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Roasted Broccoli Rabe with Garlic

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Broccoli Rabe roasted with chunks of garlic and oil and a touch of crushed red pepper flakes.

Broccoli Rabe roasted with chunks of garlic and oil and a touch of crushed red pepper flakes.Roasted Broccoli Rabe with Garlic

I love broccoli rabe, and it’s slightly bitter taste especially when sauteed with garlic and oil. It’s also great tossed with pasta, sausage, in a wrap with chicken, or eaten as a side dish.

Broccoli Rabe, otherwise known as rapini is a popular vegetable in Italian and Chinese cuisine. It has a slightly nutty, bitter flavor, and it is a good source of vitamins A, C and K, as well as potassium, calcium and iron.

Toss it with pasta, Pecorino romano and chicken sausage and you have a wonderful meal.

How to cook Broccoli Rabe so it’s less bitter

The best way to cook broccoli rabe to take away most of the bitterness is to blanch it first. Then drain it, saute some garlic in olive oil and add the drained broccoli rabe.

Adding red pepper flakes gives it a nice little kick. This shrinks to almost half its size when cooked.

Roasted Broccoli Rabe with Garlic

5 from 1 vote
Broccoli Rabe roasted with chunks of garlic and oil and a touch of crushed red pepper flakes.
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Broccoli Rabe roasted with chunks of garlic and oil and a touch of crushed red pepper flakes.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Serving Size: 1 /4th


  • 1 large bunch broccoli rabe, rapini, tough stems removed
  • 4-5 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and fresh pepper
  • pinch crushed red pepper flakes, optional


  • Heat oven to 400°.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • When water boils, add broccoli rabe and blanch one minute.
  • Remove from water and DRAIN WELL in a colander.
  • Add to a baking dish and mix with garlic, oil, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Roast 15-20 minutes.

Last Step:

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Serving: 1 /4th, Calories: 72.4 kcal, Carbohydrates: 1.7 g, Protein: 1.2 g, Fat: 7 g, Saturated Fat: 1 g, Sodium: 14.5 mg, Fiber: 0.8 g, Sugar: 0.3 g


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26 comments on “Roasted Broccoli Rabe with Garlic”

  1. Perfection! Followed the recipe. I had to limit myself to one serving but I could have easily eaten this whole recipe on it’s own. Hit the spot!

  2. Avatar photo
    Laura McKissack

    I was happy to see this and like your trick of pre-cooking it before you roast. We eat grilled vegetables with almost every meal, and I am never sure how to count the points. We take a big bowl and toss in red pepper strips, asparagus, broccolini, kale – whatever is in season and looks good, and toss it with a good quarter to half cup of olive oil, a little salt and a little pepper. Then we grill it on screens on the grill until slightly charred all over. I know *all* of the olive oil doesn't stay on the veggies, but I have no idea how much does. I think it depends on the veggie. Curly kale tends to hold a lot more than slick peppers… Do I count it all? Because if so this is not a healthy dish! Maybe we should mix with spray oil?

  3. Made this with dinner tonight! Was not bitter at all, turned out absolutely perfect. Thanks Gina!

  4. Oh my gosh, my husband and I love this in fact we are invited out for Thanksgiving dinner and I am making this along with something else. thank you for sharing.

  5. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    LOL!! I LOVE it!!! I guess it's an acquired taste, my husband's not a big fan either but I can eat this every day!

  6. I made this recipe for broccoli rabe tonight for dinner. We are very big vegetable eaters, and this was possibly the worst tasting vegetable I ever ate! It was SO BITTER!!! I ended up adding cheese and then honey just to make it somewhat edible! AWFUL!! Never again

    1. If it’s really bitter, your not salting the water enough. Really salt that water. It should taste like the ocean. I also would boil it a little longer, then adjust the roasting time time to make up for that change. Do not add salt after taking it out of the water. It will be salty enough.

  7. I have had a very hard time finding broccoli rabe in any stores. Where is the best place to find this??

  8. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    I would not use less olive oil than the recipe calls for, you'll get different results, but yes, it is bitter, not for everyone I guess but I love it!

  9. Actually, the WW system has Olive Oil at 4 PointsPlus for 1 TBS, so 2 TBS would be 8 PointsPlus, so if the recipe serves 4, then each serving is 2 PointsPlus.

  10. I am definitely going to try this dish. It looks delicious and very healthy!!!! Also, just as a note, on the new Points Plus, there is no more .5 of anything. It is all rounded to the next number.

  11. This sounds absolutely delicious! I just read online that broccoli & garlic are both negative calorie foods, so I want to start eating more of them!

  12. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    That's ok Sharon- I just don't want you to think 1 tbsp of oil is 1 pt. Wish it was!!

  13. Oops. Thanks for correcting me! I only used a tsp when I input the recipe. Going to fix it now. 🙂 Can't wait to try it!!

  14. It's beautiful!! However, I think that it's only .5 point using Points+. The broccoli rape is free, the garlic is free, the salt and pepper are free, and the red pepper flakes are free. So, you only need to calculate for the 2 tbsp of olive oil. It's 1 point per tablespoon. So, 2 points for the whole dish or .5 point for serving…right?

  15. I was referred to your blog by Marcelle from, because of how my food have become boring since I started on my healthy living & exercise journey. I have to say: WOW! Such delicious looking and low in calorie kinds of foods made in a healthy way. I am certainly coming back each time you update your blog.

  16. Avatar photo
    A Thought For Food

    I adore broccoli rabe! It's one of those things i grew up with and anytime I see it at the store, I have to get it