Satisfy Your Cravings With Red-Wine Spaghetti Recipe

Dear fellow food enthusiasts,

Today, I am thrilled to share with you a recipe for a classic pasta dish – Red-Wine Spaghetti with Broccoli Rabe. This recipe is an absolute personal favorite and one that always manages to impress my guests.

The combination of spaghetti, spicy broccoli rabe, and a flavorful red wine sauce makes for a deliciously satisfying meal. This dish offers just the right balance of sharpness, spiciness, sweetness, and bitterness; making it an ideal option for any occasion.

As a lover of all things Italian, I must admit that this dish certainly has a special place in my heart. It is rich in traditional flavors and deeply satisfying to the soul. The spaghetti is cooked to perfection, coated in red wine sauce, and complemented by the bitterness of broccoli rabe to create a masterpiece that can’t be beaten!

From a culinary perspective, this recipe is truly remarkable as it offers complexity without being overly complicated. Anyone can make it successfully, whether you are an experienced cook or a beginner trying your hand at Italian cuisine.

So without further ado, let’s get started on this Red-Wine Spaghetti with Broccoli Rabe recipe – it’s sure to become one of your new favorites!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe
Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe

Are you looking for a delicious and easy-to-make pasta recipe that will wow your taste buds? Look no further than this Red-Wine Spaghetti with Broccoli Rabe recipe! Not only is it packed with flavor, but it also has a unique twist on traditional spaghetti dishes that will make it stand out.

One reason you’ll love this recipe is that it features the bold flavors of red wine and spicy red pepper flakes. This combination gives the dish a slightly sweet and savory taste with just the right amount of heat. Additionally, the use of garlic and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese adds an extra layer of depth to the sauce that will leave your palate satisfied.

Another reason to try this recipe is because it incorporates broccoli rabe into the dish. Often overlooked in favor of traditional broccoli, broccoli rabe has a slightly more bitter taste that complements the sweetness of the wine and helps balance the spiciness. The cut broccoli rabe florets add texture to every bite, making each forkful a delight.

Lastly, this dish is incredibly versatile and can be easily customized to fit your preferences. You can swap out spaghetti for another type of pasta or even use white wine instead of red to create a different flavor profile. Add some Italian sausage or another protein for a heartier meal or omit it entirely for a vegetarian option. The possibilities are endless when it comes to making this recipe your own.

In conclusion, give this recipe a chance if you want to impress your guests or simply enjoy a flavorful meal at home. You won’t regret trying out this mouth-watering dish with its blend of robust wine flavors, spicy red pepper flakes, and crisp broccoli rabe. So grab your apron and get ready to cook up a storm – this recipe is sure to become a favorite in no time!

Ingredient List

 A sip of red wine and a bite of spaghetti, the perfect match!
A sip of red wine and a bite of spaghetti, the perfect match!

Ingredient List

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe Recipe:

  • 1 lb. spaghetti: regular or whole wheat will do.
  • 1 lb. broccoli rabe: tough stems discarded and 1- to 1 1/2-inch wide florets returned to cooking liquid to boil and cook spaghetti.
  • 6 garlic cloves: thinly sliced.
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes or more, depending on your spicy preference.
  • 3/4 cup red wine: many varieties work here, but a bottle of zinfandel preferably is perfect for this recipe.
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving.

The Recipe How-To

 Make your day better with this delicious bowl of red-wine spaghetti.
Make your day better with this delicious bowl of red-wine spaghetti.

Step 1: Cook the Broccoli Rabe and Spaghetti

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add 1 pound of broccoli rabe that has been cut into 1-inch wide florets, thick stems discarded. Blanch for 2 minutes until tender, then transfer to a bowl of ice water and drain.
  2. In the same pot, add more salt and cook 1 pound of spaghetti until al dente, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid before draining the spaghetti.

Step 2: Make the Wine Reduction

  1. In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil over medium-high heat. Add 3 garlic cloves and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add red pepper flakes and stir for about a minute.
  3. Add ¾ cup of red wine, preferably Zinfandel or another bold red wine, to the skillet and bring it to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until it reduces by half, about 10 minutes.

Step 3: Combine Everything

  1. Add the cooked spaghetti to your skillet with your wine reduction sauce, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.
  2. Gradually add in ½ cup of reserved cooking liquid as needed until the sauce clings well to the pasta.
  3. Add in your cooked broccoli rabe, stirring gently until heated through.
  4. Taste for seasoning and adjust with more salt, black pepper, and/or hot red pepper flakes as needed.

Serve hot with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and crusty garlic bread crumbs on top if desired.

Substitutions and Variations

 Indulge in this pasta dish loaded with flavors and nutrition.
Indulge in this pasta dish loaded with flavors and nutrition.

