Ready to master a one-dish wonder that's both nutritious and scrumptious? Let's dive into making our baked Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole. This easy-to-assemble dish is not only kid-friendly but also brimming with robust flavors, thanks to a blend of cheddar and goat cheese in a creamy sauce. It takes just a few simple steps and a bake in the oven to bring this hearty, cheesy casserole to your dinner table.
Are you on the hunt for a dinner recipe that ticks all the boxes - delicious, nutritious, and universally loved?
Well, look no further because our gluten free broccoli casserole with quinoa is here to win your hearts and satisfy your taste buds.
This is not just any casserole; it's a wonderful medley of wholesome ingredients blended together in a symphony of flavors that will leave everyone at the table asking for seconds.
This quinoa chicken broccoli casserole is crafted from all-natural ingredients, ensuring that you don't compromise on health while indulging in its creamy, delectable goodness.
The main stars of the dish, chicken, broccoli, and quinoa, come together in a delightful balance, creating a comforting meal that doesn't skimp on nutrition.
And let's not forget the breadcrumbs - their added crunch will undoubtedly make your tastebuds happy. It's the perfect antidote for those with picky eaters in the family, offering a dish that is as pleasing to the palate as it is to the eyes.
But the goodness of this broccoli cheddar quinoa doesn't stop at dinner. The leftovers keep wonderfully in the refrigerator or freezer, making them an excellent option for quick weekday lunches. Just reheat, and voila - you have a hearty, homemade meal ready in minutes!
Ingredients for Making Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole
- Butter: I use unsalted butter, so I have better control over the salt.
- Flour: I used gluten-free flour; you can use all-purpose flour if you are not gluten-free.
- Milk: Use whatever milk you prefer. I like the creamy texture that whole milk brings.
- Cheese: I like a blend of cheddar cheese and goat cheese. Feel free to play with this to match your family's preferences. Parmesan cheese and swiss cheese are also great options.
- Seasonings: Garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper add just the right complexity of flavors to the dish. If you have little ones or are particularly sensitive to heat, you and omit the cayenne pepper.
- Chicken: I use cooked chicken breasts, but chicken thighs would work as well.
- Quinoa: The texture of white quinoa is better than that of red quinoa in casserole dishes.
- Broccoli: To use fresh broccoli florets in this quinoa broccoli cheese bake, make sure you cut them into bite size pieces and steam or blanch them first.
- Breadcrumbs: Use gluten-free breadcrumbs if necessary.
Tips, Tricks, and Variations
- Add 10 ounces of frozen artichokes, thawed and chopped.
- Saute 1 cup diced onion and 8 ounces sliced mushrooms and add them to the chicken and broccoli mixture
- When you are cooking quinoa for casseroles and want the best texture, you can let it cool on a baking sheet. This helps to prevent it from getting gummy.
- If quinoa isn't your thing, feel free to substitute cooked brown or white rice. Millet, farro, or any other grain of you liking would also work.
- Want to make this a side dish? Just omit the chicken, and you have a delicious quinoa broccoli casserole.
Make it Vegetarian or Vegan
To make this recipe vegan, use unsweetened almond milk, vegan butter, and vegan cheese. Substitute cooked and crumbled tempeh for the chicken.
With a grain, veggie, and protein, this broccoli quinoa casserole is a complete meal on its own. If you would like to serve it with a side, a simple green salad works well. Other suggestions include:
- Ninja Foodi Grill Asparagus or Air Fryer Asparagus
- Caramelized Brussels Sprouts
- Green Beans with Bacon
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I make this recipe ahead of time?
Yes, you can make this recipe up to a day ahead and cook it just before you plan on serving.
Let the casserole dish come to room temperature or put it in a cold oven and let the dish heat up with the oven. This will prevent the cold dish from cracking due to heating up too quickly.
How do I make gluten free breadcrumbs?
- Start with a loaf of your favorite gluten-free bread. If your bread is fresh, leave it out for a day or two to become slightly stale.
- Preheat your oven to 300°F (150°C).
- Cut the bread into slices, and then into small cubes.
- Spread the bread cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the bread cubes are dried out but not browned.
- Allow the bread cubes to cool completely.
- Transfer the cooled bread cubes to a food processor or blender.
- Pulse until the bread is reduced to crumbs. For finer crumbs, pulse for longer. For coarser crumbs, pulse for less time.
- Store your homemade gluten-free breadcrumbs in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week, or freeze for longer storage.
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- Medium Saucepan
- Large (approximately 13 x 9) Casserole Dish
Store this quinoa and broccoli casserole in the refrigerator for up to four days.
You may freeze any leftovers for up to three months. (I like to do this in individual serving containers.) Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in the oven or microwave.
More Quinoa Casseroles to Try
- Butternut Squash Quinoa Casserole works just as well for a busy weeknight as it does on your holiday table!
- Quinoa Mac and Cheese is rich, creamy and so satisfying!
- If you are looking for the perfect easy dinner, you are going to love this Sweet Potato Quinoa Casserole.
- Italian Quinoa Casserole is sure to become a favorite casserole recipe in your dinnertime rotation. All your favorite flavors in a delicious (and pretty) dish.
Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 6 tablespoons flour gluten-free if necessary
- 2 ½ cups milk
- 6 ounces shredded cheddar cheese divided
- 3 ounces seasoned goat cheese crumbled
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ - ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 16 ounces cooked chicken
- 3 cups cooked quinoa
- 10 ounces frozen broccoli thawed and drained
- ½ cup gluten free breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a large baking dish with cooking spray or brush it with oil.
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes, whisking constantly.
- Gradually whisk in milk.
- Bring the milk to a simmer, stirring constantly. Cook for 4 minutes until the mixture starts to thicken.
- Reduce heat to low and add in 4 ounces of cheddar cheese, goat cheese, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Stir until the cheese melts.
- Remove from heat and stir in chicken, quinoa, and broccoli. Transfer to prepared baking dish.
- Sprinkle with remaining cheese and top with breadcrumbs.
- Bake for 30 minutes until bubbly. Allow to sit 10 minutes before serving.