Broccoli is part of the cabbage family and is closely related to cauliflower.
It is an excellent source of vitamin K and vitamin C as well as several different B vitamins.
It is believed that this vegetable was first cultivated during the ancient Roman Empire.
However, it wasn’t until after the Second World War that artificial selection created many of the varieties that we know today.
Though most people associate the appearance of broccoli with a dark green head and lighter green stalk, there are many different types of the vegetable that each have their own unique appearance and taste.
25 Types Of Broccoli
This type of broccoli is easily recognizable and is the variety generally found in the grocery store.
It is easily identifiable with its large, full, dark green florets often densely packed on lighter green stalks.
Calabrese has a milder taste and softer texture than some other broccoli varieties which makes it a favorite across the globe.
Calabrese is a type of Early Season broccoli since the time between planting to harvest is only between 60-65 days.
It does especially well when planted in the autumn as the lower temperatures produce the Calabrese’s signature flavor.
This variety takes its name from its place of origin in Calabria, Italy.
Amadeus broccoli is another Early Season variety, though this type does best when planted in early spring.
However, it also grows well throughout the summer and fall months due to its rapid growth and the short time required before it reaches maturity.
This variety of broccoli is medium-sized and has a striking blue-green color with compact florets and smaller beads (the tiny round buds that cluster together to make up the florets).
The Amadeus broccoli variety is high in antioxidants.
It also produces many side-shoot florets after the main head is harvested which means it provides a higher yield.
3. Blue Wind
This uniquely named variety of broccoli can be identified by its very large heads comprised of tightly clustered beads and florets.
It has a blue-green color with kale-like leaves that are a striking shade of light blue.
The florets have a pleasant taste with a mild sweet flavor.
Blue Wind broccoli is also an Early Season type, though this variety matures even faster than others in the same category.
You can expect to harvest your Blue Wind broccoli only 55-60 days after planting.
In addition to its early harvest time, it also produces an abundance of side shoots for an entire season of enjoyment.
Broccoli Arcadia is an interesting type of broccoli in that it does well in cold temperatures and is one of the hardiest varieties of the vegetable.
It is also resistant to head rot and mildew, making it a particularly strong type of broccoli.
Though Arcadia falls into the Early Season category, it is a late-bloomer when compared to others of the same variety, since it takes two months or more to reach maturity.
Arcadia is a visually appealing purple-green broccoli that never produces any brown beads.
It has a crunchy texture with an earthy flavor and can be enjoyed either raw or cooked.
5. Di Ciccio
This type of broccoli reaches maturity quickly, sometimes in as little as 50 days, and is, therefore, part of the Early Season category.
Though it can be harvested not long after planting, this type of broccoli may be better suited to home growers as the heads don’t all grow at the same rate.
Di Ciccio broccoli produces very small to medium-sized heads and also offers side shoots that can be harvested throughout the season.
This variety of broccoli is known to have a sweet, earthy flavor with stems and leaves that are also edible and have a similar taste.
It does best when planted in the fall.
6. Green Magic Or Green Enchantment
Green Magic broccoli is known for its distinctive buttery flavor and its light crunch.
It can be eaten either raw or cooked and is unique in that its small size allows it to thrive in a container.
It is also unusual due to its ability to grow well in high temperatures.
Artificial selection has engineered this variety of broccoli to flourish in temperatures much higher than can be endured by other types of broccoli.
It is therefore excellent for summer planting.
Green Magic is a pretty plant with medium-sized smooth heads that are blue-green in color.
It produces side shoots that will grow until the main head is harvested about 60 days after planting.
7. Eastern Magic Or Eastern Mysticism
This variety of broccoli is a result of artificial selection which allows it to survive and thrive in both hot and cold environments.
This makes Eastern Magic a very versatile plant that can withstand many different weather conditions.
It grows mostly in Canada and in the Northeastern part of the United States.
It is another type of Early Season broccoli that is ready to harvest about 60 days following planting.
Eastern Magic is a striking plant known for its tall stems, bright blue-green color, and densely packed heads.
Its flavor is light and buttery with nutty after tones.
Gypsy broccoli is the last of the Early Season variety.
It reaches maturity 60-65 days after planting and can tolerate higher temperatures.
It does well when planted in the late spring or summer and is known to be resistant to mildew.
This variety of broccoli has light green florets that are lighter than most other types of broccoli, smooth heads, and short soft shoots.
