How to Spiralize Broccoli: Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

My grandfather makes this incredible lemon garlic broccoli dish that basically bathes in a pool of olive oil and garlic. When you dig your fork into a broccoli floret, you have to let the broccoli drip-dry for a moment.

I’m not complaining. But my hips don’t lie, and it’s time that I step up to the plate and make a version of his dish that’s more love-handle-friendly. Olive oil is a healthy fat source, but I need a little moderation – especially because it’s easy to polish off a whole bowl of that garlic broccoli!

And in true Inspiralized fashion, I’m turning this comfort food dish into something spiralized – with broccoli noodles!

Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

Yes sir/ma’am, I said broccoli noodles. As in, noodles… made from a broccoli. Gosh, will the fun ever end?

You can spiralize broccoli stems! It’s a little tricky and doesn’t yield perfect spirals, but it’s doable – and the results are still as scrumptious, if not as impressive, as a bowl of zucchini noodles.

Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

In Sunday’s recipe, I showed up with a broccoli and carrot salad, using broccoli noodles, and I got a few “WTF, how?!” e-mails. So, I figured I’d come up with a little tutorial.

The most important part of spiralizing a broccoli is finding a broccoli bunch with wide stems. The stem should be no smaller than 1.5″ inches in diameter and as straight and long as possible. Ideally, the broccoli stem will be in the 1.5-3″ diameter range. To find larger broccoli, try farmer’s markets and organic grocery stores (like Whole Foods.)

Now, let’s get Inspiralized!

First, slice the florets off the stem, trying to leave as much stem fully intact as possible.

How to Spiralize Broccoli -

Then, cut off the bottom of the broccoli stem so that it is even and flat. Load the stem onto the spiralizer, careful to align it in the center.

How to Spiralize Broccoli -

Spiralize quickly (the quicker, the better), applying strong pressure towards the blade.

How to Spiralize Broccoli -

One broccoli stem yields 1 large cup of noodles. As you can see, the noodles won’t be clean spirals. However, when you cook them in the skillet with other yummy ingredients, it doesn’t matter – they transform, absorb flavors and are a beautiful addition to a broccoli dish.

Plus, how cool is it that we use the entire broccoli? Usually you throw away the stems, right?

Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

As for this recipe, it’s very basic but so comforting and flavorful, you’ll be amazed at how good broccoli can taste – especially with the dusting of pecorino romano cheese (the salt is wonderful, adding a deep savoriness that melts into the vegetable.)

You can try adding beans, chicken or steak to this dish to transform it into a full meal – think of it like an Italian-inspired version of a broccoli stir fry.

Regardless, you’ll never look at broccoli the same way again.

Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

Side note: today marks the 1 year mark from when I quit my job to start Inspiralized. This time last year, I was buying the domain name and cheers-ing Lu, celebrating my first big step towards my dream!

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s sappy post about my 1 year Inspiralized anniversary. I couldn’t be prouder and more excited to recap my first year with you!

Have you tried spiralizing broccoli before? How did it go?

Nutritional Information & Recipe


How to Spiralize Broccoli: Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Servings: 2


How to Spiralize Broccoli: Garlic Broccoli Noodles with Toasted Pine Nuts


  • 1 large broccoli head with stem
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch of red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated pecorino romano cheese


  1. Slice off the head of the broccoli, leaving as little stem on the florets as possible. Set aside the broccoli florets. Slice the bottom end off the broccoli stem so that it is evenly flat. Spiralize the broccoli stem, using Blade C.
  2. Place a large skillet over medium heat and add in the olive oil. Once the oil heats, add in the broccoli florets, stems, red pepper flakes and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 3-5 minutes, shaking the skillet frequently, letting the broccoli cook.
  3. While the broccoli is cooking, place your pine nuts in a small skillet over medium heat. Let toast until fragrant and the pine nuts slightly brown, about 5 minutes. Be careful not to burn the pine nuts – toss occasionally. When done, set aside.
  4. Add in the garlic and lemon juice and cook for 3-5 more minutes (covered) or until broccoli is tender but more easily pierced with a fork. Transfer the broccoli to a serving bowl and top with pine nuts and pecorino romano cheese.

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  1. Such a fantastic use of what typically gets trashed!!! So doing this!

  2. Congrats on the one year anniversary!! I absolutely love your blog! I’m spiralizing pretty much every other day now :)

  3. Kind of reminds me of broccoli slaw, which I always buy to use in place of noodles for stir fry. Might try spiralizing a stalk next time instead!

  4. Congratulations! You’ve come a long way in just a year. I can’t thank you enough for all the wonderful recipes, it’s totally transformed the way I cook. Have fun celebrating!

  5. Silly, I always give the broccoli stems to the dogs :) Guess I have to share with them now!

  6. So glad to see that you are posting Nutritional and Calorie information from now on!!

  7. love your use of broccoli stems+spiralizing! off to WF today
    and bringing back the broccoli! good stuff. :D

  8. I love your dedication to sharing your love of good food and spiralizing with your followers.
    Congratulations on following your dream to great success!
    Personally, I have been eating raw broccoli stalks since I was a child, and my 3 children now line up for broccoli stalks when I am steaming the tops. I have considered them a delicious secret for years, so excited to turn them into noodles and make a meal out them.

