Broccoli cheese casserole is a family favorite and a staple on every holiday. No one will turn down the greens once they taste this ultra cheesy, perfectly melty broccoli casserole topped with just the right amount of ritz cracker crunch.
Looking for the perfect Broccoli Cheese Casserole? Look no more!
First, lets talk about this recipe. You can easily look at all the ingredients and know that it would make a perfect main dish by adding turkey or chicken, which is totally true, but it also makes the most divine side dish and its how I prefer it.
But if you love your casseroles heartier, you can add a cooked protein in prior to baking.
Frozen vs Fresh Broccoli
Fresh isn’t required (I hear you sighing with relief) !
- If you do not like the muss and fuss of steaming your broccoli before hand, you really could just use frozen broccoli. Simply pop those steamers into the microwave to cook and drain any excess water prior to the rest of the recipe.
- If you do use frozen broccoli over fresh, make sure you grab 2-3 16 oz. bags to make sure you have enough for a full sized broccoli cheese casserole
- Once your broccoli are cooked up, you can continue to prep them by cutting off and losing any of the “tree” ends on the stalks.
Using fresh veggies? No problem! As far as fresh broccoli, same thing! Just pre-cook your broccoli prior to your next steps as they wont steam enough in the casserole.
You could even go so far as using oven roasted broccoli in this dish.
That makes it extra extra homemade which we all know is extra, extra love (as my grandmother would say).
Broccoli Casserole Preparation
With all cheese casseroles, they tend to stick to your pan. Make sure you thoroughly spray your pan so you do not have a big sloppy mess at the end.
There is nothing worse than stuck on food that will only come off with an hour of scraping.
This before hand step will make sure its a rinse and go situation.
While not totally necessary, I personally always like to have my ingredients ready and measured before I get started, that way I do not have to open the fridge or reach into the vegetable drawers with sticky messy hands grabbing for more jars or spices.
The smudges on my fridge handles are a tell-tell sign of what happens every time I am under-prepped for cooking!
Pre-measuring also helps when you cook with kids so they can just dump and stir.
Both of my kids love the experimentation of cooking and I don’t mind having two perfect helpers in the kitchen (which also gives them some life skills) but if they have to measure it can quickly go insane in the space.
Broccoli Casserole Recipe
While this side dish is focused on delicious broccoli, you can alter flavors by using cauliflower or green beans or substitute the cream of chicken with cream of mushroom.
Additionally do not be afraid to experiment from the original broccoli cheese casserole recipe to a totally different veggie cheese casserole.
Last but not least, many people like rice in this dish and if you choose to do that, you will need to cook your rice prior and perhaps double up your soup ingredients. I haven’t experimented with that one yet, so proceed with caution.
The truth is, with all this cheese (and you can never have enough cheese), it doesn’t matter what your end game is on the vegetables, your casserole will be perfect and should hold up under some fun changes.
More Side Dishes you will love:
Before you go, you may want to check out a few other great recipe ideas here!
- How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (a favorite of mine!)
- Cucumber and Tomato Summer Salad
- Cherry Tomato Balsamic Salad
Learn how to make broccoli casserole with this ultra easy, ultra cheesy fresh or frozen broccoli dish, a total recipe staple for a side dish that will rock your menu (and your plate) tonight
- 4 lbs fresh broccoli cooked and drained
- 1 cup real mayonnaise
- 1 can cream of chicken soup
- 4 tablespoons butter melted
- 1/4 cup diced white onion
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1-1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
Preheat oven to 350 and grab a prepared baking dish ( grease a 13x9 baking pan with nonstick cooking spray)
Spread already cooked broccoli into pan.
In a mixing bowl, pour melted butter, mayonnaise, soup, and onion and mix well. Stir in egg, 1 cup of cheese and salt and pepper and mix well.
Spread over broccoli in pan and mix well to evenly coat.
Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of broccoli and cover with crushed crackers.
Bake for 30-40 minutes or until heated through for a side dish the whole family loves.
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