It produces medium-sized florets that are crisp and pleasantly flavored.
Destiny broccoli is a Mid Season variety that takes 75-85 days to reach maturity.
This category of broccoli must be planted earlier in order to meet the harvest timeline.
Its tiny size and lack of side shoots make it easily distinguishable from other types of broccoli.
It is also unique in that it grows vertically and thrives in both hot and cold temperatures.
Destiny broccoli is a deep green color with small, rounded heads.
It has a smooth texture, an earthy, nutty flavor, and a pleasant crunch.
It does best when planted sometime during the summer with a harvest date in the autumn.
This type of broccoli is an Early to Mid Season variety that can take up to 65 days to reach harvest maturity.
It can flourish in both hot and cold environments, making it a versatile variety that can be grown in different regions.
It does best when planted in either the summer or the fall.
Belstar broccoli is a striking blue-green color with dense medium-sized heads and a pleasing mild flavor.
It produces many side shoots after the main head has been removed which allows it to be harvested throughout the season.
Express broccoli is a prime example of a Mid Season variety.
It does well when planted in the spring and will reach maturity in about 75 days.
This type of broccoli is interesting in that the numerous side shoots it produces can be harvested throughout the year rather than only throughout the season.
This variety of broccoli has a blue-green color with tight beads that form a dense cluster of florets.
It has a soft texture with a light, enjoyable flavor.
This broccoli hybrid reaches harvest maturity in 70-75 days, making it a part of the Mid Season category.
It does best when planted in the late summer as it cannot tolerate high temperatures.
Despite its heat sensitivity, Fiesta broccoli is a tough variety that is disease resistant and produces hardy thick stems and well-shaped heads.
It has a beautiful uniform blue-green color but produces almost no side shoots.
Fiesta broccoli is a popular variety known for having both an excellent texture and taste.
It is crisp, sweet, and is a favorite to add to a variety of dishes.
Marathon broccoli has a strong cold tolerance and does best when planted in the late summer or early fall.
As a member of the Mid Season variety, this type of broccoli matures in just over two months.
It is known to be an easy variety to harvest in that it consistently produces very large heads and is resistant to disease.
In addition to the heads, this plant also produces flavorful greens which can be picked and eaten even after the heads have been picked.
Marathon is a blue-green color and is medium to very large in size.
It has a moderate and enjoyable flavor that can be enhanced when cooked.
14. Waltham 29
As part of the Mid Season group, Waltham 29 broccoli takes 65-75 days to reach maturity.
It grows best when planted in the late summer so that it is ready to harvest in the fall.
This type of broccoli thrives in colder environments and was specially developed for the cooler temperatures found on the East Coast and in the Pacific Northwest of the United States.
The Waltham 29 variety of broccoli is unusual in that reaches heights of about 20 inches and has long stalks.
It is a blue-green color and produces compact heads that are medium to large in size.
It is a flavorful broccoli with sweet tasting heads and side shoots which make it a popular choice.
15. Happy Rich
Happy Rich is a type of Chinese broccoli or Gai Lan.
It is best suited for a home garden and can be grown either indoors or outdoors if the right conditions are met.
This variety is available year-round and reaches maturity about 55 days after planting.
All Chinese broccoli are known for their strong flavors and this variety is no exception.
It has a sweet, robust taste.
Happy Rich produces dark green heads that are small and uniform in color.
It also produces numerous side shoots that are flavorful, tender, and ready to enjoy.
This is another variety of Chinese broccoli.
It is known for its crispiness and its sweet, mustard-like taste.
It produces dark green heads with tiny white flowers.
Every part of this broccoli variety can be eaten, including its leaves.
It is commonly stir-fried or used in soups.
Kailaan thrives in cooler temperatures, so an early spring or late summer planting is most appropriate for this variety.
It takes about 60 days to reach harvest maturity and is best suited for a home garden.
This Chinese broccoli is also known as Emerald Green or Noble Jade.
It is a fast-growing variety that is ready to harvest in about 44 days.
It is a popular vegetable to grow due to its disease resistance, tolerance to both hot and cold temperatures, high yield, and rapid growth.
Suiho is a plant that is entirely edible, producing stems that are both soft and tender along with its kale-like leaves.
It has a strong, sweet taste and is often enjoyed stir-fried or as a roasted side dish.
