Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli, and Quinoa Casserole
adapted from Damn Delicious
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 lb fresh broccoli florets
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1/2 cup panko
- 1-1/4 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1/2 sweet onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
- 1/3 cup Greek yogurt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil an 9×13 baking dish or coat with nonstick spray.
In a large saucepan, add quinoa and 2 cups water. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, until quinoa has absorbed almost all the liquid. During the last 5 minutes of cooking time, add broccoli on top and steam until cooked through. (Note: you may also cook the quinoa and broccoli separately; quinoa in a small pot, broccoli in a large pot with a steamer insert).
Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add panko and cook, stirring, until browned and toasted, about 3 minutes; set aside.
Heat remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in the skillet over medium high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper, to taste. Add chicken, onions, and garlic to skillet and saute until chicken is cooked through and onions are soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
Melt butter in the skillet over medium heat. Whisk in flour until lightly browned, about 30 seconds. Gradually whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup cheese and Greek yogurt and whisk until smooth. Stir in quinoa, broccoli and chicken mixture. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Spread mixture into the prepared baking dish; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Place into oven and bake until cheese has melted, about 5 minutes.
Top with toasted panko. Serve immediately or, if desired, place under the broiler for a another few minutes to crisp up and darken the top.
What an awesome surprise this dish was. I expected it to be good, something to add to my casual cooking repertoire, maybe. We did not expect it to blow us away like it did. This is absolutely outstanding. The multiple pots/pans/dishes actually make it seem like a little much for a weeknight, but if you can handle some extra cleaning, there is nothing fundamentally complicated about the dish itself and the end result is well, well worth it.