Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - real food meets comfort food. From scratch, quick and easy, 350 calories. | pinchofyum.com

Well don’t cha know. This is soo tummy-rumbly-I’m-goonna-eat-the-whoole-thing good, ya shure you betcha.

Being from Minnesota, I feel the need to represent my Midwestern culture here on the blog with things like casseroles. Or more accurately: express my undying love. Which actually probably promotes the incorrect stereotype that all Minnesotans cover their doors and windows with plastic, bundle up in their warmest reindeer-patterned sweaters, walk around muttering “yeah shure you betcha” while proceeding to bake cozy casseroles and hot dishes all winter long. Oh wait. That’s, um, my life.

And so I proudly bring you today the food of my Midwestern upbringing… The Casserole. But it’s sort of a mashup of my past life and current, because, you know, QUINOA and everything.

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - a quick, comforting, and healthy weeknight dinner. | pinchofyum.com

I grew up eating casseroles and hot dishes, don’t cha know. My favorite cozy-winter-dinner one was this particular hot dish that my mom made – it was sort of a casserole-stew fusion, with ground beef, cooked potatoes, chunks of carrots, baked all together with a tomato-based saucy sauce. A big plate of that with a piece of bread and a glass of milk = my 9 year old self’s dinner delight.

But don’t forget: taco casserole, Grandma’s noodle casserole – varieties 1-37, tuna casserole, chicken and broccoli casserole, and Reuben casserole. NO WAIT THOUGH I’M SERIOUS. Like a Reuben, but baked all together in deliciously cheesy (literally cheesy) retro casserole form. I begged for my mom to make it every year on my birthday because, you know, it’s normal for a child to have a food obsession with rye bread and sauerkraut. Do not even ask because I do not even know.

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - 350 calories of cozy comfort food. | pinchofyum.com

Casserole vs. Hot dish? It has something to do with, um, I have no idea. Tomato sauce vs. creamy sauce, maybe?

But no need to trouble yourself with deep questions like that. This is a casserole. Period. End of story.

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - 350 calories of cozy comfort food. | pinchofyum.com

If you’re looking for canned cream of something soup, look no further than a casserole. Because that is the nature of a casserole and don’t question it, you big city slicker hipster person you.

But I kind of have one foot in both the hipster world and the canned soup world, and so this beauty of a casserole has its own creamy velvety sauce that is made from scratch! *jumping up and down for joy* And it works perfectly for creating that mild, creamy texture that casseroles are known and loved for. I had first discovered that whole homemade cream of chicken soup thing way back when, and this turned out the be a great time to put that to use. And add bacon. And bake it with everything homey and nostalgic under the sun.

Creamy creamy yum yum. Nothing from a can. Everyone = happy.

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - 350 calories of cozy comfort food. | pinchofyum.com

Bottom line here: this baked goodness is the antidote to winter.

Partying together up in here we have: generously seasoned chicken, cooked quinoa, crispity delicious bacon, velvety homemade sauce, a tiny bit of Gruyère or whatever kinda cheese you want over the top, and bright green pops of broccoli. It’s almost overwhelming. Except it’s more like a big gentle hug loaded with good-for-you ingredients.

Get yourself a glass of milk, maybe a warm piece of bread or a salad, cuddle down with a blanket and slippers and enjoy this baby. Winter will be over soon. I think. Right? Someone? ANYONE?

Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole - 350 calories of cozy comfort food. | pinchofyum.com

A few (affiliate) links for some of the tools you’ll need to make this recipe.

4.7 from 50 reviews
Creamy Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole
Author: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk (I used 2%)
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ½ cup flour
  • 2 cups water, divided
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • ¼ cup cooked, crumbled bacon (optional... sort of)
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 teaspoons seasoning (like Emeril's Essence or any basic blend you like)
  • ¼ cup shredded Gruyere cheese (any kind will work)
  • 3 cups fresh broccoli florets
Instructions
  1. Sauce: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and generously grease a 9x13 baking dish (seriously, be generous because it really really sticks to the sides). Bring the chicken broth and ½ cup milk to a low boil in a saucepan. Whisk the other ½ cup milk with the poultry seasoning and flour; add the mixture to the boiling liquid and whisk until a smooth creamy sauce forms.
  2. Assembly: In a large bowl, mix the sauce from step one, one cup water, quinoa, and bacon and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Slice the chicken breasts into thin strips and lay the chicken breasts strips over the top of the quinoa mixture. Sprinkle with the seasoning. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.
  3. Broccoli: While the casserole is in the oven, place the broccoli in boiling water for 1 minute until it turns bright green and then run under cold water. Set aside.
  4. Bake: Remove the casserole from the oven, check the mixture by stirring it around in the pan, and if needed, bake for an additional 10-15 minutes to get the right consistency. When the quinoa and chicken are cooked and the sauce is thickened, add the broccoli and a little bit of water (up to one cup) until the consistency is creamy and smooth and you can stir it up easily in the pan. Top with the cheese and bake for 5 minutes, or just long enough to melt the cheese.
Notes
You will know the quinoa is done when it is soft and looks as if it has popped open, with the germ of the kernel visible as a little spiral. I've gotten quite a few comments about the liquid not absorbing right away - if that's you, just bake it a little longer. With enough time, it should get that moisture soaked right up into a creamy sauce.

Nutrition Quinoa Note: Several of you have kindly noted that after 30 minutes you still had a bit too much liquid. Thank you for your feedback – it really helps make the recipe better for others. Based on your comments, I adjusted the directions to account for a little extra uncovered baking time for some of that liquid to evaporate. Thank you!

