Try these easy, kid-friendly broccoli recipes to help the kids learn to love the veggie—in all sorts of easy recipes. From Broccoli Pesto, Roasted Broccoli, and Broccoli Cheddar Soup, to the best Veggie Muffins, these recipes have you covered!


Healthy Broccoli Recipes

Broccoli seems to be one of those foods that we all want to feed to our kids, but they don’t always want to eat. BUT: These healthy broccoli recipes will give you some options of ways to serve broccoli up to your toddlers and older kids that have a strong chance of actually being eaten.

I of course can’t make any guarantees and I think we often feel so much pressure to have kids who like every food, but it is also possible that the kids will surprise us one day.

These ideas have options to include fresh and frozen broccoli according to what you have on hand.

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Quick & Easy Broccoli Recipes

There’s nothing too complicated about these broccoli recipes since I know that you are probably just like me—busy and unwilling to spend too much time on a recipe for the kids that they might not eat.

I love the sound of all of these recipes for the entire family, so even if your kiddo is still adjusting to the idea of a certain type of broccoli, everyone else at the table can enjoy them in the meantime!

These broccoli recipes are flavorful, yummy, and yet not too crunchy or spicy. I chose them with little kids in mind and aimed to include a range of flavors and texture options so you can pick the ones that seem like they’d be the most appealing to your child.

TIP: Here’s my go-to Broccoli Puree and BLW-style Broccoli for babies.

three white bowls of broccoli pasta

How can I get my kids to actually eat the broccoli?

Here are some tips to help kids love broccoli. (And check this out for tips for babies and broccoli.)

  • Serve small portions.
    This is my advice for feeding kids in general but the smaller the portion, the less likelihood that they’ll be overwhelmed by the food. And it means less food waste if they decide not to eat it.
  • Make sure it tastes good to YOU.
    One of the reasons that kids don’t always love the veggies we serve them is that they’re too bland. So I suggest taking a bite yourself and seeing if you like it. If not? Add more sauce/seasoning/etc to amp up the yummy factor!
  • Let the kids share their opinions.
    Not every new recipe you feed your child is going to fly, so try not to push too hard and give the kids (as they are able) the chance to voice their opinions about the food. They may be able to tell you what we can do to make it yummier—maybe they need a sauce or to have the pieces cut smaller!
  • Be patient.
    I don’t like to quote the stats on how many exposures it takes kids to accept new foods since they sound sooooo daunting, but know this: It takes time for kids to see foods as familiar, so if there’s anything (like broccoli!) that you really want them to eat, you need to include it in family meals regularly. Not everyday, but often enough that they know what it is and start to develop a flavor memory so they can anticipate what it will taste like. This is the best way to help new foods not be scary!

TIP: The Division of Responsibility can be a useful approach too.

broccoli and cauliflower with healthy cheese sauce on plate

1. Cheese Sauce with Steamed Broccoli

Cheese sauce makes everything better—and this one happens to have cauliflower right in the mix! This is an easy recipe to serve with steamed broccoli. (See the recipe at the bottom for the Steamed Broccoli recipe!)

Easy Cauliflower Cheese Sauce
Perfect for dipping and dunking veggies, this recipe makes enough for 2-3 servings, so you can store any leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container. Reheat it for 15-30 seconds in the microwave to serve. You can also toss any leftovers with pasta for a quick and healthy mac and cheese.
Get the recipe
how to make cheese sauce

2. Pizza Rolls with Broccoli

Trade in finely chopped, thawed frozen broccoli for the spinach in this recipe and you’ll have a kid-friendly meal ready to go.

Favorite Pizza Rolls (with Spinach and Cheese)
Be sure to grease your pan well and roll the dough up fairly tightly around the fillings for best results. (But it's okay if they don't look perfect when they go into the pan!) 
Get the recipe
Roasted frozen broccoli on pan.

3: Roasted Frozen Broccoli

Roasted broccoli was one of the veggies at our first daycare that all of the kids loved. It’s slightly sweet and is super easy to make—and using frozen broccoli creates a more tender texture that is easier for little kids to chew.

