Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole (From Scratch!)

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole - A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. | browneyedbaker.com
A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs.

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole - A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. | browneyedbaker.com

It’s been quite a long time since I made a casserole, so when I asked my husband last week if he was hungry for anything in particular on Sunday and he said “a broccoli casserole”, I jumped at the opportunity to make one. My great aunt used to make a killer broccoli casserole on Sundays growing up, and I put a homemade spin on it a couple of years ago. While I could have made that again as a side dish, I took it a step further and decided to make a main dish casserole with chicken, broccoli and rice. I know that’s a popular recipe, so I did some searching for a good recipe and was disappointed when I couldn’t find one that was completely homemade. So, I made my own!

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole - A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. | browneyedbaker.com

I made a huge batch of chicken breasts in the slow cooker on Friday night and used some of it for this casserole, which made the prep work significantly easier. If you’re looking for an easy shortcut, picking up a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store would be a great way to cut the prep time. I also made a batch of rice the day before and used pre-cut, pre-washed broccoli to keep this recipe as simple as possible. I didn’t cook the broccoli before adding it to the recipe and it was al-dente in flavor (which I like), but if you prefer super soft broccoli, I would par-boil them.

For the sauce, I made the base sauce for my favorite macaroni and cheese and added some cheddar cheese, which turned out to be the perfect vessel for serving the chicken, broccoli, rice and mushrooms.

MY OTHER RECIPES

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole - A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. | browneyedbaker.com

I used panko breadcrumbs for the topping of this casserole, but you could use plain breadcrumbs, Italian breadcrumbs, or even Ritz crackers!

Now that we’re heading into the blustery winter months, I’m excited to start recreating more homemade versions of casseroles… Do you have a favorite?

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole - A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. | browneyedbaker.com

Four years ago: Macaroni & Cheese Casserole
Eight years ago: Peanut Butter Dog Treats

Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole (From Scratch!)

Servings 8 servings
Prep 30 minutes
Cook 20 minutes
Total 50 minutes
Course:Main Course
Cuisine:American
Author: Michelle
A homemade recipe for chicken, broccoli and rice casserole made completely from scratch with a cheesy cream sauce and topped with buttered breadcrumbs.

Ingredients:

For the Casserole

  • 6
    tablespoons
    unsalted butter
    (divided)
  • 8
    ounces
    cremini mushrooms
    (sliced)
  • 4
    tablespoons
    all-purpose flour
  • 3
    cups
    whole milk
  • 8
    ounces
    sharp cheddar cheese
    (shredded (about 2 cups), divided)
  • Salt and pepper
    (to taste)
  • 4
    cups
    cubed cooked chicken
    (3-4 chicken breasts)
  • 4
    cups
    broccoli florets
    (about 1 pound)
  • 2
    cups
    cooked rice

For the Topping

  • 2
    ounces
    sharp cheddar cheese
    (shredded (about ½ cup))
  • 4
    tablespoons
    unsalted butter
    (melted)
  • 1
    cup
    plain or Panko breadcrumbs or crushed Ritz crackers

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Butter a 9x13-inch casserole dish.
  2. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat and add the sliced mushrooms. Saute, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are cooked down and all of the liquid has evaporated. Transfer the mushrooms to a separate bowl.
  3. In the same pan, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, whisk in the flour and cook for about 1 minute, until the flour starts to brown a bit and smells nutty, whisking constantly. In a slow, steady stream, whisk in the milk. Allow the sauce to come to a simmer.
  4. Once the sauce comes to a simmer, whisk in the cheddar cheese, adding a handful at a time and whisking until completely melted before adding the next handful. Season with salt and pepper and turn off the heat.
  5. Add the chicken, broccoli, rice and cooked mushrooms to the sauce. Stir with a wooden spoon until everything is completely combined and evenly distributed. Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish.
  6. In a small bowl, mix the melted butter with the breadcrumbs (or Ritz crackers).
  7. Sprinkle the casserole with the ½ cup of shredded cheese. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture on top of the cheese.
  8. Bake until browned and bubbly, about 15 to 20 minutes. Allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Recipe Notes:

Nutritional values are based on one serving

Nutrition:

Calories: 596kcal
Fat: 39g
Saturated fat: 20g
Cholesterol: 137mg
Sodium: 388mg
Potassium: 602mg
Carbohydrates: 28g
Fiber: 1g
Sugar: 6g
Protein: 33g
Vitamin A: 25.6%
Vitamin C: 49.2%
Calcium: 41.6%
Iron: 12.3%

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!