Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale

Sweet potato noodles inject the classic Spaghetti Aglio e Olio with brilliant color in this easy dish. I love to top mine with basil & plenty of Parmesan.

Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale on plate with a fork

Have you tried sweet potato noodles? In the past, I’ve made zoodles and doodles (noodles made out of daikon radish), but it didn’t occur to me until recently to make swoodles(?). Is that what we’re calling them? Anyway, one night, with a hungry stomach and minimal ingredients on hand, I saw this gorgeous recipe for Spaghetti Aglio e Olio, and I realized I could make something similar using sweet potatoes in place of the pasta.

Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale

This recipe starts with 2 medium sweet potatoes – you’ll be surprised how many noodles they make, and then you’ll also be surprised by how much they cook down in the pan. This recipe will make about 3 decent-sized servings, depending on the size of your sweet potatoes.

P.S. I’m a big fan of the Inspiralizer, because, unlike the other types that I’ve tried, it clamps down to your countertop making the “noodling” process far less frustrating, and you won’t have sweet potatoes all over your floor.

Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale

Because this is not actual pasta, more is more. The toppings are a really important component in this recipe to make the flavors and textures exciting. Add plenty of toasted pine nuts, basil, grated cheese (or vegan “cheese” from this post), and serve with dollops of pesto.

You can also customize this to your liking: roasted tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms, roasted broccoli, and goat cheese (if that’s your thing) would be great additions. And if you don’t have a spiralizer, you could make this recipe with roasted spaghetti squash instead of sweet potato, see recipe notes below.

Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale

4.8 from 20 reviews

Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic & Kale

Sweet Potato Noodles add a rush of color and plenty of nutrients to this riff on Spaghetti Aglio e Olio.
Recipe type: Main Dish, side dish
Serves: 4 as a side, 3 as a main
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, spiralized
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, enough to well coat the pan
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced sliced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, more as desired
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 cups baby kale (or thinly sliced lacinato kale)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • squeezes of fresh lemon juice, as desired
serve with:
  • ⅓ cup fresh basil, sliced
  • dollops of pesto (this recipe with basil in place of kale)
  • 2 tablespoons hemp seeds or toasted pine nuts
  • grated pecorino cheese, optional
  1. Peel the sweet potatoes. Slice in half and and cut the pointy tips off. Place in the spiralizer and spiralize into noodles. Alternatively, you can use a julienne peeler (although this is more difficult, so I recommend spiralizing).
  2. Heat the oil in a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until until the garlic slices are lightly golden brown, about 5 minutes, reducing the heat if necessary (ie, if the olive oil is bubbling too much, turn the heat down, you do not want the garlic to burn). Add a few generous pinches of salt, red pepper flakes, and a few grinds of freshly cracked black pepper.
  3. Add the sweet potato noodles and toss to coat. Let cook for 2 minutes, gently tossing and scraping down the sides of the pan.
  4. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water and toss again to ensure that nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan. Cover and let the sweet potato noodles continue for 5 more minutes or until they start to soften and are tender but still have a crisp “al dente” bite. Check and toss occasionally so that they cook evenly. Be careful not to overcook or they will start to break apart (this happens quickly).
  5. During the last minute of cooking, stir in the kale so that it wilts into the noodles. Remove from heat and transfer to 3 or 4 bowls.
  6. Serve with the fresh basil, a dollop of pesto, hemp seeds or pine nuts and pecorino cheese, if desired.
Note: if you don't have a spiralizer, this recipe would also be delicious with spaghetti squash instead of the sweet potato. Add pre-roasted spaghetti squash in step 3, and then skip step 4 - the spaghetti squash will not need the extra water or the extra cook time.



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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Disha Bhutani

    Sweet potato Noodles…! Never heard about this before. I love Sweet potato and surely will make this recipe. It’s looking simple and delicious. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  2. john martin

    These were fabulous – everyone loved them.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      so happy to hear that!

