the broccoli roast

One of my probably most annoying insistences in the 15 years that I didn’t eat meat was that I suspected people didn’t really like it as much as they thought they did. Take bacon, no doubt the first thing that comes to mind when some leaf-horfing former vegetarian has the audacity to suggest that you could live without flesh. You love the way it’s smoky and salty and crispy and fatty, right? But how much of that has to do with the actual taste of pork belly, versus the way we’ve treated it to make it even more amazing? How much of Korean short ribs are about the unseemly delicious marinade, how much of Southern fried chicken is about that shattering crust, comprise mostly buttermilk, flour and grandma love? How much of barbecued ribs is about the gloriousness of the meat on the bone versus the long tenderizing, smoking and the sweet-salty-spicy stuff we mop or crust on top? [Sorry, I have to stop this paragraph right here so I can eat it.]

what you'll need
make a little rub

And while it pretty much only took me one pregnancy, the one where I craved burgers nonstop to understand that yes, there is perhaps more to meat than the sum of its seasonings and cooking methods, I still get more excited about vegetables being treated like big ol’ slabs of meat than I do about that what they’ve mimicked. Any restaurant should know how to cook a rib-eye medium-rare; but can they make broccoli steaks?

peel knobby stems
a little dry rub
to flip

Thus, when a friend tipped me off — and by “tipped me off” I mean I saw it on her Instagram and commented “GIMME THAT TELL ME EVERYTHING NOW NOW NOW” — to the broccoli roast at the impossibly charming (I mean, that wallpaper, those bathroom sinks, there is literally nothing there that isn’t already on the Pinterest board of dreams) Burnside Biscuit in Astoria, I pretty much went nuts and routed my whole family’s weekend around getting it in my belly. It did not disappoint, which sucks because Astoria is a small schlep from here. They bring it out in a cast-iron pan still hissing from the wood-burning oven, coated in a light dry rub, a little sharp cheddar and a cider vinegar dipping sauce and you attack this thing with a steak knife. A steak knife! Little makes me as happy as vegetables that require a steak knife.

the broccoli roast

It leaves you with so many big questions to ponder — Are these ribs? Is this barbecue? What if we stopped treating vegetables like side dishes? When a vegetable is the centerpiece, does it need a side of protein? — and I suspect that, like us, you won’t be bothering with any of it because you’ll be too busy shoving forkfuls in your mouth.

the broccoli roast

One year ago: Fall-Toush Salad
Two years ago: Purple Plum Torte
Three years ago: Pancetta, White Bean and Swiss Chard Pot Pies
Four years ago: Apple Pie Cookies
Five years ago: Apple and Cheddar Scones
Six years ago: Jalapeno-Cheddar Scones
Seven years ago: Mom’s Apple Cake and Beef, Leek and Barley Soup
Eight years ago: Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Galette
Nine years ago: Wild Mushroom and Stilton Galette

And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago: Strawberry-Rhubarb Soda Syrup
1.5 Years Ago: Dark Chocolate Macaroons
2.5 Years Ago: Bee Sting Cake
3.5 Years Ago: Pasta with Garlicky Broccoli Rabe
4.5 Years Ago: Blackberry and Coconut Macaroon Tart

The Broccoli Roast
Inspired by the one at Burnside Biscuits in Astoria

It’s time we started treating vegetables like big old slabs of meat, don’t you think?

This is not their recipe but my riff on it, inspired by what I ate there; I used a small amount of the dry rub I put on ribs with a little less sugar, and then roasted various stalks of broccoli the way I always do before finishing it with a little cheddar (as they at the restaurant and which can totally be skipped because, honestly, I love cheese but it doesn’t add that much here). The vinegar dipping sauce is like a vinaigrette, minus the oil, and it cuts nicely against the broccoli and rub flavors, the way a squeeze of lemon juice usually does against green vegetables. This is a spectacularly simple and habit-forming way of making broccoli, so you’ll be glad this makes more rub than you’ll need.

Serves 2, heartily

Olive oil
About 1 pound broccoli, although the weight isn’t that important, either in 1 big head or 2 or so “trees”
Grated aged cheddar (optional)

Dry rub
2 teaspoons packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon paprika, ideally smoked but regular will also work
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
Chipotle powder or ground red pepper (cayenne) to taste
1 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt, and more to taste

Cider vinegar dip
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon smooth dijon mustard
Pinch of salt, smoked flaky sea salt is wonderful here if you have it
Pinch of pepper flakes
Shake of smoked hot paprika or chipotle powder

Heat oven to 450 degrees F. Coat a large roasting pan with a glug or two of olive oil. Combine rub ingredients in a small dish. Taste a pinch; it should be flavorful, but more salty than sweet, with a kick. Make adjustments to taste.

