Kalyn's Kitchen

Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl

This Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl is perfect for a no-fuss meatless dish, and this is loaded with good flavors. Omit the black beans for a lower-carb version that’s just as flavorful.

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Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl close-up photo

In Utah it’s expected to hit 104F this week, and it seems likely we’re going to set a record this summer for the most days above 100F.  I hear some people lose their appetite when the weather is extra hot, but that never happens to me; in fact when summer produce is abundant I’m always thinking up new ways to use it.

My latest experiment was this Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl, and the fact that the only cooking involved was 2-3 minutes to quickly saute the julienned zucchini made this a great hot-weather dish. If you like zucchini and you’re looking for a light summer meal where you don’t need to heat up the kitchen, I bet you might enjoy this as much as I did.

I did make this the idea of a meatless recipe in mind, but I actually didn’t realize the dish was vegan until I was eating it. One thing I thought made this extra good was the chopped fresh Poblano chile pepper, which added fantastic flavor to the black bean, avocado, tomato, and lime mixture. I’m falling in love with these dark green chiles, which are often called Pasilla peppers in U.S. grocery stores.

Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl process shots collage

How to Make Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl:

(Scroll down for complete recipe including nutritional information.)

  1. Rinse black beans and let them drain while you make the dressing. (Omit beans for a lower-carb or Paleo version.)
  2. Zest one of the limes and then squeeze the juice. (You need 5 tablespoons lime juice total, probably 3 limes.)
  3. Whisk together lime zest, 3 tablespoons of the lime juice, olive oil, Spike Seasoning (affiliate link), ground cumin, and chile powder to make the dressing. (Spike is not Paleo.)
  4. Toss the drained black beans with 2 tablespoons of dressing.
  5. Peel and dice the avocado and toss with 1 tablespoon lime juice.
  6. Cut up the tomato and toss with the black beans.
  7. I used this wonderful Progressive International Vegetable Chopper (affiliate link) to chop the Poblano into very small pieces, but you can definitely chop it by hand.  (This pepper is fairly mild, but still be careful about washing your hands after you handle it and don’t touch your eyes or face.)
  8. Stir the finely diced Poblano into the tomato/black bean mixture. Then add the diced avocado and enough dressing to moisten the mixture and gently combine.  (Save at least 2 tablespoons of dressing to season the zucchini.)
  9. I used an inexpensive Julienne Cutter (affiliate link) to make the noodles, although there are many Ways to Make Noodles from Zucchini; take your choice.
  10. Heat the oil and saute the garlic just until it’s fragrant; then discard the garlic.
  11. Add the julienned zucchini and cook 1-2 minutes, just until it starts to soften. Then stir in a tablespoon of dressing and cook zucchini about 1 minute longer.
  12. Serve zucchini in a bowl with a couple of generous scoops of the tasty salsa and enjoy!
  13. This is easy and delicious for a meatless meal!

Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl square thumbnail photo

More Tasty Zucchini Recipes:

The BEST Slow Cooker Zucchini Recipes ~ Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker
Zucchini Ribbon Salad (Plus 23 Zucchini Recipes) ~ The Perfect Pantry
Summer Veggie Stuffed Zucchini ~ Mountain Mama Cooks
Vegetarian Stuffed Zucchini with Brown Rice, Black Beans, Chiles, Cheddar, and Cotija Cheese ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl close-up photo

Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl

Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

This Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl has Black Beans, Avocado, Tomato, Poblano, and Lime and it's perfect when it’s really too hot to cook. Omit the beans for a lower-carb option.


Salsa Ingredients

  • one 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained well
  • 2 medium avocados, peeled and diced
  • 2 T lime juice (to toss with avocado)
  • 1 Poblano chile, seeds removed and finely diced
  • 1 cup diced tomato

Dressing Ingredients

  • Zest of one lime
  • 3 T lime juice
  • 3 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. Spike Seasoning (Spike is not Paleo, so use any all-purpose seasoning of your choice if you prefer.)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. chile powder


  • 4 small zucchini, julienne sliced
  • 2 tsp. + 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, sliced
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste


