Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Tasty Tuesday~Brocoli, Rice, and Chicken Casserole
Recipe & photo from Table for Two blog
Recipe type: Main Entree, Casseroles, Chicken
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 1 hour
5 chicken tenderloins, cut into 1-inch cubes, uncooked
1 cup white rice, uncooked OR instant rice (different types of rice will yield very different cook times. I used sushi rice. Due to the number of folks who have tried this recipe & still say their rice is crunchy, I highly suggest you use instant rice)
2¼ cup whole milk
1 (10.75 ounce) can of cream of chicken
1½ cup frozen broccoli florets, thawed
1¾ cup extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish (mine was ceramic, but you may use glass).
In a large bowl, toss all the ingredients except the Ritz crackers, together until well-incorporated.
Pour the ingredients into the greased casserole dish, spread into an even layer, then sprinkle Ritz crackers on top of the mixture.
Bake mixture, uncovered, for 40-50 minutes, or whenever rice and chicken are done cooking (mine took about 40 minutes, yours may take longer depending on your oven).
To get a deeper, golden color, you may put the casserole under the broiler for 3-5 minutes. Be careful to watch it carefully!
This may be prepared ahead of time (reserving the Ritz cracker topping until you're ready to bake), kept covered in the refrigerator, and put into the oven, uncovered, when you're ready.
You can substitute fresh broccoli for the frozen broccoli. Fresh broccoli will yield a bit longer cooking time than frozen. Also, the size you cut your broccoli will affect its cooking time as well. If you like your broccoli more on the softer side, cook it longer. If you like your broccoli to have more of a bite, cook it to the time indicated above.
I didn't give a salt/pepper measurement as everyone's taste preference is different. My husband and I honestly thought the salt content from the buttery Ritz crackers were enough for this dish, however, if you don't feel it would be, I encourage you to adapt this recipe to your taste - add salt and pepper, to taste. Start with ½ tsp. at a time, taste it, and increase until desired taste.
If after 50 minutes, your rice is still not fully cooked through (rice grains vary, sushi-grade rice, which is what I used, cooks faster than other types of rice), cover the casserole with foil and cook longer.