Rigatoni with broccoli and parmesan is a delicious and easy quick healthy pasta meal which serves 4 and is on the table in literally 20 minutes.
You folks loved my recent low fat tagliatelle carbonara so I thought I'd keep to that winning pasta theme of using low fat crème fraîche for the sauce and bring you my tasty rigatoni with broccoli and parmesan recipe today.
This is another one of the easiest healthy pasta dishes that I love to make for my other half and I.
It's so quick and simple this ritatoni and broccoli.
It's made with using just a few ingredients and all created on the stovetop with minimal dishes too.
If there's one thing I can't stand that's the thought of spending ages in the kitchen getting a meal together when I've spent the whole day in meetings at work.
I just want something comforting, easy and healthy. This creamy broccoli rigatoni pasta recipe certainly hits that spot!
The more eagle eyed of you folks who are regular blog followers might see in the photographs that I've used white pasta as opposed to my usual whole wheat pasta.
Normally I'll use whole wheat pasta as it's healthier and better for you, being an unrefined carbohydrate made from whole grains.
Unfortunately I just wasn't able to get whole wheat pasta at the time.
You see at the time when I was photographying this recipe, a number of weeks ago, we were being pelted by "The Beast from the East".
Due to those extreme weather conditions a lot of supplies of basic food stuffs were difficult to obtain so I had to make do with what I could get!
Actually the whole "Beast from the East" thing was completely mad as all our public transport here in Scotland went off and bread and milk completely ran out or became rationed!
Still, there was one advantage of using the white rigatoni pasta though.
This rigatoni with broccoli and parmesan recipe took less time to make as the white pasta cooks quicker than whole wheat!
If you're wondering what to servie with this creamy rigatoni with broccoli well I like to serve my rigatoni with broccoli and parmesan with a few spoonfuls of sweetcorn.
I find that by keeping it simple it compliments the dish with a delicious sweet crunch. It does go well with green salads too.
Of course this rigatoni and broccoli is perfectly delicious on its own too!
With a low fat creamy cheese sauce made from crème fraîche this simple family dinner is guaranteed to be a winner all round!
- Dried Rigatoni
- Broccoli Florets
- Pine Nuts
- Low Fat Crème Fraiche
- Parmesan Cheese Or Grana Padano Cheese
- Freshly Ground Salt And Black Pepper
See recipe card for quantities.
- Dried Rigatoni - you could use dried penne pasta instead.
- Broccoli Florets
- Pine Nuts
- Low Fat Crème Fraiche - you could use whipped rocotta cheese instead.
- Parmesan Cheese Or Grana Padano Cheese - pecorino romano is fine as well.
- Parsley - you could use fresh basil instead.
- Freshly Ground Salt And Black Pepper
How To Make Rigatoni With Broccoli
Detailed instructions are in the recipe card below. But here is a quick step by step guide of how to make this easy creamy broccoli pasta dish:
- Cook the pasta until al dente according to package instructions. Drain pasta using a small sieve. Return to pot.
- Whilst pasta cooking. Cook broccoli in a large saucepan. Drain and using a slotted spoon add to cooked pasta pot.
- Over a medium heat gently heat broccoli and pasta. Stir in pine nuts and crème fraiche. Simmer for 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Stir in parmesan and parsley. Season to taste and serve.
Some Tips For Perfect Rigatoni With Broccoli And Parmesan
- Whilst it might seem a good idea to cook the pasta and the broccoli in the same pan, if the pasta takes longer to cook, especially if you use whole wheat pasta, the broccoli could end up all mushy and tasteless. That's why you need to do those seperately, in two pans.
- Keep a small amount of the pasta water in the pasta pot instead of draining it all out. This will stop the pasta from drying out and also help to make the creamy sauce.
- It's possible to freeze any leftovers you might have but re-heat in a saucepan with a little boiled water rather than in a microwave which will dry it out.
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Rigatoni with Broccoli and Parmesan Recipe
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- 300 g dried rigatoni
- 200 g broccoli cut into small florets
- 70 g Pine Nuts
- 200 ml low fat crème fraiche
- 60 g Parmesan or Grana Padano cheese grated
- 2 tablespoon flatleaf parsley chopped
- Freshly grated salt and pepper
- Cook the rigatoni according to package directions, drain and return to the pot.
- Whilst the pasta is cooking place the broccoli in a large pan of boiling water and cook for 6 minutes. Then drain and add broccoli to the other pot with the drained pasta.
- Gently heat the pot with the pasta and broccoli and stir in the pine nuts and crème fraiche. When it starts to bubble turn down to simmer stirring frequently for about 2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, stir in the parmesan and parsley and season to taste.
- Serve in warmed pasta bowls.
Nutritional information provided below is calculated using paid for online tools and the exact ingredients and quantities used above.
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If you’ve made this rigatoni with broccoli and parmesan recipe, or any other recipes on Neil's Healthy Meals, then please let me know.
I’d love to hear what you think of my recipe in the comments below and please do rate my recipe 5* if you like it! 🙂
David @ Spiced
Pasta is totally one of our go-to meals when we don't have any leftovers around...and I love rigatoni! The broccoli and parmesan here sound like my kind of meal! Also, I totally get stores running out of food thanks to these winter storms. I like to call it the BMW rush. Bread, milk, water. Because apparently that's all you need when a storm is coming. Except now I'm adding pasta to that list! BMWP!
Thank goodness the shops here didn't run out of pasta completely David or I wouldn't have been able to do this recipe at all! Ha ha!
I love how you made this. Pasta with a green vegetable is also so good, and certainly feels healthier than a ragu! I've only made pasta with zucchini and Brussels sprouts. I need to make this - love the pine nut addition!
I'm glad you like this Mimi, thank you. I think this recipe would work perfectly by substituting the broccoli with either zucchini or Brussels sprouts. Also I added the pine nuts as I felt the dish needed a little bit of a "crunch" so it didn't feel like every other pasta with vegetables recipe. 😉
What a lovely pasta with the addition of broccoli! My absolute favorite. I like how quick and easy this recipe sounds plus those tips for perfect rigatoni, Amazing! Thank you.
Thanks Neha, that's exactly what I aim for and wanted to hear. That you love how this is a "quick and easy" recipe. 🙂
So I googled this “Beast from the East”, and the pictures are so beautiful (regardless the treacherous conditions). And this pasta is a perfect meal for (so called) spring - for winter versions I prefer more earthy flavors and for summer even lighter). Well done!
You're right Ben. There were some stunning images from around the time "The Beast From The East" was affecting us here.
I can't remember the last time I had to walk to work down the middle of a main road because there was so much snow on all the paths that you couldn't walk on them! ;lol:
Yep, this is a perfect spring pasta. And yes I'd say "so called" spring at the moment because it's still freezing here too!