Sautéed Broccoli Rabe with Prosciutto, Mushrooms, and Caramelized Onions


What do you do when you have a tiny bit of prosciutto leftover in the fridge? Well… aside from just eating it plain as a snack because um… yum, I’ve taken to using little bits of leftover cured meats in my side dishes for maximum flavor impact.

Just the tiniest bit of salty prosciutto turns an otherwise ordinary side dish into something so delicious that you’ll find me eating it as a main course instead. The first time I made this that’s exactly what we did, instead of making a full dinner we just ate double servings of this yummy side dish.

Somewhere in my past life as a hopeless gourmet just eating my veggies out of a sense of duty, there’s my old self looking at me like ‘are you serious, you just ate broccoli for dinner, as in that’s it?’! But here’s the thing, when veggies taste this good, you’ll find me eating them without a word of complaint.

It’s not like I’ve ever hated veggies or anything, but who wants to fill up on that when there’s some sort of creamy-carb combination calling my name? So for me the name of the game is to keep the veggies super flavorful so that I never feel like I’m eating them just because they’re good for me.

This recipe is all about flavor layering, so you start by dicing the onion and caramelizing it. Caramelizing onion takes a good solid 10-15 minutes, so that leaves you with plenty of time to prep the rest of the ingredients for this recipe and cook a simple main course as well, like a Tuscan Style Steak of you’re going all out!

I like to save time by rinsing my mushrooms right under running water to get the dirt off rather than the time consuming method of wiping them off with a damp cloth. The small amount of moisture they take on is no big deal when you’re cooking them over fairly high heat.

Once the onions are caramelized, you add the thinly sliced mushrooms and little bits of prosciutto.

Once the mushrooms have browned, it’s time to add the broccoli rabe and cover with a lid to steam/sauté until the broccoli rabe is just tender, but still bright green in color.

Tip: If you’re making this for the holidays or any kind of entertaining, you can prepare the recipe up until the mushrooms are sautéed. You can refrigerate them at this point, and when you’re ready to serve, just nestle the broccoli rabe in amongst the sautéed onion/mushroom mixture and cook until the broccoli rabe is tender which is just a few minutes. Doing part of the recipe ahead really takes the pressure off if you’re cooking several things for dinner.

We’ve been getting some great broccoli rabe from the grocery store lately, but you can also make this with regular broccoli or green beans as well. And while it does make an impressive addition to a holiday meal, most of the time when I’m making a side dish, I pair it with something of the utmost simplicity. That way I don’t have to refer to multiple recipes while cooking dinner on a weeknight, (so I’ll leave you with a few easy options below).

Roasted Sweet Potatoes or Roasted Spaghetti Squash are both great options, simply top them with the Sautéed Broccoli Rabe and you’re done with dinner!

For something a little fancier but still super simple, (maybe for a date night or easy entertaining) you can use this recipe as a topping for my Creme Fraiche Risotto instead of the heirloom tomatoes.

And finally, any simply cooked meat will be one of the fastest options like the Tuscan Style Steak I mentioned or grilled chicken/sausages/pork chops.

Sauteéd Brocolli Rabe with Prosciutto, Mushrooms, and Caramelized Onions
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4 servings as a side dish
  • 3 Tablespoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced ¼", 8 ounces
  • 14 crimini mushrooms, washed an sliced ¼" thick, 8 ounces
  • 3 slices of prosciutto, 1½ ounces, torn or cut into small ½" pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 8 stems broccoli rabe, 12 ounces, washed
  • ½ cup water
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat a large skillet, (15") over medium heat.
  2. When the pan is hot, add the butter or olive oil and diced onion to the pan, sauté for 10-15 minutes or until the onions are brown and caramelized.
  3. Increase the heat to medium high and add the sliced mushrooms, prosciutto, garlic, and fresh thyme to the pan. Sauté for 4-5 minutes or until the mushrooms are browned and tender.
  4. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, push the mushroom/onion mixture to the edges of the pan and place the broccoli rabe in the center. Add the ½ cup of water and partially cover the pan with a lid, leaving a vent out the side so that some of the steam can escape while the broccoli rabe finishes cooking. Cook the broccoli rabe for 4-5 minutes or until it's just tender but still bright green, this may vary per batch according to the stem size of your broccoli rabe.
  5. Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground pepper, and serve immediately.

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