It’s summertime and grilling season is in full swing. While we love our fair share of summery grilled burgers, steaks, hot dogs, and corn, we propose forgoing the usual side salad accompaniment to any great cookout in favor of this grilled broccolini. Technically, yes, it’s another way to get your greens in, but it’s also a great recipe for a delicious, fresh side that’s jam-packed with flavor, is absurdly easy to make, and is another excuse to not turn on the oven in peak heat months. Grab those pantry staples and let’s do this.
What is broccolini?
First developed in Japan in 1993 as a way to grow broccoli in warmer climates, broccolini is a hybrid cross between traditional broccoli and Chinese broccoli. While originally grown exclusively in Mexico, it’s now grown year-round in the US, making it increasingly more commonplace in grocery stores (hello, Trader Joes!). Broccolini’s cruciferous taste is definitely reminiscent of its more well-known broccoli relative but in a less pungent, sweeter, milder way. With less woody, slimmer stalks, broccolini is perfectly suited for a quick cook on the grill–no chopping into florets or peeling stalks and far less falling through the grill grates than some other green veg (sorry asparagus and zucchini).
How to Make Grilled Broccolini
- Prep, prep, prep. Once on the grill, the broccolini cooks in minutes, so having everything prepped ahead is important. Heat the grill, wash the broccolini, zest the lemon, grate the parm, easy stuff here.
- Season generously. Lightly-charred broccolini flavor is the star of the show here, but a generous brushing of EVOO, lemon juice, and a liberal dusting of salt and pepper elevates the dish to more than just a thrown-together side.
- Grill and serve. Three to five minutes per side will give you broccolini that’s still bright, verdant green with a few spots of char for character. Shower with parm, lemon zest, and cracked black pepper. Serve with anything else you’d throw on the grill: chicken, buttered crusty sourdough, sausages, whatever summer feels like for you.
More Side Dishes
- Whole Roasted Cauliflower
- Grilled Edamame
- Heirloom Tomato Salad
- Easy, Classic Bruschetta
- Mexican Street Corn
- 1 lb. broccolini
- 1 lemon
- 1-2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt
- fresh cracked pepper
- ¼ cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- Pre-heat grill to medium high heat. Rinse the broccolini if needed, pat dry, remove leaves if desired, and cut one inch off ends of broccolini. Zest the lemon and set zest aside.
- Brush the broccolini with the extra virgin olive oil until lightly coated, season with salt and pepper, and juice from lemon. Using tongs, place broccolini on grill grates and grill for 3-5 mins per side until cooked and slightly charred.
- Remove from grill and cover with grated parm, reserved lemon zest, and a few cracks of pepper. Serve warm.
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