Crusty pasta & broccoli bake

Crusty pasta & broccoli bake

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(97 ratings)

Ready in 20 mins


Serves 4

Super-fast veggie dish, on the table in 20 minutes

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal652
  • fat25g
  • saturates11g
  • carbs88g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein24g
  • salt1.98g
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  • 400g penne or macaroni
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 250g head broccoli, stalks chopped and florets halved



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

  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1 tsp French or German mustard



    A condiment made by mixing the ground seeds of the mustard plant with a combination of…

  • 200g pot half fat crème fraîche
  • 100g grated mature gruyère or cheddar



    Gruyère is an undoubted pinnacle of traditional Swiss cheese-making, a culinary masterpiece as…

  • small handful parsley leaves, chopped



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…

  • 4 tbsp fresh white breadcrumbs (or put 1 slice crustless white bread through a food processor)
  • ½ tsp dried mixed herbs or thyme


  1. Boil the pasta, onion and broccoli stalks in plenty of lightly salted boiling water for about 7 mins, then add the florets and cook for another 3 mins. Reserve about 400ml of the water, then drain the pasta and vegetables.

  2. Return the reserved water to the pan and dissolve the stock cube, whisk in the mustard and crème fraîche, then season to taste. Bring to the boil. Stir in the drained pasta, vegetables and half the cheese, mixing until melted. Stir in the parsley.

  3. Heat the grill for 3 mins. Tip the pasta and vegetables into a shallow, ovenproof dish. Mix together the remaining cheese, breadcrumbs and herbs, then scatter on top.

  4. Stand the dish on the base of a grill pan and grill for about 3 mins, turning if it starts to brown. Keep watching so the top doesn’t start to burn or the cheese will toughen. Remove and leave to stand for 5 mins before serving.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Catherine Fox's picture
Catherine Fox
6th Apr, 2020
Very yummy recipe have made a couple timea now. I also add courgette and garden peas to it to make it like a summer greens crusty bake! Highly recommend!
15th Jan, 2020
Delicious! I was worried the sauce would be too runny but it was fine. Never used broccoli stalks before so that was great
Kirsty Thompson's picture
Kirsty Thompson
6th Aug, 2018
So quick and easy. Delicious every time and simple to swap and change ingredients when you fancy a change.
20th Oct, 2017
I'm not normally a fan of pasta bakes. Searching for something quick to make, I came across this recipe. And am I glad I did! It's really nice and I will definitely be making it again...on a regular basis.
13th Sep, 2017
Unfortunately this turned out really bad! I follow the recipe but the cream became curd and it was horrible... I didn't even add it to the pasta because it looked and smelled terrible. I was looking forward to it after reading the comments but it was quite a disappointment! :(
29th Jan, 2017
Yum! Worked well. I followed the advice in the other comments and used half the pasta and although I didn't have enough broccoli on hand to increase the amount, I would increase it next time.
lottylouby's picture
12th May, 2016
Loved this. Made for 2 adults. Used 335g pack of Broccoli, 150g pasta, most of the 200g pot of Creme Fraiche. Fried onion in fry light then made the sauce in that pan. Didn't have parsley, just S&P. Didn't bother with the breadcrumb topping, just sprinkled the rest of the cheese on the dished up bowls and grilled until melted. Still too much pasta I thought so would reduce to 100g next time, but keep the quantity of broccoli the same. Will def make again. Took me a bit longer than 20mins but hopefully I'll be quicker next time.
3rd Jan, 2016
This was really nice - I'm writing this feeling uncomfortably full after eating too much of it! Following previous comments I fried the onion and some chopped red/yellow peppers before adding them to the finished mix. I also used the full tub of creme fraiche and baked for 20 mins instead of grilling. Looking forward to finishing the leftovers this week!
21st Nov, 2015
Very tasty and simple to make. I used less pasta and more broccoli, and fried the red onion as others have done as well as baking (25minutes at 180C). Nice depth of flavour. A strong mature cheddar is a must though, this is no place for mild cheeses!
1st Jan, 2015
Very filling and tasty dish. I used low fat Greek yoghurt (as I had no creme fraiche) and thickened the sauce with a little cornflour dissolved in water. I also added diced yellow pepper and carrots to give more flavour than just the broccoli.


8th Mar, 2015
I've read through the recipe a couple of times to make sure i'm not missing something ... any ideas what happens to the roughly chopped onion in the ingredients list? Not sure whether it should be sprinkled on the top with the breadcrumbs or stirred into the sauce.... doesn't seem to be mentioned anywhere in the instructions
goodfoodteam's picture
13th Mar, 2015
Hi Sazzle14, thanks for getting in touch. The onion, pasta and broccoli all get boiled together at the beginning of step 1. Hope this helps, let us know what you think if you decide to try this recipe.
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