This simple Pasta with Broccolini and Chickpeas is punchy and bright and comes together quickly and easily – on the table in under 30 minutes!  Made with optional Preserved lemon, it’s a tasty healthy weeknight dinner! Video. See our 20+ Fresh Yummy Broccoli Recipes!

Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas - punchy and bright and comes together quickly and easily - on the table in under 30 minutes!  A tasty healthy weeknight dinner! #spaghetti #broccolipasta #broccolini I part the out thrusting branches and come in beneath the blessed and the blessing trees. Though I am silent there is singing around me. Though I am dark there is vision around me. Though I am heavy there is flight around me. ~Wendall Berry 

We’ve been amping up our broccolini and broccoli intake lately, making a point to have it weekly.  Here’s a simple little pasta recipe that comes together in under 30 minutes that highlights this healthy veggie. Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas is fast, easy, flavorful and a snap to throw together on busy weeknights. We’ve been loving it and think you will too!

Spaghetti Broccolini ingredients

Broccolini Pasta with Preserved Lemon | 60-second video

What is broccolini anyways? 

Many think broccolini is just a younger version of broccoli but this is simply not the case. It is also not the same as broccoli rabe- another common misconception. Broccolini is actually a crossbreed between broccoli and Chinese broccoli- a leafy green – and the combination of the two gives broccolini its beautiful deep emerald color, long elegant stems and petite, condensed florets. Truly the stuff of enchanted broccoli forests…

There is much to love about broccolini; how it holds its lovely shape and color when cooked, that it cooks so darn quickly, and how packed full of vitamins and nutrients it is. And I’m hearing, that kids even like it a little better too because it is a little less bitter than regular broccoli.

boil the spaghetti

The recipe starts with cooking the spaghetti. My new obsession is this organic pasta from Italy, Monograno.  A little spendy but worth the splurge.

TIP: Measuring the water and salt- in this case 8 cups water and 1 tablespoon salt- will ensure that not only the pasta and broccolini are seasoned well, but that the reserved “pasta water” is seasoned well too – which affects the flavor of the finished dish. It’s a good ratio to remember when cooking any pasta.

While the pasta is cooking, prep your ingredients. Chop the shallot and garlic.

chopped garlic amd shallots

Split in half any broccolini that are bigger than a pencil thick.

prep the broccolini

Chop the preserved lemon if using. Feel free to sub lemon zest and lemon juice – but the preserved lemon will give it a delicious tangy briny flavor.

Saute the shallots and garlic in olive oil. Add the chili flakes.

If you are up for trying something new- these chili flakes – Aleppo and Urfa Biber are both sensational. Not too spicy, with fruity notes, and lots of flavor. Great in pasta!

We sell them at our Bowl and Pitcher store or you can find them online.

Or FEEL FREE to use regular chili flakes!

add chili flakes

If you happen to have sumac, add this as well- if not- just skip it.

Lately, we’ve taken to adding chickpeas, for extra fiber and protein,  but you can leave these out if you prefer.

When the spaghetti is al dente, add the broccolini to the pasta water.  Let it simmer until vibrant and just tender, 3 minutes or so.

add the broccolini to the pasta water

Drain, saving 1 cup of the pasta water.

add pasta water

Pour in the pasta, broccolini and hot pasta water into the pan and give a good toss.

Add the herbs and preserved lemon. Give a good toss!

Add in the pecorino. Taste and adjust salt, chili flakes and lemon (lemon juice or preserved lemon)  to your liking.

When it tastes just right, divide among bowls. This recipe will make 3 hearty servings.

On the homefront: A couple of weeks ago we migrated to Sedona. Truth be told, I had some reservations about spending more than a few days in the desert, because in the past it has felt too sparse for me, almost lonely. I guess I’m more of an ocean/forest person, but my husband really wanted to come here and explore the area.  So here we are for a couple of months and surprisingly, I’ve been wonderstruck from the very first day.

I’m not sure what it is about this place, but it feels otherworldly. Juniper forests seem to whisper quietly in the breeze speaking a language my mind doesn’t understand but my heart seems to remember.  The immense red rocks glow like they are on fire from the inside- radiating their healing light outwards. Everything in me wants to walk towards them.  It is as if I’ve been bewitched.

