If you’re a fan of broccoli try this oven-roasted broccoli rabe recipe. Made up of just 3 ingredients it is a tasty and nutritious dish that can be made in under 30 minutes! It is one of the best broccoli rabe recipes to add to your meal plan this week! See below for the recipe and video.
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What Is Broccoli Rabe
Broccoli rabe, broccoli di rabe, or rabe broccoli (pronounced rob)is a green cruciferous vegetable that comes from the Brassiceae or cabbage family. It is native to Europe and popular in Mediterranean cuisine.
When it comes to looks, broccoli rabe is a cross between broccoli and kale. It has long stems with green leaves and buds on top that resemble broccoli florets.
What is the Difference Between Rapini and Broccoli Rabe?
When comparing broccoli rabe vs rapini these are just two separate names for the same vegetable. So there is no difference between them.
Rapini is specifically used for Italian broccoli rabe recipes. The word “rapi” in Italian means turnip. Turnips are a subspecies of this vegetable and that is why you will see it referred to as “rapini” from time to time.
There are also culinary versions of broccoli rabe Chinese dishes as well.
What is the Difference Between Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe?
On the other hand, when looking at broccoli rabe vs broccolini you will find these are two completely different vegetables.
Broccolini or baby broccoli is also a green vegetable and part of the cabbage family. It differs because it is a hybrid of broccoli and gai lan. Gai Lan is better known as “Chinese kale” or “Chinese broccoli.”
The nice thing about broccolini is you can eat the florets, leaves, and stems without having to do much prep.
Broccoli Rabe Benefits
If you are wondering “is broccoli rabe good for you?” The answer is yes! This green veggie provides an abundance of nutrients.
A hundred grams or one-half cup provides about the following:
- 3 grams Fiber
- 3 grams Protein
- 0.5 gram Fat
- 20 grams of Vitamin C (30% of the DV)
- 83 micrograms of Folate (21% of the DV)
- 131 micrograms of Vitamin A (15% of the DV)
- 2 milligrams Iron: (11% of the DV)
- 108 milligrams of Calcium (11% of the DV)
- 224 micrograms of Vitamin K (over 100% of the DV)
- 0.77 milligrams Zinc (8% of the DV)
As you can see broccoli rabe is a good source of essential nutrients folate, calcium, fiber, vitamins A, C, and K.
There are few calories in broccoli rabe but it also provides a good amount of protein for a vegetable.
Broccoli rabe raw has a higher level of vitamin C. Additionally, cooking this green veggie increases the vitamin K levels.
Like the broccoli rabe calories, there are few carbs in broccoli rabe. There are just about 3 calories per serving. This makes it a great food if you are on a low carb or keto diet.
Broccoli Rabe Health Benefits
When it comes to the question, “is broccoli rabe healthy?” Some research shows it can be associated with good health.
What Part of Broccoli Rabe Do You Eat?
Its stems, leaves, and buds are all edible. The buds resemble little broccoli florets but have a different taste.
What Does Broccoli Rabe Taste Like?
Broccoli rabe is said to have a nutty and slightly bitter taste. Its flavor has been compared to mustard and turnip greens.
Some people have also compared it to the flavor of broccoli.
Why Is Broccoli Rabe Bitter?
The bitter broccoli rabe flavor comes from glucosinolates found in this food. These sulfur-containing compounds are broken down when broccoli rabe is chewed and the sulfur is released from the vegetable creating a bitter taste.
This can be appealing or disgusting to some people. So, if you are the latter, read on to learn how to make broccoli rabe less bitter and more appetizing.
How Do You Get the Bitterness Out of Broccoli Rabe?
If you are not a fan of bitter vegetables no worries! There are things that you can do to cut down the bitterness.
One way is by blanching broccoli rabe. This is when you place a vegetable in boiling water or steam it for a few minutes.
Another way to cut down that bitter flavor is by roasting. This method of cooking makes bitter veggies like broccoli rabe taste great. Similarly, roasting is an easy way to get a meal on your table quickly.
Moreover, this particular garlic roasted rapini recipe is one way that will make broccoli rabe a sure crowd pleaser!
Where to Buy Broccoli Rabe
If you are curious where you can buy broccoli rabe you can get it from local farmer’s markets, supermarkets, and health food stores.
It is sold in bunches tied together with twist ties. You can find it in the produce aisle usually by the kale and other loose leafy greens.
When choosing your rapini greens look for a dark green bunch. Try to avoid ones with yellow leaves or buds that are blooming flowers.
If you want to save time going to the store you can also Google the phrase “broccoli rabe near me” to find where it can be sold without even leaving your home!
If you are a big fan of this veggie, you can get adventurous and start growing broccoli rabe! According to GardeningChannel.com it is a fast-growing cool weather plant that is ready for harvest in just 45 days to 60 days.
Related: If you’re looking to save $$ check out how Rakuten can give you money back on your online groceries.
Many ask the question “how do you cut and cook broccoli rabe?” Read on to find out.
How to Prepare Broccoli Rabe
There is some slight broccoli rabe prep to be done before making recipes with rapini. However, it shouldn’t take too long. You just need to clean and cut your broccoli rabe.
