In My Kitchen: Broccoli Pesto Pasta [VEGAN]

I gotta admit, this dish does NOT look appetizing at all. But it’s one of my favorite things to eat. After all, what is better than fresh broccoli mixed with olive oil, lemon and Parmesan? Not much!

Get past the…interesting…appearance of this dish and treat your taste buds to a delicious meal. To make vegan, substitute nutritional yeast for the Parmesan cheese.

You’ll need:

  • 1 pound pasta (here, I used rigatoni, but you can use any shape)
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup basil leaves, tightly packed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • Salt
  • Black pepper


  1. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente. Reserve one cup pasta water, drain and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, steam broccoli florets with water until they are barely tender. Transfer broccoli to a food processor.

3. Add Parmesan, basil, garlic, olive oil, lemon zest and lemon juice to the broccoli and process until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

4. Toss pasta with broccoli pesto, adding reserved pasta water as necessary. Serve, topped with additional Parmesan (optional)

I also made this recipe using fusilli and nutritional yeast, with no Parmesan (vegan)

Source: Adapted from a recipe by Platings + Pairings

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