PS. Favorite Superbowl commercial? Mine was the Microsoft one. Even though I’m a committed Apple customer, it made me cry a little bit. Go figure. I’m a marketer’s dream.

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Comments

  1. I definitely was an odd kid who requested a casserole for my birthday every year too! They are just so good. And creamy. And easy. And good. And usually in involve cheese.
    You. Can’t. Go. Wrong. Ever.
    This casserole looks fab and I want to face plant into it right now.
    Even with quinoa.
    We’re still working on being BFFS.

  2. This is a perfect weeknight dinner! Love it!!

    • Thanks Jenny!

      • I tried to make this a few minutes ago and it’s currently in the oven so I’m not sure how its going to turn out but my flour mix, got really lumpy for the creamy sauce and I ended up straining quite a bit of flour lumps out and when I put the chicken on top it fell through bc it was really watery after I added the cup of water in the stage before putting it in the over. I’ve never made a casserole before but your directions have nothing about straining the sauce mix… did I do something wrong?

        • If you leave it in the oven long enough, the sauce will be soaked up by the quinoa (that’s how it cooks). There shouldn’t be any need to drain off any sauce – it’s pretty thick by the end.

        • Try adding the milk to the flour/seasoning (while whisking) more slowly, rather than all at once. That should help eliminate the lumps. :-)

  3. I love hearing about your food past; it is comforting and warming to hear these types of stories. You have the best ideas, I can not wait for Australia to cool down so I can make this!

  4. Quick clarification: the recipe says 3 cups fresh broccoli florets AND 3 cups broccoli. So…6 cups of broccoli? Or is one of those a repeat? Looks so good! Can’t wait to make this!

  5. So THAT is the difference between casserole & hot dish. I lived in up in the Twin Cities for 4 years after undergrad and was introduced to a brand new word: Hot Dish. (Tater tot hot dish to be specific), but thought it was interchangeable for casserole. Thanks for the mini lesson and the winter comfort :)

  6. Ohhh casseroles. My family is definitely unusual in that we don’t care for them. Pretty much Midwest heresy. The only ones we do like actually contain quinoa!

  7. Even though I grew up in Buffalo, NY, my family was heavily influenced by cooking styles of the Midwest (maybe because a lot of my family is from Pennsylvania?). Anyway, the variety of casseroles we ate was truly stunning. Scalloped potatoes, chicken and stuffing casserole, something with noodles that I can’t actually remember, and something called Lazy Man’s Pierogi — noodles, bacon, mushrooms and sauerkraut. Sooooo good….and yet, so bad :)

    I love this modern twist on chicken and broccoli casserole! Thanks so much for sharing :)

  8. This looks so delicious!! I’ve already saved the recipe for future use. ;)
    xo Andrea
    Wonderful and Marvelous

  9. This is exactly the kind of thing I crave in the winter…and I love that this doesn’t use canned soup!!

  10. This is calling my name!!! I love casseroles like this when it’s cold out. Once they are in the oven, they warm up the house and the smell alone makes everyone hungry! Pinning now!

  11. I have made something very similar to this in the past with the quinoa as well. The best thing is this freezes beautifully. I forgot I had some in the freezer and looking for dinner one night found it. it was great to just be able to heat it up.

    • Came across your comment about freezing this dish…so I’m assuming it would be fine to make this earlier in the day and just put in the oven a little longer to reheat? Thanks!! Have you made this?

  12. I always loved those thick canned soup casseroles when I was young too, so it would be great to make my own from scratch! Love the idea of adding quinoa!

  13. I grew up in Minnesota and it was ALWAYS hot dish (v. casserole). Trying to explain this term to people in Connecticut is about as confusing as the kiss-on-the-cheek greeting is to a native midwesterner. Like, why are you trying to kiss me, we just met?! Luckily my new east coast friends have no confusion about what to do with said hot dish, though–consume in mass quantities.

  14. LOL I love your writing, and the food looks delish too! :)

  15. You’re so adorable, dontcha know? I love this healthified broccoli cheese casserole recipe!

    Did you ever watch that show on Food Network “Heartland Table.” The chef left NYC to go home to Minnesota and cook meals. So good. Sooooo good!

  16. This looks delicious! I am also a midwesterner (from St. Louis) and I love casseroles! But I always forget to make them – I really need to try this! Question – are there 6 cups of broccoli in here or 3?

  17. Looks Amazing! Thanks!!!

  18. heidi torres says:

    I have never used or had quinoa, but I have a bag of rainbow in my cupboard. Great timing. I am looking forward to trying it, and the casserole as well. Thank You.

  19. Totally agree on the undying love for casseroles! =) can’t live without them!!

  20. You are seriously the best. This is exactly what I was looking for. I need to make some easy food for my hubby and wean him off his Frozen Boxed Fettuccine and Broccoli with Chicken!
    Not that I won’t eat this too. I’ll eat the heck out of it.
    And thank you for substituting for the salty canned soup!

  21. I just love the look of your casserole! Those gorgeously moist chicken pieces… That bright green broccoli… The cheesy goodness… But, umm, I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve never actually had a casserole! Unless Thanksgiving stuffing counts… I grew up in California with a mom that really didn’t like cooking, so we normally ate salads and pasta for dinner. What exactly defines a casserole? *blushes*

    • I think just a bunch of stuff sauced up together in a big dish and baked until golden and bubbly. :)

      • Oooh I like the sound of that! So it doesn’t necessarily need pasta or rice or quinoa or another carb-y thing? Like, could I do a veggie-centric one with your favorite cauliflower or sturdy sweet potatoes without the casserole police chasing after me?

