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  • Broccoli Rice Casserole

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    Whether you choose to serve this as a side dish or vegetarian main, this broccoli rice casserole is all kinds of delicious. Easy to make, it’s perfectly cheesy and creamy.

    image from top of broccoli rice casserole with cheese

    I just know you are going to love this hearty and comforting dish. Loaded with loads of fresh veggies, this broccoli and rice casserole is the perfect option for an easy weeknight meal, or serve it up as a side as part of a bigger feast.

    It’s super creamy and cheesy and finished with breadcrumbs for a tasty crunchy topping. Truly, a family favorite.

    Be sure to try my Squash Casserole and Sweet Potato Casserole if you love this dish!

    Why you will love this healthy broccoli rice casserole recipe!

    • Easy: There’s nothing complicated about this recipe. It has a pretty quick prep time and then into the oven it goes.
    • Healthy: Made with all-natural and fresh ingredients, this is a tasty way to get the goodness in!
    • Make ahead: This is a great make-ahead dish that is easily reheated.

    Ingredients

    To make this Southern broccoli cheese rice casserole, you will need the following:

    • Vegetables: Onion, carrots, broccoli.
    • Rice: Use long-grain white rice, like basmati, for this recipe.
    • Lemon zest: For a nice fresh flavor.
    • Cheese: Use a good melting cheese, like Swiss, Gruyere or Cheddar cheese.
    • Stock: To keep this dish meat-free, I used vegetable stock, but you can use chicken broth or stock instead.
    • Sour cream: For a nice creamy sauce.
    • Seasonings: Garlic powder, salt and pepper.
    • Breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese: For the topping.
    ingredients for broccoli and rice casserole

    How to make broccoli rice casserole – step by step instructions

    • Preheat the oven to 375 F.
    • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and carrots for a couple of minutes until tender and translucent.
    • Add sauteed onions and carrots, rice, and lemon zest to a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and stir to combine. Add broccoli florets on top of rice and vegetables. Sprinkle with melty cheese. Set aside.
    • In a bowl whisk vegetable stock with sour cream and season with garlic, salt, and pepper until well combined.
    • Pour stock over the rice and vegetables, then use a spatula to submerge broccoli in the liquid.
    • Combine shredded Parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs, and sprinkle everything with the mixture. Cover loosely the baking dish with aluminum foil.
    • Bake for 15 minutes covered, then remove the foil and broil for 5 minutes for the cheese to brown.
    • Sprinkle the cheesy broccoli rice casserole with a little fresh thyme if desired and serve warm.
    process images of making broccoli and cheese rice casserole
    bake and broil rice and broccoli casserole

    Can you make it ahead of time?

    Yes! This is a great make-ahead dish. You can make the whole casserole up to the point of baking, then cover it and place it in the fridge for up to two days. Just add 5 minutes of extra cooking time when you pop it in the oven.

    Leftovers will keep well in the fridge for 4 days and can be reheated at 250F until warmed through to serve.

    What do you serve broccoli and rice casserole with?

    As a side dish, this easy broccoli rice casserole with cheese is great to serve with any protein – baked chicken breasts, steak, or salmon, in fact, it’s great with so many mains! It’s also great with turkey at your Thanksgiving table. Larger portions can be served as a main alongside some steamed veggies.

    a scoop from the rice casserole with broccoli and cheese

    Recipe Variations

    To make this a heartier meal, you can easily add cooked shredded chicken or cubed ham to the casserole dish. Feel free to throw in any other veggies that you have in your fridge, red bell pepper or sliced mushrooms both work great.

    TIPS FROM NELI’S KITCHEN

    Recipe Notes and Tips

    • Use white rice for this recipe. Brown or wild rice will require a longer cooking time and your broccoli will be overcooked.
    • If making ahead of time, ensure that the broccoli rice casserole is cooled before storing it.
    • You can use fresh or frozen broccoli in this recipe.
    close up image of broccoli rice and cheese casserole

    More Rice Dishes

    If you loved this broccoli and rice casserole, make sure you try some of the other rice dishes:

    Broccoli Rice Casserole

    Whether you choose to serve this as a side dish or vegetarian main, this broccoli rice casserole is all kinds of delicious. Easy to make, it's perfectly cheesy and creamy.
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 25 minutes
    Total Time 35 minutes
    Servings 8 servings
    Calories 305kcal

    INGREDIENTS

    INSTRUCTIONS

    • Preheat the oven to 375 F.
    • Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Saute onion and carrots for a couple of minutes until tender and translucent.
    • Add sauteed onions and carrots, rice, and lemon zest to a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and stir to combine. Add broccoli florets on top of rice and vegetables. Sprinkle with melty cheese. Set aside.
    • In a bowl whisk vegetable stock with sour cream and season with garlic, salt and pepper until well combined.
    • Pour stock over the rice and vegetables, then use a spatula to submerge broccoli in the liquid.
    • Combine shredded Parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs, and sprinkle everything with the mixture. Cover loosely the baking dish with aluminum foil.
    • Bake for 15 minutes covered, then remove the foil and broil for 5 minutes for the cheese to brown.
    • Sprinkle with a little fresh thyme if desired and serve warm.

    TIPS & NOTES

    • Use white rice for this recipe. Brown or wild rice will require a longer cooking time and your broccoli will be over cooked.
    • If making ahead of time, ensure that the casserole is cooled before storing it.
    • You can use fresh or frozen broccoli in this recipe.

    NUTRITION

    Calories: 305kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 738mg | Potassium: 422mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 4575IU | Vitamin C: 71mg | Calcium: 240mg | Iron: 1mg
    Course Main Course, Side Dish
    Cuisine American
    Keyword baked rice casserole, broccoli and rice casserole, broccoli side dish
    Did you make this recipe?

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