This recipe for Broccoli Rice and Cheese is a little different than most recipes you will find with these ingredients. I had fresh broccoli I needed to use up … so I was on the hunt for something to do that was different.
I had originally wanted to make it with cheddar cheese… but Warren is not a fan of sharp cheddar… I could eat the stuff every day… I didn’t want to use Velvetta or any canned soups… so I had to improvise… and improvise I did.
I also had some mushrooms and tomatoes I needed to use… so those went on the ingredient list… I didn’t want the casserole to be bland… so onion and garlic were added…. I wanted the rice to have some flavor too… so instead of making it with water… I used chicken broth… and guess what… I had an open chicken broth in the fridge…. and finished that off too……. I love using up things rather than see them make it to the garbage in a few days…so I was off to a great start.
Now the cheese was an issue…. I was originally going to use Monterey Jack… but I didn’t have any… so I decided to try a Pepper Jack cheese sauce…. I knew he really likes that…
The result was great… we both ate far too much…. It had a little bite to it… so if you don’t like any heat… use Monterey Jack instead of Pepper Jack cheese. We had this with grilled pork chops and it was the perfect accompaniment…
It was a great way to serve Broccoli and Rice….
Broccoli Rice and Cheese Recipe
All you need:
2 cups uncooked instant rice
2 cups chicken broth (I use Fat Free)
1 fresh broccoli, trimmed to florets
½ large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced or finely chopped
6 tablespoons margarine, divided
4 ounces fresh mushrooms (about 10-12), quartered
3 Roma (Plum) tomatoes, chopped
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
About 6 ounces of Monterey Jack or Pepper Jack cheese, cut-up
All you need to do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Put the broccoli in a microwaveable dish with 3 tablespoons water… cover with waxed paper or a glass lid… microwave on high for about 5 minutes or until the broccoli is cooked but still crisp. Set aside.
In a large skillet melt 3 tablespoons margarine over medium heat.
Add the onions and add the garlic after about 3 minutes. Wait another 2 minutes then…
Add the rice, stir everything together to coat the rice…
Cook for another couple of minutes.
Add the mushrooms and cook for a couple of minutes.
Add the chicken broth and cover until it comes to a boil… then remove from heat.
In a small saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons margarine.
Add 3 tablespoons of flour… stir to make a thick paste.
Add the milk and whisk vigorously until all lumps are gone.
Continue whisk until sauce begins to thicken.
Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the cheese and continue to stir until all the cheese is melted.
The cheese sauce will be very thick… that’s okay… there is some moisture still in the skillet that will thin it a bit.
Add the chopped tomatoes and broccoli to the skillet. Mix thoroughly.
Add the cheese sauce and mix thoroughly.
Pour the mixture into a 2 quart rectangular baking dish.
Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes or until the casserole begins to bubble on the sides.
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