Broccoli Casserole is a delicious dish made with fresh broccoli, mushrooms, garlic, onions, breadcrumbs, and topped with feta cheese. This healthier version of a southern classic is the perfect side dish for any meal. Everyone in your family will want seconds!
What is Broccoli Casserole?
This healthy broccoli casserole recipe is made with no mayonnaise or excess cheese. It’s the perfect option for you if you don’t want to feel weighed down after eating dinner. Even the picky eaters in your family will love this dish. The smoky flavors of smoked paprika and a thickened milk sauce poured over the top make this dish feel decadent without all those extra calories.
- 12 ounces of broccoli florets: It’s usually less expensive to buy heads of broccoli and cut it up yourself than buying it chopped and bagged.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil: Any neutral oil will work for sauteeing the veggies.
- 2 garlic cloves, minced: This equals about 1 tablespoon.
- 1 onion, diced: White onion is the best type to use for this casserole.
- 7 ounces of cremini mushrooms, sliced: Small white or brown cremini or button mushrooms will work great for this recipe.
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika: This gives the dish a smoky flavor, but you can use regular paprika if you want.
- 1 cup milk: 2% or whole milk is best for broccoli casserole.
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch: This helps thicken the milk and create a sauce.
- 1⁄4 cup panko breadcrumbs: Breadcrumbs sprinkled on top give texture and a golden brown color to the casserole.
- 1⁄2 cup feta cheese: A little feta cheese adds texture and flavor.
How to make broccoli casserole:
Here’s a brief overview of how to make this dish. See the recipe card below for the specific recipe instructions.
1. Preheat the oven.
2. Heat olive oil and saute onions and mushrooms.
3. Mix in broccoli florets, season with salt, pepper, and paprika. Add minced garlic.
4. Whisk milk and cornstarch.
5. Pour milk mixture over the vegetables and wait until it bubbles up.
6. Transfer everything into a baking dish, sprinkle panko and crumbled cheese on top.
Tips for success:
Here are a few tips for success and variations you can try to make this the best broccoli casserole you've ever had.
- Instead of using breadcrumbs, you can crumble up some Ritz crackers and sprinkle them on top.
- You can also add some white, brown, or wild rice to this dish to make it more filling and nutritious.
- Cauliflower florets pair nicely with broccoli and would also be a great addition to this casserole.
What kind of meat can I add to this casserole?
Add some meat to this dish to make it more filling or turn it into the main course. Try shredded or diced chicken or diced ham. Be sure to cook the chicken before adding it to the dish for flavor and texture. Either of these options will taste amazing in broccoli casserole.
Is this dish keto-friendly?
Yes, this healthy broccoli casserole is perfect if you’re following a keto diet. The ingredients include vegetables, seasonings, and milk which are all low-carb. Since the breadcrumbs are sprinkled on top, you can choose to remove them completely or keep them.
What kinds of cheeses can I use in broccoli casserole?
If you want to make this dish cheesy, you can add mozzarella, cheddar, Monterey Jack, or pepper jack cheese. If you don’t mind the added calories, some traditional Velveeta “cheese” would work as well. Any of these options would be tasty!
How to store:
Store any leftover casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days. Reheat it in the microwave with 30-second increments until it’s hot all the way through.
To freeze the entire casserole, wrap it in aluminum foil and then plastic wrap. Label it with what it is, how to cook, and the date. This will help you remember later. Remember that if you cook it from frozen, without thawing first, it will take longer to cook in the oven. Keep the foil on until the last 30 minutes of cooking so the top can brown.
Do you have to cook broccoli before putting it in broccoli casserole?
No, you don’t need to cook the broccoli first. It will cook beautifully in the milk sauce in the oven.
Can I use frozen broccoli?
While this recipe uses fresh broccoli, you can use a bag of frozen broccoli instead. You may not need to cook the dish as long as the broccoli is already partially cooked.
How can I make this dish creamy?
If you’re looking to make this broccoli casserole creamier, add four ounces of cream cheese to the milk sauce and stir it in until it melts.
- 12 ounces broccoli florets
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 onion, diced
- 7 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1⁄4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1⁄2 cup feta cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Heat olive oil and saute onions and mushrooms.
- Mix in broccoli florets, season with salt, pepper, and paprika. Add minced garlic.
- Whisk milk and cornstarch.
- Pour milk mixture over the vegetables and wait until it bubbles up.
- Transfer everything into a baking dish, sprinkle panko and crumbled cheese on top.
- Bake for 30 minutes.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 199Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 289mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 9g