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Garlicky Broccoli and Beans With Pesto

Garlicky Broccoli and Beans With Pesto 4.000

(Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post; styling by Lisa Cherkasky for The Washington Post)

Weeknight Vegetarian Aug 2, 2020

This colorful meal comes together with only a few minutes of cooking, making it just the thing when you want to keep your kitchen cool. Serve with quinoa, brown rice or bread, if you like.

4 - 6

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4-6 servings

  • For the pesto
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1/4 cup water, plus more as needed
  • 1/4 cup roasted, unsalted almonds (may substitute toasted sunflower seeds)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • For the broccoli and beans
  • 1 head broccoli (about 1 1/2 pounds), thick stalk removed
  • Boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed or minced
  • 3 cups (from two 15-ounce cans) lima beans (may substitute chickpeas or any white beans), drained and rinsed
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small zucchini (4 ounces), coarsely grated
  • 1 tablespoon pure plain coconut yogurt (optional; may substitute plain dairy yogurt)
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, plus more to taste


Make the pesto: In a blender, combine the basil, olive oil, water, almonds, lemon juice, garlic, nutritional yeast (if using) and salt and puree until smooth. (If using a large or less-powerful blender, you may need more olive oil or water to blend easily.) Taste, and season with more salt, if needed.

Make the broccoli and beans: Cut the broccoli into small, bite-size pieces (the smaller, the better). Transfer the broccoli to a heatproof bowl and cover with the boiling water (this blanches the broccoli). Let stand until the broccoli is crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes, then drain.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until it softens, about 2 minutes. Stir in the broccoli, lima beans and tomatoes, and cook, stirring, until warmed through, about 2 minutes. Stir in the pesto, zucchini, yogurt (if using), zest and pepper. Taste, and season with more salt and pepper, if needed. Serve warm.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from “Deliciously Ella: Quick & Easy” by Ella Mills (Mobius, 2020).

Tested by Joe Yonan.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving (based on 6): 320

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 19g 29%

Saturated Fat: 3g 15%

Cholesterol: 0mg 0%

Sodium: 569mg 24%

Total Carbohydrates: 30g 10%

Dietary Fiber: 10g 40%

Sugar: 3g

Protein: 12g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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