Ask the Diva: Is Broccolini as Good for You as Broccoli?
Q. With all the healthy benefits broccoli offers, I've been trying to incorporate at least one serving per day into my diet. Can I substitute broccolini for broccoli and continue to get the same health benefits?
A. You bet. Although broccolini is sometimes called "baby broccoli," it is not really an immature version of regular broccoli, but rather a cross between broccoli and gai-lan, or Chinese broccoli. Instead of growing into large heads with thick stalks, broccolini grows in slender individual stalks, each topped by a small floret.
Although it tastes very similar to broccoli and can be prepared in the same way, broccolini is usually a bit sweeter and the stalks are more tender, which means they cook faster. Nutritionally-speaking, broccolini and broccoli are comparable; both are a great source of vitamins A, C, and K. As for all those other compounds that make broccoli so good for you, such as sulphoranes, indoles, and isothiocyanates, these are found in all cruciferous vegetables--including broccolini!