Prep broccoli by peeling any knobby bits and outer skin off stalks. Cut smaller heads lengthwise through stem into two “steaks;” cut larger ones a second time into four wedge-shaped “steaks,” if desired. Place cut side down in roasting pan; drizzle tops very lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with rub. Roast for 20 minutes, until deeply brown underneath. While roasting, combine cider vinegar dip ingredients. Flip, coat cut side with more rub and roast for another 10 to 15 minutes, until charred at edges. Remove from oven and immediately grate a small amount of cheese over broccoli.

Serve with cider vinegar dip and, if you’d like to be more like the restaurant, with a little pile of smoked sea salt on the side. Eat with forks and steak knives.

P.S. Looking for a different flavor? Try these stunning broccoli steaks, also inspired by my Burnside obsession, with a red chile-sambal romesco.

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149 comments on the broccoli roast

  1. Rebekah

    i was just looking at the cannoli pound cake post, and when I went back to home, here were these beauts! haha. i happen to have broccoli I need to cook today, so it seems particularly serendipitous.

  2. Jane

    I love treating vegetables like meat! Bring on the flavor!
    Is there a type-o in the brown sugar line? Looks like you list 2 teaspoons as both the original and alternative amount here.

  3. Jaime

    As a vegetarian, this might be my favorite post of yours ever. It is so true that when a restaurant makes the most to-die-for vegetable it is the most satisfying thing. Veggies for the Victory! Can’t wait to try this.

  4. I couldn’t agree with this more!!! I feel like I’m always emphatically professing that I never miss the meat in sandwiches, salads, roasts, chili, etc. I’m not a vegetarian, but this is the reason I think I pretty easily could be! Can’t wait to try this recipe.

  5. Cas

    I picked broccoli (hacked at broccoli? Went to a farm and made an attempt at cutting broccoli in a sane/reasonable manner?) yesterday with your crispy broccoli in mind. But now this!

  6. Charlotte in Toronto

    I can’t tell you how happy I am. I saw your post on Instagram when you went there and ate this and begged you to figure it out for us. Thank you.

  7. Ash

    One of the more difficult transitions to motherhood for me has been having to give up my beloved roasted broccoli temporarily since my breastfeeding babe has made it clear he doesn’t like it – when I’m ready to try it again, this will be in the rotation!

  8. Nicole R.

    I have done cauliflower in “steaks” with great acclaim, but never thought to try broccoli! This is perfect, as broccoli is far and away my partner’s favorite food (although I am the vegetarian in the family).

    I think I will serve this with a side of protein in the form of my Italian great-grandmother’s white beans.

  9. Ivana

    That looks awesome! Roasted broccoli is one of my favourite go-to side-dishes, that I recommend to anyone who’s willing to listen. And this takes it to the next level – can’t wait to try! Incidentally I just made the “one year ago” recipe, fall-toush salad, for dinner. Good timing I guess :)

  10. Cara

    “Any restaurant should know how to cook a rib-eye medium-rare.” Oh Deb, not all of us live in New York. Or perhaps I’m just more picky about my steak. A restaurant that can make an excellent steak is someplace special around here, and as a result I usually prefer my husband’s amazing skirt steak over steak out.

    That said, broccoli steak will be happening at my house tomorrow. It looks amazing.

  11. I’m actually interested in hearing more about the rest of the meal. The menus all look great, and very vegetarian-friendly. But brunch is definitely different than dinner. When did you guys make it over? My guess is brunch because the littles. And, did you order the onion petals, because I really want to know more about them. Like, are they akin to the blooming onion at Outback Steak House? Because those look dirty good. Oh. And the tights! The tights! I can’t even.

  12. Dee

    Is there any other rub I could use which doesn’t contain chilli or paprika (or any pepper or chilli based item, stupid allergies)? I really want to try this out (I love roasted vegetables with a passion bordering on the obscene…). Looking forward to trying this!

  13. Ok, I’m dying right now over your bacon comment. My mom said something very similar to me just yesterday and I said she was a nutcase! I’m not saying that anymore, I’m just laughing right now. You’re both right! I’m wrong. You’re broccoli looks fantastic. Ribs or BBQ, a pulled pork sandwich alongside this broccoli is calling my name. I’d so much rather have this than man n cheese or corn bread as it typically served around where I live. Yum Deb.

  14. CeeDubbVA

    This sounds delicious, but the recipe says “2 teaspoons packed dark brown sugar (too much, use 2t instead).” Can you fix? I’m not sure whether 2t is the before or after measurement.

