Broccoli Rabe, White Bean & Fontina Pasta

Broccoli Rabe, White Bean & Fontina Pasta

8 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, April/May 2006

Use any vegetable in place of pungent broccoli rabe to make this a family-pleaser. Make it a Meal: round out the meal with a fresh salad of cherry tomatoes and cucumbers tossed with extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Ingredients 4 servings

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Original recipe yields 4 servings
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  • 8 ounces whole-wheat shells, fusilli or chiocciole
  • 1 large bunch broccoli rabe, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces, or 8 cups baby spinach
  • 1½ cups vegetable broth, or reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 19-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ½ cup shredded fontina cheese
  • ⅔ cup Toasted Breadcrumbs, optional (see Tip)


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, according to package directions. Stir in broccoli rabe (or spinach) during the last 2 to 3 minutes. Drain. Dry the pot.
  2. Whisk broth and flour in a small bowl until smooth. Heat oil in the pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broth mixture and bring to a simmer, whisking constantly, until it thickens, 3 to 4 minutes. Add beans, vinegar, salt and pepper and the pasta and broccoli rabe (or spinach). Cook, stirring, until the mixture is heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat; add cheese, stirring until it melts. Serve immediately, topped with Toasted Breadcrumbs, if using.
  • Tip: To make toasted breadcrumbs, trim the crusts from 2 slices of whole-wheat sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor into coarse crumbs. Toss breadcrumbs with 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Cook in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until golden and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1½ cups
  • Per serving: 445 calories; 13 g fat(4 g sat); 11 g fiber; 67 g carbohydrates; 21 g protein; 88 mcg folate; 16 mg cholesterol; 5 g sugars; 7,458 IU vitamin A; 105 mg vitamin C; 204 mg calcium; 4 mg iron; 776 mg sodium; 536 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (175% daily value), Vitamin A (149% dv), Folate (22% dv), Iron (22% dv), Calcium (20% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 4 starch, 1 vegetable, 1½ medium-fat meat, 1½ fat

Reviews 8

May 21, 2015
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By: kbcolorado
Just added a little I made a few pieces of bacon and crumbled them into the recipe. I also used spinach instead and added red onions to the mix. I would say it could use a little more garlic (but I'm a huge fan of garlic). It really thickens up nicely. I will definitely make this again! Thank you! Pros: This recipe was great! Easier than people made it sound Cons: A little bland by itself
January 04, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
This was a little bland so I added some bacon and a little pesto which added the flavor needed
March 19, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
Almost great This was pretty good and the family liked it well enough but we all agreed that 2T of red wine vinegar was too much. It overpowered all other flavors in the dish. Next time I would cut the vinegar in half at least. Pros: easy
January 09, 2011
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By: wkchristiansen
The homemade toasted breadcrumbs make this dish! I've made this recipe twice now. The first exactly as suggested, the second time with spinach and shaved Parmesan instead of fontina. I liked them both a lot. I didn't think it was as much work as others described..actually pretty quick and easy, maybe because of the shaved Parma I used. Next time I will experiment with some stronger veggie additions like onion, maybe even tomatoes as it has a pretty mild punch as is.
September 15, 2010
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By: christine.mcmillion
YUM! But more work than I'm willing to put in on a week night. I agree with Cynthia about adding an onion. I'm not a fan of red wine vinegar so if I make this again I'd use balsamic. Overall very yummy but def a weekend night meal!
April 11, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
This was an excellent pasta dish! The broccoli raab is bitter, but the stock, beans and cheese all offset it well. This is one I will definitely add to the line-up!
March 20, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
This was a very solid recipe and you can add almost any veggie. I also added sausage, red onion and can of diced tomatoes (drained). I sauteed sausage and onion with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes and then added the garlic. I then sprinkled in the flour and let it cook for 1 min. Then added broth and let thicken. Next, I added tomatoes and some fresh parsley. I was really really good and the cheese and breadcrumbs are necessary and delicious additions. Will make again for sure.
March 19, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
Very nice but needs one medium minced onion, saute'd in the olive oil, sprinkled with the 2 T flour, cooked for one minute then add the broth. The onion gives extra favour and definitely more nutrition. Also, if you have no spinach or brocolli rabe, use your lettuce before it wilts, or soon after it wilts. Cynthia in Mexico
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