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How to sauté broccoli (3 ingredients)

How to sauté broccoli (3 ingredients)

After you read this recipe for sauteing broccoli you will be making this side dish once a week. It really is that simple and quick to saute broccoli. It tastes delicious and it is also beautiful served on the plate. From start to finish this broccoli side dish should only take you 15 minutes. The best part is that you truly only need 3 ingredients to make amazing sauteed broccoli. If you want to add even more flavor to your dish considering sauteing garlic with the broccoli or adding in additional herbs and spices. Get creative! While this recipe is for sauteing broccoli, do note that you can follow the exact instructions to also saute broccolini. We are big fans of making broccoli delicious around here. We sometimes make a creamy broccoli salad and we also love to make blackened broccoli. Since we eat so much broccoli in this house, it is also important for us to know how long it lasts. Personally, my absolute favorite way to eat broccoli is raw with ranch dip but the rest of the family loves it cooked.

Can you prepare sauteed broccoli in advance?

Technically you can prepare sauteed broccoli in advance and reheat it. However, what we would recommend is that you do the prep work of cutting the broccoli in advance and then spending the few minutes sauteing fresh when the time comes. 

You can cut up the broccoli and store it in the fridge the night before. Then when you are ready to saute the next day, you just heat up your pan, add the oil and broccoli and you will have a fresh dish in less than 10 minutes. 

How to reheat sauteed broccoli?

Sauteed broccoli is best served freshly cooked but you can reheat it. The key to reheating sauteed broccoli is to keep it from turning mushy.

The best way to reheat it is to add it to a hot pan and stir it continuously until it is warmed through. This should only take 2-3 minutes in a skillet over medium-high heat. The trick is to make sure that the pan is very hot prior to adding the broccoli.

Can you saute broccolini?

Yes, you can saute broccolini. Saute it just like you would regular broccoli with olive oil and salt at medium-high heat. With broccolini you can saute it whole without needing to cut off the florets. Whole sauteed broccolini looks beautiful served on a plate. Consider squeezing lemon over the top when you plate it so that it keeps its bright flavor and color.

Ingredients needed for sauteed broccoli

Broccoli – You can either buy fresh broccoli florets or a whole fresh bunch of broccoli. Cut the broccoli florets into small pieces. This way it is easier to eat and will cook more evenly. 

Olive Oil – We saute broccoli with olive oil because it can handle a high heat better than butter will over a prolonged amount of time. However, if we want that rich butter flavor will often stir in a teaspoon in the last couple of minutes of cooking.

Salt – It only takes a pinch of salt and it really does add a nice flavor. A pinch of salt can keep your broccoli from tasting rather bland.

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Optional Ingredients needed for sauteed broccoli

Herbs and spices – Don’t be shy about adding in various herbs or spices with your sauteed broccoli. While sauteed with olive oil and salt create a fresh flavor for your broccoli, it is also nice to switch things up for the palette.

Try mixing together two different flavors such as chili peppers and lemon juice. Delight your tastebuds and make a different recipe each week.

  • Chili peppers
  • Lemon juice
  • Lemon slices
  • Mustard
  • Oregano
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Tarragon
  • Goat cheese
  • White wine

Saute with garlic – One of the more popular methods for seasoning sauteed broccoli is to saute it with garlic. Sauteed garlic adds tremendous flavor and aroma to every dish.

If you choose to saute garlic with your broccoli consider cutting the garlic into slices. Add the garlic in the last 2-3 minutes of cooking. It doesn’t take long for the garlic to cook and you don’t want to burn it.

What kind of pan is best for sauteing broccoli?

We love to saute broccoli in our cast-iron skillet. It helps get that touch of char on the broccoli and we find that tasty. However, if you do use the cast-iron skillet you may need to add an extra bit of olive oil. Be sure to keep a close eye on the broccoli so that it doesn’t burn.

Our go to pan for most sauteing is our Le Creuset frying pan. This pan heats up evenly and has sloped sides. This makes it easy to stir and flip the broccoli in the pan. It doesn’t require quite as much oil in the pan either because it is perfectly non-stick. 

My suggestion is to experiment with both pans on different days and see which one works best for you and your kitchen.

How to saute broccoli

This is our overview of how to saute broccoli with a few additional tips. Down below you will find the detailed instructions with temperature and measurements.

Step 1: Prep the broccoli – Wash the broccoli in a colander and allow it to drip dry. A bit of moisture on the broccoli is actually helpful in the cooking process.

Cut the broccoli florets off from the stalk. Use your hand or a knife to break the florets into even smaller pieces. It is ok to leave a small bit of the stalk with the florets. Check out the image below for a visual guide.

Step 2: Heat up a large skillet. 

Step 3: Once it is hot add olive oil, salt, and broccoli florets to the hot pan. Spread the florets out evenly so that they have plenty of room. 

If needed cook the broccoli in batches. Avoid stacking broccoli on top of one another in the pan. If they are stacked atop one another they will steam instead of saute.

Step 4: Turn the burner to a higher temperature. Cook the broccoli florets for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Continue cooking until the broccoli starts to char on the edges and turns bright green.

Step 5: Cover the skillet and cook the broccoli for 2 more minutes. At this stage you are steaming the broccoli to make sure that it is fully cooked. 

Step 6: Remove the lid and stir the broccoli. Cook for 1 minute.

Step 7: Remove the broccoli from the pan and serve.

How to saute broccoli (3 ingredients)

How to saute broccoli (3 ingredients)

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

How to saute broccoli quickly and easily. This recipe only requires broccoli florets, olive oil, and salt. Consider adding additional spices and herbs to change up the flavors.


  • 1 bunch broccoli
  • 4 T olive oil
  • Salt


  1. Wash the broccoli in a colander. Cut the broccoli florets into bite-size pieces.
  2. Place a large non-stick pan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the broccoli, olive oil, and salt to the hot pan. Spread the florets out in the skillet so that they aren’t stacked on top of one another. (Work in batches if necessary.)
  4. Cook the broccoli for 4 minutes, stirring every minute. Cook until the broccoli starts to have charred edges and turns bright green.
  5. Cover the pan and continue cooking the broccoli for 2 more minutes.
  6. Remove the lids and stir the broccoli. Cook for 1 additional minute.
  7. Serve hot and enjoy.

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