This Creamy Broccoli Casserole is a bubbly cheesy, cream-filled casserole with bacon and broccoli.
Cooking for me is a way to enhance life. The actual act of cooking itself is a great way to wind down from a stressful day and get lost in the doing. The work of my hands, with a glass of wine and some music to liven the room up. The meal itself is an act. Yet, no matter what we are having the table is set, and a candle is lit. It creates a nice atmosphere around the table that helps set the tone for a nice meal.
Now not every meal is three courses nor do they need to be in order to be satisfying or an enjoyable experience for that matter. A nice home-cooked meal is never about the amount of work one has to go through in the kitchen. This Creamy Broccoli Casserole is a great example of that. A meal far from complicated and one that has everything you need in one pan. This casserole is simple to make using just a few ingredients. I like making quick lunches or for easy dinners as it works well for both.
Why I Love This Creamy Broccoli Casserole
I love the fact that this Creamy Broccoli Casserole can be made in basically one pan and you can have an entire meal ready to go in under 30 minutes. As much as I love to cook, there are those days when I am just needing something quick or I just don’t feel like doing a several-course style meal. This casserole is satisfying, flavorful, and filling just as it is. Although you can of course serve this as a hearty side dish. It pairs nicely with steak or even grilled chicken. I find this dish to be versatile and simple to make so for me it is a great casserole to have up your sleeve. So to speak.
What You’ll Need to Make Creamy Broccoli Casserole
Two large bundles of fresh broccoli (about 1 lb of broccoli)
1 -12 oz package of good quality bacon
2 tbs of flour
2 cups of milk
1 cup heavy cream
1- 8 oz package of grated mozzarella cheese
2 cloves of garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Cut up bacon into bite-sized pieces, in a skillet cook until crisp. Drain off the excess grease.
In a separate pot, steam broccoli crowns until cook evenly but be careful not to overcook set aside.
Add the flour to the bacon pan and coat the bacon and any grease in the pan with the flour. until blended. Slowly add the milk one cup at a time. Whisk on low heat to help thicken the milk. Add the rest of the milk in slowly allowing it to thicken as it simmers. Salt and pepper the thickened milk mixture. Then add the cream and the garlic. Allow this to simmer for a couple of minutes.
Add half the cheese and mix evenly.
Salt and pepper if desired.
Add garlic and let simmer for about a minute or until the cream is thickened. Add the broccoli to the pan. Mix to coat evenly.
Top with remaining cheese and pop under the broiler under medium heat until cheese is brown slightly.
Once done, allow the casserole to cool before serving.
Cooking Tips For Creamy Broccoli Casserole
- Be sure to drain off the excess bacon grease if you find there is a lot.
- Add the milk slowly to the flour and bacon otherwise adding it too quickly might cause the milk to be more on the runny side. Be sure to use a whisk to help thicken the milk and mix the contents of the pan in.
- Steam broccoli until it is just done. Be careful not to overcook otherwise the casserole will come out soggy. Broccoli should be bright green and crisp.
- I like to use fresh broccoli for this recipe however you can use frozen and with the cream sauce, it’s hardly noticeable.
Serving Suggestions For Creamy Broccoli Casserole
- This Creamy Broccoli Bake Casserole is a hearty one-pan meal however here are some suggestions on what pairs well with this casserole.
- A mixed green salad pairs nicely alongside Creamy Broccoli Casserole.
- Serving a loaf of rustic bread in the center of the table with butter would be a nice addition. If wanting to do homemade bread, be sure to try this No Knead Artisan Loaf for a simple delicious loaf that is easy to throw together.
- This would make a nice side dish to a steakhouse-style meal at home. Try slicing up some steak to pair with this casserole. Check out this recipe for Sirloin Steak with Herb Butter.
How To Pick Out The Best Broccoli
When selecting broccoli pay attention to the color. The florets should be dark green and tightly closed. The stalks should be thin and the overall head should be firm to the touch. Thicker stalks can be woody and are a sign of age. Avoid any heads that have yellowing or discoloration as this is an indication of age.
Best Way To Cut Broccoli
Begin by washing the broccoli thoroughly. Cut off the florets where the stalk meets. Slice into the florets separating them from each other and cutting them into smaller florets. To square, the stalk, slice off the tough outer layer of the stalk then remove the ends. Cut the stalk into 1/4 inch pieces.
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- Two large bundles of fresh broccoli (about 1 lb of broccoli)
- 1 -12 oz package of bacon
- 2 tbsp of flour
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- 2 cups of milk
- 1- 8 oz package of grated mozzarella cheese or (2 cups grated)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Cut up bacon into bite-sized pieces, in a skillet cook until crisp. Drain off the excess grease from the bacon.
- In a separate pot, steam broccoli crowns until cooked evenly but be careful not to overcook. Set aside.
- Add the flour to the bacon pan and whisk into the grease until blended, then slowly add milk one cup at a time while whisking over low heat.
- Add the heavy cream and garlic.
- Add half the amount of cheese and mix evenly.
- Add the broccoli to the pot.
- Mix until fully incorporated with the cream sauce.
- Salt and pepper if desired.
- Top with remaining cheese and pop under the broiler under medium heat until cheese is browned slightly.
- Allow it to cool before serving.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 583Total Fat: 45gSaturated Fat: 22gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 137mgSodium: 1311mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 6gProtein: 33g
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