Photo of Pasta with broccoli rabe and Bolognese sauce by WW

Pasta with broccoli rabe and Bolognese sauce

3 - 7
PersonalPoints™ per serving
Total Time
40 min
20 min
20 min
For this hearty pasta recipe, sautéed ground beef is flavored with fennel, onions, garlic, crushed red pepper flakes, and fire-roasted tomatoes. Tossed with broccoli rabe and pasta, it makes for a terrific, satisfying main meal that you and the whole family and/or dinner party will love. You'll also keep coming back to this stress-free recipe because of its versatility. Any tube-shaped pasta will work, or even pappardelle since its width allows for as much meat sauce to cling on to as possible. The sauce is great with lean ground turkey instead of beef. Are you not a broccoli rabe fan? Use spinach, kale, or regular broccoli instead. The possibilities are endless!


Table salt

tsp, for cooking pasta

Olive oil

2 tsp

Uncooked onion(s)

1 cup(s), chopped

Minced garlic

1 Tbsp

Uncooked 93% lean ground beef

¾ pound(s)

Fennel seeds

2½ tsp

Canned crushed tomatoes

28 oz, fire-roasted recommended

Table salt

¼ tsp

Crushed red pepper flakes

½ tsp

Dried oregano

½ tsp

Uncooked whole wheat pasta

12 oz, penne rigate suggested

Cooked broccoli rabe

1 pound(s), ends trimmed, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, to make sauce, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent, about 6 minutes. Add beef and fennel seeds to skillet; cook until browned, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Stir in tomatoes, salt, red pepper flakes and oregano; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
  4. While sauce simmers, add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package instructions, adding broccoli rabe to pasta water 5 minutes before pasta will be done; cook until pasta and broccoli rabe are tender.
  5. Drain pasta and broccoli rabe; return to pot. Add sauce; toss to mix and coat. Yields about 1 1/2 cups per serving.