Broken noodle bowl with broccoli peanut pesto.

Can we pause for a moment and look at how beautiful and colorful this healthy Broken Noodle Bowl with Broccoli Peanut Pesto is? I know bowls are *a thing* right now, and have been for awhile. This is exactly the kind of thing I’m craving for lunch: super flavorful, packed with bright vegetables and hearty enough to satisfy me at mid-day.

And I have to say: the chunky Broccoli-Peanut Pesto with a kick of chili garlic sauce is delish … and I can see it making a regular appearance in my kitchen this winter. I totally made up the recipe, and loved it. I envision it as a great add-in for fried brown rice with vegetables. It would be great spooned into a pan of scrambled eggs. My gluten-free friends could swap the buckwheat soba noodles for brown rice and do an Asian-inspired grain bowl. Need protein? Add sliced cooked chicken or quick-sauteed tofu.

I’m digging this Broken Noodle Bowl for lunch, but you could make dinner of it for 4 people by using 2 bundles of noodles and doubling up on all the vegetables (there’s enough pesto for a double recipe).

Crunchy, zingy, satisfying … give this one a try!

broken noodle bowl with broccoli pesto and crunchy vegetable recipe

makes 2 or 3 lunch servings, depending on how hungry you are

For the broccoli pesto:
1/4 cup lightly salted dry-roasted peanuts
1 clove garlic
2 cups (packed) lightly steamed broccoli florets
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons olive oil
1–2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon chili garlic paste (or more to taste)
Salt and pepper

Place peanuts and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse to chop. Add broccoli, sesame and olive oil, 1 tablespoon water and chili garlic paste and pulse to create a chunky puree. (Add more water if needed for consistency.) Season to taste with salt and pepper.

For the bowl:
1 bundle soba noodles broken in thirds
Assorted vegetables (as many and as much as you'd like), thinly sliced: snow peas, red pepper, cabbage, cucumber, carrot, scallion
Black and/or white sesame seeds for garnishing
Chopped lightly salted dry-roasted peanuts for garnishing

Cook soba noodles in boiling water according to package directions. Drain. While still warm, toss with about half the broccoli-peanut pesto to coat well, adding more if needed. Place half of noodles in a shallow bowl and top with vegetables; scatter sesame seeds and peanuts over. Or, toss everything together and pack into portable lunch containers.

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