How to Prepare Broccoli Rabe, Sausage, and Pasta Dish

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Christina Flores

· 2 min read

Healthy Food Recipes: Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Penne

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Additional Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Servings: 4


  • 1 lb broccoli rabe, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 8 oz penne pasta
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup toasted breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Steps to Cook:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the penne pasta and cook according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.

  2. In a large skillet, cook the Italian sausage over medium-high heat, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until browned and cooked through, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer the cooked sausage to a plate and set aside.

  3. In the same skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped broccoli rabe and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until slightly wilted.

  4. Add the minced garlic to the skillet and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant.

  5. Add the cooked sausage back to the skillet with the broccoli rabe and garlic. Stir to combine and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.

  6. Add the cooked penne pasta to the skillet and toss everything together, allowing the pasta to heat through and the flavors to meld, about 2-3 minutes.

  7. Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the grated Parmesan cheese and toasted breadcrumbs. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

  8. If desired, sprinkle with a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little extra heat.

Cook’s Note:

  • For a creamier texture, you can add a splash of heavy cream or half-and-half to the skillet along with the Parmesan cheese.
  • To make this dish vegetarian, you can substitute the Italian sausage with crumbled tofu or plant-based sausage.
  • Adjust the amount of broccoli rabe to your personal preference. Some people prefer more greens, while others prefer a higher ratio of sausage and pasta.
  • Toasting the breadcrumbs in a dry skillet over medium heat for a few minutes before adding them to the dish will give them a nice, crunchy texture.

This recipe for Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Penne is a delicious and nutritious meal that combines the earthy bitterness of broccoli rabe with the savory flavor of Italian sausage and the comforting texture of penne pasta.

The broccoli rabe provides a significant amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, making it a healthy addition to this dish. Italian sausage is a good source of protein, while the penne pasta provides complex carbohydrates to fuel your body.

The combination of the sautéed broccoli rabe, garlic, and sausage creates a flavorful base for the pasta, while the Parmesan cheese and toasted breadcrumbs add a creamy and crunchy texture to the final dish.

This recipe is perfect for a quick and satisfying weeknight dinner, and it can also be easily adjusted to suit different dietary preferences or taste buds. Whether you’re looking for a healthy and delicious meal or simply want to try something new, this Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Penne is sure to impress.

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About Christina Flores

Hi, I am Christina Flores, author of I'm passionate about creating delicious and nutritious recipes to help people lead healthier lives. Join me on this culinary journey as we explore the world of healthy eating together!