Roasted Frozen Broccoli
Roast a bag of frozen broccoli to make cooking easier and serve up the most delicious side dish. This is particularly great topped with grated Parmesan cheese!
Get the recipe
Roasted frozen broccoli on pan.
broccoli puree on spoon.

4. Broccoli Puree

This is a yummy baby food option (and there’s a method for making and serving broccoli baby led weaning style too).

Best Broccoli for Babies (Puree and BLW-Style)
Learn how to make nutritious Broccoli Puree and a super easy method for baby led weaning style broccoli. Both start with the same technique, so you can do either (or both!).
Get the recipe

pizza pockets with broccoli and cheese on yellow plate with strawberries

5. Pizza Pockets with Broccoli and Cheese

Tuck a serving of broccoli into a homemade pizza pocket for a complete meal that you can make ahead and warm on busy nights. No need to make a separate veggie (unless you want to!).

Pizza Pockets with Broccoli and Cheese
If you’re using Homemade Pizza Dough, make it at least an hour before you plan to assemble the pockets. If using store-bought, let it sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes so it’s not super cold when you try to form the pockets.
Get the recipe
pizza pockets with broccoli and cheese
Broccoli fritters on white plate with dip on side.

6. Broccoli Fritters

Turn a pile of broccoli into the yummiest fritters with this easy method. This is a great recipe for babies on up through adults.

Quick Broccoli Fritters
Combine a pile of broccoli with a few pantry staples to make the yummiest Broccoli Fritters—in less than 15 minutes. This veggie fritter is so good with a whole range of dips, and it's perfect for babies and toddlers on up.
Get the recipe
Broccoli fritters on white plate with dip on side.

broccoli cheese soup recipe

7. Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Soup

This is hands-down one of our favorite cold weather soups. It’s got all of the flavor of broccoli cheese soup with a hit of split peas for protein. So good, and good for you.

Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Soup
With plant-based protein, veggies, and cheese, this soup is a wonderful way to serve up healthy comfort food to the whole family. (Adapted from FamilyFun magazine.)
Get the recipe
broccoli cheese soup recipe

homemade broccoli tots in green bowl with ketchup

8. Homemade Broccoli Tots

Make a batch of broccoli tots that are healthier than the freezer aisle with this delicious homemade broccoli tots recipe.

Homemade Broccoli Tots (Better Than the Freezer Aisle!)
Crispy on the outside and tender in the middle, these tots are a seriously fun way to serve broccoli. You can cook the rice up to 5 days ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you're ready to bake the tots.
Get the recipe
homemade broccoli tots

veggie muffins on gray towel

9. Veggie Muffins

With broccoli and carrots in the mix, these savory muffins are a great lunch option for kids. (And also yourself paired with something like soup!)

Easy Veggie Muffins
Serve up veggies in a kid-friendly form with these SO-good Veggie Muffins. They have broccoli, carrots, protein, and kid-approved flavor!
Get the recipe
veggie muffins on gray towel

10. Quick Sausage Pasta with Broccoli

Toss broccoli with flavorful Italian sausage, pasta, and Parmesan cheese for a skillet dinner that’s (almost) sure to please.

4-Ingredient Sausage Pasta (with Broccoli)
This pasta recipe is quick and delicious and the flavor from the sausage is really key. (Just a heads up that you'll need to reserve a little of the pasta cooking water, so keep that in mind BEFORE you drain the pasta.) Chicken sausage is usually leaner than pork, so when making this with chicken sausage, I like to add butter or olive oil before serving.
Get the recipe
Egg bake with sides on lalo kid's plate.

11. Broccoli Egg Bake

This broccoli recipe can be served for any meal of the day, either on its own or with a dip like guacamole, sour cream, salsa, or ketchup.

Easy Egg Bake (with Broccoli)
Transform just a few simple ingredients—including a pile of broccoli—into this protein-packed Egg Bake to share with the kids. It’s an easy breakfast or lunch that stores well and is simple to make ahead.
Get the recipe

twirl of spaghetti with broccoli pesto in blue bowl

12. Broccoli Pesto Pasta

Blend broccoli right into this easy pesto recipe, toss it with pasta, and a delicious toddler meal is ready! It’s also a great one to make ahead and freeze for future meals.