  15. Adding to the chorus shouting “yes, thank you!!” re. treating vegetables like meat. I’m not vegetarian, and make some kickass meat stuff, but I think it’s general more time and trouble to cook meat than not in a random weeknight when I want something fast or want something not meat at a restaurant that isn’t a salad or a bunch of appetizers.

    It’s one thing I’ve never understood about using meat substitutes, either–they pretty much are either a vehicle for sauce or crust. You can get the same thing with any of a dozen vegetables, and since most meat subs have a long list of ingredients and/or don’t taste like anything to begin with, I’ll take the whole ingredient with flavor over them any day.

  16. deb

    2 teaspoons brown sugar — Is correct, now fixed. And yes, copied-pasted from my cooking notes.

    Dee — You can play around with sugar, salt and spices to get a nice balanced flavor coating.

    Molly — It was very good. Jacob got the fried chicken and biscuit, which was excellent, especially the biscuit. Alex got I think the egg-bacon-etc. breakfast. I got a grits/crispy mushroom bowl that was … fine. Mushrooms weren’t crispy and felt like way too much grits and not enough other stuff. Will get huevos racheros, as I should have, it’s my thing, next time.

    eclecticdeb — No need for one. Anything you can roast in is just fine.

    Cara — Keyword is “should.” Plenty mess up here too, and expensively. As a simple thermometer can assure this never happens, it baffles me.

  17. Laura

    Deb – This post perfectly sums up a common exchange in our household. “Meat is supposed to be the accent, not the centerpiece!” I exclaim while stretching 3 sausages or 2 chicken breasts among the 5 of us (we have 3 boys). My carnivorous husband dutifully rolls his eyes and chuckles as I describe an appropriately portioned plate, veggie and whole grain heavy. “Who ever heard of ACCENT MEAT?!?!” he retorts. Now I can say, “Deb Perelman, that’s who!” I have such a woman crush on you, Deb. Really, it’s less creepy than it sounds ;)

  18. Laura

    Perhaps it’s time for a new recipe index category called Accent Meat? Invoking the flipped classroom (sorta kinda), I think it’s time for the flipped plate.

  19. As a fellow (current) vegetarian, I was nodding along to that first paragraph! Veggies treated right are delicious. There’s no need to steam them until soggy. Putting this broccoli on my to-make list.

    And Deb, where did you get that pan? I love the shape, and it looks perfect for both cooking + serving. I need one!

  20. Lauren

    Hi Deb! This looks so delicious- and I’m having friends for dinner tonight so I am super determined to pull this off- but I’m wondering what should I serve it with- Any advice? (we’ve got a vegetarian or two amongst us). I was thinking a quinoa pilaf with shaved almonds and sultanas or baked sweet potato fries with a chipotle aioli- but feel like you are the guru here, so I defer ;-) Have you read “River Cottage Veg”? It’s brilliant and inspiring in the vein of giving vegetables their space on the plate. There is a seared steak of aubergine with chili-honey-lemon drizzle recipe I am obsessed with.

  21. Lizzie

    Just adding a perspective to the vegetable-centric meal discussion. I agree whole-heartedly with your first paragraph, and after growing up in a traditional meat-centric home I definitely had a period of time where I swung toward the vegetarian side of the spectrum. I also completely understand those who are vegetarian for religious or cultural or I-just-don’t-like-meat reasons. However, I do find that for me, taking meat off the plate can sometimes lead to an increased amount of refined carbs and cheese, and doesn’t necessarily lead to me eating any better. I have found that adding back in a decent amount of high-quality meat, cooked well, actually tips the balance in a healthier direction. Not that healthfulness is always the number one goal :) Anyways, I think we can all use some vegetable inspiration and this looks absolutely wonderful.

  22. Sharyn

    all I can say is Yeah!
    some of my favorite new recipes are from you and this looks like a winner in this mostly veggie household.

  23. You could sell me anything. These sounds so delicious. I’m a former vegetarian, and I still find that I get more excited to find new ways to cook my veggie sides than I do about the protein in my dinner.

  24. becca

    Roast at 450 degrees….Hmm. This is fine in a real house. What’s your secret re smoke flowing out of your very hot oven in a tiny apt in NYC with smoke alarms?
    I am new to apt living and recipes that call for very high oven temps like this one, or like the cast iron pan steak method using a well oiled cast iron pan, fill the place with light smoke. Maybe you have figured this out. Thanks.

  25. Jenna

    This looks amazing and I’m making it right now! We were just going to steam the broccoli tonight but I happen to have all the ingredients. Question about the dip – is the recipe missing an ingredient or are the amounts incorrect? I’m looking at just over a tablespoon of dip and thinking we might not have enough!

