Creatively Transforming Food

Broccoli Rice Cheddar Casserole

Broccoli Rice Cheddar Casserole is a heartwarming side dish your family will surely enjoy! It’s perfect to take to a family-centered event to share, or to a church pot luck dinner. They will be asking for this recipe, for sure! Fall and winter bring a recognizable chill in the air. Once home from a long day’s work, each bite will wrap you in comfort and let you know everything will be okay.  Try this as a Meatless Monday meal or with your favorite meat du jour.

Brown rice is a whole grain worth the time investment for its nutritional value, in cooking, compared to quick-cooking white rice.  The side hulls and brans which remain on brown rice are richly fortified with proteins, thiamine, calcium, magnesium, fiber, and potassium. Definitely more beneficial since white rice lose much of this in its refining process. Many articles are available to justify using brown versus white rice.. Feel free to do your own research. I was amazed at the available resources to validate its health benefits.  If time is a factor, this could be made ahead of time and refrigerated until you are ready to use it in this recipe.

Melt the butter over medium-low heat.  Add the garlic and stir until fragrance begins to hover over the pan, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle the flour over the melted butter mixture and whisk until combined and bubbly. Stir in milk, mustard, salt and pepper, whisking occasionally as it thickens.

Whisk in cheese until smooth and melted; remove from the heat source.

Stir in the chopped broccoli and brown rice. Pour into a 13″x9″x2″ pan sprayed with non-stick spray.

Pour into a 13″x9″x2″ or comparably-sized pan sprayed with non-stick spray. Sprinkle Panko bread crumbs over the top followed by the remaining cheese.

Bake for about 30 minutes in a 400 degree oven. Allow it to cool for about 5 minutes before serving.

 

Broccoli Rice Cheddar Casserole

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 8 servings

Ingredients
  • 3-4 c. cooked brown basmati rice
  • 12 oz. pkg. petite broccoli florets, cooked, chopped
  • 4 T. butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • ¼ c. flour
  • 2 c. milk, 1% or skim
  • 1 T. Dijon mustard
  • ½ t. sea salt
  • ½ t. black pepper
  • 2 c. sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ½ c. freshly shredded parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • Topping:
  • ½ c. panko bread crumbs
  • ½ c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large saucepan, over low heat, saute minced garlic in the melted butter until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  3. Add flour to the pan and whisk constantly for about 3 minutes.
  4. Whisk in milk, mustard, salt and pepper; simmer for about 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Whisk in 2 cups of sharp cheddar cheese followed by the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese until it is melted then remove from the heat.
  6. Stir in broccoli and brown rice until all ingredients are evenly distributed.
  7. Pour into pan sprayed with non-stick spray.
  8. Evenly spread panko bread crumbs over casserole.
  9. Sprinkle with the remaining cheddar cheese and bake for about 30 minutes.
  10. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before serving.