This Lemon Broccoli Pasta is super easy to make and is excellent for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. It's ready in just 25 minutes and is packed with flavour.
Broccoli and pasta is a match made in heaven, I love it! My Broccoli Pasta Bake is one of our favourite pasta bakes and I make it a lot! But when I want a quick pasta dinner this garlic lemon broccoli pasta is the one I make.
This lemony broccoli pasta dish is one of my favourite quick and easy dinners. The broccoli is roasted before being added to the pasta along with plenty of garlic, cheese, toasted walnuts and just a hint of chilli. So tasty!
I love a quick and easy dinner, especially on busy weeknights. Anything that can be made in under half an hour is a winner as far as I'm concerned!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Ready in under 30 minutes! - Yes, it really is that quick! What's not to love about a quick and easy dinner?
- That roasted broccoli - roasting broccoli is one of my favourite ways to eat broccoli, roasting the broccoli brings out the sweetness in the broccoli along with a slightly nutty flavour!
- That garlicky lemon flavour - this is such a great combination, especially with broccoli and pasta!
- Less than 10 ingredients - You just need a few basic store cupboard ingredients to make this.
- Broccoli - fresh broccoli is best for this recipe and I use a whole head of it. You could use frozen if you want, no need to thaw it, but it might take longer to roast.
- Pasta - I have used fusilli for this recipe but penne works perfectly too as does tagliatelle.
- Walnuts - I use walnut halves for this recipe but you could also use pine nuts if you prefer.
- Lemon - You will need one large or two medium lemons for this, you will need the juice and zest. I don't recommend using concentrated lemon juice.
- Garlic - I love lots of garlic in this so use 3 large cloves, very finely chopped.
- Cheese - you'll need a good hard Italian cheese, I used a vegetarian Pecorino.
- Other Ingredients - dried red chilli flakes, olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper.
How To Make Lemon Broccoli Pasta
1. Start by roasting the broccoli - cut the broccoli into bite-size florets, pop them in a large bowl then add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the juice of half a large lemon and salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes turning the florets half way through cooking.
2. Cook the pasta - cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Reserve ¾'s of a cup of the pasta water before you drain the pasta.
3. Cook the garlic - heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan, add the finely chopped garlic, chilli flakes and chopped walnuts. Cook for a minute or two.
4. Add the pasta and broccoli - add the drained pasta to the saute pan, add the juice of the remaining half of lemon along with the pasta water. Then add the roasted broccoli and the grated cheese and toss again. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and serve immediately.
- Don't forget the pasta water! Reserve about ¾'s of a cup of that pasta water before you drain the cooked pasta. When you add it to the cooked pasta and broccoli it will help everything stick together.
- Add some lemon zest - I add some lemon zest to the finished dish to add a little more zesty lemon flavour.
- Toast the walnuts - toasting the walnuts when you cook the garlic will add more flavour to the walnuts which compliments the roasted broccoli.
Storage and Reheating Tips
- If you have any leftovers then you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge once cooled. They will keep for a maximum of 2 days.
- You can eat this cold if you want, in fact I quite like it cold, but if you do want to reheat it, add some water to the pan, stir it through and heat it on the hob until it is piping hot.
Yes, you can. You can roast the broccoli from frozen, there's no need to thaw it first.
I don't recommend freezing this dish. If you do have any leftovers they will keep for about 2 days in the fridge and can be reheated on the hob.
Variations and Substitutions
- Add more veggies - you can easily add more vegetables to this recipe. Courgettes (zucchini) or baby spinach work really well. You could also add in some cherry tomatoes if you like.
- Make it creamy - if you want to make this creamy you can add about 150ml or 1 cup of double (heavy) cream after you've cooked the garlic. You may want to reduce the lemon juice a bit if you do add cream.
- Want to make it vegan? You can swap the cheese for a vegan cheese or omit it all together.
More Tasty Broccoli Recipes To Try
We eat broccoli at least a couple of times a week. So I have a few regular dishes that always make the weekly rota. My Brocoli and Mushroom Stir Fry is one of our favourite weeknight dinners. If your in the mood for soup my Creamy Broccoli and Cauliflower Soup is one of the most popular soup recipes on the blog. If you're a fan of pasta salads then you'll love my Broccoli Pasta Salad, this is so easy to make and is great for BBQs or Potlucks.
25 Minute Lemon Broccoli Pasta
- 1 large head of broccoli cut into small bitesize florets
- 350 g / 3½ cups of pasta (dry weight) I used fusilli pasta
- 1 large lemon
- 2 tablespoon olive oil divided into 2
- 3 large cloves of garlic very finely chopped or put through a garlic press
- ¼ teaspoon of dried red chilli flakes optional, use more if you want it to be hotter
- 40 g / ⅓ of a cup of walnut halves roughly chopped
- 50 g / ½ a cup of pecorino cheese (or any vegetarian hard Italian cheese) finely grated + more for serving
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper + more for serving
- Heat the oven to 180°C / 350°F fan oven 200°C / 400°F conventional oven.Cut the broccoli into bite-size florets, add them to a large bowl then add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the juice of half a large lemon and salt and pepper. Toss the broccoli until it is coated in oil and lemon juice. Transfer the broccoli to a baking tray then put the tray on the middle shelf in the oven.Roast for 15 minutes turning the florets halfway through cooking.
- Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Reserve ¾'s of a cup of the pasta water before you drain the pasta.
- Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan.Add the chopped garlic, ¼ teaspoon of dried red chilli and the chopped walnuts and cook for a minute or two.
- Add the cooked and drained pasta to the saute pan, then add the juice of the remaining half the lemon along with the pasta water. Toss well.Add the roasted broccoli and the cheese and gently toss everything together.Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.Serve immediately with freshly ground black pepper some lemon zest and more cheese.
- Leftovers - if you have any leftovers then you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge once cooled. They will keep for a maximum of 2 days.
- Reheating - You can eat this cold iI don't recommend freezing this dish. If you do have any leftovers they will keep for about 2 days in the fridge and can be reheated on the hob.
- Freezing - I don't recommend freezing this dish.
- Broccoli - the size of your broccoli will determine how long it takes to roast. Bigger florets will take longer to cook, and smaller ones will cook quicker.
- Nutritional Information - is calculated using an online nutrition tool and is approximate.
- Weights and measurements - For US readers, I use Cuisipro measuring cups and spoons, and a Pyrex measuring jug for liquids. These are the industry standard. Cup/spoon volumes can differ from brand to brand, for accuracy, I recommend weighing all ingredients if possible for best results.