Spicy Sausage and Broccoli Pasta

Being a grad student, we don’t usually get “breaks”. The days of enjoying a nice summer vacation or winter break are long gone! This week is spring break and I am thrilled that my advisor told us to take the week off! Although I still have a lot of writing to do this week, not having to get up super early just to get a stupid parking space on campus is going to be wonderful! I am going to sleep in everyday this week and nobody can stop me!!! Ha!

So this onto this pasta…This recipe comes from my sister-in-law and mother-in-law and is in the cookbook my friends and family gave me for my bridal shower (yeah, remember that book?! I haven’t forgotten about it!)! My mother-in-law made this for us when we were visiting over the holidays and it was quite yummy! And as goes with many of the pasta dishes I post, this one can also be pretty versatile. You can change up the protein and you can change up the veggies you use!

Spicy Sausage and Broccoli Pasta


  • 1/2 lb. pasta (penne, rotini, or farfalle work well for this)
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 3 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. spicy pork sausage, casings removed
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, place broccoli in a steamer basket. Place in a saucepan over 1 in. of water; bring to a boil. Cover and steam for 4-5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain the pasta, but reserve 1 cup of the liquid.
  2. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up into small pieces until the sausage is browned, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and saute for about 30 seconds. Add the broccoli and toss to coat.
  4. Add the pasta and reserved cooking liquid 1/4 cup at a time. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Serve.
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  1. Wow! A deliciously healthy pasta. My daughter is sure gonna love this.

  2. I love the simplicity of this pasta.. Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe.

  3. So simple, yet flavorful and delicious! I have some mild Italian sausage in the freezer that would taste great in your dish….mmmmmmmm.

  4. Pastas with a little bit of meat and a little bit of veggies are just how I like them. Great recipe! Enjoy your little break.

  5. Sound simple,healthy and Yummy, I don’t eat pork but I will use chicken sausage on this one :)

  6. Yum! I just had a big thing of Asian noodles for lunch, now I’m already thinking I need to go make this for dinner. I think I even have all of the ingredients. I love that you mixed the past shapes too. I always do that when I don’t have enough of any one shape to make a big batch. Hope you enjoy your break!

  7. Love this, Stephanie. This would be loved in my house for sure, yum!

  8. I love this combo of pasta greens and sausage!! Simple ingredients with a big flavor punch!! YUM! Enjoy sleeping in. I don’t know what that feels like in the last 10 years since I have two little kids who have sucked all the luxury of sleeping in from me. :)

  9. This looks lovely! Sausage normally does a number on my tummy, so I might have to get creative on what to use instead. It looks very very good though. I think I would suffer through the consequences for this one! ;-)

  10. I just made a very similar recipe from the pages of Everyday Food magazine last night! It’s almost exactly the same, and SO delicious. Thanks for sharing, Stephanie! Yours looks perfect!

  11. Great recipe :) Simple and delicious perfect for me ~ Thanks for sharing!

  12. Enjoy your week off! This pasta looks wonderfully savory, with great crunch from the broccoli.

  13. I love Italian sausage with pasta – this looks delicious!

  14. I want your advisor! Mine is surprised if we actually stay at home for a University Holiday…
    Anyways, the pasta looks delicious :) Love the broccoli in this!

  15. Delicious flavors here and I like that it is light. While it may be light I am sure the sausage lends just enough spice to make you want more, well done!

  16. I hear you! Grad students know no holiday!
    This dish will make a great mid-week meal! love it :)

  17. Next week is my spring break, and as a teacher, I definitely know what you mean b no time off. I definitely have a stack of papers to grade and lesson plans to write over that week. At least I’ll be able to sleep in while doing it :) Love this pasta! The spicy sausage will definitely win over my husband!

  18. What a great versatile pasta dish! I love pasta’s and it’s on our menu at least once a week. Enjoy your week off!

  19. YUM!! This looks and sounds just AMAZING!!!!

  20. Oooh, I keep coming across spicy sausage tonight! The universe must be trying to tell me something ;-). This looks so simple and delicious Stephanie!

  21. Pasta is so wonderfully versatile you can almost plan a whole month’s dinner around it and never eat the same thing twice. And easy, which we imagine appeals to a grad student on spring break…. great flavors in this! Enjoy sleeping in!

  22. I so don’t miss the days of fighting for a parking space on campus! Especially because the school I went to was on the side of a valley – the parking garage was at the very bottom and most of my classes were at the very top!

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