Charred Broccoli Side Dish

This Charred Broccoli side dish is delicious and simple to make, with flavors like fresh lemon, toasted pine nuts, tangy pecorino cheese, and fresh basil.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword charred broccoli
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 208kcal


  • 2 lbs broccoli florets (3 small heads)
  • 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil*
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts toasted
  • 1/4 cup grated pecorino romano cheese plus another (optional) tablespoon for garnish
  • 10 large fresh basil┬áleaves chopped or cut into chiffonade
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  • Preheat broiler to high**, then spread the broccoli florets evenly on a sheet pan. Make sure you only have one single layer of broccoli.
  • Char the broccoli under the broiler, turning the broccoli every 5 minutes or so, until the edges of the broccoli are dark, but the stalks are still crisp tender. This should take about 15 minutes total, depending on the heat power of your broiler.
  • Place the charred broccoli in a large mixing bowl, then add the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, pine nuts, 1/4 cup pecorino romano cheese, basil, salt, and pepper. 
  • Toss well to combine, then taste to see if any additional salt or seasoning is needed.
  • Serve the broccoli with extra pecorino romano cheese sprinkled on top. Enjoy!


*Many "extra virgin olive oils" are fake. Make sure to use a really good one here that has great flavor, it's essential for the flavor of the dish. I like California Olive Ranch, and the Greek Kalamata from TJ's is also excellent.
**Alternatively, you can 1) roast the broccoli in a 450 or even 500 degree F oven for about 15-20 minutes, watching closely until the florets are dark on the edges, and the stalks are crisp tender. You just have to be careful not to dry out the broccoli/overcook. Or 2) grill the broccoli for about 10-15 minutes, until the florets have a nice char on the edges but aren't overcooked.


Calories: 208kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 390mg | Potassium: 511mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 960IU | Vitamin C: 134.9mg | Calcium: 115mg | Iron: 1.5mg