Top Rated Broccoli Rabe Recipes
The combination of grits, broccoli rabe, white beans, and a fried egg come together to make a dish which is far tastier than the sum of its parts.This recipe is courtesy of Happyolks.
The maple syrup in this recipe is subtle enough so that you won't feel like you're eating breakfast, but it's just the right amount of sweetness to complement the creamy sauce and hot pepper flakes.Click here to see Cooking with Maple Syrup — 8 Recipes.
Coming from a Barese family, eating broccoli rabe is non-negiotable — it's a staple. In my grandmother's town of Adelfia in Bari, Italy, the cousin of spinach and the sister to broccoli was on the table quite often. What wasn't on the table ever? Farro. Though an Italian grain, it never existed in our lives until I introduced it recently. Now, when blended with the familiar verde, hearty crumbed walnuts, and sharp Parmagiano, it is welcomed with a smile.
Hello all, I am the risotto queen, nice to meet you. Wait, what? True story — that is my name in my kitchen at home. At work, I'm known as "Queen of the Rabe," due to my incessant talk of the beloved vegetable with our recipe editor, Will Budiaman.So, to bring together my love for broccoli rabe and risotto, I thought what better way to bond the two then a little butter and a bit of formaggio. The result was better than I had hoped — happy faces and full stomachs!Click here to see Butter vs. Olive Oil: What's Better?
There's nothing better than eating a hot sandwich in the fall. This hearty sandwich, inspired by DiNic’s roast pork sandwich in Philadelphia, may take some time to make, but it's packed with great flavor from the homemade broccoli rabe and jus.
- Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- Large pinch red pepper flakes
- 1 pound (450g) broccoli rabe, ends trimmed
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil with garlic over medium heat until garlic just begins to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Add red pepper flakes and toast for about 30 seconds. Remove from heat.
Add broccoli rabe to boiling water and cook until thickest parts of stalks are tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain well. Add rabe to skillet, toss well, and return to medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally and lowering heat as necessary to prevent scorching, until rabe is very tender, about 10 minutes. Season with salt. Serve right away, or continue to cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for up to 20 minutes longer before serving (it just gets better and better).
Joe Shows me How to Cook Broccoli Rabe to Perfection
Joe Riti is not a trained chef, but I am not exaggerating when I tell you he is a master of Italian cooking. One of the things I am always incredibly amazed at is how effortlessly Joe seems to throw together the most delicious food in enormous quantities in record time. All while keeping the kitchen immaculately clean.
Many of the classic dishes Joe prepares are actually surprisingly healthy and based on very simple, super fresh ingredients. His recipe for broccoli rabe is no exception. It is really very basic and surprisingly easy to make. But when I tell you it is truly the best tasting, I am not exaggerating. It’s amazing and quite versatile too.
How to make it less bitter: before you even start cooking.
Now, we learned a few tips about reducing bitterness in broccoli rabe before you even start to cook it.
- Find plants that are young and tender, not too mature. When you’re shopping, you might not have a lot of options. But steer toward broccoli rabe that is younger and tender. Very mature plants can be even more bitter. And there’s no way to know…until you eat it!
- Don’t chop too much: simply remove the bottom stem! Chopping the broccoli rabe can cause the plant to become event more bitter. So remove just the very tough bottom stem only. Don’t chop the leaves or florets!
How to Cook Broccoli Rabe
When I cook most vegetables, I want them to have a nice al dente bite. Sorry, no mushy green beans or roasted radishes for me! But broccoli rabe (also called rapini) is an exception. In this recipe, we’ll cook it well past al dente to soften its tough stems and mellow its bitter flavor. We don’t want it to be mush, but we do want it to be well-done. Raw rapini recipes are hard to come by for a reason.
As a result, there are two parts to my method for how to cook broccoli rabe: blanching and sautéing. Sure, blanching is an extra step, but it actually saves you time in the long run, as it quickly softens the thick stems.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat, drop in the greens, and cook for about 2 minutes, until they’re bright green and starting to soften. Transfer them to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process, drain, and pat them dry.
Finish cooking the rapini by sautéing it with olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes until it’s completely tender. This step should be quick – after you blanch the greens, they just need 3-5 more minutes on the stove.
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
Best Broccoli Rabe Recipes
Here's one of my quick tips on how to trim broccoli rabe: Peeling the stems of broccoli rabe and boiling it will kill the bitter taste. A great tip if that is something you are experiencing.
