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Broccoli Sunflower Pesto Pasta
Broccoli Sunflower Pesto Pasta
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 3
  • 2 small crowns of broccoli, or one large head of broccoli
  • 2 oz parmesan
  • ¼ cup shelled, unsalted, sunflower seeds
  • 1 handful fresh basil leaves (about ¼ cup)
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tbsp olive oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 12 oz short pasta like casarecce
  • 2 tbsp butter
  1. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil (about 4 quarts of water and 4 tbsp kosher salt).
  2. Cut off the large stem of the broccoli crowns then cut into 1 inch florets. Once the water is boiling, add the broccoli florets, boiling for just 1 minute. Remove them using a slotted spoon or skimmer to a bowl. Let them cool for 3 minutes.
  3. Add the pasta to the boiling water. Follow the package directions and boil until al dente.
  4. Meanwhile, cut the parmesan into cubes and add them to a food processor. Blend on high until the parmesan is like dust. Remove 2 tablespoons of the parmesan and set aside for garnishing, leaving the rest in the food processor. Add half the broccoli along with the sunflower seeds, basil, garlic, a big pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper, and the juice of half a lemon. Run the food processor on high and gradually drizzle the olive oil through the vent until you have a coarse pesto. Taste for salt.
  5. Reserve a cup of the pasta water. Remove your pasta pot from heat, drain the pasta, then put it directly back into the pot. Add all of the pesto and the butter along with a splash of pasta water. Stir continuously, adding a little pasta water at a time until the pasta is coated and the sauce is the consistency you like it. Serve topped with the extra parmesan.
Recipe by Tastemaker Blog at https://tastemakerblog.com/2021/03/23/broccoli-sunflower-pesto-pasta/