  26. Linda

    Clothilde at C & Z has a great recipe for charred broccoli and avocado with tahini and bunchesbof fresh herbs….(which, now that I think of it, is sort of like your roasted carrot and avocado salad -_-)
    Though – vegetables should be eaten with a steak knife? Uh, no, they should be eaten with fingers.

  27. Kris

    I just made this, and it was awesome! Although the vinegar dip seemed small, it was well enough for my boyfriend and I to share. Very interesting, easy, and delicious. Thanks Deb!

    Oh, and the cannoli cake was unbelievable. Made it last night and it’s all I thought about today at work….soooooo good!

  28. This phenomenal-looking post inspired a delicious riff at tonight’s dinner: used the spice rub on delicata squash half moons and roasted them well; turned the vinegar rub into a vinaigrette and ate it all with spinach, quartered grape tomatoes, and quinoa in a warm grain salad. So quick and so satisfying! Thank you, Deb, for the (endless) inspiration!

  29. Lauren

    Raga-MUFFIN= Good enough to eat. My mother would have said she looks like “Liz off the pickle boat” in all her “finery”. That is a great photo. The socks had me in stitches. I will have to make a trip to Astoria, we usually go to Middle Village for German food, ( from CT no less) but this looks as if it is definitely worth a stop.Thanks for all your yummy references in this post.You always give us food for thought.

  30. Aimee

    We made this for dinner tonight and it was completely fabulous!

    The ratios for the dipping sauce seemed off though. A tablespoon of ACV to a 1/4 teaspoon of mustard…I wonder if this is backward?

  31. This looks fantastic! I love eating vegetable based meals for dinner, so I can see myself making this meal very soon! I think for me, when I crave meat, it’s more about the feeling it gives me than the taste. Even though beans and lentils, etc. are protein sources, they often leave me feeling bloated more than satiated the way meat tends to do. That said, I do think we as a society need to eat more veggies and less meat, so recipes like this are golden! Thanks Deb!

  32. Staci

    I just love you. Thank you for not giving us vegetarians a hard time. Veggies totally can be the main event. I feel like there’s so much flavor to be found in dishes without meat and this recipe highlights that. You’re the best.

  33. Gudrun

    I LOVE this post! You have hit the nail on the head – it’s brilliant! Thanks for the food for thought – and yet another amazing recipe…

  34. mslewis

    Gosh, I don’t understand this at all. Broccoli is my favorite veggie ever and I can’t see messing up such an amazing thing with all that stuff. Yuck!

  35. I always think the same thing….that some of the stuff we eat is just a yummy vehicle for other better flavors:-). I love broccoli though and will totally do this. I am also really liking the dipping sauce. I could see myself using that for other stuff, too!

  36. Ann

    I am Ann the full timer RVer (from NYC). I have not posted in a while, but I am always reading the blog and cooking your wonderful recipes. Yesterday my husband (raised in Astoria, NY) and I bought broccoli to make your crispy broccoli (a favorite). When we got home, saw this recipe and made this instead. AMAZING. AMAZING.
    Note to Jane #45: I didn’t have onion powder, so I used 2 teaspoons of minced onion and the rub was fine. We didn’t find it too sweet with 2 tablespoons of the sugar. I also doubled the vinegar dip. Like I said, AMAZING. Simone #47 thanks for the tip on using the rub on squash. Deb, thanks again for all your hard work.

  37. Tara

    I happened to have some broc hanging out in my fridge, and made this for dinner last night! So delicious! I was worried the dipping sauce would be too tart for my liking, but it was great. Thank you so much!

  38. This recipe looks amazing and your unending use of broccoli is inspiring! Your description of the taste of meat verses vegetables reminds of that interview with Jose Andres where he described the layers of eating a pineapple that you would never get with meat. Anyway, this looks delicious!

  39. Andrea

    THANK YOU! That is exactly what I say to my friends. It’s not the meat you miss, it’s the fat/salt/fried/baked/breaded/roasted-ness of it. :D

  40. I will never forget when I dined at a restaurant in SF and ordered the grilled broccoli. Everyone else ordered meat or fish and yet everyone raved about how amazing the broccoli was. What happens when you brown it and get it crispy is just magical.

  41. Jessica B

    I made this last night with black bean quinoa burgers and it was perfect. The rub was exactly right and the dip was surprisingly delightful. Did not miss the meat!

    Highly recommended!

  42. deb

    On a grill — Absolutely. But make it blazing hot.

