After much testing, this is my favorite way to make broccoli casserole. Simple ingredients layered in the right order can make something really delicious!
2 pounds broccoli, blanched
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 white onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1/2 cup cream
2 cups cooked long grain white rice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
8 ounces cheddar cheese, grated
8 ounces bacon, crispy
1 cup breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter a large 9×13 baking dish.
- Blanch broccoli in salted boiling water for about 2 minutes until it’s bright in color. It should still be a bit crispy, not soggy at all. Remove and let cool.
- If you need to cook rice, you can do so in the broccoli water, but it’s easiest to use leftover rice. Once rice is cooked, measure out two cups of cooked rice.
- Add chopped bacon to a skillet over low heat, cook until pieces are crispy and fat is rendered, about 7-8 minutes. Then remove bacon and add breadcrumbs. Stir well until bread crumbs absorb the bacon grease and start to brown. Remove from heat.
- In a large pot (you can use the same one for cooking broccoli and rice – just wipe it out), add butter and melt over medium heat. Then add onions and garlic and cook until translucent. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Add flour to the pot and stir. Cook for a minute or two, then add milk in 1/2 cup batches, stirring constantly to incorporate. Add cream last. Once mixture is together and warm, add rice. It’ll be a bit watery at this point, but will thicken while baking. Add mustard to mixture and season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Pour your rice base into the prepared casserole dish. Top with broccoli florets. Then top with grated cheese, followed by bacon and breadcrumbs.
- Bake casserole at 350 degrees F. for 25-30 minutes until it’s bubbly and browned on top.
- Serve while warm!