This Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole is easy to make and packed with flavor! With cheddar, goat cheese and a hint of kick this healthy recipe makes a great family meal. Make it vegetarian by substituting tempeh for the chicken.
Broccoli Quinoa Casserole Backstory
Years ago I thought that finding balance as a mother was possible.
It was a desired destination, and if I did everything right, I'd wake up there and never leave.
I've come to the conclusion that balance as a mother isn't possible
It isn't that I don't have seasons where family and work life is going smooth.
Certainly there are even (brief) moments where I feel like I've got it all together.
Then something happens
It could be a move, a fit, night waking, or teen attitude sparks. Or maybe refusing to eat, do school work or take a bath.
(Hunger strikes are very real from the littlest member of our family. That is when I rely on cheesy dishes like this Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole. Because who can say no to cheesy?)
Most often, it is many things at once.
All of a sudden family life is thrown into chaos.
A few years back, I'd go with the chaos and let that stress take over the family. I'd become a snappy, agitated mom, looking to find fault with everything.
Skye would drive me crazy in a way that only pre-schoolers can, and I'd start to find my joy slipping.
These days, while I'm nowhere near perfect, I've developed some strategies to get back on track.
And one of them is to make sure that we all sit down together for a wholesome meal like this Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole.
There is something about a family dinner that helps everyone to refocus.
And, I'll admit it, there is a certain smug satisfaction when I can get the kids to eat anything healthy without fuss.
This dish is such a hit at our house because quinoa fades into the creaminess of the cheese sauce, and at least in the minds of my kids disappears.
Variations for This Recipe
- Add 10 ounces frozen artichokes, thawed and chopped.
- Substitute Gruyere cheese for cheddar.
- Saute 1 cup diced onion and 8 ounces sliced mushrooms and add it to the chicken and broccoli mixture.
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Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole
Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa Casserole
- 6 tablespoons pastured butter or olive oil
- 6 tablespoons gluten free flour
- 2 1/2 cups milk
- 6 ounces cheddar cheese shredded and divided or Daiya
- 3 ounces seasoned goat cheese or Daiya
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 16 ounces cooked chicken or tempeh chopped
- 3 cups cooked quinoa
- 10 ounces frozen broccoli thawed and drained
- 1/2 cup gluten free breadcrumbs.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 2 quart baking dish with cooking spray.
- Melt butter in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Gradually whisk in milk. Stirring constantly, bring to a simmer.
- Cook, whisking constantly, until thickened. Reduce heat to low and add in 4 ounces of cheddar cheese, goat cheese, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Stir until 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.