    Cider vinegar dip proportions — No, I used it exactly the way I’ve written. I find cider vinegar rather subtle and a little sweet. You can whisk in a little oil to make it more of a vinaigrette — I can see from my IG photo that they do — but I didn’t find it necessary.

    Dip amount — Actually, that is a mistake — it should be double. However, we only used half, but if you only make 1T amount, you won’t have enough to make it easy to dip, if that makes sense.

    Heating the roasting pan before roasting — I’ve done this before, but didn’t do it here. No harm in doing so, the broccoli just hits with more of a sizzle. But I don’t find that it changes how roasted it gets or anything.

    mare — Love it. In little ramekins, for imposed portion control?

    More pairings — Risotto, a biscuit, a last-gasp-of-tomatoes salad, some sort of toast with stuff heaped on it, a crispy fried egg (ahem) and/or roasted potatoes, or maybe a tiny portion of meat — am I the only one who wishes 4-ounce steaks were more of a thing? Love steak, don’t like hulking slabs of it. (Right now, my husband is shaking his head somewhere, wondering where he failed…)

    Sylvie — Love Jose Andres. He’s probably done this already and I didn’t see it, but he’s the kind of guy I want to hand, like, a tomato, some worcestershire and a stalk of celery and see what magical stuff he makes with it. Or some equally random combination. (P.S. I mimicked one of his salads over here, always a favorite.)

  43. Rebecca in SoCal

    I wonder if this would encourage my only-raw-broccoli eating husband to try cooked, but I doubt it as he shudders at any sugar, and wouldn’t even try curry-ish coated roast cauliflower (even though I TOLD him it was not his aunt’s overcooked-to-a-mush stuff!) *sigh* Is it okay if I call him a meathead because he thinks you MUST eat meat?

    I agree with so much of the commentary here, like the restaurant skill and the meat as accent (who? Try the Chinese.)

    Anyway, I hope the enthusiasm for this recipe holds on for a couple months until it’s cool enough to roast (vegetables) here!

  44. Dahlink

    My father’s family thought it was healthy to eat a LOT, and that included a good portion of meat. I eat beef once in a great while, but after three or four bites, I’m done.

  45. Lori

    When I lived in Texas, home of fried chicken, chicken fried steak, chicken fried catfish, and on and on, I had just recently begun eating meat again. Then and forever after I have thought that someone should invent chicken fried fried. I imagine you could be the one to do it justice.

  46. Deb, you are a fabulous writer and a busy mama, so this isn’t criticism, just an alert to a careful writer: the line “how much of Southern fried chicken is about that shattering crust, comprise mostly buttermilk, flour and grandma love?” is adorable but requires a bit of a fix, I do b’lieve?
    Love this post and couldn’t agree more. I live in Southern California, for crying out loud, and we’re big on massaging our kale and caramelizing our ginormous carrots in cast iron. At least while we still HAVE produce (ahem, I’m talking to YOU, cumulonimbus rain clouds)…

  47. Kathryn

    Picked up our CSA share yesterday and have been thinking roasted vegies ever since. This is perfect. I have a small piece of smoked cheddar needing to be used, seems like it’s been waiting for this meal. P.S. I knit baby socks if you’d like to try something a little more to size. ;-)

  48. Susan

    Oh boy does that look good. As a mostly vegetarian (don’t cook meat for self, but if making a steak for my child, I’ll have to taste-test …. for her, ahem) I’m always looking for new ways to make veg more than just veg. This reminds me of grilled squash, caulifllower, and the like, which we used to marinate and put on the grill. (Until my husband left us and took the grill. I really miss that grill.)

  49. Bill

    Wow, this was fantastic, and I never would have come up with it on my own. Had it with crusty no-knead bread and that was my dinner. Thanks.

  50. Joanna

    Looong time reader/cooker of your recipes, first time commenter. First of all, let me say that I love your recipes; I’ve lived in studio apartments and LOVE that your recipes have hints for small kitchens, I’ve lived in Philly/western NY state and love that your seasonality is similar, and most of all, I love that your recipes have just the right mix of ingredients already IN my pantry and ‘exciting’ ingredients. I don’t even know how many of your recipes I’ve made, from the warm salads to tomato sauces to veggies to cakes!!! Second, I don’t desire any kids of my own, but yours are cute. :)

    Now that I’ve gotten all my gushing out of the way, I have one general question re resources. Partly due to living with a completely-baffling meat-and-potatoes (i.e. not pickles or cheese!) boyfriend and partly due to a new longer commute, I suspect slow cooker is the way to go for the winter. I know you have a few slow cooker recipes, but do you know of slow-cooker-focused bloggers like YOU? I feel like I’ve done a decent amount of recipe googling, but I’m wondering what treasures I’ve missed.