  22. Stephanie says:

    Looks great- I could eat casseroles every night. I need to make this soon. Please share the recipe for the Reuben casserole too!

  23. Where is the saturated fat coming from?

  24. This looks AMAZING. Seriously. But, *ahem*, I NEED this reuben casserole recipe too. Because that also sounds amazing. Bonus if it contains no canned crud. :D

  25. I’m not a big casserole person, but this one sounds so delicious! I’ve been planning a quinoa casserole- maybe it will have to be this one!

  26. I’m not a fan of broccoli but I have no problem having it if it’s a part of dish like yours. Love this recipe, it’s easy and full of flavor!

  27. Bottom line is that broccoli casserole is one of my favorite childhood dishes. Now quinoa is favorite, so I am all over this!! Love cozy casserole!

  28. Love this flavor combination, great recipe!

  29. Just last night I was trying to figure out what to do with some leftover chicken—my go-to chicken-rice casserole recipe calls for a can of cream soup, and I’m REALLY trying to get away from that (fat, sodium, chemicals, blech!). I ended up using the pan juices which I had saved from Sunday’s roast chicken, carefully scraping all the fat off the top (easy after it’s been refrigerated) and then adding a little hummus as a thickener. My husband loved it, but it was still too salty for my taste. Anyway, I saw a link on Facebook this morning for your recipe, et voila! I think you’ve provided my new go-to recipe–can’t wait to try it, thank you SO much! (By the way, I think the difference between a casserole and a hot dish is strictly a regional thing—here in the Chicago area it’s always a casserole, but I would expect anyone from Minnesota to call it a hot dish. ;-)

  30. Yum! Great combo of flavors with the bacon added in to round things off! Here’s hoping spring is here soon!

  31. Valerie B. says:

    Do you think I can substitute rice for the quinoa with the same cooking time and prep?

    • No, rice takes a lot longer (found that out the hard way) but the same concept applies, so just make sure it’s covered and give yourself some extra baking time. :)

  32. This recipe sounds great! We like to make 2 batches of casseroles and freeze one, so I was wondering if this can be frozen and at what point would you freeze it?

  33. I am making this tonight! I can’t wait to try it! It looks so yummy!!!

  34. This looks deli. I´ve just got one question: if I had some already cooked quinoa and chicken, would I have to cook the sauce much longer on the stovetop or could i just throw it straight into the oven?

    Thank you in advance!

    Marita

    • I think you could just kinda stir it all up and then bake it for a while. But you would not need as much water or sauce because the quinoa soaks up some of it while it’s cooking in the oven. So just reduce the sauce amount and eyeball it!

  35. I made this last night and it was amazing. First time trying quinoa too :D

  36. Representing the midwest as well, a “dont ya know” from Wisconsin. :) I moved down to Texas a couple years ago and people still hastle me about my “a’s”.

    This casserole looks fab and love that you used quinoa to healthify it up! :) Pinned!

    Favorite commerial: the doritos time machine!

  37. I love that ancient grain quinoa!!! Broccoli is also another of my favorites because sometimes when you cook it, it brings out a sweet taste! It is not a pinch of yum here, it is a bowl of yum!

  38. This looks so fantastic! Gorgeous pictures! Can’t wait to try it!

  39. Another quinoa dish that looks amazing. I would be very interested to see a receipe for the Reuben casserole. I tried a Sauerkraut ‘bake’ a friend made the other day and it was amazing.

  40. This is amazing…. I love casserole and eating healthy and casserole don’t belong in the same sentence! But…… This worked out GREAT! Thanks so much for giving me my comfort food, and a solid under 500 cal dinner!
    PS this was my first time cooking with quinoa and it was fabulous!

  41. This looks really good! Might try this tonight for dinner but will use beef instead.
    Love all the things you’ve been cooking lately.

    Hugs and kisses from the Philippines

  42. I wonder if i could substitute almond flour, instead of the flour (I eat amylose free)

  43. What a colourful plate!

  44. Have you ever used frozen broccoli?

    • No, I haven’t, but if you did I would do a steam in the bag kind where you have more control over how much moisture it holds and how much it’s cooked before adding it to the casserole. My only concern would be that it would be overcooked and a little too watery but steam in the bag seems to be better for that.

  45. 1) This looks amazing
    2) Casseroles are potentially one of humanity’s greatest accomplishments
    3) I am making this next week.

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  46. I might as well be from Minnesota because I love me some casserole. I made this las night and it was delicious! My quinoa hater husband even liked it, so you know it’s good!

  47. I just bought my first bag of quinoa a few weeks ago and have been looking for a great recipe to use it in besides just eating it plain as a side dish…and lo and behold your recipe pops up on Pinterest!! Just bought some chicken and broccoli too so this is perfect timing! I was born and raised in WA State and then transplanted to TX but it will always be a “casserole” to me. :) Thank you so much for sharing!

  48. Could I substitute rice for quinoa? I don’t have any quinoa right now….

  49. It’s like you read my mind! I’ve never been able to make a quinoa dish I liked until now. This was great! I added kale at the assembly step instead of using broccoli, and that worked well, too. And bacon. Brilliant. Thanks!

