We’re not going to pretend that skillet-charred broccolini is the sexiest thing you’ll make this week. Or that it’ll instantly turn your kids into vegetable aficionados. We can, however, promise that this simple side will come together quickly, only mess up a single pan, and earn you accolades from most (if maybe not all) the folks at your table. Which makes it a definite keeper in our books.Angie Zoobkoff

A white plate of skillet-charred broccolini.

Skillet Charred Broccolini

5 from 1 vote
This skillet charred broccolini comes together in a flash to ensure that you can get a veggie side dish on the table no matter how busy you might be.
David Leite
Servings2 to 4 servings
Calories291 kcal
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time15 minutes


  • Two bunches broccolini, larger stems halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons garlic confit oil
  • 3 or 4 garlic confit cloves
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Coarse sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons shaved Parmesan cheese
  • Squeeze of lemon


  • Wash the broccolini and shake off all but a little water clinging to the tops and stems.
  • Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Carefully add the garlic confit oil and cloves and let the garlic sizzle for about 1 minute.
  • Add the broccolini to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Carefully pour in the water (it will steam and may splatter), reduce the heat to medium, cover, and steam the greens for 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Uncover the skillet and increase the heat to high. Add the olive oil and season with salt. Toss once with tongs in the skillet, then cook until the broccolini are charred to your liking, 2 to 5 minutes.
  • Sprinkle in the cheese and allow it to melt over the broccolini.
  • Remove the skillet from the heat, squeeze lemon juice over the top, and serve right away.
Simple Fare Spring/Summer Cookbook

Adapted From

Simple Fare: Spring and Summer

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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 291 kcalCarbohydrates: 16 gProtein: 8 gFat: 22 gSaturated Fat: 4 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 16 gCholesterol: 3 mgSodium: 134 mgPotassium: 47 mgFiber: 2 gSugar: 4 gVitamin A: 3040 IUVitamin C: 159 mgCalcium: 199 mgIron: 2 mg

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

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2017 Karen Mordechai. Photo © 2017 Karen Mordechai. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

This recipe really takes advantage of the more subtle and tender personality of broccolini and kicks it up with some nice bitterness from the charring and balances it all out with sweetness from the parm and a nice splash of acidity care of the fresh lemon. I found this to be an extremely versatile side and one that all of my kids enjoyed, too. The fact that it all takes place in one pot makes it all the better!

The broccolini played nicely with the rest of the meal: creamy polenta, hangar steak, and basil lemonade.

This simple recipe comes together quickly but results in a side dish with loads of flavor that highlights the sweetness of the vegetable. I was especially pleased with the addition of the garlic confit for its much softer and mellower taste.

Steamed until the stalks achieved a lovely, bright green and then charred before adding the cheese and seasoning with sea salt. Once on a serving dish, I sprinkled it with lemon juice. I wasn’t able to purchase much broccolini but I assume 100 grams per person would be a decent serving size.

I think I’ve found my new favorite vegetable…and preparation method. This recipe is quick, easy, and the results are out of this world. There’s not much to say—the preparation and cooking couldn’t be more straightforward.

The key is to use a cast iron pan and get the pan really hot before dropping in the broccolini. Be careful because if you do it right, it packs a big sizzle.

The recipe is so straightforward. We had too much broccolini for one batch so did it in two and that didn’t mess up the timing for the rest of our dinner.

To be sure, making the garlic confit is time-consuming but well worth it.

The same as the greens recipe, they were right—it’s the simplest of recipes and easy to do for the beginning cook. I used 17 ounces of broccolini for the recipe. I preheated the skillet to medium-high heat, added the garlic confit oil and cloves and immediately added the rinsed broccolini. The broccolini was done in about 3 minutes including the thin stems.

Once it was tender, it charred quickly once I turned the heat up and added the oil. The lemon was a really nice addition to the crispness of the flavor and paired well with my 14 Hands Sauvignon Blanc.

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has 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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