Broccolini, Cherry Tomato, and Butter Bean Udon

Broccolini, Cherry Tomato, and Butterbean Udon

I asked my twitter friends if they’d like to see recipes made for one, and the response was overwhelming; absolutely. A lot of you seem to make lunch for yourself, or have several weeknights where you’re cooking solo and want to throw something fresh together without a lot of hassel.

When I know I’m going to be eating alone, I rarely do the logical thing and make a big batch of something so I can have leftovers. I’m terrible with leftovers. I’m too fickle when it comes to food, so leftovers turn to science projects in the fridge. Therefore I tend to make a lot of one-off meals based on whatever odds and ends of produce I have left.

So here’s one of them. I had one serving broccolini, and half a pint of cherry tomatoes. Not enough of either to feed both me and my husband, so I made one little but delicious meal out of it. If you’re not cooking for one, this dish is easy to scale up, so don’t worry. But my friends who dine independently? This one is especially for you!

Annnd, how about a video? Here’s the whole meal, start to finish, in two minutes. A little overview, if you will. There’s nothing difficult about this recipe, so this is more for fun than anything. You can watch the whole video in HD, full-screen, even!

Watch this video on Vimeo instead.

Broccolini, Cherry Tomato and Butter Bean Udon
Serves One

1 to 1 1/2 Bundles Udon Noodles
Oil, about 2-3 Tbs
3-6 Stalks of Broccolini, depending on size
1/2 tsp Red Pepepr Flakes
Black Pepper
10 Cherry Tomatoes, quartered
1/2 Cup Butter Beans/Lima Beans, drained and rinsed
1-2 tsp Italian Herbs
Balsamic Vinegar, for drizzling

Heat a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add udon noodles and cook for four minutes (or as long as package directions dictate), then drain and rinse well. Coat lightly with oil to prevent noodles from sticking. I use spray oil for this, I think it’s the easiest and you use the least amount of oil. Set noodles aside.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium high with a little oil. Add broccolini and coat with oil. Season with 1 big pinch of salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Once the broccolini starts to turn bright green and get a little color (just a minute or two), push them to the edge of the pan.

Turn heat up a little and add quartered cherry tomatoes. Stir to coat in any oil/spices leftover from the broccolini, then let cook, untouched, to get a little color and soften up, 1-2 minutes. Once tomatoes are softened, add 1/2 cup of butter beans. Stir everything together and remove to a bowl.

In the still-hot pan, add a 1-2 Tbs more oil. Add cooked udon noodles to the hot pan, seasoning with a pinch of salt and italian herbs. Toss to coat the pasta. Once the pasta is coated and is heated through, add back the broccolini, beans, and tomatoes. Taste and season with more salt or pepper if needed.

Plate, and drizzle with balsamic vinegar if desired.

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Feel free to follow me on twitter! Besides random daily updates, I tweet about upcoming blog posts, show sneak-peek photos of new recipes, and let you know the moment my blog has been updated. I do try to limit cat-related tweets, but I’m only human. And it is twitter, afterall. Say hello and I’ll say hi back!

Broccolini, Cherry Tomato, and Butterbean Udon


  1. jenn

    i was just thinking of a way to use up my cherry tomatoes and frozen broccoli; it’s like you climbed in my head (i’d be scared for you if that were the case).

    and thanks for giving me yet another distraction in class — <3 twitter!

  2. A-K

    Your video is great – like a mini-movie! I’m really impressed with the production. I’m looking forward to more of them! (The dish looks lovely too.)

  3. Pearl

    i LOVED that video. the recipe looks absolutely fantastic! i love one-dish meals because it’s so convenient – who says you can’t enjoy delicious food while still maintaining an air of simplicity?

    thank you so much for sharing! i’d love to see some more ideas :)

  4. Singing Horse

    This udon dish looks sooooo yummy! It’s like the answer to my prayer. I love udon noodles and often cook for myself, but I don’t want to spend too much time or energy on an elaborate dish. This is perfect! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

  5. amy (veganissexy)

    I love love broccolini, but it is just so darn expensive at my store. I’m sure this would be just as lovely with normal broccoli, so I’ll definately give this one a try…..but with my favorite tofu noodles :) Thanks for the idea!

  6. Laura

    I love this! Especially the idea of using fast-cooking udon noodles instead of semolina spaghetti. Makes it even quicker and easier!

  7. JennyBakes

    Hey, funny, I just posted about Twitter in my blog too. Mine is more specific, for quotations, but fun to experiment with. I’m adding you to my follow list. And this recipe looks delicious.

  8. Jennifer

    The video was a masterpiece (just like your photography)!! And what a lovely idea to add the butterbeans. Fabulous.

  9. A

    OMG…. I tried searching for you on twitter a while back but couldn’t find you. I’m now a VYY follower! Yay! Also, I just adore your videos! So professional!

  10. laci

    BEAUTIFUL video and dish- so simple yet elegant and mouth watering, I especially love the music, zooms ins, clips, background music and drizzle of vinegar at the end- keepup the great work! :)

  11. Krista

    Love love love the videos! The music is zippy, the camera work is superb and the recipes are delish. More please! :)

  12. Sophie

    Please do more of these or even just a easy dish for two.

    As cleche as it is after a long day at work coming home to cook for the hubby I just want to make something fast that doesn’t come from a packet


  13. sarah

    mmhh that looks so tasty and easy. i almost picked up broccolini yesterday but i didnt…it would have gone perfectly because i practically have everything else! :(

  14. Ashley

    I LOVE your videos! The music is very fun.
    I would like to add a resounding “YES!” for more one person meals. I only ever cook for myself and am not normally big on left overs either, but I found myself making the same things over and over again. I look forward to seeing more faboo vegan yum for one!

  15. Ann

    Do you know the calorie count for this (or at least a guesstimate)? I want to try this but I’m also trying to watch my calories.

    Sorry, I don’t know the calorie count. I think there are websites that can calculate that for you though, when you enter the ingredients in.

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  17. Juliana

    I happened to stumble upon your blog when I was looking for vegan recipes & it’s great!! They thorough and easy to understand which I love!! I’m not a vegan (just vegetarian) and have to say I will be trying more vegan cooking now. Thank you!!

  18. monica corcoran

    Just made this recipe for dinner and it was divine. Used some sesame oil and a little garlic too.
    Your blog is wonderful — I’m a new, but already loyal fan.

  19. BethanyA

    I made thiswith purple sprouting broccoli, navy beans and normal spaghetti noodles-delicious, so simple! I used one of those low fat cooking sprays too so my diet is fricking sweet
    Love your recipes!

  20. astrorainfall @ beauty box

    I’m quite a new vegan so I’m in that space where I still need something more substantial and “meaty” in my meals. BEANS! I’m not a fan of soy so I feel completely carbed-out after a noodle dish with just veggies or I end up thinking I need a heavier flavour. I’ve found my solution. Thanks!

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