  50. Hey, is the mixture supposed to be very soupy and liquidy before it goes in the oven?

    • Mine was soupy when first going in but the perfect consistency after. I didn’t need to add any extra water when adding the broccoli.

    • Kristen says:

      I was wondering the same thing. Mine was very soupy. I cooked for 30 minutes then took it out. Would that much of the liquid boil away if I would have added 15 minutes?

      • Maybe – seems like several people are saying the same thing. It shouldn’t be soupy, so maybe I’ll add a note to the recipe to extend the cooking time. Thanks for the feedback!

  51. Made this chicken/quinoa casserole on Sunday. it was a unanimous hit. Very tasty.

  52. I made this last night and it was delicious! My husband and kids loved it! Thanks for a great recipe!

  53. This looks really yummy thanks for sharing!

    I always thought a hot dish was any main course food that was served hot, which would include casseroles, meatloaf, fried chicken, baked beans, cooked broccoli…..(always asked at group functions to bring a hot dish, salad, and/or dessert). Casseroles are dishes with mixed ingredients such as chicken, broccoli,rice and a sauce to hold it together and usually baked.

  54. Thank you so much for a fabulous recipe. We loved this so much and couldn’t stop going back for more. We used fontina cheese on top which worked out deliciously! Thanks again for a healthy and easy recipe!

  55. I am making this tonight but have a question – we are going to be pulling the chicken off of a rotisserie chicken (so its already cooked). Should I wait and add the chicken with the broccoli at the end or toss it in as listed?

    • Hmm, good question. I don’t think it would dry out if you put it in there.. usually rotisserie chicken is really moist and juicy. actually some of the flavor might help the quinoa become even tastier. I’d put it in in the beginning and see how it goes!

  56. Cheryl Robinson says:

    So yummy!!! My husband and 11 year old son approved. We just about finished off the entire pan!! I didn’t feel guilty since it is so darn healthy!! Thank you for posting this delicious recipe. I will be making it again and again per the request of the boys down here in the South!

  57. Do I use cooked chicken or put in the raw chicken to bake? I’m new to making casseroles. This looked yummy.

  58. This was a pain in the butt to make (when juggling a 7 month old), but because it turned out so delicious, it was very worthwhile. Thanks!

  59. Ah this looks awesome. I do love my family’s broccoli casserole, however I haven’t made it in forever because of the well, canned cream of mushroom soup, and fear.

    Do you think that this will work well with whole wheat flour too? I recently came to realize that most brands of bleached flour makes my stomach hurt.

  60. I’m in the midst of making this (just about to add the broccoli), and it’s really, really soupy. I was surprised at how liquid it was when I first put it into the pan, but I figured the quinoa would soak up all the extra. Now the quinoa is definitely cooked through but the whole pan is still basically liquid. I’m not sure what happened; I’ve checked the recipe 4 times and we used the listed amounts of everything (haven’t added any extra water after the 1 cup that went into the original mixture). Weird. I will say that the bite I tasted to check on the quinoa was delicious, though, so I’m still looking forward to eating the finished dish! I think it’ll just be more soupy instead of hotdish-y.

    • Hm, can you bake it a little longer uncovered to let some of the liquid soak up? I’m surprised too – mine was super sticky – as you can see in the pictures. That mixture you make in the beginning should be really thick.

  61. Trying this tonight! Has anyone added mushrooms to it? Wondering if I tried it what stage I would add them at?

  62. Seriously delicious! I despise the word casserole, but I sure do LOVE to eat them!

  63. I made this for dinner tonight and my family really enjoyed it, including my 2 and 5 year olds! Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe. I broiled it for about 4 minutes at the end and it was perfect!

  64. Im from MN too and cat wait to make this, any experience subbing out the flour for a gluten free flour, my kiddo is gluten free.

    • No, I don’t have much experience with gluten free flours but I know you can substitute some flours to make a roux so I wouldn’t be surprised if you can with a GF flour as well!

    • I’m gluten free and made this tonight using a pre-made gf flour mix. It turned out great! I used Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose baking flour mix if that helps.
      Fabulous recipe!! We will be making this often!!

  65. Could you freeze a portion of the casserole after making it? Or how long do you think it could keep in the fridge? I think it sounds delicious, but my boyfriend refuses to try quinoa, so I’d be cooking for one.

  66. Lacey McLaughlin says:

    Made this tonight and it was a Success! My entire family enjoyed it from the littlest 1 years old to my biggest ( hubby) ;) Thank you! I will be making this again

  67. Great-looking recipe! Have you (or anyone?) tried a vegetarian version without the chicken? I haven’t been buying as much poultry recently, and was thinking of trying this as a veggie casserole. If you’ve done so and made any special changes to the recipe, do share….
    Thanks!

  68. I was the one above with the soupy casserole. I took the foil off and let it bake for another 10-15 minutes before adding the broccoli, and it thickened up quite nicely. And it was delicious! Thanks for the recipe.

  69. Going to make this tonight, looks great! I don’t have poultry seasoning…any ideas on what to use instead of the two different seasonings you used? Thanks!

    • Do you have sage or thyme? Those are kinda the two main things in my poultry seasoning. Here’s a link with specific breakdowns of each spice, not my combination but I’m sure this is great too. Basically just put something in it to give it flavor. Fresh, dried, whatever. :)

  70. I have been obsessed with quiona lately and this was BEYOND amazing! My family of 4 devoured all but one lonely bowl I managed to hide for my lunch tomorrow. I did sub skim milk so I could be ok with adding more cheese because really what’s better then bacon and cheese!?!? Thanks so much for sharing!