  51. Isa

    I came planning on seaching the archives for a great broccoli recipe, what a nice surprice to find one (almost) live! As usual, you’re a true inspiration.

  52. Next you’ll tell us there’s no Easter Bunny.

    Seriously, I love treating broccoli and cauliflower like meat.

    A friend taught us to make buffalo cauliflower by dipping in buttermilk, dusting with flour and tossing with buffalo sauce, then baking.

    Thanks for sharing the dry rub.

    -Glenn K.

  53. Marlene

    Hi Deb, Just wondered if you have any good recipes for a Christmas Dinner Vegetarian Main? It needs to be something that can be prepared at least a day in advance and just re-heated and is “meaty” in consistency – like a nut roast style thing (if you know what I mean)….A tall order I know but with you having been a Vegetarian too I thought you might be able to give me some inspiration. Like lots of people, every Christmas I cater for a huge gathering for a sit down meal and after spending ages preparing the starters, enormous range of vegetables, turkey, ham (you get the picture!), I can’t normally be bothered to prepare anything for myself so I end up with a large plate of vegetables with no “main”. Any ideas? Thanks.

  54. Paige

    Re “accent meat”: I toured the gardens at Monticello several years ago, and our guide explained that Thomas Jefferson believed that vegetables should be the centerpiece of the meal, with meat as nothing more than a garnish.

  55. Kalisa

    There are so many veggies that go from “yeah, they’re fine” to “WOAH I LOVE IT” with a good roast in a cast iron pan! We’re already big roasted broccoli fans in this house so I’ll give this a try! I may toss the spices with frozen broccoli rather than make the “steaks” as I always have a bag of broccoli on hand. We’re trying to eat more veggies so this is perfectly timed. Thanks!

  56. Madison

    I made this for dinner last night and was obsessed! My broccoli needed a bit more time to get the charred florets. I am using the rest of the spice rub for roasted acorn squash. This is a new addition to the dinner rotation!

  57. The oven is coming to temperature as we speak and these green steaks are sitting ready! I CANNOT wait! For dessert? I’m going to move on over to today’s Peanut Butter Salted Cookies! Deb, you’ve brought culinary sunshine and butterflies to my life this week! THANK YOU!

  58. Dahlink

    We had this last night, with the omission of the dipping sauce–I just added lemon quarters to the plates to squeeze over. I agree that the cheese isn’t essential–will omit that next time. All the other good flavors overwhelm the cheese. But yum!

  59. Jen

    I had the roasted broccoli at Girl and the Goat in chicago recently and in a restaurant full of amazing meat dishes (and they were delicious), the broccoli was the favorite dish we ordered. It was smoky and incredibly charred, I’m guessing it is similar to what you had at your restaurant. While oven roasted is great I wish I could figure out how to get that smokey flavor, but alas without a wood fired oven I don’t know that it’s possible.

  60. I like my meat but totally agree on giving more credit to vegetables! There are lots of different was to prepare them and are fun to experiment with! Just like meat they tend to be Glorious on Bbq :) Thanks for sharing! I’ll make something like this soon! Beautiful recipe ;)

  61. I just made this for dinner tonight (along with some boxed rice pilaf because I am not fancy) and IT WAS SO DELICIOUS. I made the dipping sauce but we didn’t really end up using it. Both kids (ages 5 and 1.5) happily ate their broccoli pieces and we will definitely be adding this to our regular dinner rotation. YUM.

  62. Lisa

    Made this last night and it was delish!! I think I would use slightly less of the seasoning. I thought the vinegar sauce was not going to be enough, but it turned out to be the perfect amount. YUM!!!

  63. I made this tonight! It is really, really good, and wanted to share that it works GREAT for a mix of cauliflower & broccoli too. For whatever reason, I just don’t love ACV, so I subbed lemon juice for cider vinegar and it was super tasty. I was stealing pieces of broccoli off the platter while finishing the other dishes I was serving. A+.

  64. Anna B.

    I made this tonight as well. It was fantastic! I’m going to make a double batch of the dry rub and just use it on ALL the things. Deb, thanks for making my transition into a more vegetable-heavy lifestyle actually enjoyable.

  65. I made this tonight, but my broccoli was already chopped up (rather than in the larger stalks), so I just tossed it with olive oil and the dry rub and roasted it in smaller pieces. Oh, my. I am already plotting a run to the grocery store for more broccoli. I am not sure I will ever make it any other way. Who knew a meat rub would bring out the best in broccoli? Thanks for the new ideas!

