Broccoli Lemon Carbonara.
It’s time to wrap yourself up in a hug of broccoli lemon carbonara!
This is like a grown up version of mac and cheese with some broccoli… and the lightest, silkiest sauce that you can imagine.
And I’m cheating a bit in calling this carbonara but it doesn’t have bacon or pancetta or any kind of pork. Instead, I sauté the garlic in a bit of butter so there is still a skillet full of fat to toss the noodles in!
Spaghetti carbonara is a major comfort food for us. It’s something I make when I have no idea what to make. And it’s one meal that Eddie loves that doesn’t include chicken or steak (okay yes there is bacon but still) and I always think of it on a Friday or Saturday night when it’s cold and snowy, we have no plans and we’re starving.
It’s the best treat!
I’ve also made mannnny different versions of this over the years. Majorly trashing up that carbonara name. Because why not!
First thing to know:
You should like lemon in savory dishes to make this recipe. However, it’s not overly lemony. The lemon zest gets whisked in with the eggs and parmesan and then a little extra is sprinkled on top for garnish. It’s bright and refreshing for such a comforting dish. At the same time, the sauce that the parmesan and eggs create takes away some of the tartness from the lemon.
I roast the broccoli first! You don’t HAVE to roast it. You can even toss it in the skillet with the garlic if you wish. I just love roasted broccoli OH SO MUCH. So I figure while the water is coming to a boil for the pasta and then, boiling, I will take 15 minutes to roast the broccoli and give it a bit of charred flavor. YUM.
After the roasting of the veg and boiling of the pasta, everything comes together in one skillet! Toss the noodles in the garlicky butter. Whisk together the eggs, parm and lemon zest, then quickly stir it into the hot noodles to create a sauce. Add some reserved water from boiling the pasta to thicken it up and make it silkier. Fold the roasted broccoli in.
Add more cheese. (of course)
Add more lemon (why not)
Eat and be the happiest person alive!
Broccoli Lemon Carbonara
- 3 cups fresh broccoli florets
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 pound pasta, cooked
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for sprinkling
- 2 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the broccoli on a baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast the broccoli for 15 to 20 minutes, until it just starts to char.
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Once boiling, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Remember! You want to reserve at least 1 cup of the pasta water once it has finished cooking.
- Heat a large skillet over low heat. Add the butter and the garlic. Cook, stirring often, for 5 to 6 minutes until the garlic slowly begins to brown.
- In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, parmesan cheese and almost all of the lemon zest (I reserve a bit for sprinkling). Add a few cracks of black pepper.
- Once the pasta is cooked, drain it well. Toss it in the garlic and butter. Turn the heat off under the skillet. Add the parmesan/egg mixture and immediately begin stirring with a spatula to create a creamy sauce. Stir for at least 2 minutes, so the eggs don’t scramble and a sauce coats the noodles. Whisk in ½ cup of the pasta water and stir until the sauce comes together. If you want the sauce even more liquidy, you can add the remaining pasta water!
- Fold the roasted broccoli into the pasta in the skillet. Sprinkle with more parmesan and black pepper. Serve immediately!
The bacon isn’t even missed I promise.