Easy Broccoli Pesto (for Pasta and Pizza)
This will likely make enough for two meals. You can freeze the leftovers for a future meal. (This recipe was updated to improve the taste and method in April 2019.)
Get the recipe
broccoli pesto on spaghetti in blue bowl with pink fork

13: Easy Mashed Potatoes with Broccoli

This recipe is one that I fed to my girls a lot when they were little since everything goes into one pot and it’s super easy for little kids to eat. You can top your adult serving with some crushed red pepper flakes or a strong cheese for added flavor.

Healthy Mashed Potatoes with Broccoli
If you want to make these creamier, live it up and add more sour cream and butter!
Get the recipe
Lemon broccoli pasta in two bowls with spoon.

14. Lemon Broccoli Pasta

Flavorful, quick, and so delicious, this lemony pasta is a great one to share with the kids.

Quick Lemon Broccoli Pasta
Bursting with fresh, bright flavor, this Lemon Broccoli Pasta is one of our absolute favorite fast meals. It's ready in less than 20 minutes, you can use fresh or frozen broccoli, and it's perfect for little kids and us adults.
Get the recipe
Lemon broccoli pasta in two bowls with spoon.

15. One-Pot Broccoli Mac and Cheese

Everything cooks in the same pot in this super comforting mac and cheese recipe. The broccoli is a nice bonus!

One-Pot Broccoli Mac and Cheese
The method on this recipe is streamlined to cut down on dish washing. Add the optional spices for more flavor if you like! Double it to make more.
Get the recipe

16. Pizza Bites (with Veggies

Fill pizza dough with broccoli and cheese to make this fun kids meal (that you might want to eat too!).

Favorite Pizza Bites
Fluffy pizza bites are a delicious lunch or dinner option—and you can customize the filling to please your kids! We like these with a little side of warmed marinara sauce for dipping.
Get the recipe

17. Easy Boiled Broccoli

Go back to basics with this tried and true method for cooking perfectly tender broccoli every time.

Easy Boiled Broccoli (to Share with the Kids)
You can start with broccoli crowns or precut broccoli florets. And then serve it plain or with a favorite dip.
Get the recipe

18. Creamy Broccoli Pasta

Pair broccoli with pasta, lemon, and ricotta cheese for a comforting family meal.

Creamy Pasta with Broccoli
Feel free to cut this recipe in half to make a smaller portion for your family. (Or make the full batch and enjoy the leftovers!)
Get the recipe
creamy broccoli pasta in white bowls.
Broccoli pasta in various bowls.

19. Broccoli Pasta

This is a favorite way to serve broccoli to kids—which basically tastes like the yummiest broccoli mac and cheese.

Easy Broccoli Pasta
Give homemade Broccoli Pasta extra yum with this power-packed cheese sauce that has 4 cups of broccoli built in. It is ready in less than 20 minutes, has two veggies in the mix, and is super easy to make. You can even freeze extra portions for future weeks!
Get the recipe
Broccoli pasta in various bowls.

20. Broccoli Pizza Bites

Stuff broccoli and cheese into pizza dough for the yummiest homemade pizza bites perfect for dinner or lunch.

Favorite Pizza Bites
Fluffy pizza bites are a delicious lunch or dinner option—and you can customize the filling to please your kids! We like these with a little side of warmed marinara sauce for dipping.
Get the recipe

Related Recipes

What’s your favorite way to serve broccoli? I’d love to hear in the comments, so please chime in below!

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20 Healthy Broccoli Recipes for Kids

This is my go-to recipe for easy Steamed Broccoli. You can find links to the rest of the recipes in the Notes for easy referencing.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 13 minutes
Cuisine American
Course side
Calories 33kcal
Servings 4


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  • Fill a medium pot with 2 inches of water and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
  • Add a steamer basket filled with broccoli and cover. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until the broccoli is bright green and tender when poked with a paring knife.
  • Use a spoon to transfer the broccoli to a bowl and toss with butter or olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
  • Serve with Cheese Sauce if desired.


Calories: 33kcal, Carbohydrates: 6g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 34mg, Potassium: 293mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 573IU, Vitamin C: 81mg, Calcium: 47mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published December 2018.

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