How many of you end up making you and your spouse chicken, one of your children grilled cheese and the other one pasta with butter. As parents, naturally we feel the need to make sure our kids eat something at every meal. As a result, if they don’t like what we make, many of us find ourselves scrambling at the last minute to make something else. Somewhere along the line, short order cook got added to our job description. Don’t get me wrong, pasta with butter is delicious and easy to whip up, but night after night it can get old AND your little one is missing out on valuable nutrients.

When I’m exhausted and have zero energy to cook (um, everyday), but still have to come up with something for the family to eat, I make this recipe. Pasta with broccolini takes no time to prepare, is super delicious and perfect as pasta salad the next day.

Broccolini is similar in name and taste to broccoli, but it’s actually from the cabbage family. Its high in vitamin C, but also contains vitamin A, calcium, folate and iron. It can be more delicate than broccoli, so make sure not too over cook it. Kenya has always loved it because its fun to hold and munch on like a tall tree.

Even for kids that turn their noses up at veggies, this should be a hit.


Pasta with Broccolini

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Servings: 4
Prep Time 1 minute
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes



  • Bring large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions.
  • In the last 3 minutes of the pasta cooking time, add the broccolini.
  • Drain the pasta and broccolini and place in the bowl.
  • Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and throughly combine.
  • Serve.


Calories: 320kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 550mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g
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About the Author

Catherine is a mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.


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  2. I used the spinach tomato fussili from Whole Foods but I didn’t have a Parmesan cheese on hand…however, still my 4 yr old said “mmmmm…I could eat it a long time like 30 years” lol…he liked it! So did my almost 9 mo old son for whom I mashed it a bit with a hand blender…
    I am sooo glad I found weelicious…each recipe I tried so far was super easy and turned out great…filling up my recipe box already!

  3. This is so yummy! However, I have a toddler who refuses to even taste new foods. If its not familiar, she won’t touch it.
    I loved this dish though. So easy, so tasty!

  4. I make a version of this, but add goedln raisins and pine nuts. The sweetness of the raisins, in counterpoint to the salt of the sausage and the bitter of the rabe, adds a kind of inexplicable richness. I moisten with chicken stock instead of water, too, and sometimes add about a half a tablespoon of butter at the end of cooking. John likes to drizzle his with some really good olive oil after it’s dished up. This is one of our go-to, don’t know what the hell to have for dinner, we always love it, dishes.

  5. There are some great vegan alternatives to parmesan cheese. One brand is called Parma. Another option would be to sprinkle on some Nutritional Yeast! It is really yummy on popcorn to give that cheesy, tangy bite!

  6. Since we have dairy allergies in our family, what would you suggest to use in place of the parmesan to give it that salty tang?

  7. Broccolini pasta was a hit. It was super fast to make and Cole loved it. I used a small shell pasta that I found at Whole Foods. It was the smallest pasta I could find. I didn’t want to use alphabets (too small for picking up) so this was a good compromise. I was a bit afraid at first thinking that they would be too big for him (13 months old) but he did just fine. Pasta is Organic Ancient Harvest Quinoa Pasta Shells.

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