Quick bacon pasta with lemon, garlic and broccoli

    25 min

    This is my quickest family dinner, loved by the grown ups and the kids. Wholewheat pasta makes it healthy, but you can use regular pasta, too.


    Hertfordshire, England, UK
    4 people made this

    Serves: 3 

    • 300g wholewheat pasta
    • 250g streaky bacon
    • 150g broccoli
    • 4 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
    • juice and zest of 1 lemon
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • 30g grated Parmesan cheese
    • chilli flakes (optional)
    • chopped fresh parsley (optional)

    Prep:5min  ›  Cook:20min  ›  Ready in:25min 

    1. Bring pasta to the boil then simmer until nearly done (we will add the broccoli a couple of minutes before the end).
    2. While the pasta is cooking, chop the streaky bacon into small pieces (I use scissors for ease) into a frying pan and fry until crispy (this can take almost as long as it takes for the pasta to cook so I start the bacon off immediately).
    3. When the pasta is nearly ready add the broccoli to the pasta (I normally put a lid on to get the pasta back to the boil quickly, then take the lid off again for the last few minutes).
    4. Drain the fat from the bacon then add the olive oil (it seems like a lot but the lemon will cut through it). Once the olive oil has heated through, add the garlic and fry with the bacon for 20 seconds then remove from the heat.
    5. Drain the pasta and broccoli mix and tip this into the bacon and garlic mixture. Add the lemon zest and juice and mix again. Season to taste. Serve with grated Parmesan (this is essential!), and top with chilli flakes and chopped parsley before serving (optional).


    Once you've made this a few times, you'll be able to do it really quickly. I tend to have everything prepared before the end so that I can just throw it all together. You can substitute the bacon for salmon which is nice (and healthier) but you'll need to make sure you season it well. I occasionally use Gia garlic puree for quickness and add frozen peas with the broccoli. It's also nice with sliced courgettes, fried for a few minutes with the bacon.

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