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Spring vegetable pasta by Joe Wicks 

The crisp asparagus, the sweet burst of peas, the super-soft broccoli that coats the pasta almost like a pesto – this spring vegetable pasta is absolutely banging.

Joe Wicks cooking in a wok

Recipe by Joe Wicks

If health is wealth, then get this recipe off the shelf, you elf.

The trick is to cut the broccoli quite small, as you’re going to intentionally overcook it – you will love it when it all mixes in with the pasta.


Serves 4

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  • 1 head of broccoli, finely chopped, stalk discarded 
  • 300g (10oz) penne pasta 
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 200g (7oz) asparagus, cut into 2–3cm (¾–11/4in) chunks 
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 
  • 4–5 sprigs of fresh rosemary, finely chopped 
  • 150g (5oz) frozen peas 
  • zest and juice of 1–2 lemons 
  • 50g (2oz) Parmesan, finely grated, plus extra to serve 
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper 



Step 1

Stick the kettle on, then pour the boiling water into a large pot. Add the chopped broccoli and penne and boil until the pasta is al dente and the broccoli is very soft, around 9 minutes. 

Step 2

In the meantime, in a large frying pan, heat the oil and fry the asparagus until deeply golden and slightly crisp. Throw in the garlic and rosemary and fry for 1 minute until fragrant.  

Step 3

Once the pasta and broccoli are cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer the pasta and broccoli straight into the asparagus pan and toss vigorously with a bit of the pasta water to combine. Add the frozen peas, zest and juice from 1 lemon and the Parmesan and continue to toss vigorously until a glossy sauce clings to the pasta. 

Step 4

Plate up with plenty of extra Parmesan for sprinkling. 

Green kitchen tips

Gather your leftover veg peelings, garlic skins and broccoli stalks, and pop them in a ziplock bag in the freezer. Once you’ve amassed a decent stash you can boil them with herbs and spices to make a tasty vegetable stock!