So I know what you’re about to say. Sarah, it’s Spring, almost Summer in the U.S. … the season of light, bright food! Why on Earth are you making something so dense and heavy? This is winter, don’t-have-to-fit-into-a-bikini, cheesy comfort food.
Well, I’m a huge fan of the “comfort food isn’t just for winter” mindset. Screw the bikini. And a little bit of this won’t make you gain weight just like a little bit of exercise won’t make you lose it.
Balance, people, balance.
But if you just wanna sit there and stuff your face with this stuff, this is a judgement free zone. Because, come on, it’s cheese.
It’s cheese AND broccoli AND rice. Some of my favorite things.
If you’ve ever been to a restaurant called Cheddars, you’ll be very happy with this recipe. It tastes exactly like their version.
I mean, EXACTLY. Many copycat recipes are just inspired from its original dish. Or it tries really hard to be exactly like it and just falls short. If you close your eyes while eating this, you’ll swear you are sitting in Cheddars.
The good news is this recipe is super simple. It actually didn’t take a lot of finessing or fine-tuning to get the flavor just right. And I didn’t have to re-try the recipe a thousand times before I share it with you. (However, I have made this recipe a thousand times – it’s a Thanksgiving staple in my house)
The biggest caveat of this recipe is the cheese. You absolutely must get the American cheese from the deli counter. (If you’ve read my queso post, you know how much I despise Velveeta)
Truth is, you just won’t get the same flavor or consistency with other cheeses. So bear that in mind when shopping for this recipe. The extra trip to the deli counter is worth it.
Until next time. X
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Broccoli Cheddar Casserole
Broccoli Cheddar Casserole is a family favorite – perfect for a weeknight or as a holiday side.
- 1 1/2 c. cooked white rice
- 1/2 c. (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/2 white onion, diced
- 1 1/2 lb. fresh broccoli crown
- 1 lb american cheese, sliced from the deli counter
- 1/3 c. milk
- 1 sleeve saltine crackers
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 2qt casserole dish.
- In a medium saucepan, bring lightly salted water to a boil. Separate the broccoli crown(s) into smaller bite-sized florets. Trim off any excess stem and dice. Boil the broccoli florets and stems for two minutes, then immediately drain and plunge them into ice cold water to blanch.
- In a medium saucepan, melt the butter on medium heat. Add the diced onion and saute 3-5 minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Add the milk and stir, then turn the heat down to medium low. Tear the cheese slices into smaller portions and gradually add them to the pot. Stir and make sure the cheese is fully melted before adding more.
- In the greased casserole dish, place the cooked rice, broccoli and cheese sauce. Crush half of the sleeve of saltine crackers over the top and mix thoroughly.
- Bake for 30 minutes uncovered. Remove and stir, then crumble the other half of the saltines on top and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Serve warm.
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