We love having simple go-to recipes that we can whip up any night of the week. This broccoli with peanut sauce is a delicious side to make with almost any dish or eaten by itself on a bed of coconut rice.–Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi


This dipping sauce can be a lifesaver when you make it ahead of time. Peanut sauce will last up to 3 days in the fridge. You can reheat it in the microwave or over low heat on the stovetop.

Four plates topped with broccoli with peanut sauce and a small dish of sesame seeds on the side.

Broccoli with Peanut Sauce

4.80 / 5 votes
This broccoli with peanut sauce made with ginger, garlic, sesame oil, soy sauce, lime, and peanut butter is a fast and failproof way to get everyone to eat their veggies. Dip, drag, and dredge steamed broccoli in the Thai-inspired sauce. Then let your imagination loose with any sauce that's left over. Or make another batch because you just can't get enough of it.
David Leite
Servings4 servings
Calories187 kcal
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Total Time20 minutes


For the peanut sauce

  • 2 tablespoons untoasted sesame oil, or substitute mild vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice or rice vinegar
  • 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1/2 to 1 small green chile pepper, or less to taste, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons smooth or crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon honey

For the steamed broccoli

  • 7 ounces broccoli or broccolini, trimmed into uniform spears
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds, to serve


Make the peanut sauce

  • In a small bowl, whisk everything together. Taste and, if you like, add more of any ingredient.

Steam the broccoli

  • If using broccoli with thick stems, you may wish to peel the thick outer layer of the stems with a vegetable peeler.
  • Set up a metal or bamboo steamer in a pot, add an inch or so of water, and bring to a boil.
  • Steam the broccoli or broccolini until almost but not quite as tender as you like, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.

    ☞ TESTER TIP: The broccoli or broccolini will continue to cook a little after you take it off the stove from the residual heat. Anticipate this so your broccoli isn’t sad and soggy.

Serve the broccoli with peanut sauce

  • Shake, stir, or whisk the peanut sauce to recombine. If desired, add a little warm water, a few drops at a time, to thin the sauce.
  • Drizzle some sauce on plates, top with the broccoli, and scatter with sesame seeds. Bring to the table while still warm.
The Diabetes Weight Loss Cookbook

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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 187 kcalCarbohydrates: 10 gProtein: 6 gFat: 15 gSaturated Fat: 3 gSodium: 594 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 4 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2019 Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi. Photo © 2019 Susan Bell. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

I’d eat anything if it’s dipped in peanut sauce. In fact, I ate all of the broccoli in this recipe by myself, in one sitting, for a weeknight dinner last week. It was delicious and I really liked the chile in the tangy nutty sauce. I typically do not use chile pepper in a peanut sauce. (I used 1/2 medium jalapeño.)

I prefer steaming broccoli to boiling it. Boiled broccoli florets hold a lot of water and draining them in a colander is often not enough—you almost have to pick up each spear and shake the water out of the floret or dab it on a tea towel.

Since the recipe says to serve the broccolini warm (i.e. do not shock it in ice water after cooking), I feel 2 minutes of cooking time would be more appropriate. Without any cooling process, the broccoli kept cooking. So by the time I served it was softer than I prefer.

This recipe is delicious and healthful and a great way to introduce people to broccolini. It comes together in minutes but presents gorgeously. My guests loved it, simply picking up the long stems that were perfectly tender, dunking, and eating the broccolini whole.

It had a very Thai-influenced flavor and would pair wonderfully with other Thai tapas-style dishes, such as spring rolls, satay, fried ribs, lettuce wraps, etc.

This is a very yummy sauce that I think you could put on any number of vegetables—it’s great with broccoli but I could also see eating it with cucumbers, celery, bell peppers, even mixing it into stir-fries.

The recipe is very simple and, seeing as it’s multi-purpose (at least in my opinion), I think it could be a summer go-to when the weather’s hot and you want a cool snack. Loved it!

I found the peanut sauce to be delightful with the lime, peanut butter, and pepper taking the lead with hints of ginger, garlic, and soy.

The only changes I made to the sauce is I opted for the olive oil in place of the sesame oil. I did add the teaspoon of toasted sesame oil. Sesame oil, toasted or not, is one of those ingredients that can ruin a dish for me. I do like a hint of it, though. I used a very small serrano pepper, so small it wouldn’t even register on the scale at the market so they gave it to me for free. Size obviously didn’t matter as I got a big surprise when I tasted the sauce. That was the hottest serrano pepper I’ve ever had so I added a little more honey to balance it out.

I’m a huge fan of broccoli. Not only for its health benefits but its versatility as well. I’ve made chicken satay many times, usually accompanied by a vegetable fried rice with lots of broccoli. However, it never dawned on me to make broccoli the star with the sauce. I used to only eat the florets, but I have come to love the stems equally as much. Now I keep a few inches of the stem on and use a vegetable peeler to remove the tough layer.

I couldn’t resist grilling up a few skewers of chicken. This made for a very satisfying meal and the broccoli with the sauce stole the show.

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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