An easy recipe for sauteed broccolini. Simply cook it in butter until browned and crisp, add water to the pan, cover, and briefly steam. Easy!
I have quite a few vegetable recipes on this blog. I often skip the starch at dinner and simply serve a vegetable side (or two). So I’m always on the lookout for interesting vegetables to make for my family.
This is one of my favorites. It’s tasty, nutritious, and very easy to make. Especially when you use my easy method of sauteing first, then steaming.
What’s the difference between broccoli and broccolini?
Broccolini is a cross between broccoli and Chinese broccoli. It has small florets and long, thin stalks.
The entire vegetable is edible, so you don’t need to remove the leaves before cooking. It is sweeter and milder than broccoli, and it cooks faster.
When making broccoli, it’s best to cook the florets and the stems separately, because the stems are tough and need a longer time to cook. Here’s a good recipe for roasted broccoli stalks.
It’s actually easier to make sauteed broccolini because you can cook the entire vegetable at once.
The ingredients you’ll need
You’ll only need four simple ingredients to make this tasty side dish (the exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below):
Fresh broccolini: You can find it in the vegetable aisle, usually right next to the broccoli.
Unsalted butter: I love using creamy European butter, but any butter will be great.
Kosher salt and black pepper: If using fine salt, you should reduce the amount you use, or the dish could end up too salty.
How to saute broccolini
It’s easy! The detailed instructions are in the recipe card below. Here are the basic steps:
1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan.
2. Add the broccolini, the salt, and the pepper.
3. Cook until the butter is gone and the vegetable is beginning to brown.
4. Add water to the saucepan, cover, and steam until the stems are tender-crisp.
Should I blanch it before cooking?
Many recipes will tell you to blanch it first. This means cooking the broccolini briefly in salted water, then quickly rinsing it in cold water or dipping it in ice water to stop the cooking process.
As explained above, I do it a little differently, and I think my method is easier. I like to sauté it until browned and crispy. Then I add a bit of water to the hot pan, cover and briefly steam, just until the stems are tender-crisp.
What to serve with sauteed broccolini?
You can also serve it alongside fried or poached eggs for a tasty meatless dinner.
What to do with the leftovers?
I don’t really like to keep the leftovers. They tend to become limp in the fridge and lose their wonderful crispiness. So I try to make just as much as we can eat.
But if you end up with leftovers, you can keep them in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days. You can reheat them in the microwave.
I sometimes chop them up and add them cold to a salad the next day for my lunch, or mix them into an omelet the next morning.
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- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 bunches fresh broccolini
- 1/2 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Heat a very large, 14-inch skillet over medium-high heat until very hot, about 3 minutes. Add the butter and swirl to coat.
- Add the broccolini, the salt and pepper. Sauté 5-10 minutes, stirring often, until the broccolini has absorbed all the butter and parts of the broccolini are beginning to brown.
- Add 1/4 cup water to the bottom of the skillet. Cover and steam for about 2 minutes, until the stems are tender-crisp. Serve immediately.