and Tricks
To ensure your Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops with Zucchini Noodles turns out absolutely perfect, here are some helpful tips and tricks:
- Pat the Scallops Dry: Before searing, make sure to pat the scallops dry with a paper towel. This will help you achieve a beautiful, golden-brown sear.
- Don’t Overcrowd the Pan: When searing the scallops, give them enough space in the pan. Overcrowding can lead to steaming instead of searing, which might affect the texture and flavor.
- Avoid Overcooking Zucchini Noodles: Zucchini noodles can easily turn mushy if overcooked. Aim for a quick sauté—just enough to warm them up and slightly soften them.
- Variations and Substitutions: You can replace butter with a dairy-free alternative or use more olive oil for a dairy-free version. If you’re not a fan of zucchini, feel free to substitute it with other spiralized vegetables like carrots or sweet potatoes.
And there you have it—Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops with Zucchini Noodles. A meal that is as nutritious as it is delicious, as elegant as it is easy to prepare. I encourage you to try this recipe and experience the harmony of flavors and textures for yourself.
Once you’ve tried it, I’d love to hear your feedback. Did you enjoy the dish? Did you add your own twist? Share your experiences in the comments section below.
And don’t stop here—explore the rest of our blog for more creative, delicious, and healthy recipes that can bring joy to your kitchen and your table. Remember, cooking is an adventure, so let’s embark on this delicious journey together. Happy cooking!
This dish is best enjoyed immediately while the scallops are warm and the zucchini noodles are fresh. Enjoy this light, delicious, and healthy meal!