Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Brown Rice Casserole (No Canned Soup)

Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Brown Rice Casserole.  Easy to make from scratch without using any canned soups. Vegetarian meal or a great side dish. Alohamora Open a Book http://alohamoraopenabook.blogspot.com/

I've been really struggling cooking meat lately now that I am farther along in my pregnancy.  My poor husband has been eating a lot of vegetarian meals.  I love it, and luckily he is a good sport and doesn't seem to mind it too much.  

Our Aunt gave us some awesome fresh broccoli from her garden the other day.  I decided a healthy broccoli casserole sounded like a classic and delicious comfort food I could get behind for dinner.  However, this casserole would make a delicious side dish as well to a ham or baked chicken goodness if you weren't going for an all vegetarian meal.   

Most of the rice casseroles I come across all use fake cheese or canned soups. I didn't want to use any fake ingredients, so I easily made a cheese sauce using real cheddar cheese and milk.  Think Mac and Cheese with rice and vegetables.  I personally think easy to make from scratch sauce tastes tons better than any canned soup. 

I did use some flour for thickening, but you could easily use a rice flour or another gluten free flour as a substitute to make this a GF meal.

Give this casserole free of canned soup a go for dinner.  This Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Rice Casserole is a great vegetarian main course or a tasty vegetable side dish.

Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Brown Rice Casserole
Recipe: Alohamora slightly adapted from Oh My Veggies

Active Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Time: 1 hour 
Servings: 6-8

1 c. rice, I used brown jasmine 
4 c.broccoli, chopped.
1/2 c. shredded carrots 
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 c. onion, diced (use your frozen diced onions)
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp paprika
2 cups milk, I used fat free/skim
1 1/2 c.cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 c. parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 c. bread crumbs

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and spray/grease a 2 quart oven safe baking dish.. 
  2. Cook one cup of rice (brown or white rice).  This is my favorite, how to cook rice, step by step tutorial.  When your rice is cooked you will have approximately 3-4 cups of cooked rice. 
  3. Add your broccoli and carrots to a microwaveable bowl and add 1-2 tablespoons of water.  Cover loosely with a lid or saran wrap and microwave on high for 2 minutes to steam the vegetables.  Drain the water.
  4. Add the vegetables to the cooked rice and stir them together in the prepared baking dish.  
  5. In a large pan over medium heat melt the butter and add the onion and garlic.  Cook the onion and garlic until the onions are soft and translucent. 
  6. Add the flour to the pan and stir until it is no longer clumpy.  This should take you no more than 1 minute. 
  7. Add the spices to the flour mixture and stir until mixed in for no longer than 30 seconds. 
  8. Add the milk to the pan and stir it constantly for 10-15 minutes until the mixture thickens. 
  9. Add the cheese and stir until it is melted completely. 
  10. Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste if you so desire.
  11. Remove the cheese sauce from the stove and stir it into the vegetable and rice mixture. 
  12. Top the casserole with bread crumbs. 
  13. Bake the casserole at 325 degrees for 20 minutes until hot.  
  14. Enjoy! 
  15. Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator 
Happy Healthy Broccoli Cheddar Rice Casserole eating! 

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