cheesy chicken and broccoli bake

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil divided
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into cubes
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese


  • Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet (at least 12”) over medium-high heat. Add 1 chopped yellow onion and saute, cooking until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir in 1 glove of minced garlic, cooking for an additional minute. Stir in 1 pound of cubed chicken breasts or thighs and season with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Cook the chicken for 2 minutes, just until the outside is seared.  Add 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 cup of white rice, 1 cup of orzo, and 1 tablespoon of chopped parsley, and cook until golden and toasted, about 2 minutes.
  • Add 4 cups of chicken broth and bring to a boil over high heat. Add 3 cups of broccoli and another pinch of salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, cover and reduce heat to the lowest setting. Cook, covered for 15 minutes, until the rice and orzo are cooked.
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine ⅓ cup of bread crumbs, 1 tablespoon of chopped parsley, a glug of olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • Once the rice is cooked, stir in ½ cup of heavy cream, and 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese. (if skillet isn’t oven-safe, transfer to a 9×13” baking dish at this point) Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese over the top followed by the breadcrumb mixture.
  • Transfer to the oven and bake for another 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and breadcrumbs are just beginning to brown.


  • Serve with a classic green salad.


  • Vegetarian: Swap chicken broth for vegetable broth and remove the chicken and increase the broccoli to 4 cups.


  • To Freeze: Prepare the casserole through step 5. Let cool, then cover tightly. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge or on the counter for 2-3 hours. Bake as directed.


Calories: 660kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 118mg | Sodium: 451mg | Potassium: 747mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1204IU | Vitamin C: 45mg | Calcium: 344mg | Iron: 2mg