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Rigatoni with Broccoli-Lemon Sauce

4 to 6 Servings

30 minutes

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This is an adaptation of pasta sauced with a creamy, silky broccoli puree that we tasted in Rome. We use broccoli crowns here and not the lower portion of the stems, which are sometimes tough and fibrous. We start by simmering the broccoli in a large pot of salted boiling water. After removing the pieces, we keep the water at a boil and use it to cook the pasta.

4 to 6



Don’t simmer the broccoli until fully tender or its color will turn a dull shade of green. Cooking it only until crisp-tender ensures a vividly hued puree.

30 minutes


  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • 1

    pound broccoli crowns, cut into 1-inch pieces


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Catherine P.
June 28, 2023
Wonderful, easy and healthy!
Super easy! Made it with garlic scapes from my garden instead of garlic and used chickpea pasta to get lots of protein and fiber. Absolutely delicious with great flavour and mouth feel! Will make again!
Michael D.
June 21, 2023
Great cold too
This is one of my favorites. When it’s just two of us for dinner, there’s usually leftovers and I really enjoy them cold. I’ve never made a whole batch just for cold pasta salad but it would be a great addition to a picnic. The lemon juice, capers, and pepper flakes really make for bright flavors warm or cold.
Michael K.
July 15, 2023
Rest the purée overnight
Rest the puree overnight in the refrigerator. This allows for better blending of the flavours, I found. Then simple heat it gently and stir in as directed in recipe.
Thomas S.
May 4, 2023
Too much cheese I think.
No broccoli flavor. I think the cheese smothered it. Might try it without cheese… Tasted good though.
Betty D.
June 19, 2023
A bit watery
I liked it, but it definitely needs tweaking
Anne W.

I recommend this one to everyone I know. Outstanding flavor, broccoli so I feel good about it ... and yet .. it's comfort food. Easy, low dish count. And did I mention yummy?

Brenda B.

Just made this recipe from broccoli harvested from our winter garden. Top marks! Since I wasn't going to use basil or walnuts for garnish, I held back a generous half cup of the cooked broccoli from the puree and tossed the sprigs in with the cheese and lemon juice. Frankly, I'm not convinced that capers (which are great with the broccoli) would be my choice to pair with basil. I'll definitely make this again.