This Broccoli and Chorizo Pasta is a quick and easy mid-week meal packed with flavor and ready in just 20 minutes.
The punchy chorizo sausage is key here. It gives this easy pasta dish so much flavor. It gives off its delicious paprika and garlic spiced oil as it is fried. This oil is then used to make an almost instant sauce that coats the spaghetti.
The broccoli is cooked with the pasta and adds a great earthy taste to the dish. Serve this broccoli chorizo pasta with a side salad and some bread for a quick and delicious dinner.
Pasta is always a winner, and this dish has it all! Some nice green veggies, flavourful chorizo, garlic, olive oil, pasta, and parmesan. We are talking about all the good things here.
It makes a great midweek meal, and because it has broccoli in it, you don't even need a side dish of veggies! You can serve it on its own or adds some bread and maybe a salad. So good and so easy!
Most grocery stores stock Mexican chorizo and Spanish chorizo, both have excellent flavor, and you can use either for the broccoli chorizo pasta! So use whichever you have or whichever is easier to find. But if you have a choice, here are the differences.
- Mexican Chorizo is raw and soft. It looks more like ground meat.
- It is usually pork-based, although it can be a pork-beef mixture.
- Heavily flavored with garlic and chili.
- Spicer than Spanish Chorizo.
- Sold in the fresh sausage section of the grocery store, near the breakfast links.
- A cured or semi-cured sausage.
- Contains chopped pork.
- Flavored with garlic and dried and smoked red peppers (smoky pimentón).
- It doesn't include much chili and tends to be milder than Mexican Chorizo.
- It is sold in the cured meats section of most grocery stores, near the ham and bacon.
The photos of this Broccoli Chorizo pasta have been taken using Mexican Chorizo, but you can interchange them.
Which pasta to choose
This is an oil-based sauce, so you want to choose a long thin pasta like spaghetti, linguine, angel hair, or fusilli lunghi. The long strands are easily coated in the richly flavored oil.
If you want to use a pasta shape, avoid anything tubular and go for something like fusilli, orecchiette, or farfalle (bowtie pasta).
Cooking the broccoli
The broccoli is cooked in the pasta water.
You can use fresh or frozen broccoli in this recipe, but note the different cooking times and adapt accordingly - fresh broccoli florets will need 3 minutes in the pasta water, whereas frozen broccoli will only need 2 minutes.
- Get the chorizo crispy. The crispy chorizo gives the finished dish texture. To do this, cook the chorizo in olive oil over medium heat. It will crisp up and release its paprika and garlic flavored oil into the pan - this is the basis of the sauce.
- Season your pasta water well. The salt in the pasta cooking water will season the pasta as it cooks, giving you a much more flavorsome dish. I recommend 1 tablespoon of salt for a quart of water, enough for a pound of pasta.
- Before you drain your pasta, reserve two cups of pasta cooking water, this will bring the sauce together and allow the oil to slick the pasta with flavor. You won't need a full two cups, but it's better to have saved too much and not need it than to have not saved enough.
What to serve with Broccoli Chorizo Pasta
This is a complete meal! It has protein, veggies, and carbs. So you can serve it as it is. I often just add some garlic bread and maybe a side salad.
If you want to make it more of a meal, maybe add an appetizer like or a dessert like an easy chocolate mousse.
What wine to drink with Broccoli Chorizo Pasta
The rich chorizo brings so much paprika and garlic to the pasta that you want to pair it with something light yet juicy.
For those who prefer white wine, a Verdejo, dry Reisling, or Viognier are all excellent choices.
A light Rioja or a Beaujolais is an excellent choice when it comes to red wine, as would a chilled Pinot Noir or Gamay.
If you make this Broccoli Chorizo Pasta, don't forget to come back and comment. You can also tag me on social media.
Any questions about the recipe? Use the comments section below.
Get the Recipe
Broccoli Chorizo Pasta
- 1 tablespoon salt – see note 1
- 12 oz long pasta – see note 2
- 2 cups raw chorizo sausage – see note 3
- ¼ cup olive oil - see note 4
- 1 small head broccoli (cut into florets) - see note 5
- 4 cloves garlic - minced
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon dried Italian herbs
- ¼-½ teaspoon red pepper flakes – optional
- salt and pepper
- parmesan - for garnish
- Bring a large pan of water to a boil, and add the salt.
1 tablespoon salt
- Add the pasta and set a timer for 1 minute less than the suggested cooking time.
- When the pasta has 2-3 minutes left to cook, add the prepared broccoli. (see note 3)
1 head of broccoli florets
- Before draining the pasta, reserve 2 cups of the pasta cooking water.
While the pasta is cooking
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan over high heat.
¼ cup olive oil
- Add the chorizo, use a spatula to break it up in the pan, and fry for 5 minutes, occasionally turning, until golden and crispy. (see note 2 if you have a cured chorizo sausage).
2 cups of chorizo
- Remove the chorizo from the frying pan, keeping the oil behind.
- Add the garlic, paprika, Italian herbs, and pepper flakes (if using). Give this a good stir and then immediately add a ½ cup of the pasta cooking liquid to the pan and bring to a boil.
4 minced garlic cloves
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon dried Italian herbs
¼-½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- Add the drained pasta and broccoli and toss to coat the pasta well in the oily sauce. Once the liquid has been absorbed, add ¼ cup more of the cooking water and stir the pasta to coat. Test your pasta. It should be perfectly cooked and well seasoned. Add extra salt and pepper as needed.
salt and pepper to taste
- Add the chorizo and any oil that has collected on the plate.
- Serve the pasta, adding parmesan if you want.
- It seems like a lot of salt, but don't reduce it. It is what seasons the pasta inside as well as outside. It makes so much difference I promise.
- A long pasta like spaghetti, linguine, angel hair, or fusilli lunghi works perfectly for this recipe! If you want to use a pasta shape, avoid anything tubular and go for something like fusilli, orecchiette, or farfalle (bowtie pasta).
- If you want to use a cured or semi-cured Spanish-style chorizo sausage, then slice this into thick disks before frying in the olive oil.
- Depending on your chorizo you may need to add extra olive oil to your pan.
- Cook fresh broccoli for 3 minutes in the pasta water, and cook frozen broccoli for just two minutes. If you like very soft broccoli, you can add an extra minute.
Nutrition is per serving