  66. Wendy B

    Deb, I am so impressed! I made this tonight and got my boyfriend to eat broccoli for the first time ever! I’ll have to try this rub on more veggies to see if he’ll bite :)

  67. Gerley

    The things you make us do to broccoli! And now I know how to cut it,too! Without the sad sad mess it always made. The most exciting my broccoli ever got before I met you was to dip it in some kind of sour cream and I thought THAT was mixing it up.
    This is roasting right now and I am pretty sure it needs to be in the “put an egg on it” category because that’s what I am doing and my egg shall be crispy and I shall think of you the whole time while eating both *dirty winking emote here*

  68. CarolJ

    I roasted it at 425 alongside an Idaho potato and it turned out perfectly. With my husband away on a trip, I’m enjoying a three-week celebration of all things cruciferous (which he does not care for at all), and this was a great way to kick off the parade. Thank you for this creative and delicious idea.

  69. Amy Clough

    I made this tonight and it was terrific. I skipped the cheese, and had ancho chili powder so used that instead of the chipotle, but everything else was as written. Wish I’d made more!

  70. I’ve loved broccoli since I was a child. Which was too many years ago to mention here. Ahem.

    I would eat broccoli every single day and ask for seconds. And thirds.

    I will be making this, times about four, since my hubs and I are vegan, and broccoli is, and will be, the main dish.

    Thanks for sharing!

  71. you are so right! so much of the allure of meat is about texture, having something satisfyingly smoky, fatty, or substantial to sink your teeth into–traits that, with the proper techniques, can in actuality be coaxed out of your finest mushrooms and cruciferous vegetables.

  72. I tried this at mum’s sunday lunch and halfway through – oops, realized she had no chili powder mild nor hot…so I substituted a dry piri piri which I’d brought from home for use in hummus and it was lovely!! I used the exact same amount as you said to use for the chili. It went rather well with the mustard vinaigrette too.

  73. Rose

    I live in Astoria—and just went to Burnside for brunch for the first time a few weeks ago! Didn’t even notice this on the menu but now I obviously have to go back. Also, as a veggie, I feel pretty similarly to the way you described meats in the first paragraph—that’s how I keep myself in check when I think about how bacon sounds good…I’m like, do I want the bacon/the animal, or do I want that salty-sweet-fatty taste? (Always the latter).

  74. BOH

    Stephanie Izard treats vegetables like meat. Check out all of her restaurants in Chicago (two plus a third opening soon)!She also treats meat like meat! Delicious!

  75. carrotpeople

    Made this and it was fantastic even with my accidentally burning them, and forgetting the cheese, and omitting sauce. Have more rub waiting in a jar for next time (hopefully soon) I can make it again.

  76. Mrs D

    Ahhhhh, Miss Deb, your daughter is simply delightful. My heart skips a beat at those photos – she seems like an old soul that little lady. She’s absolutely gorgeous and that rich red hair is a revelation.

  77. Jennifer Peek

    AMAZING AND ADDICTIVE – I could not stop eating it! Squashes any craving for meaty BBQ (Hello from Birmingham, Alabama!) I have made 3 times in the last 2 weeks. Thank you for a simple and delicious recipe.

  78. Lauren

    Tried this a few weeks ago and was seriously impressed, both with the overall result and that insanely delicious rub – which I used again tonight on butternut squash. All I can say is WOW. (I know this kind of defeats the idea of vegetarian roasts, but I bet the rub would be ridiculous on a nice steak too :D )

  79. Shelly

    Loved the rub on the broccoli but have to say I wasn’t a fan of the dipping sauce. I found it too vinegary and actually found that it took away from the lovely taste of the roasted broccoli. I seriously loved the broccoli though and it will become a regular on the menu!!

  80. Manisha

    Just made this for lunch and it was delicious! The rub was a bit on the spicy side, but I like that. I may be in the minority but I liked it more without the dipping sauce. I didn’t have onion powder, used some minced fresh onion. And the bit of cheddar was perfection. Great and easy recipe, will definitely make again and again!

  81. Bryce

    I love this post so much because you are absolutely right. For me, meat is almost boring now. Been there, eaten that. A few years ago I had dinner at a vegetarian restaurant called Plant in Ashville, NC and I still think about it. Barbeque “ribs” that tasted like RIBS. Now that’s talent/creativity. The whole meal was outstanding. Love the popularity of veg restaurants now. So inspiring. I’m making this broccoli dish this week.