How to Clean Broccoli Rabe
First, you want to wash the veggie. The second step is to pat it dry with a kitchen or paper towel. The third and final step is trimming broccoli rabe’s stems.
How to Cut Broccoli Rabe
Certain recipes may require cutting the rapini into smaller pieces. However, for this roasted broccoli rabe recipe, this is all the cutting you need to do.
Now know how to prep broccoli rabe you’re ready to get cooking with broccoli rabe!
The Various Ways How to Cook Broccoli Rabe
Once you have the broccoli rabe prepared you can use it in your recipe. Cooking broccoli rabe can be done in a variety of ways. You can make the following recipes for broccoli rabe:
- Blanched/steamed broccoli rabe
- Sauteed broccoli rabe
- Baked broccoli rabe
- Grilled broccoli rabe (grilled rapini)
- Steamed broccoli rabe
- Sauteed broccoli rabe
Sauteed broccoli rabe is quite a popular method for how to cook rapini. However, I think roasting is the best way to cook broccoli rabe. This is also a very easy way to get a delicious quick side dish or broccoli rabe appetizer.
Blanching is often an initial step in many broccoli rabe recipes. If you were curious “can you cook broccoli rabe without blanching?” For this recipe yes!
This is another reason why I like roasting broccoli rabe. You can skip the blanching step!
Adding spices like garlic will also make this veggie taste great. Garlic rabe can be made by mixing roasted broccoli rabe with garlic and olive oil. It is a really easy rapini recipe that can be cooked while you prepare your proteins and other veggie sides.
Spices also help to calm the bitter taste!
Ingredients In this Recipe
This recipe is super easy to make and contains just the following 3 ingredients:
- Fresh broccoli rabe
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Fresh garlic
How to Make This Recipe
Here are the steps on how to make broccoli rabe roasted in the oven. You can first rinse the broccoli rabe, pat dry, and set it aside.
Then mix the EVOO and garlic together and set it aside.
Separate the broccoli rabe bunch into separate stalks. Using kitchen scissors or a sharp paring knife cut one inch off the bottom of one stalk. Continue until all the pieces of broccoli rabe are trimmed.
Take the trimmed broccoli rabe pieces and lay them out on the covered baking sheet.
Dip a basting brush into the olive and garlic mixture and brush onto each of the broccoli rabe pieces until they are well covered and no longer have dry parts.
Place the baking sheet in the oven and let cook until the broccoli rabe browns. This should be about 15 minutes.
Let cool for four minutes and serve.
How to Store and Save Leftovers
If you have any broccoli rabe left be sure to place it in a sealable container and place it in the fridge. The roasted broccoli rabe will stay fresh for 3 to 7 days.
When you are ready for leftovers you can enjoy cold or place them in the microwave for 30 seconds to heat up. Reheat in the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit for five minutes
If you find you cannot fit the whole broccoli rabe bunch onto the one baking sheet you can transfer the extra pieces to another sheet pan.
You want to keep the layer thin to ensure it gets crispy.
If you need to use two baking sheets you may need to add another tablespoon of oil and a few more garlic cloves.
I like keeping the stalks whole, but if you prefer smaller pieces you can chop them up before you put on the olive and garlic mixture.
Substitutions and Variations for Roasted Broccoli Rabe
If you cannot find fresh broccoli rabe alternatively, you can use frozen broccoli rabe instead. There will be an extra step of letting it thaw. You will also need to drain out all the water before mixing it with the garlic and oil.
In addition, if you cannot find a fresh or frozen variety of this vegetable don’t fret! The following veggies can be used as a broccoli rabe substitute:
- Turnip greens
- Mustard greens
- Chinese broccoli
- Dandelion greens
- Collard greens
Additionally, If you like a little extra spice you can also add a dash of sea salt and/or black or red pepper flakes too. Some roasted broccoli rabe recipes may also add a dash of fresh lemon or orange to add some additional citrus flavor.
Equipment Used in This Recipe*
Here is a list of equipment or similar items used in this roasted broccoli rabe recipe.
- Kitchen scissors
- Parchment paper or a reusable roasting mat
- Baking sheet
- Mixing bowl
- Basting brush
- Garlic peeler
- Garlic press
- Measuring spoons
- Half spatula
*Some of these links are affiliate links, which means when you sign up or purchase from these links we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more in our disclosure statement.
Roasted Brocoli Rabe Recipe
- 1 bunch Broccoli rabe
- 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves Garlic peeled and pressed
- Rinse the broccoli rabe, pat dry, and set aside. Then preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Take a baking sheet and cover it with parchment paper or a reusable roasting mat.
- In a large bowl add 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and 3 cloves of peeled pressed garlic.
- Then toss together. Set aside.
- Separate the broccoli rabe bunch into separate stalks.
- Using kitchen scissors or a sharp paring knife cut one inch off the bottom of one stalk. Continue until all the pieces of broccoli rabe are trimmed.
- Take the trimmed broccoli rabe pieces and lay them out on the covered baking sheet.
- Dip a basting brush into the olive and garlic mixture and brush onto each of the broccoli rabe pieces until they are well covered and no longer have dry parts.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and let roast broccoli rabe until it browns. This should be about 15 minutes.
- Let cool for four minutes and serve.
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