  71. I spent my first 49 years in Minnesota. They were always called hotdishes, not casseroles. At least in my neighborhood! I am going to try this, looks delish!

  72. I made this for my family tonight and everyone loved it! Even my 10 year old daughter who “doesn’t like quinoa” gobbled it up. I wound up cooking the chicken and quinoa for 40 minutes before adding the broccoli. I also let it sit in the warming drawer for 10-15 minutes after and that really helped it become “less soupy”. All I had on hand was mild cheddar and that was yummy.

    I was just turned onto your blog yesterday and I’m afraid I will begin obsessing over making your recipes :-). We try to eat real food with lots of flavor in our house – and your site is just perfect. This was my “test” recipe and I will be back for more. Thanks for pulling all of this together into such a beautiful site – the pictures and design are fantastic and I love your writing.

  73. Had been thinking about this ever since you posted it and finally made it last week… no poultry seasoning, but used rubbed sage. It was a hit with the family (3 of us). And it was even better warmed up the next day – as can be said for most hot dishes/casseroles.
    Loved using the quinoa instead of pasta!

  74. Family loved it! I will be making this regularly

    Any suggestions on how to keep it from boiling over in the oven?

  75. Hey! I love this recipe. Almost like chicken and rice but without the rice! :) anyhow I tried to make it for the first time the other night and I overcooked it a bit, and now it’s very dry and gummy. Any suggestions to bring the leftovers some moisture? :)

  76. Has anyone tried this with almond milk instead of dairy milk? Really want to try this.

    • I have tried it with almond milk and with gluten-free flour and it still ends up being delicious! I love this recipe and have made it a few times now. My husband loves it even though he is not a big fan of quinoa :)

  77. This looks amazing & I’m in the process of making right now. Clarifying question – do you remove the boiling broth/milk from the heat before mixing in the flour/mik/seasoning mixture? Mine is super lumpy, even though I’ve whisked the crap out of it. Not sure what I did wrong…any ideas? Thanks!

    • I think when you mix it all together it will be fine. It should be decently smooth, but the little lumps should work themselves out during the mixing and baking.

  78. I’m so confused, do you cook the chicken before you put it in the oven, or no?

    • Kelly not sure if the reply was meant for me. I didn’t cook anything beforehand besides the bacon. After 30 minutes I checked it and it was still very soupy and the quinoa wasn’t cooked, so I cooked it for another 10-15 minutes and it seemed like it sucked up all the moisture. So I added the cup of water and cheese and let the cheese melt and the whole thing was still dry! The chicken and the quinoa mixture! The flavor is good, but when I tried to reheat it it was really gummy :(

    • Nope! It will bake in the oven with the liquid and quinoa.

  79. Thanks for the recipe, this will be dinner this evening. I’m a Wisconsin girl and love casseroles. And my favorite dish, I beg my father to make is country style pork ribs slow cooked in sauerkraut, served over boiled potatoes. So delicious. Thanks again!

  80. jentacat says:

    Can I cover it with a lid instead of foil? I don’t use foil.

  81. Hi! This looks wonderful! What do you think about preparing/cooking earlier in the day to reheat at dinner time? I have two little people who often hinder the cooking process! Was wondering up to what step I could make this and then pull out of the refrigerator and pop in the oven. Thanks!

  82. Made this for dinner tonight and it was wonderful! I agree that the bacon, though optional, is a must! What a quick and easy meal- I know this will become a regular rotation in our house. I too had to bake a little longer before adding broccoli because my mixture was still soupy. I baked uncovered for at least 15 min longer.

  83. If I can sub out the flour for something Gluten Free-maybe slowly adding cornstarch to the milk to thicken or subbing in GF flour mixture-I will be one happy camper! You have combined all my favorites!

    Sarah

  84. What am I doing wrong that this is coming out like soup? I used the right amount of liquid. I didn’t even add extra for the broccoli. I could drink this casserole (although I would have to stop to chew the chicken and broccoli LOL).

    • Ooh, not sure. Sounds like something went wrong though – it should be pretty thick and saucy, but not soupy. Did you cook the creamy flour mixture for enough time? Did you bake it covered or uncovered? Did you use a different kind of flour? Some commenters have found that baking it a little longer helped the liquid to get absorbed better.

  85. I was hesitant about the consistency from the recipe, but it was fantastic! I too am Minnesota but can’t handle the canned condensed soups, so this is a great resource to sub on other family recipes. I subbed sun dried tomatoe pesto for bacon and goat cheese as the cheese. I also just set the broccoli on top without cooking it so it got a nice deep roasted flavor. It was sooo good. Looking forward to leftovers for lunch tomorrow. :)

  86. So based on the instructions, I’m not seeing when to cover it with foil. I assume for the 30 minutes? Or based on the note did you correct it to all uncovered time in the oven?

    • Yeah, I corrected it to bake uncovered. When I made it, I did mine partially covered and partially uncovered (the covering was more of an afterthought), but uncovering it will allow the moisture to evaporate which is what most people were having issues with. If it’s getting too browned, cover it up. Otherwise I’d say go for it uncovered.

  87. This looks amazing! I am assuming the chicken doesn’t get cooked before it gets added to the casserole. Is that correct? Most casseroles I’ve made call for the chicken to be precooked, so I just want to make sure I have this right. :)
    Thank you!

