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Difference between Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe

Difference between Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe

Do you love the taste of broccoli but find it difficult to differentiate between broccolini and broccoli rabe? You’re not alone! Many people find it challenging to distinguish one type of vegetable from another. But, don’t worry; we’ve got all your questions about these often-confused veggie varieties answered. In this blog post, we will discuss the differences between Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe as well as why there is often confusion around them both. Let’s get started digging into these two beloved vegetables – exploring their history, nutritional value, best uses in cooking recipes and more!

What is Broccolini?

  • Broccolini is a vegetable that looks and tastes like a cross between broccoli and Chinese kale. This nutritious veggie has quickly become a favorite among health-conscious individuals who appreciate its mild, slightly sweet flavor and versatile culinary uses.
  • Broccolini has an interesting origin story, having been developed in the 1990s by Japanese seed company Sakata Seed Corporation as a hybrid of both broccoli and Chinese kale.
  • Enjoyed raw or cooked, it can be grilled, steamed, added to salads, stir-fries, casseroles, lasagna – you name it Broccolini can do it! Broccolini is also rich in vitamins A and C, as well as fiber, making it not only tasty but also good for your health. So why not give Broccolini a try?

What is Broccoli Rabe?

  • Broccoli Rabe is a leafy green vegetable with a bold and slightly bitter taste. It has close family ties to Broccoli but differs from its cousin in texture, flavor, and appearance.
  • Broccoli Rabe has slender stalks that branch out into dark green leaves, resembling the shape of a small tree. This vegetable is packed with nutrition such as calcium, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and fiber.
  • Broccoli Rabe can be prepared in a myriad of dishes; popular recipes include sautéing with garlic and olive oil or adding it to Italian sandwiches for an extra punch of flavor. Broccoli Rabe is the perfect addition to any meal that needs some color and flavor!

Difference between Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe

Broccolini and Broccoli Rabe are two green vegetables that are commonly confused due to their similar appearance.

  • Broccolini is a cross between broccoli and Chinese kale, while Broccoli Rabe is more closely related to the turnip family.
  • Broccolini has a sweet flavor compared with Broccoli Rabe’s bitter taste, and Broccolini florets are usually smaller than Broccoli Rabe buds.
  • Broccolini can be steamed or stir-fried while Broccoli Rabes should not be cooked too much as they become limp quickly.

Although both contain calcium, potassium, and vitamins A, C, K, and B6, Broccoli rabe contains more Vitamin K than Broccolini. Enjoy both of these vegetables in salads and side dishes for a nutrient-filled meal!


While both of these greens are similar in taste and appearance, there are some key differences that set them apart. Broccolini is a hybrid vegetable that is part broccoli and part Chinese kale, while broccoli rabe is related to the turnip family. When it comes to preparing these greens, you typically want to blanch or sauté them before adding them to your dish for optimal flavor. And if you’re looking for a nutritious side dish or addition to your meal, either of these options would be a great choice.

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