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Broccoli pesto pasta with spicy crumbs  recipe

Broccoli pesto pasta with spicy crumbs recipe

11 ratings

Broccoli is the star ingredient in this twist on pesto pasta that's reminiscent of a pasta bake with its crunchy crumb topping, but without the oven time. Vegan, healthy, dairy-free and freezable, it ticks so many boxes, making it a versatile and vibrant midweek meal. See method

  • Serves 4
  • 20 mins
  • 569 calories / serving
  • Freezable
  • Healthy
  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Dairy-free


  • 375g head of broccoli, cut into florets, stalk cut into 1-2cm pieces
  • 320g frozen peas
  • 100g pumpkin seeds
  • 3 garlic cloves, 2 crushed, 1 thinly sliced
  • 30g pack fresh basil
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 300g wholewheat spaghetti
  • 220g pack green beans, trimmed and halved
  • 3 tbsp olive oil​
  • 1 red chilli, sliced
  • 6 tbsp (40g) dried breadcrumbs
3 of your 5-a-day and low in saturated fat

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    16g 22%
  • Saturates

    2g 12%
  • Sugars

    11g 13%
  • Salt

    0.3g 5%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 70.7g Protein 26.5g Fibre 20.3g


  1. Cook the broccoli stalk and peas in a large pan of boiling water for 3-4 mins until the broccoli is tender. Scoop into a colander with a slotted spoon, run under cold water and drain. Reserve the cooking water and set aside.
  2. Toast the pumpkin seeds in a dry frying pan for 3-4 mins until golden. Tip into a food processor with the crushed garlic, basil, and lemon zest and juice, then blitz to combine.
  3. Cook the spaghetti to pack instructions in the reserved cooking water, adding the broccoli florets and green beans for the last 4 mins of cooking. Drain, reserving a mug of the cooking water.
  4. Meanwhile, add the broccoli stalk and peas to the food processor and blitz again, slowly adding 2 tbsp olive oil and 100-120ml water while the motor is running, to make a thick, slightly chunky pesto. Season to taste.
  5. Heat the remaining 1 tbsp oil in the frying pan over a low-medium heat. Fry the sliced garlic and chilli for 1-2 mins until the garlic just starts to turn pale golden, then add the breadcrumbs. Fry for another 1-2 mins until golden and crisp; tip into a bowl.
  6. Stir the pesto through the pasta and vegetables, loosening with a little of the reserved cooking water if needed. Spoon into bowls and top with the spicy breadcrumbs to serve.

Freezing and defrosting guidelines

In order to enjoy optimum flavour and quality, frozen items are best used within 3 months of their freezing date. For more tips on freezing and defrosting food, read our article Love Your Freezer.

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