  88. I made this last night and it was sooooo good. My boyfriend doesn’t usually like quinoa but he loved it :D

  89. I have it in the oven now!
    I skipped cooking the broccoli and just covered the dish with the broccoli for 20 minutes. We shall see how it turns out!
    I’m from the South and we love our casseroles too! Add butter and cheese and we are on aboard!

  90. Delicious! Made exactly as recipe directed. Well, it was a little short on bacon as I ate some prior to adding to quinoa mix. But that is between us-my family loved the dish!

  91. Hi! I think there may be a mistake in the recipe. You talk about putting the foil back on but the step say to bake uncovered for the first 30 minutes. I’m not sure when the foil goes on and off.

  92. Suzie Honeycutt says:

    I made this tonight for dinner. The whole family loves it. I didn’t need to add any water at the end and everything was cooked completely.

  93. I have two little girls so I didn’t have time to read all the comments so I am not sure if someone has posted this or not, but I made this tonight and I used baking spray with flour and it didn’t stick at all.

    I also seasoned the chicken with the Emeril seasoning so it was little salty, but that was my fault. Otherwise this was fantastic.

    I recently found your site and have tried a few recipes and each one has been amazing. Can’t wait to try the next one.

  94. I think I just figured out what we’re having for dinner tonight!!!!! Thanks!

  95. Just made this and it is seriously good! Yummmmmmy!

  96. Made this tonight with a precooked chicken, leftover quinoa, and frozen brocolli! Super easy, just made the sauce, precooked the brocolli, and threw it all together for 15 mins then added the cheese. Thanks!

  97. Christina says:

    i noticed in the comments people referring to using lid vs foil to cover the pan but in the recipe it states to bake uncovered. Are you supposed to cover the dish in the oven at any point?

    • I changed the directions – I covered mine partially (covered at first, then removed) but I think it’s best to leave it uncovered since several people were commenting about the liquid not getting absorbed.

  98. Jan Taylor says:

    I just stumbled upon your blog and love it! Love your writing. Love your recipes. Love your wit. Love, love, love! LOL

    I was wondering if using a gluten free flour would change the creaminess of the dish…..Any idea? Also, have you experimented with GF flour for your homemade cream of (you fill in the blank) soup? Just wondering. I’m new to the gluten free world, but am thinking that normal recipes could be tweaked just a little to make them GF. This looks so good that I don’t want to miss out on the yumminess!

  99. You. Are. Awesome. I came for the recipe but was blown away by your wit and fun writing. Can’t wait to try the recipe, but in the meantime I’m gonna check out your other posts!

  100. savannah del campo says:

    Any way to make this dairy free????

  101. Charlotte says:

    I made this last night and it was delicious! I’m always looking for new recipes with a healthy twist and this was perfect; even my other half loved it and said we would be cooking it again.
    Thank you so much!

  102. I made this dish tonight and it’s not as good as it looks. Very tasteless and turned out mushy (even thou I baked it for an hour) all the flavors blended together which made it taste very blend. Blah

  103. Matilde Flores says:

    Made this dish earlier today and want to reheat it for my boyfriend! would you suggest microwave or putting it back in the oven? if so, at what temperature and how long?

    Would really appreciate it!

    PS. I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!! can’t wait to try all the other recipes!!

  104. Made this last night for dinner – it was delicious and exactly what I was hoping for!! I added a bit of Parmesan cheese to the sauce (because I’m kind of obsessed with parm) and carrots for another veggie. This recipe will definitely be going into the regular rotation! Thank you! :)

  105. I tried your dish tonight, but modified it because I did not have any broccoli. I mixed green beans and fresh spinach into the mixture before cooking it. It was very good, but it was a little heavy on the poultry seasoning. Next time I will use about a half teaspoon.

  106. wendy martin turley says:

    love this. my 7 yr old son saw the pic of the casserole and said yum. so I guess i’ll be making this. yes! fewer pots to wash!

  107. Hi Lindsay! Thank you so much for sharing such a great recipe. I made this last night and it turned out wonderfully. Gruyere is my all-time favourite cheese and it was definitely what gave the dish that extra kick. I may or may not have upped the amount of bacon + cheese, but hey! No one complained ;-) Anyway, keep ‘em coming! This one has been bookmarked in my favourites.

    Cheers from Vancouver,
    Frances

  108. Made this last night and….. HOLY it was good! It was fast, simple and delicious! I will for sure be making this again!

  109. You call it what you like; I call it soul food; because it feeds my soul ; gives me that down home relaxed and I ate to much feeling. After this all you want to do is kick back with a glass of tea or cup of coffee and prop your feet up and just wallow in that feeling of comfort and relish the contentment you feel in your soul. Needless to say I eat a lot of ” soul food”:):):):)

  110. This looks SO delicious!
    I can’t wait to try it.

    (Haven’t tried it yet but I give it 5*.)

  111. Hi there. Love your site. Thanks for the great recipes! Can you tell me what is in Emeril’s Essence or what I could use as a substitute? I live in South Africa and its not available here.
    Thanks :)

  112. Paige Anderson says:

    YUM!