  3. mofa singh

    Wow, looking delicious. I love potato noodles. I would try it for share. Thanks for sharing it

  4. Joe from gultfreeme.com

    Looks so yummy and healthy, wish I could do the same

  5. Adrianne

    I would love to call them Sweet Potoodles!

  6. Justine Jackson

    Looking forward to making this! A winner for the possible variations it suggests. I’d like to get other suggestions for robust dishes like this one!

  7. MaryBeth Nuovo

    I haven’t made this yet – do you have nutritional information for this or your other recipes?

  8. Alexis from AlexisNicoleYoung.blogspot.com

    I’ve made this twice because it’s so good ! Very easy recipe to follow. I add grilled chicken breast to mine for extra protein. And I use butter squash noodles. The lemon and red pepper flakes plus Parmesan cheese really balance everything out and make it interesting. Very impressed.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi ALexis, I’m so glad you loved the noodles!

  9. Ana

    Made this for potluck today! Instant hit. I baked the sweet potato noodles. 425 for 15 min. Came out perfectly al denote 🙂

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Ana, I’m so happy to hear that this was a hit!

  10. Marie

    Awesome dish, I added roasted red peppers to mine…would like the nutritional facts on this if anyone knows thanks

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Marie, I’m so glad you loved the recipe! Apologies, I don’t calculate nutrition facts.

  11. MaryEllen

    Nice recipe, I used spinach browned the garlic and pine nuts first then tossed in the sweet potatoes then spinach. For those who aren’t vegan an egg would be good with it as well cooked on top.

    • MaryEllen

      Tried to increase the stars to 4/5 but it wouldn’t. Love the spices you have chosen as well

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Mary Ellen, I’m so glad you loved the recipe!

  12. Charissa

    I just made the sweet potato part to use with a different topping. Here’s my question: I made with white sweet potatoes because the “yams” had funny shapes at the store; I have a Kitchen Aid spiralizer attachment. I thought that the noodles came out quite starchy and I was a little bummed. So is that just the nature of sweet potato noodles or should I try again with orange sweet potatoes (often labeled as yams)? Should I use a finer blade on the spiralizer (I used the larger noodle option not the small one)? Any other tips?

    I love the idea and I’d like to make it work for us!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Charissa, try cooking them a little less and make sure the topping/sauce is very flavorful to overcome the fact that it’s not quite pasta. I’d say, give this recipe a try with orange sweet potatoes :). I can’t say for sure without trying it myself if white sweet potatoes were the issue.

      If you’re not a fan of sweet potatoes as pasta, give this yummy soup a try (I made these noodles with my KA spiralizer): https://www.loveandlemons.com/zucchini-sweet-potato-noodle-minestrone/

      Hope that helps!

  13. MommaSimms

    Made it tonight and have added it to our “definitely make again” recipe stack! All the flavors together and the ease of making this dish and made tonight’s dinner a huge hit.

  14. fi

    Hi Jeanine and Jack. Really delicious veggie meal, even more so with the kale pesto. Just need a better spiruliser like yours, as ours is a twisted cone shaped one took absolutely ages (and hand ache!) to make the noodles. Still, was way worth the effort. Many thanks for this healthy start to 2018!

  15. pavitra from wheelyard.com

    Wow, looking delicious. I love potato noodles. I would try it for share. Thanks for share.

  16. Hey guys,
    i am in love with your blog 🙂 the design is amazing and refreshing different in comparison to other food blogs 😀

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Thank you, Joana!

  17. Kacy from library.uonbi.ac.ke

    This is getting interesting, sweet potato noodles……

  18. Carolyn

    I made this for my (non-vegan) Dad and it was incredible. He loved it. I did not have any applesauce handy, so puréed a mango. I also chopped up and tossed in some dates but cut down the ratio of sugar. Lastly, I did not have the time to soak the nuts for the frosting, so just spread raw organic honey (it has the consistency of soft butter) on the warm cake and if oozed into it and set perfectly. Sublime. Thank you for the recipe!

  19. Evan

    Delicious! I added roasted cauliflower, roasted broccoli, and grilled chicken. Was a hit!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.