Cheesy broccoli pasta bake

Cheesy broccoli pasta bake

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(26 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 30 mins

Skill level



Serves 6 - 8

A versatile pasta bake is a midweek staple and this recipe can even be made ahead and frozen for extra convenience

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 1l milk
  • 2 garlic cloves, bashed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 500g dried pasta
  • 350g broccoli, in small florets
  • 75g butter
  • 75g plain flour
  • a little freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • small bunch parsley, roughly chopped
  • 200g cheese, grated (cheddar, Parmesan, Gruyère, or a mixture)

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  1. Bring the milk, garlic and bay leaves to the boil in a small saucepan, then remove from the heat and leave to infuse. Cook the pasta to al dente following pack instructions (if you’re freezing, cook for 1 min less), adding the broccoli for the final 2 mins. Drain.
  2. Strain the milk into a jug. Heat the butter in the pan until foaming then stir in the flour for 1 min. Add the milk a little at a time, stirring or whisking constantly to remove any lumps. Bubble for 1-2 mins, stirring constantly until you have a thick, lump-free sauce.
  3. Remove from the heat and stir in some nutmeg, the mustard powder, parsley, three-quarters of the cheese and seasoning. Combine with the pasta and broccoli and transfer to one large, or individual, heatproof dishes. Scatter over the remaining cheese and cool and freeze for up to three months, or heat the grill to high and cook for 2-3 mins until golden and bubbling. If frozen, defrost in the fridge overnight, then cook at 200C/180C fan/gas 6 for 30-40 mins until piping hot.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2011

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B_McPhee's picture
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Made this with measurements as per the recipe and the whole lot was devoured! It served 2 adults and 3 children very easily with big portions, and even the kids (including one vegetable-phobic 6 year old) cleared their plates. The measurement is correct - 1 litre of milk. It seems an awful lot when you're making it but with 500g pasta it produces a lovely, silky smooth pasta sauce. I used mature cheddar and a bit of grated mozzarella on top as well (nice and stringy!) and as with most pasta bakes I topped with a handful of breadcrumbs for extra crunch. Would thoroughly recommend this recipe. Oh, I agree with the other comment, though - it's not much use if you refrigerate for the next day, it goes quite stodgy.

Frantic Flapjack's picture
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I halved the recipe as it was only for 3 of us. I made it the day before and the sauce was lovely - tasted great and a good consistency. However, the next day it had sort of set in the baking dish. I thought by sprinkling with cheese and reheating in a hot oven would sort it out but unfortunately it didn't. Turned out a stodgy lump, so I would recommend it but eat it straight away.

jeanettebain's picture
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Great for vegetarians but also accompaniment to casseroles. My vegetarian niece (19) had 4 helpings!!

mrslangers's picture

I have cooked this and yes 1 litre is correct I wasnt sure so did a pint and a quarter.Not smothered in sauce but still nice.Next time I will use a litre.I added smoked streaky bacon cooked under the grill till crispy as my son doesn't do veggie. I also used mature cheddar and gorgonzola, plus 2-3 tsp of ready made mustard.These quanties did 4 adults with good appetites.
Oh I did do some cauliflower as well as the brocoli,we will be having this again. Lovely

mandinga's picture
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I made this (it was OK, but not show-stopping). One litre of milk is correct - it's meant to make a large quantity so that you can freeze it.

stephj123's picture

I'm gonna have a go at this later and also add some cauliflower. Gonna try with 1pt milk, 1ltr seems way too much.

knoxdwc's picture
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Lovely food styling in a takeaway tray!

stoney's picture

Think it means 1 litre Ellen; all the other quantities are in does sound rather a lot though.

ellennetheravon's picture

I take it that is 1 pint of milk?