And the broccoli noodles are back!
This recipe is one I had originally written for the cookbook and it ended up being a fail. So, I worked on it a bit, changed up the prep methods and proportions and now, it’s on the blog, bigger and better than ever.
First off, if you haven’t seen this post on spiralizing broccoli, check it out.
I’m not a huge sides-girl. I usually make a big salad, some spiralized rice bowl or some spiralized pasta for dinner, which all don’t require sides. On occasion, I’ll make salmon, a veggie and potatoes or some other starchy goodness. I don’t prefer to eat like that, though – it’s very boring.
I like to bite into a meal and get a bunch of flavors in one, instead of having to pick at everything on plate in sequence.
Anyway, this broccoli noodle salad would make a great side! Ha – so hypocritical, I know! But really, I ate it alongside some grilled chicken and was so happy. It’s a side, a pasta salad, a salad and a snack- this dish is totally versatile.
While you can make this recipe and eat it immediately, the longer the noodles marinate in the dressing, the more they wilt and become chilled and more pasta salad-y. Plus, the flavors develop more, making it even tastier.
This tomato basil screams summer – the basil, tomatoes, garlic and white balsamic infuse the broccoli and make a real summer treat. Also, I realize that I use food processors a lot in my recipes, but you don’t necessarily have to use it here. If you chop up your campari tomatoes more finely, you can just whisk all of the ingredients for the tomato basil dressing together.
Now, you’ll notice that I only use one of the two broccoli head’s florets (yet both of the stems.) I think the proportions work better with only 1 set of broccoli head florets, but if you won’t end up using them later in the week and don’t want to risk wasting them, add them to the food processor also. The salad will be less pasta salad-y, but it will still taste as good as it should.
Honestly, when I took my first bite of this pasta salad, I immediately thought to myself, “I need to have a BBQ and make this for everyone.” It’s going to be an easy crowd-pleaser, kind of like this Italian Zucchini Pasta Salad. The fluffiness of the broccoli breadcrumbs, the crunch of the stem noodles and the robust flavor of the basil and tomatoes is breathtaking.
I really need to get moving on that “How to Spiralize Broccoli” video, don’t I? Don’t be afraid – it’s much easier than it sounds!
Have you given broccoli noodles a shot yet?
Now you can watch a cooking video of this recipe:
Nutritional Information & Recipe
Tomato Basil Broccoli Noodle and White Bean Salad
- 2 large heads of broccoli with stems
- 1 cup cannellini beans
- For the dressing:
- 5-6 campari tomatoes seeded and roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons minced basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Separate the broccoli florets from their stems and set aside the stems and one head of broccoli’s florets. While you will be using both stems, you will only be using one broccoli heads’ florets for this recipe (save the other one for future use.)
- Remove as much stem as possible from the broccoli florets and place the florets into a food processor and pulse until breadcrumb like. Set broccoli aside in a bowl and wipe down the food processor.
- Spiralize the broccoli stem, using Blade C. Roughly trim the noodles and place in the bowl with the floret crumbs.
- Place all of the ingredients for the dressing into the food processor and pulse until chunky, but dressing-like. Don’t overprocess it – you don’t want this dressing to be watery.
- Pour the dressing into the bowl, add in the beans and toss well to combine thoroughly. Serve immediately or let sit in the refrigerator to let flavors marinade.