    I made this with the cheese I had on hand, cheddar, and it turned out delicious. I also used Trader Joes 21 Seasoning Salute. Oh and I used lactaid nonfat milk. :)

    I always soak quinoa before preparing so I figured I’d do the same with this. I rinsed and soaked the quinoa for about 20 minutes before preparing….not sure if it helped..but i did not end up with too much liquid. And I also did not have to add any liquid once I added the broccoli. Perfect gooey casserole consistency. :)

    THANKS for the great recipe! :)

  113. I made this last night and it was perfect! My husband is lactose-intolerant so I made it with almond milk instead of milk and it worked out just fine. I baked it for an extra 10 minutes as suggested to let it thicken up a bit. Thanks for posting a recipe without cream of sodium soup!

  114. Hi I want to make this for dinner tonight. Because I am using pre-cooked quinoa, would I leave out the 2nd cup of water and just make the sauce? Thx

  115. Hannah says:

    I cannot wait to try this tonight! Any idea if buckwheat flour could be used?

  116. So i am currently making this, and the liquid soaked up fine, I got a good creamy mixture by the end, but my chicken does not look anything like yours. Did you by chance brown your chicken first? Mine looks white, not grilled looking like yours. First time making quinoa, so fingers crossed.

    • I didn’t brown it at all first. I left mine uncovered for a lot of the cooking time and it browned up a little bit because of the spice mixture that I used on there. Does that make sense?

  117. YUM! This is so good and so easy! I imagine this makes about 6 servings, but I think I could easily eat 1/4th. :-) I used frozen slices of cooked chicken breast and topped with seasoned pepper. Definitely will make this again. Thanks!

  118. Can you put the chicken in uncooked or is it precooked before the casserole?

  119. I boiled broccoli as instructed and threw in onion, asparagus, used that water for the add in! Love this recipe n flavor combo, u can add whatever in it! And as many said before I love there is no canned soup/veggies! I used all organic and I feel good with what my family is eating tonight! Can’t wait to read the rest of your blog!

  120. I just made this tonight. It was so easy and so delicious! I can’t believe how creamy it was without any cream!! Thanks so much for the great recipe!

  121. I made this for dinner tonight. Super yummy. I don’t eat dairy, so I substituted coconut milk for the 2% and left out the cheese. Quite tasty.

  122. This recipe is DELICIOUS!!! I followed the recipe precisely except I used skim milk, & stirred in about 3 tbsp of shredded pares an to the quinoa mixture & added salt, pepper and garlic just before adding the broccoli & cheddar cheese. It paired PERFECTLY with a mixed baby spinach/spring mix salad with raspberry vinaigrette and orange flavored almond slices. Amazing, filling and nutritious. . The perfect comfort food!!!!

  123. Amazing! Even my picky picky two year old loved it!

  124. You say it is gluten-free, but you have flour in the directions, which is it?

  125. This was excellent, Lindsay. Thank you so much for sharing. It’s honestly one of my favorite quinoa recipes, thanks to you!

  126. Hi Lindsay! I am a beginner cook. Just wondering, would this be okay to prepare ahead of time in the casserole dish, put in the fridge, and then bake the next day? Thanks!

    • I would prepare each part separately, store separately, and then assemble just before baking, just because I think the quinoa might get kind of weird if it sits in the sauce overnight. Let me know how it goes!

  127. This looks amazing. I’ve done casseroles in the crockpot before and was wondering if this could also be cooked in the crockpot. Walking in from a long day to smell this dish cooking would be heavenly!

  128. My quinoa came out really bland… Used coconut flour and no bacon… Wahhh

  129. This was soooo beautiful!

    I added roasted pumpkin cubes and toasted pine nuts to mine! :)

    Thanks Lindsay

  130. This was really, really awesome! I had the extra liquid issue too, but 15 extra minutes cleared that right up. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe- I would definitely say this is a new favorite!

  131. I made this tonight and OMG is it good. I thought I didn’t like quinoa because it was always bitter, whether I rinsed the heck out of it or not. I’m so glad I gave this a chance with Target’s Simply Balanced rainbow quinoa. Not bitter at all. Comforting and creamy and wonderful. Thank you for a wonderful recipe! xoxo!

  132. Heather says:

    I’m curious why you pre-cook the broccoli. Is it a texture thing? The thing I love about casseroles is tossing everything in the one dish. Couldn’t you throw the broccoli in a bit sooner and let it cook in the liquid?

    • I’ve found that the broccoli gets really icky (read: overcooked, mushy, dark dark green) when you put the whole thing in there together. If that doesn’t bother you then NBD. But I wanted mine to be fresh and perky and green, so that’s why I did it that way. :)

  133. I followed the instructions exactly and going on 50 mins in the oven now and it is still soup.

    • Sorry to hear that Sara! Maybe another ten minutes will do it? It’s hard to say why without being there in person, but if everything is measured correctly it should eventually thicken up.

  134. has anyone tried this with almond milk instead of cow’s milk? I’m looking to make it dairy free

  135. also, you could use Bob’s red mill GF all purpose flour and then it would be a GF recipe :)

  136. Does this freeze well?

  137. This looks delicious. I rarely bake casseroles. (blame my hipster NYC lifestyle I guess! haha) My question is the quinoa and the chicken are uncooked before layering it in the casserole dish? You just bake all of it?

  138. I tried your chicken quinoa recipe and it’s delicious. I never tried this casserole with chicken until your recipes. it was creamy and I loved it.

  139. This looks fabulous and just pinned it…I have most of the ingredients, but this would be perfect for a busy week ahead. Thanks for sharing!

  140. Melissa Boggs says:

    I am tweaking this recipe a bit an trying it tonight with my family. It is in the oven an is smelling great! Thanks for the great idea!!

