Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage


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Creamy Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage is the PERFECT weeknight meal! You’re welcome!

Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage from www.whatsgabycooking.com (@whatsgabycookin)

How is it November later this week? Like where on EARTH did the year go? Thanksgiving is going to roll out around here in a few days and I couldn’t be more excited for the holiday season. I want some comforting meals, lots of movie nights at home with the fire place going, and all the hot cocoa.

And this Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage fits the bill when it comes to comforting meals. It’s loaded with flavor from all the broccolini and the sausage and there’s a creamy ricotta sauce that you’re going to want to douse on everything!

Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage

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Gaby Dalkin
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For the Pasta

  • 8 ounces rigatoni
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage casings removed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • 1 pound broccolini stems sliced crosswise into 1/4 inch coins, and tops cut into small florets
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried chili flakes
  • 1/2 cup whipped ricotta see below
  • About 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs toasted with 2 tablespoons olive oil

For the Ricotta

  • 1 1/2 cups whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil


  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and break up with the back of a wooden spoon and cook for roughly 6 minutes until it starts to brown.
  • Add the broccoli coins, the remaining olive oil and sliced garlic to the skillet. Toss the sausage and keep cooking until the sausage is just about fully browned and the garlic is fragrant. Add the chili flakes and season with salt and pepper.
  • While the sausage is browning, cook the pasta according to the package directions. About 3 minutes before the pasta should be al dente, add the broccoli florets and cook all together, until the pasta is al dente. Drain and reserve 1 cup of the pasta water
  • Add ½ cup of the reserved pasta cooking water to the skillet with the sausage and return skillet to the heat. Add ¼ cup or so of the pasta water, the whipped ricotta, and half of the Parmesan. Stir the ingredients in the pan to combine the ingredients, put back over medium heat, and cook for a couple of minutes to warm everything through and make a saucy consistency. Serve with more Parm and top with the breadcrumbs.

To make the Ricotta

  • Put the ricotta, salt and plenty of pepper in a food processor and start to process. With the motor running, add the olive oil in a thin stream. Pause and scrape down the sides if needed. The mixture should get lovely and creamy. Taste and adjust with more salt and pepper as needed. Store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Rigatoni with Broccolini and Sausage: Chef Vision

Photo Matt Armendariz // Food Styling Adam Pearson // Recipe adapted from Six Seasons

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  1. Monika

    This is perfect for the fall and winter menu! I just love anything with broccolini!

  2. Rebecca

    Hi there! Do you toast the breadcrumbs in any butter or olive oil? Or do you you just brown them up in a dry pan? Didn’t see that part in the directions : )

  3. Bonnie Richardson

    Sorry, got a little confused…. Does the whipped ricotta go on last and on top of the bread crumbs?

    • Gaby

      no it goes in at the middle!! I just updated the formatting so it makes more sense 🙂

    • J

      Dinner for the win!!!!! I saw this and knew in my soul I had to make it!! I couldn’t get broccolini so I substituted Dino kale. I also 4 timezed the garlic bc we have a problem :). Also had some onion I had to use. This was so amazing my bf was bowing to me!!! Even made his friend come over to try it!!! I can’t wait till I can try it with the broccolini!

  4. Alia

    My husband made this for dinner last night. WOW!! So delicious I had to stop myself from licking the plate clean. Okay, we were at home alone so I didn’t actually stop myself… Can’t wait for the leftovers at lunch!!

  5. Dorsey Lachner

    OMG!!! This was amazing! I used the largest rigatoni noodles I hand carried home from Italy! My husband, who loves pasta, was completely blown away. Everyone would love this, kids and adults!! Could serve for a fancy dinner and impress your guests or serve as an everyday meal. It’s that worthy!!

  6. Jessica

    I just made this tonight for the whole family for dinner and it was a huge hit!!! … only comment was that there needed to be more! I did however make a few modifications based on what i had in the kitchen that i thought id share.

    (1) kale instead of broccolini. I have SO MUCH kale still from my garden that I’ve been desperate to use up! (2) goat cheese instead of ricotta. I have a few lactose intolerant family members who cant have the ricotta. And (3) I added sundried tomatoes! … just because i like them and had them on hand 🙂

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe!!

  7. Kate

    Made this tonight and it was Fabulous!! Family loved it. So tasty and cheese sauce was delicious. Thank you for the recipe. We definitely be making more of your recipes. Easy to make too. I made the whipped ricotta ahead of time so I think it all came together in about 15 minutes.

  8. Laura Souyoultzis

    I’m excited to try this tonight. Going for a dairy free version!

  9. Rebecca Walker

    Hi! Is the 8 ounces of rigatoni 1/2 box of pasta for this recipe? Looking at the box i have it’s says 1 lb, and trusty google says 1 1b equalsl 16 ounces..haha just trying to make sure i’m doing the right quantities : ) thank you!!

  10. Brittany

    This is likely a dumb question but the wording is confusing to me (likely due to not enough coffee).

    “About 3 minutes before the pasta should be al dente, add the broccoli florets and cook all together”

    Just to clarify, the florets are added to the skillet with the sausage and not the boiling pasta water correct? Thank you thank you!

    • Gaby

      3 minutes before the pasta comes out of the boiling water, add the broccoli into the pasta water and cook the broccoli with the pasta. Then drain them all together!