Linguine with sardines

Linguine with sardines

Total Time
45 min
15 min
30 min
Pasta con le sarde is one of the classic dishes of Sicily and Calabria, the region in Italy that makes up the toe of the country’s boot-shaped peninsula. As with any beloved recipe, the ingredients vary from region to region, village to village, even home to home. This version is made with canned sardines (though fresh cooked or frozen can be substituted) and broccoli rabe instead of the usual fennel. Sardines are an inexpensive seafood option that give this dish rich flavor. Canned sardines do come with bones, so you’ll need to remove those before adding them to the skillet.


Uncooked whole wheat pasta

6 oz, linguine

Broccoli rabe

¾ pound(s), 1 medium bunch, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

Olive oil

1 Tbsp

Uncooked onion

1 large, chopped


3 clove(s), sliced

Red pepper flakes

¼ tsp

Table salt

¼ tsp

Sardines canned in water

7½ oz, drained

Lemon zest

1 tsp, finely grated

Fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp

Grated Parmesan cheese

¼ cup(s)


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, adding broccoli rabe during last 5 minutes of cooking. Reserve 3⁄4 cup cooking water, then drain pasta and broccoli rabe.
  2. Meanwhile, in large deep skillet, heat oil over medium. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, crushed red pepper, and salt and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Remove and discard bones from sardines and break fish into chunks. Add pasta, broccoli rabe, lemon zest and juice, and sardines to skillet and cook just until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes, tossing constantly and adding reserved cooking water as needed if pasta seems dry. Divide pasta among 4 plates and sprinkle with cheese.
  4. Serving size: 12⁄3 cups pasta and 1 tbsp Parmesan