Steamed Broccoli

Learn how to steam broccoli perfectly every time! Seasoned with salt, pepper, and a big squeeze of lemon juice, it's a delicious healthy side dish.

Steamed broccoli

When I need a super-fast, super-fresh side dish to round out a meal, I make this steamed broccoli recipe. The whole process takes under 10 minutes, prep time and cleanup included, and the results are always delicious. The steamed broccoli is crisp-tender and vibrant green. I love it on its own (the steaming brings out the broccoli’s natural sweetness), but it’s even better with salt, pepper, and a big squeeze of lemon juice on top.

Broccoli florets on a cutting board

How to Steam Broccoli

My method for how to steam broccoli couldn’t be simpler! Here’s how it goes:

First, prepare the broccoli. Trim off the stalk and cut the broccoli into bite-sized florets. If you like, you can also peel, dice, and steam the stalk. Otherwise, save it for another use, like making broccoli rice!

Next, cook. Add the broccoli florets to a steamer basket, and place it in a saucepan filled with 1 inch of water. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cover the pan. Let steam for 5 minutes, or until the broccoli is crisp-tender and bright green.

Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice to taste. That’s it!

How to steam broccoli - hand lifting steamer basket from pot

Steamed Broccoli Serving Suggestions

Most often, I enjoy steamed broccoli as a healthy side dish. Before I serve it, I toss it with salt, pepper, olive oil, and a big squeeze of lemon juice so that it’s nice and bright. It also tastes fantastic dressed with lemon vinaigrette, vegan ranch, honey mustard dressing, or romesco sauce.

Once it’s seasoned, steamed broccoli pairs nicely with almost anything – serve it next to a frittata, a baked potato or sweet potato, vegan meatballs, or a hot bowl of soup. I especially love it with pasta. Try pairing it with any of these recipes:

If I’m not serving steamed broccoli as a side dish, I like to add it to grain bowls or toss it with noodles. Try it in my Cashew Broccoli Soba Noodles or my Macro Veggie Bowl. It’d be excellent in this Buddha Bowl and this Power Bowl, too! Steamed broccoli also adds color and texture to this cozy Vegan Broccoli Soup.

How do you like to eat steamed broccoli? Let me know in the comments!

Steamed broccoli recipe

More Vegetable Cooking Basics

If you loved learning how to steam broccoli, try roasting or sautéing it next! Then, experiment with these easy vegetable recipes:

How to Steam Broccoli

rate this recipe:
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Serves 4
This steamed broccoli recipe is my favorite method for cooking broccoli. It takes less than 10 minutes, and the florets are sweet, crisp-tender, and bright green. Serve it as a side dish, or toss it into grain bowls, mac and cheese, and more!


  • 1 pound broccoli florets
  • Water, for steaming
  • Olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, for seasoning, optional


  • Place the broccoli florets in a steamer basket and set over a pot with 1-inch of water.
  • Bring the water to a simmer, cover, and let steam 5 minutes, until the broccoli is tender.
  • Season the steamed broccoli with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, as desired.


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Rate this recipe (after making it)

  1. Lorie

    So delicious and moist! The topping is so pretty and yummy. My only complaint is it’s a bit crumbly, may need a egg or substitute. I think all baking recipes would be better off measured using a scale. Thanks for this delicious recipe!

  2. Jayme Silvestri

    I just made this last night, added basil and grape tomatoes, also sealed the chicken in a pan just before the oven. It was incredible delicious I am so glad I run into your recipe! Thanks!

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Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.