Tender chicken nestled in creamy & cheesy wild grain rice blend surrounded by broccoli. This family favorite is perfect for Sunday dinner or weekly meal prep.
This post is being sponsored by my friends at Emile Henry USA featuring their beautiful 13×9 Rectangular Baker. As always, all opinions my own. Thank you for supporting partnerships with brands I trust and believe in.
I’m sure at some point in your lives you’ve had chicken and rice casserole. Heck, I can remember going to my girlfriend’s houses growing up, and at least once a week one of their parents was making this.
One Dish Meals Are The Best!
Confession: I’m that weirdo that actually likes to do dishes. I always have to be honest. But ever since my hand surgery it’s hard for me to do them as I can’t hold stuff.
And since 99% of the kitchen cleanup is left up to Mr. Fantabulous, I try to create recipes that don’t require a million dishes. Even though we have a brand new dishwasher, he refuses to use it. don’t ask me why.
Grab Your Ingredients
What you will not see in this recipe is cream of anything soup. Sorry Mom, but I just can’t use it. And honestly, it’s not needed.
From The Fridge
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (you can also use thighs as well)
- Broccoli Florets
- Cheddar Cheese (cubed and shredded)
- Heavy Cream
Let’s Get Cooking!
I honestly don’t know of an easier dish. It’s kind of like I want to yell “Everybody in the pool!” when I make this recipe as that’s kind of how it feels.
- Lightly spray the baker with cooking spray. Next, dump in the rice and add a third of the salt/pepper
- Mix the cream and stock and pour it over the rice. No stirring required either! Yes, it’s THAT easy!
- Add in the broccoli, cubed cheddar, and butter followed by another third of the salt and pepper.
- Place the chicken breasts on top and the last bit of salt and pepper.
- Cover tightly with foil and place the casserole into a preheated 350F oven for an hour and 15 minutes. *This is baked that long because the recipes call for a wild rice grain blend.
- After 75 minutes, remove the pan from the oven. Remove the foil, sprinkle over the shredded cheddar and bake a few minutes more or until the cheese is melted on top.
Who’s Hungry for Chicken & Rice Casserole?
Once the casserole is done, it’s time to eat. Because we covered the pan tightly, the chicken is super moist and flavorful (it pulls the flavors from the rice, stock, salt, and pepper into the meat).
The rice is creamy and luscious – which is probably one of my favorite texture of cooked rice.
The broccoli is tender but has just a slight bite.
And HELLO CHEESY DELICIOUSNESS!
- Wild Grain Rice – You can use brown rice but I would check the time at 65 minutes as this tends to cook faster.
- Meatless – You can omit the chicken and add more veggies! Double up the broccoli, add cauliflower. Shredded carrots would be yummy. I would saute mushroom and other veggies that are higher in water.
- Cheese – You can certainly add more cheddar cheese cubes for an uber-cheesy dish. But you can also add whatever cheeses you want!
Broccoli & Chicken Rice Casserole Variations
The best thing about dishes like this is you can totally make it your own!
- Mexican Flair – Add a can of diced green chilis and petit diced tomatoes along with a teaspoon of cumin, pinch of cayenne and even some drained black beans to the dish. Add in some chopped cilantro too!
- Chorizo & Peppers – To the recipe also add partially cooked chorizo crumbles. Saute up some red peppers and add that to the dish when you add the broccoli. Use Cotija and Pepper Jack cheeses.
How to Store Casserole Leftovers
This makes for the perfect meal prep. I will cover the bottom of my meal prep dish with rice mixture and then top with a piece of chicken.
If I don’t use it for meal prep, I will cover the cooled baking dish with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge. This lasts in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Leftover Casserole Ideas
I love transforming leftovers into new dishes. I like that variety.
You can certainly plate up another dish of the rice mixture and chicken, cover with foil and reheat at 350F for about 10 minutes or until warmed through.
But here are some of my favorite revamp ideas:
- Burrito – Place some of the warmed rice mixture on a flour tortilla. Add some of the cooked chicken (shredded) on top, add more cheese and a little sour cream. Wrap up and enjoy it!
- Rice Bowl – Add some of the warmed rice mixture to a bowl. On top of that add some of the cubed chicken. Next add some chopped fresh veggies – snow peas, carrots, chopped peanuts and drizzle on your favorite vinaigrette
- Warmed Salad – warm up the rice mixture and chicken (chopped). Wilt up some spinach and warm chopped romaine lettuce. Add the rice, and chicken to the greens. Plate and top crispy bacon, fresh mozzarella, and a warm dijon vinaigrette.
- 1 1/2 cups wild rice blend
- 3 cups chicken stock, low sodium
- 3/4 cup heavy cream/milk
- 1 1/2 teaspoon each kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper, divided
- 2–3 cups chopped broccoli florets
- 2 cups cubed cheddar cheese
- 3 tablespoon butter, unsalted
- 4 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
- 1 cup shredded cheddar
- Preheat the oven to 350F, rack in the middle. Spray the Emile Henry 13×9 Rectangular Baker with cooking spray. Set aside.
- To the bottom of the baker, add the rice in an even layer. Use a 1/3rd each of the salt and pepper and sprinkle over the rice. In a bowl, whisk together the stock and cream/milk and pour over the rice. Next add the broccoli, cubed cheese and butter. Sprinkle with another 1/3rd of the salt and pepper over top. Lay the chicken on top, sprinkle with the rest of the salt and pepper.
- Cover tightly with foil and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, carefully remove the cover and check the temp of the chicken. Chicken (it should be 165F).
- Remove the chicken and set aside. Gently fluff/stir the rice with a fork. If adding the additional cheese, add the chicken back on top, sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of shredded cheddar and bake until the cheese is melted ~10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, plate the chicken, re-fluff the rice and plate the rice.
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