How to Cook Broccoli (and 6 Delicious Broccoli Recipes!)

October 30, 2017
by HelloFresh Eat

    Humble broccoli is a staple in many a dish; and with good reason. it’s good for you, versatile and absolutely delicious.

    how to cool broccoli

    Of course, eating steamed broccoli every night is an absolute bore. So, in honour of our hard working green cabbage friend, here are 6 amazing recipes to transform an everyday veg into extra special dishes.

    How to Cook Broccoli

    Think of broccoli as coming in two sections: the florets and the stalks. Most of the time, we use the florets in recipes – the dark green part of the broccoli that looks like a tree top. When selecting broccoli at the grocer, go for dark green florets with a bright but even colour and no brown spots. The tops should feel a little springy and spongy to the touch.

    Broccoli stalks are great to eat as well – they just tend to let a little less love than their floret heads. A good, fresh broccoli stalk is firm and crisp. We love to process them coarsely for broccoli rice or chop them up for baking or in soup.

    how to cook broccoli

    Pesto, Pine Nut and Parmesan Rigatoni with Broccoli and Chilli Flakes


    • 1 brown onion
    • 1 clove garlic
    • 1 packet pine nuts
    • 1 tub traditional pesto
    • 1 bunch basil
    • 1 head broccoli
    • 300g rigatoni pasta
    • 300g baby spinach
    • chilli flakes
    • 100g parmesan cheese

    how to cook broccoli

    1. Get Prepped: Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Chop the broccoli into 2 cm florets. Finely slice the brown onion. Peel and crush the garlic. Pick the basil leaves. Finely grate the Parmesan cheese.
    2. Add the rigatoni (use suggested amount) to the saucepan of boiling water and cook for 7-8 minutes, or until ‘al dente’. In the last 2 minutes of the pasta cooking time, add the broccoli. Reserve 2 tbs of the pasta water and drain. Return the rigatoni and broccoli to the saucepan, drizzle with olive oil and stir through the reserved pasta water.
    3. While the rigatoni is cooking, heat a medium frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the pine nuts and toast, stirring, for 3-4 minutes, or until golden. Transfer to a small bowl.
    4. Heat a good drizzle of olive oil in the same medium pan over a medium-high heat. Add the brown onion and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Stir in the baby spinach leaves and cook for 1 minute, or until wilted. Remove from the heat.
    5. Transfer the spinach mixture to the saucepan with the rigatoni and broccoli and add the traditional pesto. Stir to combine.
    6. Divide the rigatoni between bowls. Top with the pine nuts, chilli flakes, basil and the grated Parmesan cheese. Tip: Some like it hot but if you don’t, just hold back on the chilli flakes.

    Broccoli Rice

    how to cook broccoli

    1 head broccoli, florets and stems coarsely chopped.


    Place the broccoli in a food processor and process until finely chopped. Yep, that’s it. This low carb, high impact rice has a tonne of uses, but we really love broccoli rice in the next recipe.

    Broccoli Tabouli with Goat Cheese and Pomegranate


    how to cook broccoli


    • 350g broccoli, cut into florets
    • 4 green shallots, thinly sliced
    • 400g can chickpeas, rinsed, drained
    • 1 Lebanese cucumber, coarsely chopped
    • 1 punnet cheery tomatoes, halved
    • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 2 cups fresh continental parsley leaves, finely chopped
    • 1 lemon, juiced
    • 2 tbs pomegranate molasses
    • 40g (1/4 cup) goat cheese, crumbled
    • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds, toasted
    • Pomegranate seeds
    • Lemon wedges, to serve


    1. Process the broccoli in a food processor until it’s finely chopped and resembles rice.
    2. Combine broccoli, shallot, chickpeas, cucumber, tomato, mint and parsley in a large bowl. Season. Toss to combine.
    3. Place the lemon juice and pomegranate molasses in a small jug and whisk to combine. Season. Pour over the tabouli and toss to combine. Transfer the tabouli to a large serving platter. Top with the crumbled goat cheese, toasted pumpkin seeds and pomegranate seeds. Serve with lemon wedges.

    Broccoli Soup


    • 2 teaspoons olive oil
    • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
    • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
    • 1 1/2 broccoli heads, cut into florets, stems chopped
    • 1 Red Royale potato, peeled, chopped
    • 4 cups (1L) salt-reduced chicken or vegetable stock
    • 1 cup (120g) frozen peas
    • 1/2 cup (125ml) thickened cream
    • Chopped Chives, to garnish


    1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, for 5 mins or until onion softens. Add the garlic and nutmeg and cook for 30 secs or until aromatic. Add the broccoli stems, potato and stock and bring to the boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 mins or until broccoli and potato are very tender.
    2. Add the broccoli florets and peas to the pan. Bring to a simmer. Cook for 3-5 mins or until the vegetables are bright green and just tender. Remove from heat.
    3. Use a stick blender to carefully blend until smooth. Add the cream and blend to combine. Season.
    4. Ladle the soup evenly among serving bowls. Add a little cream on top to decorate and garnish with chopped chives.

    Oven-roasted Broccoli with Garlic, Lemon and Pine Nuts

    If you’ve never tried roasting broccoli before, we highly recommend doing so. The flavour transforms into a rich, delicious star of any dish which is robust enought so support rich pine nuts and Parmesan or Pecorino cheese.


    • 750g broccoli, cut into florets
    • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
    • 2 tablespoon rice bran oil
    • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
    • 1/4 cup shaved parmesan or pecorino cheese


    1. Preheat oven to 220°C/200°C fan-forced. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Place broccoli, garlic and oil in a bowl. Toss to combine. Transfer to prepared tray. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until tender.
    2. Remove from oven. Transfer to a platter. Add lemon rind, lemon juice, pine nuts and cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Serve.

    Broccoli and Apple Slaw with Buttermilk Dressing


    • 80 gm hazelnuts
    • 1 large head broccoli (about 450gm), cut into florets, thicker stalks reserved
    • 2 apples, thinly sliced into matchsticks3spring onions, thinly sliced
    • ½ cup thinly sliced rocket

    Buttermilk dressing

    • 120 ml buttermilk
    • 1 tbsp each lemon juice and white wine vinegar
    • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
    • ½ small garlic clove, very finely chopped

    how to cook broccoli

    1. Preheat oven to 180C.
    2. Spread hazelnuts over a baking tray and roast until skins darken and nuts are fragrant (5-6 minutes). Tip into a tea towel, rub off skins, coarsely chop and set aside.
    3. Thinly shave broccoli stalks lengthways on a mandolin into a bowl, shave florets into bowl, then broccolini, again lengthways.
    4. Add apple, spring onions, rocket and hazelnuts, reserving a few to serve.
    5. For buttermilk dressing, shake ingredients in a jar until well combined.
    6. Season to taste and drizzle dressing over salad to taste, toss lightly to coat and serve slaw scattered with reserved hazelnuts.

    Hungry for even more broccoli? We got you. 

    Previous post
    How to Make Homemade Cashew and Raw Cacao Butter How to Make Homemade Cashew and Raw Cacao Butter
    Next post
    Want to maintain the body of a 20-year-old for life? Want to maintain the body of a 20-year-old for life?

    Related posts