EASY BROCCOLI RABE RECIPE INCLUDING PARMESAN CHEESE
1 lb broccoli rabe, trimmed
5 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 TBS parmesan cheese, grated
Cut an "X" in the bottom of the broccoli rabe stems and add to boiling salted water. Cook until tender about 5 minutes. Drain.
In a skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and then the garlic. Cook for a couple of minutes. Stir in the broccoli rabe and saute for 10-15 minutes or until desired tenderness. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese before serving.
BROCCOLI RABE WITH PANCETTA
2 lbs broccoli rabe, ripped into bite pieces pieces
3 oz pancetta, diced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
3 TBS extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 pinch red pepper flakes
kosher salt to taste
juice of one lemon, to taste
grated parmesan cheese
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil and add the broccoli rabe. Boil until it is bright green in color and then immediately drain and plunge into ice water. Drain and set aside for now.
In a skillet over medium-high heat, fry the diced pancetta until lightly crisp or five minutes. Add the garlic and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Toss in the red pepper flakes. Saute until the garlic is lightly browned or approximately 1 minute.
Next add the broccoli rabe. Toss and cook until tender and heated through. Remove from the heat and add lemon juice.
Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with more red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese.
FRESH BROCCOLI RABE RECIPE
2 lbs broccoli rabe, trimmed and coarsely chopped
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic, minced (or to taste)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 to 1/4 tsp crushed homemade crushed red pepper flakes
Bring salted water to a boil and add the broccoli rabe. Cook until tender or approximately 5-6 minutes. Immediately drain and plunge into ice water. Drain.
Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat, add the garlic and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the broccoli rabe and season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste. Cook until heated through and serve immediately.
This is a delicious broccoli rabe recipe that is comfort food at it's best.
BROCCOLI RABE WITH PASTA AND SPICY SAUSAGE
2 bunches of broccoli rabe, stalks trimmed and lightly peeled quartered lengthwise
12 oz orecchiette pasta
3 TBS olive oil
1 lb spicy bulk sausage
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 to 1/4 tsp homemade crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the broccoli rabe. Cook for 4 minutes or until tender crisp. Strain the broccoli rabe and save the liquid to cook the pasta in. Set aside the rabe.
Cook the orecchiette pasta in the same pot of boiling water that the rabe was cooked in. Boil until tender but firm approximately 8 minutes or so. Drain and this time reserve 1 cup of the water that it cooked in.
In a large skillet heat the oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and break up with a spoon while cooking. Fry until browned and cooked or 8 minutes.
Add the garlic and red pepper flakes to the cooked sausage and saute for for 30 seconds or so. Add the broccoli rabe and toss to coat evenly.
Add the cooked pasta and reserved liquid - 1/4 cup at a time to moisten. Stir in the parmesan cheese and season with ground black pepper. Serve immediately or at room temperature.
BROCCOLI RABE RECIPE INCLUDING PASTA AND CHICKEN
16 oz fusilla or gemelli pasta
2 bunches of broccoli rabe, stems discarded and trimmed
1/2 cup flour
3 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/3 cup olive oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4-1/3 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta and save the cooking liquid. Set pasta aside for now.
Bring the cooking liquid to a boil again and blanch the broccoli rabe for approximately two minutes. Drain and set aside.
Dredge chicken in flour and shake off any excess flour. Heat oil over medium-high heat and fry for 1-2 minutes or until golden brown on each side.
Add garlic and broccoli rabe - season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Add the wine and chicken broth, stir to combine and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
Add the cooked pasta, stir to combine and remove from heat. Top with grated cheese.
Fish never tasted so good with this broccoli rabe recipe.
BROCCOLI RABE WITH MAHI-MAHI
6 TBS extra virgin olive oil
6 large garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
kosher salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 bunches broccoli rabe, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives
juice for one lemon
4 - 8oz mahi mahi steaks or 1 inch tuna steaks
In a large skillet, heat one tablespoon of the olive oil. Add garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of kosher salt. Cook for 2 minutes.
Next add the thicker broccoli rabe stems with the white wine. Cover and cook until for 5 minutes. Add the remaining broccoli rabe pieces and cook covered for another 5 minutes or until all is very tender.
Uncover the pan and add the olives and cook until liquid starts to evaporate. Next, add the lemon juice and season with kosher salt and pepper. Drizzle with another tablespoon of olive oil and set aside to keep warm with the lid on.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Season fish with salt and pepper and drizzle each side with 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil. Place the fish in the hot skillet and cook for 4-6 minutes on each side.
