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Penne with Turkey and Broccolini

Penne with Turkey and Broccolini


  • 3/4 pound penne pasta

  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided

  • 1 bunch broccolini (about 9 ounces), tough ends trimmed, stalks and florets chopped into 1-inch pieces

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

  • 1 pound ground turkey, preferably dark meat

  • Parmesan cheese, for topping (optional)


In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the penne until al dente, 11-13 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta cooking water.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, add 2 tablespoons EVOO over medium-high heat. Add the broccolini and season with salt and pepper. Stir in 2 tablespoons water; cover and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.

Lower the heat to medium. Add the remaining EVOO and the onion and cook until soft, 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Push the onion to the side of the pan, increase the heat to medium-high and crumble in the turkey; season. Cook, stirring, until the meat is no longer pink, about 5 minutes.

Add the pasta, broccolini and three-quarters of the reserved pasta water to the turkey; toss well. Add the remaining pasta water if needed to thin the sauce.