Ah, the casserole. I’m not exactly sure what technically defines a casserole. Around here, it’s any large oven-baked dish which encompasses your protein, sides, and grains all in one. Scoop some on to a plate, then chow. It’s Sean’s favorite way to eat. And, thanks to the ease of cooking quinoa in the rice cooker (that does not taste like seedy glop), I’ve been trying to incorporate quinoa into our favorite dish styles. Enter the Broccoli Chicken Quinoa Casserole (jump to recipe!).
I have to admit, I’m still getting in the groove of this food blogging and meal planning adventure. But what I am certain about is this Broccoli Chicken Quinoa Casserole has found a place in that groove. It has every component of a perfect Sunday Meal Prep Meal. The recipe makes six servings – perfect for three days of lunches for two, or your Sunday dinner and Monday through Friday lunch for one. Sean seems to think it gets better on the second or third day (flavors mingling? brewing? marinating? All of the above!).
One thing I want to note: this casserole is not the quickest of recipes. It takes time to cook and prepare all the quality ingredients before the casserole magic happens. But that’s what makes it so tasty! I would definitely suggest it as a weekend or Sunday meal prep recipe if you don’t have a lot of time in the evenings. In fact, it’s one of the recipes that will be featured in the first Sunday Meal Prep post at Project Meal Plan! I promise it’s not difficult, just takes a little planning ahead 🙂
Rotisserie chicken is my preference for this recipe (okay, I mean, all recipes), though you can use any cooked and shredded chicken. While the quinoa is brewing away in the rice cooker, I get all the other components prepared. Pull the chicken from the carcass, steam the broccoli, pan fry the mushrooms, and make the creamy parmesan sauce.
After all the cooked ingredients have cooled for a few minutes, toss them all together and fill up your casserole pan. And of course, sprinkle more cheese on top! Bake for 25 minutes, then a few extra minutes on broil to get the golden brown crispiness on top.
The good news is I actually ate this for lunch today (and multiple days last week), and I still want it for lunch tomorrow. Fortunately for all of us, that’s not a bad thing. One serving of this casserole leaves me feeling perfectly full and satisfied. It is seriously packed with protein, so much that I thought there was some kind of technical error when I was calculating macronutrient totals. It’s got 28g of carbs, 23g of fat, and 41.5g of protein. No joke! Big thanks to MyFitnessPal for helping me obtain the most accurate nutritional information available.
Broccoli Chicken Quinoa Casserole recipe with rotisserie chicken, mushrooms, broccoli and a creamy sauce! I promise you’ve never had quinoa like this!
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 4 cups rotisserie chicken (meat from one whole chicken)
- 10 ounces white mushrooms, sliced (about 4 cups)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large head of broccoli, cut and stalk removed
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1-1/2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese (separated)
- salt and pepper
- Use cooked quinoa, or cook 1 cup of dry quinoa and 2 cups water or chicken broth in a rice cooker on the rice setting. When the quinoa is done cooking, let it cool for several minutes before adding it to the casserole mixture.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Add mushrooms and pan fry until they soften, stirring occasionally. Strain and set aside.
- Place broccoli and water in a microwave safe bowl or steamer, and microwave on high for 3 minutes. Strain and set aside.
- In the previously used mushroom saucepan, melt butter over medium heat.
- Add flour and whisk continuously until a paste is formed, about one minute.
- Slowly add milk, whisking continuously. Let it simmer while whisking for another 2-3 minutes.
- Add grated parmesan cheese, whisking continuously. Continue stirring until the sauce is thick to your preference and cheese is melted.
- Add parsley, oregano, garlic, and red pepper flakes to sauce. Stir until mixed.
- Combine all chicken, quinoa, broccoli, mushrooms, and sauce in large bowl. Add 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and a dash of salt and pepper. Stir until well mixed.
- Evenly distribute mixture in a greased 9×13 inch casserole dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese.
- Bake uncovered for 25 minutes. Broil for an additional 3-5 minutes until top is browned.
- Let cool for 5 minutes before enjoying!
Cooking Quinoa: Add 1 cup of dry quinoa and 2 cups water or chicken broth in a rice cooker and cook on the rice setting. When the quinoa is done cooking, let it cool for several minutes before adding it to the casserole mixture.
Rotisserie Chicken: I pull all the chicken from the carcass while the quinoa is cooking. Use the carcass to make chicken broth! I’m currently experimenting with that.
Recipe inspired by Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole by Lindsay Ostrom at Pinch of Yum! I have never made Lindsay’s recipe, and our recipes do vary greatly; however, I have to give credit to the original inspiration for quinoa in a casserole!
- Serving Size: 1/6 of casserole
- Calories: 491
- Fat: 23g
- Carbohydrates: 28g
- Protein: 41.5g
This recipe is featured in next week’s Sunday Meal Prep Post! Please stay tuned!
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