Serve immediately with the broccoli rabe.
ITALIAN BROCCOLI RABE SPAGHETTI WITH RED WINE
1-3/4 lbs broccoli rabe, thick stems discarded
1 lb spaghetti
1 (750 ml) bottle of red wine (preferably Merlot)
1 tsp white sugar
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp red pepper flakes
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
3/4 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese
Cut the broccoli rabe into 1 inch pieces. Blanch in boiling salted water uncovered for two minutes. Transfer broccoli rabe with a slotted spoon to a colander to drain and reserve the liquid it cooked in. Put broccoli rabe in a bowl for now. Set aside.
Return the cooking liquid to a boil and add the spaghetti. Cook for 5 minutes (pasta will NOT be fully cooked). Drain.
Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large skillet and saute garlic and red pepper flakes for a minute. Pour the wine in and reduce until half of the wine is left.
Add the cooked pasta and broccoli rabe and season with salt and pepper. Cook until liquid is reduced in half again. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and serve immediately - and top with grated cheese.
I have more than broccoli rabe recipes, please check out more fresh vegetable recipes below.
Broccoli Rabe Benefits
This is why broccoli rabe is my top choice as a Keto super vegetable. Check out all these great health benefits!
Lowest Carb Vegetable
As far as I know Broccoli rabe is the lowest carb vegetable available. One 85 gram serving has 2.9 grams of carbs with 2.4 grams of fiber, results … net carbs in broccoli rabe are a less than a gram per serving. This makes it perfect for Keto dieters.
Calories in Broccoli Rabe
As I’m sure you can imagine at this point the vegetable is also low in calories. Yes, it is. Broccoli rabe has a meager 28 calories per serving.
Considering how low in calories and carbohydrates this leafy green vegetable is you might expect its nutritional portfolio to be a bit thin. Not at all! A single serving of broccoli rabe boasts nearly three times the daily recommended amount of Vitamin K. The keto friendly veggie aslo provides large amounts of Vitamins A & C. It is loaded up with minerals too. Bone broth adds a few more nutrients as well.
Broccoli Rabe Recipes
Broccoli rabe, also known as rapini, is a slightly astringent green is particularly popular in Italian cooking. Raw or lightly cooked it can add a pleasant bitterness to a dish, while cooking it down mellows it out. Stuffed into stromboli and ravioli, blanched and sautéed, or tossed into pasta, we’ve rounded up our favorite broccoli rabe recipes.
We love pairing bitter broccoli rabe with rich pork. If you’re from the Philadelphia area, this combination is likely familiar to you—local institution DiNic’s is famous for pairing pork and rapini. The roast pork is probably their best-known offering, but we have a recipe for their decadent pulled pork, braised wine and herbs and served with provolone, hot peppers, and broccoli rabe on an Italian roll.
To balance out broccoli rabe, we turn to sweet, creamy, or tangy ingredients. To make a simple pasta, toss orecchiette with broccoli rabe and lemon zest and top with goat cheese. Or serve the vegetable with sweet golden raisins, spicy red pepper flakes, and crunchy toasted pine nuts for a side that goes well with grilled salmon or meatballs.
Stromboli is an Italian-American classic typically made with pizza dough. For our chicken and broccoli rabe stromboli with mozzarella and cherry peppers, however, we use an Italian bread dough to get a super crispy crust.
Find all of these dishes and more in our collection of broccoli rabe recipes.
White Bean Soup with Fennel Seeds and Broccoli RabeWhite Bean Soup with Fennel Seeds and Broccoli Rabe
Chicken and Broccoli Rabe StromboliGet the recipe for Chicken and Broccoli Rabe Stromboli
Roast Pork with Summer VegetablesRoast Pork with Summer Vegetables
Broccoli Rabe, Cannellini Bean, and Ricotta CrostiniBroccoli Rabe, Cannellini Bean, and Ricotta Crostini
Parmesan-Crusted Halibut with Broccoli Rabe and Mashed PotatoesParmesan-Crusted Halibut with Broccoli Rabe and Mashed Potatoes
Broccoli Rabe with Pine Nuts & Golden RaisinsBroccoli Rabe with Pine Nuts & Golden Raisins
Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Fried RavioliBroccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Fried Ravioli
Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat CheeseSlightly bitter rapini (also known as broccoli rabe) marries well with tangy goat cheese in a pasta recipe that’s ideal for summer picnics and potlucks. Get the recipe for Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese »
Pulled Pork Italiano
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Lemony Roasted Potatoes & Broccoli Rabe
Do you like dares? I do. Well, unless they involve heights, in which case I’ll pass. If you dare me to do something with my two feet firmly on the ground, I’ll be inclined to take you up on it.
