by Olena

Ground Turkey and Broccoli Pasta

Olena's image
Olena Osipov
5 from 118 votes

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Pasta with Ground Turkey and Broccoli is 30 minute one pot meal with turkey, broccoli, tomatoes and Parmesan cheese. It is one of those healthy ground turkey recipes your family will ask to make again and again.

Also in our dinner rotation are turkey burgers, turkey meatloaf and turkey meatballs.

Ground turkey and broccoli pasta in a pot garnished with Parmesan

Healthy Ground Turkey Recipe

This! This healthy ground turkey recipe is the best use for a pack of ground meat:

  • Easy and quick: Healthy dinner perfect for busy weeknights – your time is 10 minutes, idle time is 20 minutes. Need more help with dinner? Check out iFOODreal meal plans.
  • Kid friendly: Kids because most love pasta (and broccoli).
  • No food waste: When you don’t know what to make with ground turkey and yet it’s in your fridge.
  • Lots of broccoli: When you have to use up large amount of broccoli. Also see broccoli salad and chicken broccoli casserole.

I made this pasta with ground turkey and broccoli after work one day. I promise you, I sat on a chair with a cup of tea for at least 15 minutes while dinner was cooking. Only recipe that beats this one’s cook time is spaghetti with tomato sauce and mac and cheese.

The flavors of meat, pasta, parsley and garlic are unbelievable together in. My 14 year old asked “Mom, what’s the sauce?”. Um, nothing really. Simple food like this turkey chili or zucchini ground turkey skillet is the best. And it’s healthy!

ground turkey, broccoli, pasta and parmesan cheese

Ingredients for Ground Turkey and Broccoli Pasta

  • Ground turkey: I used 1 lb of extra lean ground turkey. Equivalent substitute is ground chicken, but pork and beef are OK if that’s all you have on hand.
  • Pasta: Short pasta like penne, elbow macaroni, bow ties etc. For health benefits, I recommend to use whole wheat or whole grain pasta. Gluten free pasta like brown rice, quinoa, chickpea etc. is healthy and full of fiber too.
  • Broccoli: Fresh or frozen. Frozen is pre-cooked, so might need less cook time. Did you know 1 bunch of broccoli (just over 1 lb) contains 17 grams of protein?! ground turkey, broccoli, onion, pasta, tomato, parmesan cheese, olive oil, parsley, garlic
  • Other veggies: Tomato and onion.
  • Parsley: Use Italian flat leaf parsley rather than curly parsley – more flavor.
  • Garlic: Grated garlic is more flavorful rather than minced – so you will need less.
  • Stock: Any low sodium stock like chicken, veggie or beef will work. Also bouillon cubes diluted in water.
  • Parmesan cheese: Buy large chunk of Parmesan cheese and grate yourself vs. a shaker kind full of preservatives and cellulose. It freezes well, lasts a lifetime and adds even more flavor at the end to this pasta and soups like Instant Pot lentil soup.

How to Make Ground Turkey and Broccoli Pasta

  • Saute onion and turkey: Preheat large Dutch oven, pot or deep skillet with a lid on medium heat. Swirl oil in a hot pot and spread with spatula to coat its bottom. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes or just enough till fragrant. Then cook ground turkey just until small enough pieces. Meat doesn’t have to be cooked through and pink is OK.
  • Cook with pasta for 10 mins: Add pasta, stock, seasonings and everything should come to a boil as you stir. Level with spatula and cook covered on low heat for 10-12 minutes. It’s OK to open lid once to check on pasta. Pasta should be al dente – not too soft. So it doesn’t become a mush when we cook broccoli further. how to make ground turkey and broccoli pasta step by step
  • Add broccoli and let stand: When past is ready (al dente), turn off the heat. Add broccoli, tomato, garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir, cover and let stand for 3-5 minutes or if you like very soft broccoli, keep cooking for another 3-5 minutes. You can chop parsley and grate Parmesan cheese in the meanwhile.
  • Garnish and serve: Add parsley and Parmesan cheese, gently stir and watch it all come together. Serve hot.

