Winter Produce Guide: Broccoli

Tips for buying, storing, and cooking broccoli, plus our favorite broccoli recipes

A cruciferous vegetable related to cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts, broccoli is a supermarket mainstay year-round, but it peaks in the U.S. between October and April. The ingredient pairs well with bold and pungent flavors: Roasted broccoli, caramelized with garlic, olive oil, and a pinch of crushed red chile, adds depth to stacks of lasagne; steamed or boiled florets can be blended into a brilliant lemon-kissed pistou to bolster vegetable soup; and stir-fried spears make a quick meal when tossed with firm tofu, ginger, toasted sesame oil, lime juice, and fish sauce. Before serving broccoli completely raw in a salad or on a crudité plate, consider blanching it for just a minute or two and then shocking it in ice water for a brilliant green hue and a crisp-tender texture.

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Florets should be deep green with tight cluster of buds and no yellowing. Stalks should be bright green and firm, with crisp leaves. The freshest broccoli will still have a moist cut end.


Broccoli keeps best when cold. Store it, unwashed, in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator crisper drawer and consume it within a few days.


Give broccoli a rinse under cold water and rotate the head to cut away small spears. Trim the stem end by an inch or two and use a peeler or small knife to cut away tough outer layers, if needed. Slice the stem into sticks or rounds.

Broccoli Recipes

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