My dare for you is to serve something a little different at Thanksgiving. Just one side dish that deviates from the usual green bean casserole and mashed potatoes, maybe. Or a dessert that’s not pumpkin pie. (This dessert should certainly not replace pumpkin pie, however. Let’s not get too crazy.) Just something that will broaden your guests’ horizons a bit and liven up the standard beige Thanksgiving plate.
Here’s a side dish that fits the bill. It includes broccoli rabe, which we’ve talked about before—it looks like long, flat broccoli but tastes more like kale. It’s bitter in the best way. I really like it.
Here, roasted broccoli rabe is tossed with golden potatoes and just enough Parmesan cheese to tempt even the skeptics. The dish comes together fairly quickly—you can prepare the broccoli rabe and dressing while the potatoes roast for the first 22 minutes, then roast the broccoli rabe on the upper rack until it’s tender and the leaves are a little crisp. A simple, zippy blend of lemon, mustard and garlic soaks right into the potatoes and makes this dish extra flavorful.
If you don’t have enough oven space for the big feast, I think this recipe would also make a great breakfast hash situation. Just top individuals servings with eggs cooked to your liking. If you are still a little skeptical of broccoli rabe, click here to learn about its nutrition benefits and find more creative broccoli rabe recipes from bloggers!
Cut off the tough ends of the stems of the broccoli rabe. Then, holding a stem with the florets in hand, nick a little piece at the end of the stem with a paring knife, and pull the little piece of the stem toward you, peeling the stem partially. Continue working your way around the stem until it is peeled. As you peel, some of the large, tough outer leaves will also be removed discard those as well. Repeat with the remaining stems. Wash and drain them in a colander.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Scatter the garlic over the oil, and cook, shaking the pan, until golden brown, about 1 minute. Add the broccoli rabe, and season lightly with salt and the crushed red pepper flakes. Stir and toss to distribute the seasonings.
Pour ¼ cup water into the skillet, and bring to a boil. Cover the skillet tightly, and cook, lifting the lid to turn the stalks occasionally, until the broccoli rabe is tender, about 10 minutes. Taste, and season with additional salt and crushed red pepper if necessary. Serve hot.
Pressed Broccoli Rabe and Mozzarella Sandwiches
- Calories 671
- Fat 42.6 g (65.5%)
- Saturated 19.6 g (98.2%)
- Carbs 39.0 g (13.0%)
- Fiber 6.3 g (25.3%)
- Sugars 2.9 g
- Protein 35.8 g (71.7%)
- Sodium 1364.6 mg (56.9%)
broccoli rabe (about 1 1/2 bunches), tough stems discarded, coarsely chopped
large garlic cloves, minced
green olives, pitted and finely chopped
drained brined capers, finely chopped
Individual-size sandwich rolls, split (I like rolls with sesame seeds for this, but you do you)
fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
Pour water into a large saucepan to fill about 1-inch and bring to a boil over high heat. Add a large pinch of salt and then the broccoli rabe and cook, stirring occasionally, until bright green and slightly wilted, about 30 seconds.
Drain the broccoli rabe in a colander, wipe the pot dry, and return it to high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the oil, the garlic, and the red pepper flakes and stir until the garlic is fragrant, about 15 seconds. Immediately add the drained broccoli rabe and a large pinch of salt and cook, stirring, until the broccoli rabe is coated with the garlicky oil and is a bit more softened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and set the broccoli rabe aside to cool down a bit.
Place the olives, capers, vinegar, remaining 1 tablespoon oil, and a small pinch of salt in a small bowl and stir to combine. Place the rolls, cut-side up, on a work surface and evenly distribute the olive mixture among the rolls, putting some on both halves of each roll. Divide the mozzarella and broccoli rabe evenly among the rolls, close the rolls, and then tightly wrap each sandwich in plastic wrap.
Place something flat and heavy on top of the sandwiches, such as a large cast-iron skillet. Let the sandwiches sit under this weight for at least an hour before eating or putting them in your backpack.
Ingredient Variation: If you can’t find or don’t like broccoli rabe, substitute regular broccoli or any dark, leafy green such as kale.
Reprinted with permission from Now & Again: Go-To Recipes, Inspired Menus + Endless Ideas for Reinventing Leftovers by Julia Turshen, copyright (c) 2018, Chronicle Books.