It’s no surprise that I LOVE cheese. Seriously. Especially cheddar cheese. I will eat almost anything with cheddar cheese on it. So when I found this recipe for a rice casserole with chicken and broccoli smothered in cheddar cheesy deliciousness, I just had to give it a try! And bonus, it’s a one-pan meal, so easy clean up as well.
Chicken is the one meat that everyone here can agree on. If you ask Ryan, he will say, “mmmm chicken is yummy.” And it’s one of the few types of meat that Tyler will eat most of the time. Broccoli is another thing we all agree on, and it’s green, so I like to get that in when we can. The boys still have a little trouble with rice sometimes because it’s a little harder to pick up, but they mostly ate the chicken and broccoli in this. And of course, we all agree on the cheese!
For this meal, you will want to use a large skillet with decent sides to it because it does start to get pretty full for a little while as it’s cooking. Start by putting a bit of olive oil in the pan, and sauteing your chopped onion over medium heat.
Meanwhile, cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and season it with salt and pepper. Then add it to the pan with the onions and turn the heat up to medium-high to let the chicken cook through.
Once the chicken is cooked, push it to the side of the pan and add the rest of the olive oil. Then add the rice and saute it for a few minutes. I was a little skeptical of this step, I’ve never made rice this way, but it worked!
Add the chicken broth to the pan and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat back down to a simmer, and cover the pan.
Cook the chicken and rice in the broth for about 10-12 minutes, covered, while stirring occasionally.
Add the broccoli to the pan and cover the pan again. Cook another 8-10 minutes, or until the broccoli and rice are tender. Most of the broth will cook into the chicken and rice and evaporate.
Remove the pan from the heat. Mix about 1/2 cup of the cheese into the casserole, then cover with the rest of the cheese.
Cover the pan again and let it sit for a few minutes so the cheese can melt on top of the casserole.
Serve immediately! I know it doesn’t look too pretty, but trust me, it makes up for it in taste!
Cheesy Rice Casserole with Chicken & Broccoli
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion (diced)
- 1 lb chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- 1 cup brown rice (uncooked)
- 2 1/2 cups broccoli florets (chopped)
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups cheddar cheese (shredded)
- In a large pan, sauté onions in two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat
- Chop chicken into bite-sized pieces and season with salt and pepper
- Once onions soften, increase the heat to medium high and add chicken
- Brown the chicken and add the garlic
- Push chicken to one side of pan and add additional tablespoon of olive oil to pan
- Add the uncooked rice in the olive oil and saute it for a couple of minutes
- Add the chicken broth to the pan and bring the mixture to a boil
- Lower the heat to a simmer and cover the pan with a lid
- Cook chicken and rice mixture, covered, for about 10-12 minutes
- Add broccoli and stir to combine
- Continue to cook, covered, another 8-10 minutes on low, or until broccoli and rice are both tender
- Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup of cheese
- Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and cover with a lid, letting it sit for 1-2 minutes or until cheese has melted