This simple Sautéed Broccoli recipe is perfect for simple weeknight meals or for a fancier dinner party. It features crisp-tender broccoli florets cooked in the perfect blend of fresh garlic, olive oil, and lemon, then finished with parmesan.
Sautéed Broccoli with Garlic
Broccoli is one of my favorite vegetables. But it wasn’t always that way. I used to turn my nose up at it. Until, that is, I learned how to properly prepare it. Turns out, adding a little garlic and lemon provides a whole new perspective.
This garlic sautéed broccoli is so tasty, so easy to throw together, and requires just a few ingredients.
How to Sauté Broccoli with Garlic
This sautéed garlic broccoli comes together in just 20 minutes!
Scroll to the recipe card below for ingredient amounts and full instructions!
- Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat, add in the olive oil to heat. Arrange the broccoli in a single layer in the skillet, sprinkle with salt, and then cook without turning for 5-7 minutes. Once the broccoli turns golden-brown on the bottom, add water and flip.
- Cook for another 2-3 minutes, then add garlic, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, and lemon juice. Cook for another 30-60 seconds.
- Remove the pan from heat, sprinkle with parmesan, then serve.
Tips for this Sautéed Broccoli Recipe
- Use fresh ingredients! Fresh broccoli and freshly minced garlic are the key to the best flavor and texture. Frozen broccoli or pre-minced garlic just don’t do the trick.
- Chop the florets evenly so they cook at the same rate. The last thing we want is to bite down into a way-too-crunchy piece of broccoli after cooking.
- Keep the veggies moving after you add the garlic. If they sit too long, the garlic can burn.
- If you like your broccoli extra soft, you can steam it for 1-2 minutes before sautéing. I don’t prefer this though. I like the crisp-tender texture that is the result of just sautéing.
- The lemon juice and zest are optional. If you don’t care for lemon, leave those ingredients out.
- We used a cast-iron skillet for the photos, but cast iron can react with the lemon juice and create a metallic taste. Use a non-stick skillet for the best results.
Storage and Reheating
Refrigerator: Sautéed broccoli and garlic is definitely best served right away, but if you do have leftovers they will last in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Reheating: To reheat leftovers, warm on the stove over low heat or place in the oven at 350ºF until heated through.
Is Steamed or Sautéed Broccoli Better?
While that depends completely on your own personal preference, I definitely favor sautéed broccoli over steamed.
Well, steamed broccoli is broccoli cooked over a pan of boiling water. It has less flavor and a softer texture. Sautéed broccoli, on the other hand, is cooked directly in a pan in hot oil and usually seasonings. The result is a crisp-tender texture and so much flavor!
What Can I Add to Broccoli to Make it Taste Better?
The garlic, lemon, cheese, and seasonings, do plenty to add flavor to the broccoli. However, if you’re looking for some additional flavor, you can totally mix in other seasonings of your choice, breadcrumbs or add a splash of white wine to the mix.
What to Serve with Sautéed Broccoli for Dinner
This sautéed broccoli recipe is so flavorful, but also insanely versatile! It pairs so well with pretty much any entree. If you’re looking for ideas, here are a few of my favorite main dishes to serve it with:
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- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- 1 tablespoon garlic cloves minced
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat a medium skillet over medium heat, then add the olive oil. When the olive oil is warm add the broccoli and toss to coat. Cook the broccoli for 3-5 minutes. About 30 seconds before the broccoli is done, add the garlic. Stir to combine.2 teaspoons olive oil2 cups broccoli florets1 tablespoon garlic cloves
- Cook the broccoli and garlic for 30 seconds, then add the white wine. Stir the broccoli, garlic, and white wine for 30 seconds to 1 minute then remove from heat. Sprinkle it with salt and pepper.¼ cup dry white wine
- Serve hot. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.