Broccoli Cheddar Casserole

Breakfast and BrunchCasseroleComfort FoodEgg

Best broccoli cheese casserole ever. Broccoli florets, blanched and baked with bacon and cheddar cheese in a milk, cream, and egg custard, spiced with black pepper.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Not your Grandma’s Broccoli Cheese Casserole

Oh la la. This is not your grandma’s broccoli cheese casserole. Ever since Christopher Kimball challenged people to Google broccoli casserole, insisting they would be disappointed with what they found, I’ve been meaning to post a killer easy broccoli casserole. And dear readers, this is it.

Broccoli Cheddar Casserole

An Easy Broccoli Casserole that Tastes Amazing

The ingredients? Broccoli of course, then bacon, flour, milk, cream, eggs, cheddar cheese, a little Dijon, salt, and lots of freshly cracked black pepper.

The tricks to this broccoli cheese casserole are to:

  1. Pre-cook the broccoli florets a bit so they cook up tender in the casserole.
  2. Use bacon because bacon makes everything taste better.
  3. Spice it up with black pepper. Just simple freshly cracked black pepper. Use as much as you can stand; it will make your broccoli cheese casserole sing.

Many thanks to the new love of my culinary life, Dorie Greenspan, who provided the inspiration and basic structure for this broccoli cheese casserole recipe with a fabulous cauliflower gratin in her cookbook Around My French Table (hint, buy this book for yourself and all your friends, it’s stunning.)

Broccoli Cheddar Casserole Recipe

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  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 5 as a main course, 10 as a side

Prep your ingredients while you are heating the blanching water to save time.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (900g)broccoli, stems removed (can use vegetable peeler to peel, then slice and eat like celery), large florets cut, yielding about 8 cups of broccoli florets
  • Salt for blanching water
  • 2 strips of thick-cut bacon (about 2 ounces), cut crosswise into 1/4-inch wide strips
  • 5 eggs, beaten
  • 1/3 cup (43g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (118 ml) cream
  • 1 cup (236 ml) whole milk
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons of freshly cracked black pepper (1 to 2 teaspoons if using fine ground black pepper)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 8 ounces (225g) cheddar cheese, grated

Method

1 Blanch the broccoli florets: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (1 Tbsp salt for 2 quarts of water). Add the broccoli florets and boil for 3-5 minutes or until just tender enough so that a fork can easily pierce the floret, but still firm. Strain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

2 Cook the bacon: While the water in step one is coming to a boil, cook the bacon pieces on medium heat in a frying pan until lightly browned, but not crisp. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess fat. Set aside.

3 Make the egg, flour, cream, milk, cheese base: Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). Butter a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish. In a bowl, whisk the eggs into the flour, then whisk in the cream and milk. Add the black pepper (more or less to taste), salt, and mustard. Mix in about a third of the cheese.

4 Assemble the casserole: Place the parboiled broccoli florets in the casserole dish, sprinkling about a third of the cheese over the broccoli florets as you lay them down. Sprinkle the bacon pieces over the broccoli.

Pour the egg, cream, milk, cheese mixture over the broccoli, moving the broccoli pieces a bit so that the mixture gets into all the nooks and crannies. Sprinkle the casserole with the remaining cheese.

5 Bake for 25-40 minutes, or until set. Once the top has browned, you may want to tent with aluminum foil to keep from burning.

Hello! All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to Broccoli Cheddar Casserole on Simply Recipes. Thank you!

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Links:

Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan. Buy this book!

Cheddar roasted broccoli from Inspired Taste

If you make this recipe, snap a pic and hashtag it #simplyrecipes — We love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, & Twitter!

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

91 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  • Serena

    With this recipe turned out OK if I didn’t add the flour? I am gluten-free and this recipe looks amazing!

  • Judith

    Wonderful recipe! I’ve made it twice in as many weeks, and have passed the recipe along to my co-workers. Two broccoli crowns works out to be the right amount for a two-quart casserole (the next size up was a three-quart dish, so I went with the smaller size). Baked it tented with foil for the first 25 minutes, then removed foil for the remaining 10 minutes, in a convection oven set for 400 degrees. It’s a bit time-consuming to construct but I save a little time by cooking a pound of chopped-up bacon at a time and keeping it in the fridge for use when the need arises. My husband loves this casserole, and I’ll certainly make it for company. Might add Gruyere cheese, as well as Cheddar. Thank you for a much-needed boost to our tried and true recipe roster.

  • Tina

    I made this recipe into a quiche: I halved the recipe and baked it in a parbaked frozen pie crust for 40-45 minutes at 325 degrees. I also used frozen broccoli, which i had blanched briefly, drained and dried so it wouldn’t make the crust soggy. It came out great!

    xxxxxyyyyy

  • Dottie bonds

    Want make this ❤️

  • Vermont Mom

    I’ve been making this recipe, without bacon, for five Christmas dinners now, and my meat eating relatives love it. I also double, cover with foil, and remove for the last 10 minutes. If it is not as brown as I want it to be, I broil the last few minutes. I always forget that it needs to cool for at least 10 minutes because if burns the mouth if you eat it too soon – so factor letting it rest with foil on top for up to 20 mins.

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