pasta broccoli recipe


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This Pasta broccoli recipe is so much more delicious than you might think – it has hardly any ingredients, but it is full of incredible flavour Create this divine vegetarian pasta dish and make it creamy, without any cream. Pasta Broccoli is a recipe close to my heart as it is a common dish in Calabria where my wife’s family are from – before we met I had never tried it and now I can officially say I’m hooked! Try this recipe for a quick mid-week meal – no mess, no fuss, no prep, just let the simple ingredients shine!

Watch the PASTA BROCCOLI Video Recipe: 

How to Make PASTA BROCCOLI Like an Italian

pasta broccoli recipe

1 head of broccoli
300g spaghetti (150g per person)
2 cloves garlic (1 per person)
Extra virgin olive oil
Grated pecorino cheese
Rock salt

Large pot
Medium – large fry pan
Garlic crusher
Hand sieve


  1. This pasta broccoli recipe has a key ingredient – broccoli! Fresh is best or organic from a local farmer – the more tender, the better!
  2. Start by trimming the end of the broccoli stem off and leave to the side, then cut the rest of stem off in one piece and trim the florets off too.
  3. Cut the stem into small pieces so that it cooks at the same time as the rest of the broccoli.

VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: If there are broccoli leaves, add them in too!

  1. Boil 5L water in a large pot, and add a tablespoon of rock salt.
  2. Add your broccoli to the boiling water and leave to cook for approx. 5 minutes.
  3. Put a medium size pan on your stove at a low heat and add a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil.
  4. Add crushed garlic to the pan then leave to simmer. Once the garlic starts to brown, add 1-2 tablespoons water – this will help prevent the garlic from burning.
  5. Once the broccoli has been cooking for 5 or so minutes, use a hand strainer to transfer it to the pan and gently combine it with the EVOO and garlic, leaving it on the stove at a very low temperature.
  6. At this point, you want some of the broccoli to be crushed and others to be full pieces.
  7. Put the pot of water back on the stove and bring to the boil again before adding the pasta in. Leave to cook according to packet instructions.

VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: Get a mug and fill it with the water from the pot of boiling pasta, then leave to the side.

  1. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper to the broccoli and stir through. (If you love pepper, add lots!)
  2. Once the pasta is ready, using a hand sieve, strain it then add to the pan and mix together gently, but well, being careful not to break all the pieces of broccoli.
  3. Add half a cup of pasta water for this pasta broccoli recipe and mix well. This combined with the softer pieces of broccoli will help to create a creamy sauce without the need for any artificial ingredients!
  4. Add a generous sprinkle of grated pecorino (or parmesan) cheese and mix through.

HOW TO SERVE: Immediately! Serve it hot and add as much extra pecorino and pepper as you desire – you will be surprised by how flavoursome this very simple dish is!

For a twist on traditional, add a tablespoon of pasta water to a scoop of fresh ricotta, mix it together and combine with the pasta while it’s still hot. Two words: Flavour explosion!

pasta broccoli

E ora si mangia, Vincenzo’s Plate…Enjoy!

pasta broccoli like an italian

More Recipes made with Broccoli:


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