  141. Just made this last night for dinner and as soon as I took the first bite I was writing more ingredients down on my shopping list to make it again ASAP. I may have gone back for 2nds and 3rds so probably sooner, rather than later. It was delicious!

  142. This was fabulous! :-) I have to say I rarely follow recipes exactly (I usually experiment with additions/substitutions), but I did here, and I loved it. I used meat from a chicken I had roasted earlier in the week, and I used Spelt flour in the sauce (was worried I’d get a “whole wheat” taste to it, but I didn’t notice it). So yummy, and my man had a huge second helping. ;-) Definitely making this again.

  143. X-Michigander girl here! Birthday request was always Chicken and Dumplings. I guess having a February birthday made me want something hot!

  144. Megan huston says:

    I’m confused… Where does the flour come in? Do you bread he chicken?

  145. I made this and it was very good. worked well. had to cook it the suggested extra 15 minutes but once broccoli was added it made it seem thicker! delicious flavour!

  146. Tackling this recipe tomorrow night! Subbing cauliflour for the broccoli as it is what i already have at home.

  147. Would you be able to make this with rice instead of quinoa? I live in South Africa and I couldn’t find quinoa here. It might be called something else here…

  148. We didn’t like this recipe at all and we are casserole lovers. I’ll not make it again.

  149. Kim Langevin says:

    wow I was waiting for this casserole! it’s so good it’s allready family aproved. How about freezing it, would it work before baking it?

  150. In theory, this casserole should have been delectable, but instead it was disgusting. I ate half of my plate and threw the entire pan away.

  151. I was a little apprehensive abiut this recipe at first. When I was younger, the broccoli, chicken, rice, and cheese casserole was one of my favorites. I have not had it in many years since my dads food restrictions wont allow it. This was a very nice, healthier compromise. We all enjoyed it for dinner tonight.

  152. I made this tonight with already cooked quinoa and rotisserie chicken. Just skipped to the last step (well, I made the sauce too, with GF flour since I have celiac disease, and blanched the broccoli), added mozzarella/parm mix, and baked for about 20 min. Very good! Definitely a recipe you can keep as is, or add your own spices (I like the curry idea above), or wing it like I did! Thanks for the recipe!

  153. I am a casserole junky and this sounds amazing!! I have never really been into freezing things, but I would like to get into it. How exactly would I freeze the leftovers for this recipe? How long will it last? I want to start making things in bulk to save money because I feel like I live in the grocery store!! Thanks in advance!

  154. Also, if you love casseroles as much as I do, I highly recommend this recipe…it is absolutely delicious!! If you make it, I really hope you enjoy it!!!

    http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/onion-topped-sausage-n-mashed-potato-casserole-10000001898465/

  155. THIS. ALL OF THIS. Had it for dinner last night and am having the leftovers for lunch today. Really delicious, healthy and the chicken was as tender as if it had been cooked in the slow cooker. I thought it was a bit heavy on seasoning too so I’ll reduce it a bit next time but that’s just personal taste. Bookmarked to favourites! :)

  156. Made this last night for a friend who just had a baby and it came out soooooo great! Definitely a keeper. And now I need to make this for my family.

  157. I am totally with you on the childhood obsession with ruebens!!! My grandma used to make open faced ruebens in the oven and the bread was dipped in egg and crushed cornflakes… The. Best.

    Off to google a recipe for rueben casserole…

  158. What if I only have frozen broc

  159. Yay!! I’m gluten free so canned soups are out for me :(. With this recipe I can just substitute with gluten free baking mix instead of flour. So excited to enjoy a creamy casserole tonight!! Thank you!

  160. This was so delicious!! My husband had no idea that this meal was healthy and he thought it tasted like shrimp and grits (we are from the south and love grits)! This was also my first time making quinoa and your recipe made it easy to prepare. I am definitely adding this to my repertoire! Thanks!!

  161. Made this last night, so DELICIOUS!!!!!

  162. Delicious! I made this today and we loved it. Used tricolor quinoa (nice contrast with the white sauce & chicken) and subbed 3T arrowroot powder instead of the 1/2 c flour to thicken the sauce, to cut back on carbs a little, and it worked great. I’m definitely making this again – seems like it would reheat great for lunches!

  163. Super delicious! Even the husband enjoyed it! We also decided that after it sat and rested through our first helpings, the second helpings tasted even better… ;-)

  164. I enjoyed this casserole but the rest of the family didn’t, I should have known since one doesn’t even like couscous either and she thought this was right up there with couscous. It was a good thought but guess I won’t be making it again.

  165. I came across this recipe on Pinterest and decided to give it a try. I didn’t use bacon but added raw spinach to the sauce and quinoa mix. It was a big hit! Will definitely make this again. I like that this didn’t call for any canned soup but still tasted amazing. I also faced the soupy problem that others mentioned but extra time seemed to have fixed it. I didn’t even add any more water when I added the broccoli. My husband has already packed the leftovers for lunch tomorrow…so that is the biggest compliment :)

  166. I have made this recipe 3 times, and today was my best attempt. I only make 1/2 of it, but one major change I made is that I use One TBLS of Curry Powder in place of the poultry seasoning. I also cooked it in three stages. First stage: 20 minutes: No chicken or broccoli;Second stage: 15 minutes: just add the chicken; Third stage: Final 15 minutes: Add the broccoli and cheese. In my opinion, it tasted great and I loved it. Oh, and I omitted the bacon altogether.

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