Broccoli Pesto Pasta is an easy, from scratch, creamy pasta sauce made healthier with broccoli, Greek yogurt and olive oil. Thank you to Pompeian for sponsoring this post.
One of our favorite dinners is Roasted Red Pepper Pasta. It is easy, made healthier with lots of vegetables and Greek yogurt and the kids love it. Since it is such a popular recipe around our house, I use it as a base recipe for creating new ones, like this Broccoli Pesto Pasta.
Broccoli Pesto Pasta starts with a from-scratch vegetable-based pasta sauce using wholesome ingredients and is made creamy with Greek yogurt. Not only is Broccoli Pesto Pasta a delicious way to eat your veggies, but is also quick to make for a weeknight.
To make Broccoli Pesto Pasta, I start by cooking the pasta al dente, according to package directions. Next saute onion in olive oil until softened, add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add this mixture to a food processor, along with steamed broccoli, Greek yogurt, Parmesan cheese and olive oil. Pulse until smooth and serve over pasta with crushed red pepper flaked sprinkled top!
For the pasta, I typically use rotini shaped pasta, but any short to medium shape will work well (gluten free varieties work well too!) For the oil, I use a quality olive oil, such as Pompeian Robust Extra Virgin Olive Oil, which has a vivacious bitterness and peppery taste that enhances the flavors of the broccoli pesto sauce beautifully.
The key to choosing a quality olive oil is to look for third-party verifications on the bottles label, including the Non-GMO Project Verification, which can be found on all Pompeian olive oils. Next be sure the bottle has the USDA Quality Monitored Seal, which means the olive oil samples undergo frequent and rigorous testing for sensory, quality, purity and origin to ensure a quality product in every bottle. Last, the bottle should have the North American Olive Oil Association Seal, which indicates even more testing. This is the only program where the oil is sampled from the store. Pompeian was the first brand of olive oil to carry this seal.
After making sure the olive oil bottles carry these seals, the bottle should also show the olives’ lot number and country of origin directly on the bottle to ensure traceablility from farm to table.
In addition to looking at the bottle’s label, look at the bottle itself, which should be dark in color. Once you purchase the oil, keep it in your pantry, away from heat and light.
It was helpful to learn these five ways to identify quality olive oil, since I use it so frequently in cooking. The quality of the olive oil really makes a difference in the taste and quality of the food I make, so it was really helpful to learn these five ways to identify quality olive oil, since I use it so frequently in cooking tasty recipes, like this Broccoli Pesto Recipe.
- 1 pound of steamed broccoli florets, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 12 ounces pasta
- ¼ cup olive oil, divided
- 1 cup yellow onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (adjust to taste), plus additional for serving
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt
- In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package directions to al dente and then drain. (Once pasta is done cooking, reserve 1 cup pasta water to thin sauce as needed).
- Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and crushed red pepper and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute).
- Add onion mixture, remaining oil and broccoli in the food processor and process until smooth. Add cheese and yogurt and continue to process until smooth.
- Pour broccoli sauce into large bowl. Add pasta, and toss to coat. Add pasta water by 1 tablespoonful, as needed, until sauce is desired consistency.
- Serve with additional Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes, as desired.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Pompeian. All opinions are my own.