Oh. And we have a gentleman ghost in our house.  Another story, another time. 😉 

This simple Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas is punchy and bright and comes together quickly and easily - on the table in under 30 minutes!  A tasty healthy weeknight dinner! #spaghetti #broccolipasta #broccolini

Enjoy the Pasta with Broccolini and let us know what you think in the comments below.



More broccolini recipes you may like: 



clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas - punchy and bright and comes together quickly and easily - on the table in under 30 minutes!  A tasty healthy weeknight dinner! #spaghetti #broccolipasta #broccolini

Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 24 reviews
  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine | Feasting at Home
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 3 1x
  • Category: pasta, main, vegetarian
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: italian
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Pasta with Broccolini, Preserved Lemon and Chickpeas – a punchy, bright pasta recipe that comes together quickly and easily – on the table in under 30 minutes!  A tasty healthy weeknight dinner!


Units Scale
  • 8 cups water
  • Salt
  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 1012 ounces broccolini, cut in half lengthwise ( or use regular broccoli see notes)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 fat shallot, finely diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, rough chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Aleppo, Urfa Biber or regular chili flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon sumac (optional)
  • 12 tablespoons preserved lemon, chopped (or sub lemon zest from one lemon)
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 1 cup reserved hot pasta water
  • 12 tablespoons lemon juice (if not using preserved lemon)
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup pecorino or parmesan
  • optional: additional 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
  • salt and pepper to taste


In a large pot, bring 8 cups of water and 1 tablespoon salt (measure both) to boil. Add spaghetti and simmer until al dente.  Add broccolini to the pasta water and cook 2-3 minutes, or until just tender and vibrant green. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.

While the spaghetti is cooking, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute shallots and garlic 3-4 minutes until fragrant and tender. Add chili flakes,  sumac, preserved lemon ( or lemon zest), chickpeas if using, and salt and pepper. Saute 1-2 minutes, turn the heat off.

When the pasta and broccolini are done (save 1 cup pasta water)  add it to the garlic shallot mixture in the skillet, over medium heat. Add 1 cup hot pasta water, and give a good toss.  Taste.  Add a squeeze of lemon juice if you like (especially if not using. the preserved lemons).

Toss in the fresh parsley and pecorino, taste again, and adjust salt, pepper and chili flakes.  You want to taste the salt and lemon, both. 😉  For extra richness, mix in another little drizzle of olive oil – or a little butter (my husband LOVES it this way).

Divide among bowls and enjoy.


Leftovers reheat well and will keep 3-4 days in the fridge.

If using regular broccoli, allow a couple of extra minutes of cooking time ( florets and stems tend to be bigger).


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 570
  • Sugar: 5.7 g
  • Sodium: 805.9 mg
  • Fat: 19.8 g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 80.8 g
  • Fiber: 9.7 g
  • Protein: 20.8 g
  • Cholesterol: 9.8 mg

Share this with the world!

to get recipes via email

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star


  1. I’m home alone tonight, and as pretty much the only thing I had in the fridge was broccolini, I googled it to find your recipe. By some miracle, I had everything else in the pantry except preserved lemons and shallots, but I did have a lemon, and half a red onion. What a hit! This was quick, easy and delicious. I’d say keep 2 cups of pasta water. I definitely needed more than a cup (probably extra half cup) I wasn’t sure if you removed your pasta before cooking the broccolini. I did as I was worried about over cooking, so it probably dried a little bit while the brocc was cooking. I also upped the lemon juice a bit. Next time I’ll try with preserved lemons, but it’s fine with fresh. I would never have thought of chickpeas in pasta….my wife doesn’t like sausages so we never have the classic broccolini pasta, but I know she’ll love this!

  2. Where to get Aleppo or other pepper flakes? They may improve an already fabulous recipe!!! Love learning new (to me) ingredients.

    My daughter and I compare notes by phone and expand our cooking knowledge with each blog! “Never had a miss with Sylvia!!!”

  3. I made this for dinner tonight. It was really delicious! I used regular lemon and zest and pecorino cheese. Thank you for such a yummy recipe!😋💕


Our Latest Recipes