Penne with Broccoli, Ricotta & Chickpeas

Weekday dinnertime, sigh. You’re tired, you’re hungry and you just want to sit down with a glass of wine and unwind from the day.

Sound familiar?

Before you reach for those takeout menus, you may want to rummage around in your fridge to see what ingredients you have on hand that can easily be thrown together. That’s exactly what I did last week while looking for something quick, easy (but delicious) to have for dinner after a long day at work.


Because you cook the broccoli with the pasta, this pasta dish is really a cinch to whip up, even on those nights when cooking is the last thing you want to do. No chickpeas? You could replace them with cannellini beans. Extra chicken lying around? Leave out the ricotta and add in some grilled chicken pieces instead.


The lemon zest in this dish goes a long way, packing a strong punch of flavor with such a small step. Do you have a lemon zester as part of your kitchen arsenal? If not make sure to get one immediately! I have one on hand all the time, and even have a separate one for Passover. Here’s the one I love using.


1 cup penne pasta

1 1/2 cups broccoli florets

1/2 cup ricotta

1/2 cup chickpeas

1 Tbsp lemon zest

2 tsp olive oil

salt and pepper


Bring a medium sized pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta as directed. For the last 2-3 minutes of cooking, add broccoli florets to water.

Drain pasta and broccoli.

Add pasta and broccoli to a large bowl and coat with olive oil. Add chickpeas and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.

Add ricotta on top and serve.

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