The Broccoli Dish Your Kids Will Eat

I love broccoli. Unfortunately, that love of broccoli has not rubbed off on my oldest daughter. No matter how I prepared it — blanched and served with ranch dressing, steamed, boiled in soup, covered with cheese — she’d eat it (because we made her) but she wouldn’t enjoy it. That is, until I started roasting broccoli.

Roasted Broccoli

I’m surprised at how many people haven’t tried roasted broccoli. Perhaps I watch too many episodes of “Barefoot Contessa” and think that everyone roasts their vegetables like she does. I don’t blame her. Roasting vegetables is super easy, requires very few ingredients and the results are flavorful.

“But it’s broccoli.

With all the rage of kale chips nowadays, roasting cruciferous vegetables is not uncommon—It’s the only way I’d eat brussels sprouts and a great way to bring out flavor in cauliflower. When you roast broccoli, the little florets are just slightly nutty, the stems are tender yet have a little bite to them, and the slight sweetness from the caramelization of the broccoli comes through.


The moment I take it out of the oven, it’s like sharks during a feeding in this house (yes, even the kids). Even while I’m finishing up the other dishes, the roasted broccoli gets picked on before it gets to the dinner table. We’re lucky to have more than a 5 pieces each on our plates!

The recipe couldn’t be more simple. Preheat oven to 425°F, cut broccoli in to little florets  no more than 2 inches wide (for even roasting), toss it together with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes.

There are other variations, too. You can add some lemon zest or sprinkle a little lemon juice before throwing it in the oven (it will brighten up the flavor). Try adding some freshly grated parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes once it’s out of the oven. Or gruyere… yum.

For now, I’m going to ease my kids into trying new flavors with their broccoli. I’m just glad they’re eating something green.

How do your kids like their vegetables? Do you have kids that just won’t eat their vegetables? Discuss below!

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