Broccoli Rice with Pesto, Pine Nuts, and Parmesan

Rule #179: Sometimes the longer the name of the recipe, the better it tastes. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

This little number was the birth child of my ridiculous love for carbs and my ridiculous need to lose this ole baby weight. I wanted something that could be a decent substitute for pasta when we are having an Italian dish. I have to say, I don’t miss the carbs when we have this as a side. I almost* would prefer it over pasta. 

*Don’t tell spaghetti I’m cheating on him, please. 

H-E-B sells this lovely stuff: already riced broccoli. You could easily throw some broccoli into a food processor and get the same result (or chop it finely). BUT, I love a good shortcut. I prefer riced broccoli over cauliflower for this side dish because it doesn’t have as distinct a taste. It can soak up the hearty marinara sauce in Italian dishes as well as the pesto, pine nuts, and Parmesan in this side dish itself. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

First, heat some olive oil until shimmering over medium-high heat. Then throw in the riced broccoli. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

Sauté the broccoli rice for about 4 minutes, until it’s softened a bit. Then add in a good amount of green pesto. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

Then, throw in some pine nuts and Parmesan. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

You can lightly toast the pine nuts if you want. Simply heat a small skillet over medium-high heat, then toast the nuts for about 3 minutes (until fragrant), stirring occasionally. 

Give everything a good stir and cook for an additional 5 minutes. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

Garnish with more pine nuts and Parmesan. 

Broccoli Rice with Pesto Pine Nuts and Parmesan

We love ours with Italian Meatballs and Mozzarella Stuffed Chicken Meatballs, but good ole bolognese spaghetti sauce would be yummy, too! 


Broccoli Rice with Pesto, Pine Nuts, and Parmesan

3 tbs. EVOO

4 cups riced broccoli (approximately)

2 heaping tbs. green pesto

2 tbs. pine nuts, plus more for garnish

1/4 cup Parmesan, shredded or grated, plus more for garnish

In a medium skillet or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil to shimmering over medium-high heat. Add in the riced broccoli and cook for 4 minutes, until softened, stirring occasionally. Add in the pesto, pine nuts, and Parmesan. Stir to combine and cook an additional 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Garnish with more pine nuts and Parmesan.

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