Hearty, healthy, and delicious, this cheesy broccoli rice casserole is easy to make and great to serve a crowd! A great potluck recipe.
Casseroles are a great choice when feeding a crowd. There is always leftovers and you can be creative in your ingredients! Just look at our Philly cheese steak casserole, or our Mexican street corn recipe, there is something for everyone!
The beauty of casseroles is that you can make it with rice, pasta, or even stuff it with just vegetables like a classic favorite green bean and potato casserole or meat!
Move over pasta, rice is taking the lead with this super tasty and ridiculously pull apart cheesy broccoli rice casserole.
Is broccoli rice casserole healthy?
Yes, this rice casserole is for the most part healthy, as long as you’re using minimally processed ingredients and swap out white rice for brown rice.
For our recipe, we are using brown rice for a healthier option. If you want a healthy broccoli rice casserole, it’s more about serving size compared to the actual recipe. Remember, everything in moderation!
For an even healthier casserole, you can choose to use cauliflower rice.
How To Make Broccoli Rice Casserole
This recipe is tasty and simple to make with just a few steps.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Saute your onions and seasonings in a pan with melted butter. About 3-4 minutes, just to soften your onions.
- Add in your broccoli, cook an additional minute before adding in your remaining ingredients, except for about a cup of shredded cheese. Cook until cheese begins to melt, about 2 minutes.
- Pour rice mixture into a well-greased pan, top with remaining shredded cheese and bake until cheese is melted and bubbly! It takes about twenty minutes.
Can I use frozen broccoli for a casserole?
Yes, you can use frozen broccoli for this casserole. We used a frozen bag of broccoli that we steamed and it worked as good as fresh broccoli! Just be sure to drain out the excess liquid.
Remember to chop up your broccoli so it’s mostly only florets and in bite sized cuts. This will make the casserole cook more evenly.
What kind of rice should I use for a casserole?
We used leftover brown rice for our casserole recipe. All you need to make sure is that the rice you use is already cooked. For convenience we recommend using instant rice! Remember, by changing the rice, you can change the whole flavor profile. Have fun with it.
Here are some rice options you can use for casseroles:
- white rice -any grain
- wild rice
- yellow rice
- brown rice (what we used)
- cauliflower rice
What kind of cheese should I use for a cheesy broccoli rice casserole?
We are using both a canned cheddar soup ingredient, as well as shredded cheddar cheese. If you want to make this rice casserole recipe really cheesy, you can add in different cheeses for the ultimate cheesy casserole!
Using a canned cheddar soup ingredient works as a bond for all of the ingredients to stick together better for the casserole. You can use cream of chicken or cream of mushroom if desired, instead.
You can also add chunks of Velveeta cheese, but we love using shredded cheddar cheese. Remember, cheddar and broccoli really pair well together. Think of Panera’s cheddar broccoli soup or our broccoli salad recipe.
Can broccoli rice casserole be made ahead of time?
Yes, you can either refrigerate it up to two days before baking or you can freeze it up to a month!
Slow Cooker Broccoli Rice Casserole
If you’re looking to have it made the same day, but can only prepare it in the morning, you can cook it in the slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours to save time.
Can a rice casserole be frozen?
Yes, you can freeze your leftover casserole. I suggest putting it into a freezer friendly container with a tight-fitting lid. You can freeze it up to a month.
To reheat it, I suggest thawing it on the counter for half an hour or in the microwave for a few minutes and then transferring it to a baking dish and baking at around 350 for half an hour, or until your broccoli rice casserole has been warmed through.
What goes with broccoli rice casserole?
If you’re wondering what to pair with this easy casserole recipe, we suggest a protein and a side of veggies. Here are some great recipes to serve with broccoli rice casserole:
Some other good side ideas would be baked or grilled lemon salmon, a tossed or chef’s salad, and fresh fruit. To end the evening right, here are some dessert options that pair well with the easy casserole:
Looking for a different take on this recipe? Try this Broccoli Chicken Curry Rice Casserole!
Broccoli Rice Casserole
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 small onion (chopped)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (or to taste)
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 12 ounces steamed broccoli florets (chopped)
- 10.75 ounces condensed cheddar cheese soup (1 can)
- ⅓ cup heavy cream
- 2 cups cooked brown rice
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese (shredded, divided)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9x13 baking pan (or 2 quart baking dish) with cooking spray.
- Melt butter over medium high heat in a large pan. Add onions and saute until softened, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add in seasonings and broccoli, cook an additional minute before adding in remaining ingredients except for 1 cup of shredded cheese. Cook 2 minutes.
- Pour rice mixture into the prepared pan. Top with remaining cheese.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese melts and is bubbly.