Broccoli Pesto- anti-cancer recipes- cook for your life

Broccoli Pesto

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Clock Icon for Prep Time 20 min prep
Person Icon for Serving Size 4 servings
Carrot Icon for Number of Ingredients Size 8 ingredients

Pesto isn’t always about pine nuts and basil, it can be about other members of the vegetable kingdom too, as here. Broccoli is blanched then pureed with garlic, parmesan, fresh basil, and...


  • 1½ cups broccoli florets ( see Ann’s Tips)
  • 8 ounces whole wheat fusilli pasta (2-ounces per person)
  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup toasted walnuts
  • ⅓ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 stem basil leaves

Nutrition Facts


427 cals


22 g

Saturated Fat

5 g

Polyunsaturated Fat

3 g

Monounsaturated Fat

14 g


45 g


2 g


2 g


13 g


268 mg


  1. Bring salted water to boil in a pot. Add the broccoli and boil for 5 minutes. Drain and run under cold water.
  2. In the same pot, bring another batch of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and reserve ¼ cup of cooking liquid.
  3. In a food processor, process the salt, garlic, and olive oil until the garlic is evenly chopped. Add the drained broccoli, walnuts, Parmesan cheese, and basil. Process until well blended with some texture remaining. Taste for seasoning.
  4. Cover and refrigerate pesto if not using immediately. Toss the pesto with the drained pasta, adding some cooking liquid if the pesto is too thick. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Chef Tips

This pesto is a perfect way to use frozen broccoli  florets.

If you are on a low fiber diet, cut out the garlic for a 1/4 teaspoon of asafoetida, and sub out the walnuts for 2-3 tablespoons of creamy almond butter. Use on white rice or white pasta.


Registered Dietitian Approved

All our recipes are created by chefs and reviewed by our oncology-trained staff Registered Dietitian, Kate Ueland, MS, RD, to ensure that each is backed with scientific evidence and meets the standards set by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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