While this recipe calls for red wine, spaghetti, and broccoli rabe to make a delicious and hearty Italian-inspired dish, there are plenty of variations and substitutions you can make to customize the flavors and ingredients to your liking. Here are a few ideas:

– Swap out the red wine: While red wine is typically used in traditional Italian cooking, you could experiment with using white wine instead. This will create a lighter, fresher flavor that is perfect for warm weather months.

– Use a different type of pasta: If spaghetti isn’t your favorite type of pasta, feel free to use something else. Orecchiette is another popular pasta shape that is often paired with broccoli rabe in Italian cuisine.

– Add some protein: This dish can easily be made into a complete meal by adding some protein like Italian sausage or diced chicken. Simply brown the meat in a separate skillet before adding it to the pasta.

– Spice it up: If you like your food with a little more heat, add some extra red pepper flakes or hot sauce to the dish. You could also try substituting broccoli raab for broccoli rabe, which has a slightly bitter taste that pairs perfectly with spicy flavors.

– Make it vegan: This dish can easily be made vegan by skipping the parmesan cheese and using a vegan substitute instead. You could also add some sautéed mushrooms or roasted eggplant as an alternative source of protein.

Remember, cooking is all about experimenting and finding what works best for your tastes. Don’t be afraid to mix things up and try something new!

Serving and Pairing

 Who said only white wine goes with pasta? Red wine has its own charm too!
Who said only white wine goes with pasta? Red wine has its own charm too!

Once the red-wine spaghetti with broccoli rabe is cooked, it’s time to serve it up in style. This pasta dish is perfect for entertaining guests or for a cozy dinner at home. It pairs exceptionally well with a hearty red wine, such as the 750ml bottle of red wine, preferably zinfandel, recommended in the ingredient list.

The spicy broccoli rabe adds depth to the dish, and the rich tomato sauce complemented by the red wine reduction brings out its flavours further. I suggest grating some parmigiano-reggiano cheese on top of each plate to give it a tangy finish.

The ideal pairing partner for this spaghetti recipe is garlic bread sprinkled with bread crumbs. The crunchiness of the breadcrumbs complements well with the spiciness of the broccoli rabe.

Suppose you want to make it a more substantial meal or trying to feed a larger crowd. In that case, you can consider serving it as drunken spaghetti inspired by Michael Chiarello’s cookbook Bottega. The drunk version includes a few extra glasses of your preferred deep red wine added while simultaneously cooking and stirring until fully absorbed.

For vegetarians, switch out red meat for Italian sausage pasta with cime di rapa or orecchiette pasta sauce with broccoli raab for an equally indulgent and flavorful dish. You may also prefer Rachael Ray’s orecchiette with sausage and broccoli raab or Ina Garten’s Sausage, Broccoli Rabe and Orecchiette recipe for an excellent pairing option.

Regardless of how you choose to pair it up, this recipe will become one of your favorite dinner items ideal to enjoy any night or special occasion!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Make your dinner special with a plate of red-wine spaghetti, perfect for those romantic dates.
Make your dinner special with a plate of red-wine spaghetti, perfect for those romantic dates.

One of the great things about this red-wine spaghetti with broccoli rabe recipe is that it can be made ahead of time and stored for later consumption. After cooking, let the pasta cool down to room temperature, place it in an airtight container, and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

When ready to serve, you can reheat the pasta either in a microwave or a stovetop. To reheat in a microwave, put the pasta in a microwave-safe dish and heat it on high for 1-2 minutes until heated through. Be sure to stir the pasta occasionally to prevent uneven heating.

If you prefer reheating on a stovetop, then add some olive oil or cooking liquid to the refrigerated pasta and warm it up over low heat until heated through. You may need to adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes before serving.

Before serving, a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese on top will enhance the flavors of this dish. Additionally, garlic bread or bread crumbs would be another great accompaniment on the side.

Overall, reheating this delicious red-wine spaghetti with broccoli rabe recipe is simple and easy. Whether you have stored leftover pasta or made ahead for a dinner party, this recipe will still taste just as good when reheated properly!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Spaghetti and broccoli rabe, chef's kiss!
Spaghetti and broccoli rabe, chef’s kiss!

To ensure that your Red-Wine Spaghetti with Broccoli Rabe turns out perfectly, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind.

Firstly, when cooking the broccoli rabe, it’s important to cut it into evenly sized 1-inch wide florets and discard any thick stems. This ensures that the broccoli rabe cooks evenly and doesn’t become tough or chewy. Additionally, be sure to return the cooking liquid to a boil before adding the spaghetti to the pot. Stir the spaghetti occasionally for about 5 minutes until it’s al dente and tender.