  82. Heidy

    I have been saving this recipe to try and finally made it last night for the family. Fabulous! It was like candy and I could have eaten three times as much. I wasn’t sure how the dipping sauce would go over, but you are right, it really compliments the dish and takes it up a level, and everyone loved it. Thank you so much for posting this!

  83. Kimberly

    I doubled the rub and added it to some sweet potatoes and butternut squash before roasting. Finished it with some Greek yogurt, lime juice, and a little sauerkraut. Maybe even better than the broccoli. Luckily, I don’t have to decide which I like more.

  84. Julia


    Oh my god. This is the most delicious thing I’ve EVER tasted!!!

    Also guys, note while I was preheating the oven, I was like… why not throw in some purple sweet potatoes, roast some onions with this rub on them, and throw some corn in there.

    Seriously, it’s the best dinner in the world!! And I’m not even a Veg!


  85. cindy

    Love this. I made the rub a while ago and now it’s too moist and won’t sprinkle. It just clumps. I stored it in a commercial spice jar I emptied, washed, and dried out. Any ideas?

  86. Laura in CA

    I could have eaten the whole roast and would have if I didn’t have to share with others. We ran out of olive oil after the first “glug” so we added some toasted sesame oil. Delicious.

  87. Laura in CA’s husband

    To any of you wondering if you should make this or not… YES! the answer is YES! We are making this for a second time tonight! That’s two nights in a row! We made a special trip to the store to buy more broccoli just to make this again. And even though we replenished our EVOO stock, we still added toasted sesame oil – yum!

  88. Getting ready to make this again for the thousandth time! This is one of our most favorite vegetable sides. It’s definitely best with the full broccoli trees (I love nicely cooked broccoli stalks), but sometimes I just have florets and it is still delicious. Thanks for the great recipe!

  89. bcmeag

    This was okay! The dip absolutely provides a nice kick, and the rub is good, but it didn’t change my life like I had hoped given Deb’s effusive recommendation. And I love broccoli something fierce. And this blog and this writer, of course.

    Next time, I might add more salt (the flaky salt on the side of the plate at the end was a key bit that I initially missed), and maybe worked harder to coat the heads with a more consistent gloss of oil rather than just scattering it around. Also add bit more of mustard to the cider vinegar, coming closer to a 2:1 ratio.

  90. April

    Once upon a time, I shared this on Facebook. My mother-in-law saw it, and cooked it for us. When I asked for the recipe, she said that she had found it through me! And so, we came to make this at least once per week. Its amazing.

  91. Teyani

    These are awesome yummy.. but I suspect your oven doesn’t run quite as hot as a new one. It could’ve been cooked in 10 minutes first side and five the next. Mine were a bit too charred, but still fabulous.

  92. Wow. So so so good! Made these without the sugar in the rub, added 1 tsp 100% fruit apricot preserves to the dipping sauce (both to add back some sweetness and to thicken it a bit into a drizzle), and added 2 diced golden potatoes to the sheet pan around the broccoli. Spectacular.

    Will definitely be going into regular rotation!

    1. Came here to gush about how awesome this is, only to find my comment from last year :) I’ve made umpteen variations of the rub, made it with and without the sauce, and every time it’s delicious and steals the show for any meal it’s paired with. Cheers for sharing this incredible, versatile wonderfulness!!

  93. Cindy

    I have to try this recipe. I used to live in Astoria and used to love Burnside Biscuits, but they have since closed, which makes me sad.

  94. My partner begrudgingly bought broccoli instead of chicken today, and after he tried a bite said “THIS IS EXCITING” and then, “I feel like my mind is clear for the first time in ten years.” So perhaps I overdid it on the mustard, but I’d call this a winner!

    1. lauren

      First, I love your screen name, being an Eng. major. Second, your partner’s and your comments are truly entertaining . Thank you for making reading comments fun again.

    1. deb

      There is a print icon that leads to a print template at the bottom of each recipe, where it says “DO MORE:” You can also click CTRL + P from any recipe post and it will take you to a streamlined print template. We will definitely make it easier to find when we next redesign.

  95. haruspex

    Eating it directly off the pan* (I made little pieces) with a quick dip in the sauce, so yeah, I like it. *I live alone.

  96. Brindie

    Ahaha I searched all my pins and recipe books of food I’ve made for a couple weeks and FINALLY think I’ve found the recipe I was searching for! (Fingers crossed, I’ll be making this very soon – pretty sure this is the one!) I am pretty sure I saved this years ago, when I myself didn’t eat meat. After 31 years of being a vegetarian, even when it wasn’t “cool,” I have started a meat and began a new food journey about 3 years ago. I’m so happy to have found this article even if this ends up not being the broccoli recipe I’ve been searching for, I appreciated the read.