  9. This recipe does sound delicious and I’m really pleased to see that you’ve come up with a use for broccoli stems. Yes, I’m guilty of throwing out a lot of them. No more. Now when I make the dish that requires only florets, I will save and use the stems. I do have one question, though: broccoli stems have a tendency to get woody near the skin when they get as big as you are recommending. If you know it’s woody, would you peel it, or just use as is? Thanks.

  10. You are so amazing. Truly an inspiration. I came across your site through a friend of mine and have been a spiralizing maniac ever since. Everyone I share your recipes with has bought their own Paderno and is doing the same. Last night I had my mother in law over for dinner and made your golden beet Harissa recipe. I think she nearly licked her plate

  11. OMG this looks so good I believe my family will love this. thank you so much for giving us so may wonderfull recepies. Everyday I want to run home and make them YUMMY !!

  12. Kate Ransdell :

    I’m thinking some sautéed shiitake mushrooms would be a wonderful addition! And, I, too, appreciate the nutritional info.
    Thank you for all your hard (fun) work in providing us with these fabulous recipes. And HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!
    I could be a spokesperson for the Spiralizer AND your blog!!

  13. Yay! I just got two big stalks from the farmers market yesterday and was trying to figure out what to do with them! Love your website, it is so professional and put together.

  14. I have learned So Much from your blog….cooking and noodling is now one of my Favorite pastimes….Thank you so very much….keep up the Great Work!!!

  15. Look delicious! I guess spiralizing a cauliflower stem would also work!? Ohh my, the options are endless!

  16. What do I think? I think you’re awesome! Love your recipes, your sense of humor, and your energy which is felt in your blog! And Happy Anniversary! Keep it up…you have a cult following, getting bigger day by day!

  17. Wow! Just ate this for dinner and it was great. The only unhappy people are the dogs; the broccoli stems are normally their treats!

  18. Just made this for lunch… OMG!!! It was amazing. I didn’t have any pine nuts, but I still loved it!! Thank you!!

  19. This looks tasty! Congrats on your one year! What a long way you’ve come!

  20. I Spiralized three fat broccoli stems following your directions…saved florets for another day. Used a Ziplock Steamer bag to steam my broccoli spirals and had a great side dish…no wasted broccoli!

  21. Where can I purchase a spiralizer in Ontario?

  22. This was amazing. Definitely a new staple in this house.

  23. I’m new to your blog and recently bought my spiralizer. my question for this recipe is this. where’s the garlic? it’s called “garlic broccoli noodles” and yet I see use of garlic in the instructions or list of ingredients. =\

  24. This was absolutely the tastiest broccoli I’ve ever had!! I are the entire dish. I may never be able to eat it any other way. Thank you, Ali, for your wonderful recipes.

  25. I’m addicted to broccoli and just found this recipe (and your blog btw) I’m now craving for this dish and dreaming about buying a spiralizer for my kitchen :) Thanks!

  26. Just wondering…is there a way to print your recipes WITH the photo? I love having the photo because it reminds me how much I want to make the recipe! I eat with my eyes, too!

    Thanks, Andrea

  27. Valerie Blanks :

    OMG!! This was sooooooooooo fantastic! One of my new faves!

  28. This recipe is FANTASTIC!! I subbed a 1/2 tbsp of low sodium soy sauce in place of the lemon, and it tastes like a guilt free Chinese dish. Will definitely make this one again!!!

  29. I love this site. Great inspiration for all things veggie noodle :) Here’s my take on broccoli noodles.

  30. Hi Ali,

    Could I do a quick (30 sec/1 minute) boil of the broccoli versus sauteing in oil? Then,
    after it rinses, add to the pan with garlic and olive oil, etc? How do you think that would work to boil the noodles and florets?

  31. Made spiralized carrots with sauce, white beans and parm cheese… Delicious !!
    However the carrots left orange stain !. Soaked and most came white again … Any hints to get orange stain … Also from sweet potato?.
    Thanks. Jydy


  1. […] My Favorite Blog of the Week happens to be INSPIRALIZED!  Ali is a blogger who shows you all kinds of cool things you can do with the Spiralizer I mentioned above.  She explains that Spiralizing is the art of taking vegetables and turning them into noodles. Inspiralized is what you and the dish become afterwards – a healthier and inspired version! It’s such a cool tool to use all summer long to make healthy dishes.  Check out Ali’s blog, and I think you’ll be amazed at all you can do!  Her latest post > HOW TO SPIRALIZE BROCCOLI- GARLIC BROCCOLI NOODLES WITH TOASTED PINE NUTS. […]

  2. […] I posted a few pics on Facebook tonight and people asked me for the recipe so here ya go! To learn how to spiralize broccoli you’ll want to check out Ali’s post. It’s super easy and you’re not wasting […]

  3. […] off, if you haven’t seen this post on spiralizing broccoli, check it […]

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