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Gorgonzola Pasta with Browned Butter Lemon and Broccolini in a white bowl resting on a dark green cloth on a wooden surface

Gorgonzola Pasta with Browned Butter Lemon and Broccolini

  • Author: Whip & Wander
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Mains
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian


This Gorgonzola Pasta with Browned Butter Lemon and Broccolini is pleasantly rich, creamy, and bursting with complex flavor and texture.


  • 12 oz penne pasta (or your preferred pasta, gluten-free if needed)
  • 50 g (about 1/2 cup) walnuts, halves or pieces
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large lemon, thinly sliced, ends and seeds discarded
  • 1 tbsp garlic-infused love oil - OR - 1 tbsp olive oil + 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 bundle (about 272 g) broccolini, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt + a generous pinch more to salt the pasta water
  • 6 oz (about 1 cup + 3 tbsp) Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled or roughly chopped, plus more to top if desired
  • 2 oz (about 2/3 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated + plus more to top if desired
  • 2 oz (about 1/4 cup) heavy cream
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil over medium-high heat with a generous pinch of salt. Cook pasta to al dente, according to package directions (generally about-10 minutes). Prior to draining, remove 8 oz (1 cup) pasta water and reserve to the side, then drain the pasta and reserve to the side.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, I like to toast the walnuts. In a large skillet or saute pan over medium heat, add the walnuts and toast gently, stirring often with a wooden spoon or spatula until lightly golden and fragrant around 5-minutes. Nuts can burn quickly so keep a close eye on them as they cook. Once toasted, remove from heat, transfer the nuts to a prep dish (as you'll be using the pan again), and reserve to the side.
  3. Using the same pan you just toasted the walnuts in, over medium heat, melt the butter. Add lemon slices and cook, stirring often, until butter begins to brown and lemon has softened and is beginning to brown on both sides. Remove from heat and reserve lemon and any remaining brown butter to the side, scraping the pan out gently with a silicone spatula.
  4. By now, you will likely have drained your pasta and the pot is empty. Using the pot you cooked your pasta in over medium-high heat, add garlic-infused olive oil (or olive oil) and heat until shimmering. Add broccolini and saute, stirring frequently for around 5 minutes. You just want to give the broccoli a chance to brown and tenderize slightly but keep a bit of crispness. Season with 1/2 tsp Kosher salt. If using minced garlic cloves (instead of the garlic-oil) you can add this in during the last minute of cooking, sautéing with the broccolini until fragrant. Remove the broccolini from the pot and reserve to the side with the lemon.
  5. Lower the heat in the pot to medium. Add 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water along with the gorgonzola cheese, parmesan cheese, and heavy cream. Stir frequently until cheese is melted and smooth (adding a splash of the remaining reserved pasta water as needed) then season with a few cracks of black pepper to taste. Add the pasta back to the pan and stir to combine with the sauce. Add the broccolini and lemon to the pot and gently toss to combine.
  6. Serve pasta with a measure of the reserved toasted walnuts on top and an optional sprinkle of additional Parmesan cheese and/or Gorgonzola cheese to top, if desired. I usually add an extra crack of black pepper to finish.


Nutritional information on Whip & Wander is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site.


  • Serving Size: 1 serving
  • Calories: 501
  • Sugar: 3 g
  • Sodium: 488 mg
  • Fat: 26 g
  • Saturated Fat: 12 g
  • Carbohydrates: 48 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 19 g
  • Cholesterol: 57 mg

Keywords: pasta, Gorgonzola, Lemon, Broccolini