Orecchiette With Broccoli Rabe

Orecchiette With Broccoli Rabe: Main Image

Quick Facts

Servings: 6
Orecchiette means “little ears”—any small sized pasta shape such as penne would work in this. If you can’t find broccoli rabe, standard broccoli works fine.


  • 12 oz orecchiette
  • 2 lbs broccoli rabe or broccoli, (about 4 cups)
  • 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, (or more)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (sea salt if on a corn-free diet*)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese*


  • Boil water for pasta. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Drain, reserving about 1 cup (250mL) of the cooking liquid.
  • Meanwhile, trim the broccoli rabe into pieces about 2 inches (5cm) long, removing any stalks that are larger than 1/2-inch (1.25cm) in thickness. Chop coarsely.
  • Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add garlic. Cook until the garlic is fragrant. Add broccoli rabe, salt and red pepper flakes and sauté for 1–2 minutes. Add the 1 cup (250mL) of reserved cooking water and cook for about 5 minutes, until the broccoli is a vibrant dark green color. Transfer the pasta to the skillet and toss to coat the pasta with the vegetable and the juices. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

* Allergy notes: People following a corn-free diet should avoid iodized salt since it contains dextrose, which should be avoided by those allergic to corn. The egg protein lysozyme is an unlabeled additive in some cheeses. People allergic to eggs should eliminate any cheese in this recipe.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 321
  Calories from Fat 67 (21%)
(11%)Total Fat 7g
(11%)Saturated Fat 2g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
(2%)Cholesterol 7mg
(13%)Sodium 323mg
(14%)Potassium 481mg
Total Carbohydrate 50g
(8%)Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 0g
Sugar Alcohols 0g
(29%)Protein 15g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Nutrition facts are calculated by a food expert using nutritional values provided by the USDA for common products used as recipe ingredients. Actual nutritional values may differ depending on the amounts or products used and can be affected by cooking methods.

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The information presented here is for informational purposes only and was created by a team of US–registered dietitians and food experts. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements, making dietary changes, or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2018.