Secondly, choose a good-quality bottle of red wine preferably a zinfandel to use in the recipe. A quality red wine can add complexity and depth to the dish, so don’t skimp on this ingredient.

Thirdly, add a teaspoon of sugar to balance out the acidity of the tomato sauce and red wine reduction. This will create a delicious sweet and savory flavor profile that is sure to please your taste buds.

Fourthly, don’t forget to save some of the cooking liquid before draining the spaghetti. The starchy liquid can be used to help thicken the sauce and create a silky texture.

Finally, garnish your finished dish with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, black pepper, and hot red pepper flakes for an extra burst of flavor. With these tips in mind, you’re sure to impress your guests with this delicious and flavorful meal!


Now that you know everything about this delicious Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe Recipe, let’s answer some frequently asked questions.

Can you put red wine in spaghetti sauce?

When preparing tomato sauce, both red and white wine can enhance its taste. Red wine brings out a depth of character and fullness, whereas white wine adds a touch of fruity complexity. It is best to add the wine during the initial stages of cooking, once the vegetables have softened.

How do you make Martha Stewart broccoli rabe?

Golden garlic is cooked in oil in a pan on medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes. Then, broccoli rabe is added to the pan and seasoned with salt and pepper. The mixture is occasionally stirred until it is heated through. To serve, it is accompanied by lemon wedges and red-pepper flakes.

Why is my broccoli rabe tough?

Despite its delicious taste, it’s essential to know how to prepare broccoli rabe correctly, as its stalks can be tough if not cooked properly. While some restaurants only sauté the dish lightly, my mother’s kitchen insists on a more thorough preparation to achieve the ideal tender crunch.

What red wine for spaghetti?

Pairing pasta dishes with the right wine is crucial for a fulfilling experience. Acidity plays a vital role in the pairing, as acidic tomato sauce requires a wine with a similar level of acidity. A Merlot, Shiraz, Zinfandel, or Nebbiolo are excellent choices for red wine, while a Rose, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, or Sauvignon Blanc would be suitable for white wine. Choosing a wine with lower acidity would make the flavor bland and unsatisfying.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this red-wine spaghetti with broccoli rabe recipe is a delicious and satisfying meal that will have you and your guests coming back for more. The combination of the spicy broccoli rabe, the rich tomato sauce and the bold flavor of the red wine make for a unique and flavorful dish that is perfect for any occasion.

Whether you’re looking to impress your dinner guests or just looking for a dinner tonight red wine spaghetti with broccoli, this recipe is an excellent option. It’s easy to prepare, offers versatile options for substitutions, and can be stored and reheated with ease.

I highly recommend giving this recipe a try, as it is sure to become a family favorite. And don’t forget to pair it with a delicious glass of red wine to round out the experience. So get cooking today and indulge in the spicy, decadent delight that is red-wine spaghetti with broccoli rabe!

Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe

Red-Wine Spaghetti With Broccoli Rabe Recipe

I saw this prepared on Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello on the food network. It looked so interesting that I wanted to post it for future reference.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Calories 833.1 kcal


  • 1 3/4 lbs broccoli rabe, thick stems discarded
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle red wine (preferably Zinfandel)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese


  • Cut broccoli rabe into 1-inch wide florets. Blanch in a 6 to 8 quart pot of boiling salted water, uncovered, 2 minutes. Transfer with slotted spoon to a large colander to drain, reserving broccoli-cooking liquid in pot, then transfer broccoli to a bowl.
  • Return cooking liquid to a boil and cook spaghetti, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes (pasta will not be fully cooked). Reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain pasta in colander and return empty pot to stovetop.
  • Add wine and sugar to pot and boil vigorously 2 minutes until liquid is reduced a bit.
  • Add spaghetti and shake pot to prevent pasta from sticking. Gently stir with tongs until coated and boil over high heat, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid is absorbed, about 6 minutes (pasta will be al dente).
  • Immediately after adding spaghetti to wine mixture, cook garlic and red pepper flakes in the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over moderately low heat, shaking skillet occasionally, until garlic is pale golden, about 5 minutes.
  • Add broccoli rabe, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add 1/2 cup of reserved pasta water.
  • Pour broccoli rabe into skillet with the spaghetti mixture and carefully toss with tongs to combine (skillet will be very full).
  • Cook while stirring, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, season with freshly ground black pepper and drizzle with a bit of olive oil.
  • Stir in the grated cheese. Serve immediately.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 529gCalories: 833.1kcalCarbohydrates: 98.3gProtein: 25.3gFat: 23.4gSaturated Fat: 4.6gCholesterol: 7.2mgSodium: 685.4mgFiber: 9.2gSugar: 5g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Spaghetti, Vegetable
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