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) heavy 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.

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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.

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98 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  • Blessed

    Can you please, please verify what type of cream?

  • Juliet

    This was legit–SO GOOD! I used less broccoli, a bit more bacon and added sauteed onions, bell peppers and broccoli and followed all the other instructions! Delicious.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  • Paresh

    Has anyone tried it without eggs?

  • Mary

    I made this Sunday; covered with tinfoil and cooked Monday after letting it sit out for 30 minutes. Didn’t have cream so I used all whole milk and upped the flour from 1/3 to 1/2 cup. Also added 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken.
    Divided it into a 2 qt dish and 1 qt dish (for my son to take to his appt). Cooked it at 350 (convection) for 30 minutes covered and then 15 minutes uncovered. Served with salad and whole grain tortilla chips. very good! This is definitely a recipe that you could use as a base for many variations!

  • Serena

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

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Broccoli Cheese Casserole - an easy broccoli casserole you'll love!Broccoli Cheddar Casserole