We demonstrate generation of broadband high-intensity picosecond pulses using a non-collinear optical parametric amplifier, seeded with a broadband cavity-less dye laser and pumped using the second harmonic of a picosecond Nd:YAG laser. With appropriate choice of the pump-seed non-collinearity angle, we observed energy conversion from the pump to the signal wave of around 15%, with the bandwidth of the amplified radiation around 445 cm−1 (20.7 nm) centered around 680 nm. An energy of 1.2 mJ per pulse of duration around 26 ps has been achieved. A light source with such parameters could be suitable for use in time-resolved broadband picosecond Coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.