If you’ve avoided broccoli your whole life, here are simple ways to cook and boost broccoli’s flavor so that you can enjoy this nutritious vegetable.
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli are packed with anti-inflammatory properties. It belongs to the same family as cabbage, kale, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts. Broccoli is a low carb food and often a staple in low carb or keto diets. Eating it raw and steaming broccoli may be the healthiest way to prepare broccoli, but it may also not be the most appetizing. Some may enjoy the earthy flavors of broccoli in its raw form, however, adding heat actually amplifies its flavor. Here are some other tasty ways to enjoy it and still get some of broccoli’s nutritional benefits.
How to Buy and Store Broccoli
- When you are buying broccoli, you want to pick broccoli that has a uniform green color. Avoid broccoli with brown and yellowing spots. The broccoli stem should be firm and the crown should be tight and springy.
- You’ll want to store your broccoli in the fridge until you are ready to use it. Storing it in the fridge will help keep it fresh for up to a week.
Meal Prep Tips for Broccoli
- Before cooking your broccoli, you’ll want to slice through the broccoli stem and get close to the crown. This will allow the crown to break into the large florets. To create bite-size pieces, cut through the trunk of each floret.
- Don’t toss the stem. The large stem is edible and is packed with fiber and nutrients. Just be sure to use a peeler to remove the tough outer portions. Then you can use a grater to shred them and make them into broccoli slaw or thrown them into a food processor to make broccoli rice as a low-carb option. You can also add them to soups and stews which will make the broth more nutritious.
- To wash the broccoli, rinse the stems and florets under running water to remove any dirt.
- To retain the maximum nutritional benefits of broccoli, you’ll want to avoid boiling it in excess.
Simple Ways to Cook Broccoli
If you’re looking for a quick and no-stress way to cook broccoli, blanching and steaming broccoli will be the easiest method. Both of these methods are good for when you are trying to do some prep in advance. These two methods are also helpful if you bought too much broccoli and want to freeze them for later use. Blanching and steaming them before freezing will give you better tasting broccoli when you are ready to use them.
Boil water into a large pot and add a teaspoon of salt. While, you are waiting for the water to boil, create an ice water bath and set it aside. Then, carefully add the broccoli florets into the boiling water for about 1 to 2 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to remove the broccoli florets and place them into the ice water to stop the cooking process. Blanching broccoli will give it a bright green color and make it more appetizing to eat than raw broccoli.
The easiest way to steam broccoli is to place the florets in a microwave-safe dish and add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water. Cover the dish with a lid and microwave on high for about 3 to 4 minutes. Be careful when removing the lid to avoid being burned from the steam. Use a fork to check if the broccoli is tender. The fork should easily poke through the broccoli without it falling apart.
Tasty Ways to Cook Broccoli
While blanching and steaming broccoli may be the easiest ways to broccoli, it doesn’t add much flavor. Here are three of our favorite ways to add flavor to boost the flavor of broccoli. These are three easy ways to incorporate broccoli into your weekly meal prep.
Bake them with Eggs
Making egg frittatas or egg muffins are often easy ways to incorporate vegetables for our morning breakfasts. We often use leftover veggies and herbs to our eggs, and adding broccoli to these meals is a great way to get this veggie into our diets. All you need to do is chop up the broccoli florets into smaller pieces. Scramble eggs in a mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper. Then, either use a greased baking dish, or greased muffin tins and evenly pour in the scrambled eggs. Top off the eggs with the broccoli florets, along with other veggies or choice of toppings. You can add tomatoes, diced sausage, and even a sprinkle of cheese. Bake it in the oven for about 10-12 minutes.
If you are not a fan of the sulfurous flavors of broccoli, then roasting this cruciferous vegetable is a way to change those flavors to something that you may enjoy. All you have to do is season the broccoli with a bit of garlic powder and salt. Coat it with olive oil and place it on a sheet pan. Roast it in the oven at 425 for 20 to 25 minutes. After roasting, you get crispy golden brown broccoli that tastes amazing. Sprinkle it with lemon juice for some added freshness.
Stir Fry or Saute Broccoli
Before you saute the broccoli make sure that it is completely dry after rinsing. Add oil to a skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Toss in the florets and add your seasonings. Stir them frequently until the broccoli is bright green and tender. If you are making stir fry, add your sauce at the end so that broccoli florets can soak up the sauce. We often use a soy garlic sauce or a sesame ginger sauce.
10 Ways to Enjoy Broccoli
Sheet Pan Salmon with Roasted Broccoli and Apples on top of Fresh Spinach Salad
Grilled Steak with Oven Roasted Cheesy Broccoli
Sauteed Chicken Sausage with Fajita Bell Peppers and Broccoli Rice
Boiled Eggs with Seasoned Oven Roasted Potatoes and Broccoli Hash
Oven-Baked Cheesy Broccoli Rice and Chicken
Stir-Fried Cauliflower Fried Rice
Ground Beef Stir Fry with Broccoli
Steamed Broccoli with BBQ Baked Potato
Air Fryer Broccoli with Orange Soy Glazed Chicken Thighs
Fresh Broccoli Salad with Radish and Cherry Tomatoes
Try out this simple stir fry recipe using broccoli: