Broccoli with Orecchiette

Pungent garlic and spicy red pepper (great for weight loss) are balanced by the light sweetness of green broccoli (excellent for cancer prevention, heart health and the immune system) in this vegan dish. It also makes for a wonderful side dish with the fish of your choice.

This could be a fun, new recipe to surprise your friends and family with this holiday season!


  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 (10-ounces) packages frozen chopped broccoli (do not thaw)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 tsp hot red-pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano plus additional for serving
  • 1 pound dried orecchiette pasta
  • 2 Tbsp salt


  1. Finely chop garlic.
  2. Cook garlic in oil in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, but not brown. Add broccoli, water, red-pepper flakes, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until broccoli is tender and almost all of liquid has evaporated, 12 to 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, cook orecchiette in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (2 Tbs salt for 6 quarts water) until al dente. Reserve 1 cup cooking water, then drain pasta.
  4. Toss pasta with broccoli, cheese and 1/2 cup reserved cooking water. Season with salt; thin sauce with more cooking water if desired. Serve with extra cheese for sprinkling.

For more delicious recipes, schedule an appointment with our certified nutritionist, Gwen, at 360-570-0401.

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