Unlike other broccoli varieties, this type does not produce florets but is known for its long stems and full leaves instead.
Also known as Green Jade, this Chinese variety of broccoli is ready to harvest only 45-50 days after planting.
It performs the best in cool temperatures, though it can be grown year-round in the right climate.
This type of broccoli is a popular choice for home growers because of its quick growth, disease resistance, and high yield.
Like other Chinese broccoli varieties, Ryokuho has a strong flavor and is usually enjoyed stir-fried or in a soup.
It does not produce florets but does sprout tall thick stems and dark green leaves.
The stems are crispy and flavorful.
The leaves also have a full delicious taste that make this variety a favorite.
Apollo is the result of a broccoli/Chinese Kale cross and is known as a specialty variety of broccoli.
It has a longer growing time of up to 3 months and is best suited to cooler temperatures as hotter environments create a bitter-tasting plant.
Apollo is a high yield broccoli and often needs a lot of space in order to fully develop.
This specialty broccoli produces beautiful florets, stems, and flower buds which are all edible.
Its side shoots are long, delicate, and reminiscent of asparagus.
This variety has a delicate full flavor and is generally chopped before being used in stir-fry dishes, soups, and stews.
Also known as Baby Broccoli, Brokali, or Delicate Stem Broccoli, this specialty variety is the result of a cross between Chinese and European broccoli.
It produces small florets and delicate stalks that are sensitive to extreme fluctuations in temperature.
They do best in cool to mild environments.
Broccolini is also easy to grow, which makes it popular in home gardens.
This relatively new variety of broccoli has a sweet taste with peppery overtones.
The entire plant, from the florets to the leaves, is edible and has a milder flavor than most other types of broccoli.
It is generally roasted, sauteed, or steamed and is a favorite on pasta dishes and salads.
This specialty broccoli is striking in both appearance and flavor.
It produces highly recognizable florets due to their yellow-green color and beautiful spiral pattern.
The detailed beauty of Romanesco along with its rich nutty taste makes it a favorite ingredient in pasta, soups, and salads as it can be eaten either raw or cooked.
Romanesco does best in colder environments and is sensitive to hotter temperatures.
It has a much longer growing time than most broccoli varieties taking between 75-100 days to mature.
It produces multiple heads that can be harvested individually as desired.
22. Purple Broccoli
As its name implies, this broccoli variety produces beautiful purple florets that are composed of tiny flower buds.
It has large leaves that are a lovely silver-green color which surround a large central stalk.
It also produces heads of similar size on smaller thinner stalks which surround the main head.
It has a distinctive nutty flavor with hints of pepper that go well with its overall mild sweetness.
Purple broccoli is ready to harvest 80-90 days after planting and produces a high yield of the colorful heads and tender stems.
This variety is best suited for cooler temperatures and is generally planted sometime in the autumn or even in the winter.
Exposure to hotter temperatures may produce a bitter-flavored plant.
23. Red Fire
Despite its name, this type of broccoli produces rich, purple florets that form tightly clustered heads.
It is a hardy variety that does very well in cooler winter temperatures and is best when harvested between late January and early March.
It grows especially well in the Mid-Atlantic and Pacific Northwest regions of the United States.
Red Fire produces florets and stalks that are both sweet and tender with large to medium-sized heads.
They also produce side shoots after the main head has been harvested which are equally tasty.
This type of broccoli is often enjoyed steamed, on a salad, or in stir-fry dishes.
This is another purple sprouting variety of broccoli.
It produces large amounts of miniature broccoli stems that can be picked one at a time over a number of weeks.
It has large, blue-green leaves with frilled edges.
Santee is a high-yield plant that does best when harvested either in the early spring or in the late summer.
This type of purple sprouting broccoli is known for its distinctive flavor and the fact that it turns a dark green when cooked.
The stems are tender and sweet and, along with the heads, can be eaten either raw or cooked.
Like the other varieties of purple broccoli, Santee is high in antioxidants.
25. White Sprouting Broccoli
This beautiful broccoli does not produce the same kind of high yields found with the purple varieties.
However, it does have a sweeter taste and a much more tender texture.
This type of broccoli has a very long grow time and is not ready to harvest until 220 days after planting.
This means they will reach maturity sometime in the spring of the year following their planting.
It is best suited for cooler temperatures.
White sprouting broccoli is high in nutrients and should be picked when the heads are still in a tight bud for optimal flavor and nutrition.