This quick and awesomely vegan Broccoli Pesto Pasta recipe is highly nutritious, healthy and requires only 6 simple ingredients. It’s guaranteed to satisfy your pasta cravings in as little as 15 minutes!


I’ve been making this broccoli pesto pasta on repeat in the last few months, and my whole family keeps asking for more! So, it was about time I’d share it with you all.

The flavor-packed, creamy broccoli pesto sauce embraces beautifully the paccheri (but you can choose any kind of pasta you like), the lemon zest gives a delightful refreshing twist and the toasted pine nuts add a little always-welcome crunch.

For an Italian-style pesto, you can also add a few tablespoons of Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese. If you like things spicy, a tiny pinch of red pepper flakes will totally complete this dish.

Best of all, it takes just 6 simple everyday ingredients to make this SUPER HEALTHY broccoli pesto pasta.Broccoli pesto pasta on grey plate, raw broccoli, lemon, basil leaves, pine nuts and paccheri pasta in the backgroundAs an added bonus, this pesto freezes beautifully, so you can stock up the freezer for a quick lunch/dinner fix whenever you don’t feel like cooking.

HOW TO MAKE BROCCOLI PESTO PASTA

The BEST broccoli pesto pasta you will ever eat takes just 15 minutes to make *start to finish*, and requires only 6 simple ingredients: good-quality short/long pasta ( I like paccheri pasta from Gragnano {affiliate}), fresh or defrosted broccoli florets, a handful of fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, lemon zest and high-quality, fruity extra-virgin olive oil.

broccoli pesto pasta ingredients: broccoli, basil, lemons, paccheri pasta and toasted pine nuts on grey boardHere’s a few reasons to fall in love with this creamy broccoli pesto pasta. It’s:

  • vegan
  • dairy-free
  • ready in 20 minutes
  • just 6 ingredients required

After quickly boiling the broccoli florets, place all the ingredients, besides the pasta, in a food processor and mix until combined.basil leaves, broccoli florets, lemon zest, toasted pine nuts, salt in the bowl of food processorMake sure you don’t throw the water where you have previously boiled the broccoli.

Instead, when it’s time to cook the pasta, simply add it into the broccoli-water pot, so it gets infused with extra broccoli flavor (and can soak up extra vitamins & nutrients).cream broccoli pesto pasta sauce inside food processor

Don’t forget to reserve 1/4 cup of pasta cooking water, so you can add it to the broccoli pesto right before dressing the pasta, for a creamy, delicious result.

This broccoli pesto pasta is completely foolproof, so it’s absolutely perfect for novice cooks. And it tastes so good, that will even please the most determined broccoli-haters.

WHY YOU SHOULD EAT MORE BROCCOLI

Broccoli is one of those so-good-for-you ingredients packed with health benefits.

This incredible vegetable is the most concentrated source of vitamin C, as well as antioxidants.

It’s also high in fiber, which aids digestion, and maintains low blood sugar. More importantly broccoli contain immune boosting properties that help prevent and even hinder the growth of breast, cervical and prostate cancer, and can also boosts liver function.

These are just a few of the healthy properties of this versatile veggie, so you should definitely try to incorporate more broccoli in your diet, and what better way than this broccoli pesto pasta?

Broccoli pesto pasta on grey plate, raw broccoli, lemon, basil leaves, pine nuts and paccheri pasta in the backgroundIf you’re looking for an easy weeknight meal, look no further. This broccoli pesto pasta is easy, quick, completely fuss-free and 100% family approved!

Check out more weeknight easy pasta recipes:

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

Please let me know how you liked it! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #thepetitecook! Looking at your pictures always makes me smile *and super hungry*!

Broccoli Pesto Pasta {Vegan}

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: broccoli pesto, pesto pasta
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Author: Andrea

This quick and awesomely vegan Broccoli Pesto Pasta recipe is highly nutritious, healthy and requires only 6 simple ingredients. It's guaranteed to satisfy your pasta cravings in as little as 15 minutes!

Print

Ingredients

  • 350 gr (about 1 head) broccoli florets (10 oz)
  • 350 gr short pasta (I use paccheri) (10 oz)
  • handful fresh basil leaves
  • 60 gr toasted pine nuts (1/4 cup)
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 60 ml extra-virgin olive oil (1/4 cup)
  • sea salt & freshly cracked black pepper

To serve:

  • toasted pine nuts
  • handful of basil leaves
  • lemon zest
  • freshly cracked black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cook the broccoli florets in a large pot of lightly salted boiling water, for about 5 minutes, or just until tender.
  2. With the help of a slotted spoon, transfer the florets from the water into a bowl with cold water and ice, then drain and set aside.
  3. Fold the pasta into the pot used for cooking the broccoli and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes for paccheri.
  4. Add broccoli florets, basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice and zest into a food processor and pulse until crumbly.

  5. Set the food processor on slow speed and gently pour in the extra-virgin olive oil. continue to mix until your broccoli pesto reaches a creamy texture.

  6. Add 60 ml (1/4 cup) of pasta cooking water into the broccoli pesto and continue to mix until reaching a creamy texture. Season with sea salt and black pepper to taste.

  7. Drain the pasta, return to the pot and stir in the broccoli pesto.
  8. Divide the broccoli pesto pasta among 4 plates, top with extra pine nuts, lemon zest, basil leaves and freshy cracked black pepper, and serve

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