Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa Casserole

I had another post scheduled for today, but after making this casserole I just had to share it now!  In the south, casseroles usually involve processed cheese, frozen vegetables, and canned cream soup.  I wanted to create a fresher, healthier broccoli casserole.  This version has fresh broccoli and carrots with quinoa and lots of cheesy goodness.  The cream and cheeses still make it decadent and the panko crumbs give it a nice crunch.  You really should try this recipe….asap!


We had it as a vegetarian entree, but it would make a great holiday side dish or even a potluck dish for a holiday party!

The cast of characters…


Start by rinsing your quinoa (don’t skip this step!), and cooking it in the vegetable broth.  You can sub water or chicken broth if you want.


While that’s cooking, chop your broccoli and carrots.  Add them to a large skillet, cover with water, and bring to a boil for around 5 minutes.


Once tender, drain vegetables and set aside.


Next, add olive oil, onion, and garlic to your skillet.  Cook for 1 minute and add flour.  Stir to combine.


Remove from heat.  Add the broccoli mixture,


1/2 cup parmesan, and 1/2 cup mozzarella.


Add quinoa to the vegetable/cheese mixture.  Combine and pour into prepared baking dish.


In a small bowl, combine cream and nutmeg.  Pour over the quinoa mixture.


In another small bowl, combine remaining cheeses and panko.  Sprinkle over the top of the casserole.


Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes until golden and bubbly.


Let it sit for 10 minutes so the casserole can set.  Waiting is the hardest part!  Now serve and enjoy!!



1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
2 cups vegetable broth or water
2-pounds fresh broccoli florets
2 carrots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese, divided
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
1 cup heavy whipping cream
⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½-cup panko crumbs or bread crumbs

1.  Preheat oven to 400.

2.  Lightly grease a large baking dish; set aside.

3.  Add quinoa and vegetable broth to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Turn the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until broth is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Cover quinoa and set aside.

4.  Place broccoli florets and chopped carrots in a large saucepan and cover with water; bring to a boil and continue to cook for 5 minutes, or until tender.

5.  Drain well; set aside.

6.  Heat olive oil in skillet; add chopped onion and garlic and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant.

7.  Stir in flour; stir until thoroughly combined.

8.  Remove from heat and add the broccoli mixture.

9.  Add 1/2-cup shredded parmesan cheese and 1/2-cup shredded mozzarella cheese. Season with salt and pepper.

10.  Transfer the vegetable mixture to the previously prepared dish; set aside.

11.  In a small mixing bowl, combine cream and nutmeg; mix until combined.  Pour milk mixture over casserole.

12.  In a separate bowl, combine remaining cheese and panko crumbs.  Sprinkle panko crumbs mixture over broccoli mixture.

13.  Cover with foil. Bake for 20 minutes, uncover and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until golden and bubbly.

14.  Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes.  Serve and enjoy!


Join the Conversation

  • Running ‘N’ Reading

    This looks fantastic! I’m with you…my MIL and I joke that any casserole in a Southern household has to have cream of mushroom soup and Velveeta – ha! We’ve tried to never have either of those things on the table during holiday events, but we miss some of the “old school” dishes we’ve grown up with. This is a wonderful alternative; can’t wait to try it out and share it with her.

    • jenchoosesjoy

      I can totally relate!! I hope you like this one:)

  • alsoranagain

    You had me at “cheesy.” And I can even feel good about making and eating this because it’s actually healthy! Thanks for the recipe.

    • jenchoosesjoy

      I hope tou enjoy it!!

  • dorseyml

    Perfect! I need more recipes with quinoa. This sounds really good!

    • jenchoosesjoy

      I love quinoa and cook with it all the time! I hope you like this recipe:)

  • mary @ minutespermile

    yum! i made a similar quinoa mac ‘n’ cheese a while back and loved it. great substitute for normal noodles

    • jenchoosesjoy

      Ive never made a quinoa mac n cheese, but that sounds awesome!

  • Arielle

    Oh wow it looks so delicious!! <3

    • jenchoosesjoy

      We love this recipe!

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  • Julia

    Made it tonight and it was AWESOME! Thanks for the recipe!

    • jenchoosesjoy

      Im so glad you liked it!!!

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