Broccoli pesto pasta

Broccoli pesto pasta

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(43 ratings)

Prep: 5 mins Cook: 15 mins


Serves 4
A new delicious version of the Italian favourite, pesto pasta, with broccoli

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal604
  • fat26g
  • saturates4g
  • carbs79g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein19g
  • salt0.47g
Save to My Good Food
Please sign in or register to save recipes.


  • 400g penne, farfalle or conchiglie pasta
  • 250g broccoli, cut into florets



    Like cabbage and cauliflower, broccoli is a brassica and is sometimes known by its Italian name…

  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 large lemon



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • ½ tsp dried chilli flakes



    Part of the capsicum family, chillies come in scores of varieties and colours (from green…

  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…


  1. Tip the pasta into a large pan of boiling salted water and cook according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, bring a smaller pan of salted water to the boil, add the broccoli and boil for 4 minutes.

  2. Drain the broccoli and return it to the pan. Lightly mash the broccoli with a potato masher or fork. Finely grate the garlic and zest the lemon, then mix into the broccoli with the chilli flakes and pine nuts. Cut the lemon in half and keep for later.

  3. Drain the pasta and return it to the pan. Stir in the broccoli pesto and squeeze over the juice of 1⁄2 lemon. Pour in the olive oil and generously season with salt and pepper. Spoon in the grated Parmesan, toss the pasta well and serve.

You may also like

Ads by Google

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
20th May, 2014
lovely recipe. i used less lemon than was recommended and added a good tbsp of pesto.
2nd Mar, 2014
A great recipe! I was going to make the traditional broccoli pasta with breadcrumbs, but I didn’t have any and no dry bread either. (I hate the powdered stuff they sell so I make my own from home-made sourdough bread.) I modified the recipe a bit: I boiled the stems and steamed the florets al dente. Smoothed the stems with oil, lemon zest & juice and blackpepper and mixed that to gnocchi. Chopped the florets with scissors and tossed the pasta, florets, toasted pine nuts and Pecorino. Lovely!
2nd Oct, 2013
This a regular in our house; cheap, quick and simple, I usually add some fried bacon bits to it as well.
12th Sep, 2013
neither of my kids like broccoli so i always struggle with what to make. And yet they wolfed this dish down with gusto and requested it again, so I've made it twice this week! Its simple, quick, and delicious, but a word of warning here - when a recipe is simple you HAVE to use high-quality fresh ingredients because they make the taste really stand out proud. I used fresh spaghetti from Waitrose's chilled cabinet, as well as their fresh green pesto sauce in the same cabinet. I omitted the parmesan, threw all the ingredients in a pot and gave a good stir before adding the pasta. I finished it off with the lemon zest and lemon juice, all fresh. The lemon really makes this dish, so dont skip. Now I know how to use up broccoli easy peasy.
SarahSlurps's picture
2nd Jul, 2013
I'm learning to cook, and this was easy for me and really really yum. The fam were impressed. :)
2nd Aug, 2012
Fresh, summery and very tasty, a different take on the shop bought jars of pesto I usually use. Perfect vegetarian recipe and very easy and quick to prepare and cook.
21st Apr, 2012
Lovely. I served with some roasted courgettes mixed in and feta crumbled over.
26th Sep, 2011
This is so simple and delicious, it's good if you always have a jar of pesto that needs using up too, I just cook the brocolli and mash it together with a few spoons of pesto. Stir into the penne and serve with the Pine Nuts and a few slices of garlic bread, easy!
16th Aug, 2011
Really nice, easy, cheap, tasty supper. I didn't fancy the chilli, so I left that out, and as the supermarket had sold out of pine nuts I left them out too, but it was really nice. I'll definitely be doing this one again. Ooh, and it's easy to throw together for one person too.
2nd Aug, 2011
I blitzed broccoli with a hand blender to a traditional pesto consistency and my usually picky 18 month twins are both stuffing this down like no tomorrow. I am also having to resist licking the pan till they are done! Can imagine you could easily use the basic pesto sauce and add meat or other veg. I did add in a bit of traditional pesto too, as per previous suggestions. think it will be an addition to the repertoire.


Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.