Ziti and Broccoli in Garlic Cream Sauce

This HAS to be one of the easiest recipes you will ever make! And….the most authentic in taste.

Who doesn’t love cream and garlic? Throw in some crisp red bell pepper, blanched broccoli, fresh sliced scallions, and grated fresh Parmesan cheese, and you have one of the best dishes you will ever eat!

I’m not sure which cookbook I got this recipe from years ago, but no matter who tries it, they love it! It’s one of those warm comfort foods that you’ll just make over and over again and east enough for a beginner cook.

Even though the sauce is made with heavy cream, its very light. You only reduce it for a couple minutes so the sauce stays light. The longer you reduce it the heavier it will get, so make sure to watch it!

You can even make ahead by cooking the Penne and cooling on a tray. Once cooled, put into a zipper bag. I blanch the broccoli, cool the same way, and put that in a zipper bag. I cut the fresh vegetables and put those into zipper bags. Grate your Parmesan cheese and put into a zipper bag.

The right before you are ready to serve, you can make the sauce (which only takes a few minutes), and then throw it all together.

This recipe can’t be easier and you will think you are ion an Italian restaurant when you taste it!

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Ziti and Broccoli in Garlic Cream Sauce

  • Author: A Foodie Affair
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x


This is a wonderful pasta and veggie dish with an extremely light and tasty garlic cream sauce.


Units Scale
  • 1 lb. broccoli florets
  • 8 to 10 oz. ziti
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 c. white wine
  • 11/2 c. heavy cream, slightly warmed
  • 3 scallions, white and green parts, cut into strips
  • 1 red pepper, cut into strips
  • 1/4 c. really good grated Parmesan cheese (more or less to taste)
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat 8 c. water to boiling in large pot. Blanch broccoli in boiling water until just tender and bright green. Take out of water with a slotted spoon and put into a colander and rinse under very cold water to stop cooking process. Set aside.
  2. Bring water in pan back to a boil and cook ziti for 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain in a colander and set aside.
  3. Heat butter in a large skillet over moderate heat. Add the garlic and cook only until fragrant (about a minute or two). Do not brown (if it does get brown, throw out and start again. Burnt garlic will ruin any recipe). Add the wine, and reduce for 1 minute or so until reduced to about 1 tablespoon. Warm cream in microwave slightly and add cream (if you add very cold cream you run the risk of it curdling when adding to the hot mixture). Increase the heat to moderately high and bring to the boil. Boil for 2-3 minutes, until the cream thickens and is reduced by a third.
  4. Put the ziti and broccoli in a large shallow pasta serving bowl. Add the sauce, scallions, red pepper and Parmesan cheese and mix together. Season with salt & pepper.
  5. Gustare!


This can be made ahead and assembled right before you’re event. Prepare everything as directed and wait to assemble right before your event. Just reheat the sauce and assemble.

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins

The Verdict:
This is a great main dish or side dish. The garlic cream is exactly that. A light, tasty, creamy sauce that compliments the vegetables in the dish, unlike the heavy alfredo type sauce you so often see. Also great for leftovers. Just add a little more cream and cheese when reheating.

You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Anita at Hungry Couple
    July 23, 2012 at 9:29 am

    Ooh, garlic cream! 🙂 Not waistline friendly but oh, so delicious. 🙂

    • Reply
      July 23, 2012 at 8:43 pm

      This is truly something to try!

  • Reply
    July 23, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    This sounds like a lovely summer pasta dish =)

    • Reply
      July 23, 2012 at 8:42 pm

      It is delicious! Try it, you will def agree!

  • Reply
    January 5, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    This was so easy to make and so delicious. I added grilled chicken and sliced to each – and then shredded a little extra Parmesan over it. I was delighted that my whole family enjoyed it. Definitely will make it again thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      January 13, 2017 at 10:13 am

      Hi Natalee, this is my fav pasta recipe. So comforting! My family loves it as well! Glad you loved it!

    Leave a Reply

    Recipe rating