  1. Drain the beans into a colander placed in the sink, rinse well with cold water, and let beans drain while you make the dressing.
  2. Zest one lime, then squeeze the juice as well as additional limes to make 5 tablespoons lime juice.
  3. Save 2 tablespoons lime juice for the avocado; mix 3 T lime juice, lime zest, olive oil, Spike Seasoning, ground cumin, and chile powder to make the dressing.
  4. Put drained beans into a bowl big enough to hold all the salsa mixture and stir in 2 T dressing.
  5. Peel and dice the avocado and toss with 2 T lime juice (in a separate bowl.)
  6. Chop tomatoes and toss with the beans.
  7. Cut off stem and remove seeds from the Poblano pepper, finely dice the pepper, and toss with the beans.
  8. Then gently stir the avocado with lime juice and enough dressing to moisten it into the salsa mixture, saving at least 2 tablespoons of the dressing to season the zucchini.
  9. Use a Julienne Cutter (affiliate link) or other tool to make the noodles. (see notes)
  10. Unless you have a huge wok-type pan, I would saute the zucchini in two batches.  Heat half the oil over high heat, add half the sliced garlic, and saute the garlic just until it’s fragrant, about 1 minute.
  11. Remove the garlic and immediately add half the julienned zucchini to the seasoned oil.
  12. Saute 1-2 minutes, just until the zucchini is starting to soften, then stir in 1 tablespoon of the dressing and saute about 1 minute more.
  13. Season zucchini to taste with salt and fresh ground black pepper.
  14. Repeat with the other half of the zucchini if you’re making all four servings.
  15. To serve, divide the sauteed zucchini among bowls and top with a generous scoop of the black bean mixture.


I shared Three Ways to Make Noodles from Zucchini or Other Vegetables. That post might be helpful.  Now that I have a Spiralizer, I would definitely prefer that. If you’re not making four servings at once, don’t julienne or saute the zucchini until right before you’re going to eat it.  The black bean mixture will keep in the fridge for a day or two.  (I ate some of mine over scrambled eggs, which was also delicious!) Recipe created by Kalyn when it was really hot but she still wanted to experiment with zucchini.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 429Total Fat: 31gSaturated Fat: 4.4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 24.9gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 426mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 17gSugar: 6.5gProtein: 12g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Everything in this Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl is a low-glycemic ingredient, and this would be approved for any phase of the South Beach Diet. For other low-carb diets, including Paleo or Whole 30, omit the beans and use more avocado.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl

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    19 Comments on “Julienned Zucchini Vegan Mexican Bowl”

  1. Danielle, so glad you enjoyed it!

  2. This was an amazing recipe! We are Vegetarian Paleo, so this was perfect for us. I think I will use less lime juice next time, but it was still wonderful. We added scrambled egg whites (left over from Sunday's Hollandaise) on top.

  3. Sally, good to know about the replacement bladeds. Hope you enjoy; I loved this recipe!

  4. Kalyn, I have one of those fancy spiral cutters, and guess what? I lost the blades during our move last year! Then, last week I realized amazon has the replacement blades for sale, so as soon as they arrive, I want to make "zucchini noodles" to celebrate 🙂 I might just use your recipe, since it's perfect for the weather

  5. Norma, hope you enjoy!

  6. Oh, I must try this. I go meatless once a week and this recipe will be the one I try next!
    Thank you for posting it.

  7. Thanks Becky. And I agree, it is so hot for hot food. This is not cold, but it's about room temp when you eat it.

  8. I love your take on zucchini noodles! I can only eat cold food lately too!!

  9. Thanks Donna. I love this type of zucchini, no matter what you put on it.

  10. I gotta say that I am loving your "barely cooked" idea for zucchini- it really is so much better than mushy or raw – the perfect balance!

  11. Thanks Carolyn! I am in love with the julienne peeler, and so inexpensive compared to buying a spiralizer. I think the spiralizer might be easier for some things, but this works great on zucchini.

  12. I honestly would have thought you'd used one of those spiral slicer thingies for the zucchini because they look so perfect. I'd love to try that julienne peeler! It's a gorgeous meal.

  13. Jeanette, sounds like I need to check into a spiralizer, although I have loved my little julienne peeler. And the price was right!

  14. I've got a "spiralizer" that I used to use to make zucchini pasta – going to have to dig it out. Such a pretty presentation Kalyn!

  15. I haven't tried the spiralizer machine. I find the julienne peeler is easy if you do one end of the zucchini all the way around, then flip over and do the other end. Maybe I should make a video of it (ha!)

  16. Love the sound of this recipe. However, I'm such a klutz with the Julienne peeler, I'm seriously thinking about getting one of the spiralizer machines. Have you ever tried one?

  17. Joanne and Lydia, ever since I got the julienne peeler, I'm a huge fan of julienned zucchin, but this might be my favorite way to use it so far!

  18. Until recently, poblano peppers weren't that easy to find here in the northeast unless I went to a Latino market. Now, my regular grocery store carries them, and I've been using them more and more. Thanks for linking to my zucchini ribbon salad — aren't zucchini strips fun?

  19. We've been having some crazy heat here also…it's not 104 but it feels like it with the humidity. A recipe with barely any stove time sounds good to me! Especially one as colorful as this!