More Tips and Variations

  • Spaghetti or any long pasta: Broken into pieces spaghetti, fettuccine or any long pasta is just as fine. Break in half or more to prevent lumps.
  • If you like soft broccoli: If you like soft cooked broccoli, add it 3 minutes earlier or use frozen broccoli. I like broccoli firm similar to a broccoli salad. And this is what this recipe is.
  • Tomato substitution: You can skip tomato all together or use sun dried tomatoes. Diced bell pepper is good too. This pasta recipe combines both broccoli and sun-dried tomatoes. And this Tuscan chicken pasta is great if you are looking for creamy pasta dish.
  • There is some liquid left after cooking pasta: It’s OK. It will get absorbed by pasta with time as you let it sit “to cook” broccoli and before serving. It also makes “the sauce”. You can add more water just in case your ground turkey and broccoli pasta looks dry to you.
  • Oil: The best oils for frying are those that have high smoke point. My go-to is avocado oil or coconut oil. Light olive oil, grapeseed oil or organic canola oil works.
  • Gluten free pasta: It cooks faster than whole wheat and could stick more, so keep your eye on it.

Storing and Reheating Tips

Storing: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 3 days. I do not recommend freezing it as pasta doesn’t withstand freezer in general. If recipe is too large, cut it in half.

Reheating: To reheat, add leftovers to  the pot, or if you refrigerated in same pot place it on the stove, add a splash of broth or water and reheat on low while covered, stirring a few times. Basically you want food to steam through.

More Healthy Dinner Recipes

Got Instant Pot? Check out this Instant Pot goulash or browse more Instant Pot recipes.

ground turkey and pasta with a spoon in a pot
Ground Turkey and Broccoli Pasta

Ground Turkey and Broccoli Pasta {One Pot}

Pasta with Ground Turkey and Broccoli is 30 minute one pot meal with turkey, broccoli, tomatoes and Parmesan cheese. It is one of those healthy ground turkey recipes your family will ask to make again and again.
4.98 from 118 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: One Pot
Cuisine: American Ukrainian
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 379kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 3 cups any short pasta
  • 3 cups veggie or chicken stock low sodium
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 lb broccoli florets
  • 3 tomatoes diced
  • 1-2 garlic cloves grated
  • Red pepper flakes a pinch
  • 1/2 cup parsley finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese grated

Instructions

  • Preheat large Dutch oven or pot on medium heat and swirl oil to coat. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add ground turkey and cook for 5 minutes, breaking into pieces and stirring with spatula. Add pasta, stock, salt and pepper; stir and level with spatula.
  • Then cover and cook on low heat for 10-12 minutes, checking after 10 minutes. Brown rice and any gluten free pasta cooks faster than wheat.
  • When past is al dente (not too soft, so it doesn’t become a mush), turn off heat and add broccoli, tomato,  garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Add parsley and Parmesan cheese, gently stir and serve hot.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days. I wouldn’t recommend freezing.

    Video

    Notes

    • Spaghetti or any long pasta: Broken into pieces spaghetti, fettuccine or any long pasta is just as fine. Break in half or more to prevent lumps.
    • If you like soft broccoli: If you like soft cooked broccoli, add it 3 minutes earlier or use frozen broccoli. I like broccoli firm and this is what this recipe is.
    • Tomato substitution: You can skip tomato all together or use sun dried tomatoes. Diced bell pepper is good too.
    • There is some liquid left after cooking pasta: It’s OK. It will get absorbed by pasta with time as you let it sit “to cook” broccoli and before serving. It also makes “the sauce”. You can add more water just in case your ground turkey and broccoli pasta looks dry to you.
    • Oil: The best oils for frying are those that have high smoke point. My go-to is avocado oil or coconut oil. Light olive oil, grapeseed oil or organic canola oil works.
    • Gluten free pasta: It cooks faster than whole wheat and could stick more, so keep your eye on it.

    Nutrition

    Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 379kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 594mg | Potassium: 787mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1488IU | Vitamin C: 84mg | Calcium: 165mg | Iron: 2mg
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