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Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole

This Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole includes homemade condensed or Campbell’s Soup, flavorful rice cooked in chicken broth, and a buttery, crunchy Ritz topping. Cook up some fresh chicken or use Rotisserie!

Be sure to try my other rice casserole recipes using ham and broccoli, sausage and peppers, or ground beef and mushrooms. or chicken cordon bleu next!

Casserole Dish filled with broccoli cheddar chicken and rice casserole with a wooden spoon scooping some out.

Are you ready for the ultimate comfort food recipe? My family and I have been eating this chicken and rice casserole for years now. Who needs to separate chicken, rice, and broccoli when you can whip up a creamy casserole?!

This recipe is one of my favorite freezer foods. I’m pretty sure readers come back for this recipe more than any other. (It’s also in The Cozy Cookbook on page 178!)

You can make it with chicken breasts, rotisserie chicken, and I even have a ham and a ground beef version!


Ingredients

See recipe card below for full ingredient amounts and instructions

  • Butter
  • Chicken Breasts
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Salt/Pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • Chicken Broth
  • White Long Grain Rice– See below for info on using different rice
  • Broccoli Florets- fresh or frozen, see info below
  • Condensed Cream of Chicken SoupTry my homemade recipe!
  • Milk- any kind of fat content is fine
  • Sour Cream- Mayo may also be used
  • Cheddar Cheese– Shred your own from a block at home for best results. I use Cracker Barrel Extra Sharp Yellow cheese as it melts really well. Avoid aged/crystalized cheeses as those won’t melt well.

Topping:

  • Ritz Crackers
  • Butter

*Consider using unsalted butter and low sodium chicken broth to decrease sodium content.

Cream of Chicken Soup Substitutes

Don’t Use Minute Rice

I highly recommend you use regular long grain rice instead of minute rice:

  • Long grain rice = creamier consistency. Short grain rice tends to be stickier.
  • Regular rice has higher nutritional value and better flavor.

Using Brown or Wild Rice

These varieties take longer to cook and requires more liquid than white long grain rice.

  • Refer to the package for the required amount of liquid and cooking time and adjust the amount of chicken broth that you use per package instructions. 

Using Frozen Broccoli

  • 2 cups of frozen broccoli (and/or cauliflower) can also be used. Just be sure you thaw and pat it dry! 
  • Frozen broccoli is already blanched (partially cooked), but you may want to consider steaming it as well for a softer texture in the casserole. 

Using Rotisserie Chicken

  • This is a great casserole for rotisserie chicken, 2 cups is the perfect quantity to use.
  • Since rotisserie chicken can sometimes be salted, consider using low sodium chicken broth so that your meal doesn’t turn out overly salty.

Make-Ahead Method (Assemble Now, Bake Later)

Refrigerator

  • This casserole can be assembled ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 2 days prior to baking. Let it sit out for 30 minutes prior to baking or add 15 minutes to baking time.
  • The cracker/butter topping should be added at the end of baking.

Freezer:

  • Assemble the casserole as outlined and do not bake. Let it thaw for 24 hours in the fridge. Let it sit out for 30 minutes prior to baking and add 10 minutes to baking time.
  • The cracker/butter topping should be added at the end of baking.

Storage

  • Store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • This casserole is a great meal to freeze and is best if used within 3 months of freezing.
  • I often reheat frozen lunch-sized portions in the microwave from a frozen state. If possible, I’ll also bake it 350 degree oven at the end to crisp up the top.

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overhead shot of broccoli cheddar chicken and rice casserole with wooden spoon in the dish.

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A wooden spoon with a scoop of broccoli chicken rice casserole from a casserole dish.

Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole

4.96 from 723 ratings
This Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole is an easy make ahead meal that you can assemble and bake another day! Your family will love the buttery, crunchy Ritz topping!

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, or 2 cups diced rotisserie chicken
  • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • Salt/Pepper, to taste
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cups white long grain rice, uncooked
  • 2 cups fresh broccoli florets, uncooked
  • 10.5 oz. Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, separated

Optional Seasonings

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Casserole Topping

  • 1 cup Ritz crackers, crushed
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter

Instructions

  • Note: This recipe is designed to allow you to prepare all of the casserole ingredients in one pot before transferring to a casserole dish for baking. Before you begin, refer to your rice package for the amount of liquid (we'll use chicken broth) and cooking time. I use white long grain rice and the cooking time/liquid amount below works perfectly.
  • Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  • Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and season with Italian seasoning and desired amount of salt and pepper.
  • Heat butter in a large pot over medium heat until melted. Add the chicken and cook until golden brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside. Note: This step is not needed if using a cooked rotisserie chicken.
  • Add the chicken broth, olive oil, and rice to the pot and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.
  • Cover tightly and cook for 6 minutes.
  • Add the broccoli and replace the cover. Cook for 9 more minutes, or until no liquid remains in the pot and the rice is cooked through. (If it's not cooked through yet, quickly replace lid and simmer 5 more minutes, or until cooked through.)
  • Turn off the heat and leave the cover on. Let the rice stand for 10 minutes, do not stir. Any rice on the bottom of the pot will release.
  • Add the cooked chicken, cream of chicken soup, milk, sour cream, optional seasonings, and half of the cheddar cheese.
  • Add to a lightly greased 9 x 13 casserole dish and top with remaining cheese.
  • Cover and bake for 15 minutes.

Add the Topping:

  • Melt the butter and crumble up the crackers. Combine to form the topping for the casserole.
  • Top the casserole with the crumbled cracker topping and bake uncovered for 10 additional minutes.
  • Let the casserole sit for 5 minutes prior to serving.

Notes

Pro Tips:
  • Using Frozen Broccoli: 2 cups of frozen broccoli (and/or cauliflower) is a perfect alternative to fresh broccoli. Just be sure you thaw and pat it dry. Frozen broccoli is already blanched (partially cooked), but you may want to consider steaming it as well (about 5 minutes or so) for a softer texture in the casserole. 
  • Cheddar Cheese- Shred your own from a block at home for best results. I use Cracker Barrel Extra Sharp Yellow cheese as it melts really well. Avoid aged/crystalized cheeses as those won't melt well.
  • Skip the can and try this with my Homemade Cream of Chicken Soup!
  • Be sure to check out my ham and ground beef rice casseroles next!
  • This recipe is in The Cozy Cookbook on page 178!

Make-Ahead Method: Assemble Now, Bake Later.
  • Refrigerator

    • This casserole can be assembled ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 2 days prior to baking. Let it sit out for 30 minutes prior to baking and add 10 minutes to baking time.
    • The cracker/butter topping should be added at the end of baking.

    Freezer:

    • Assemble the casserole as outlined and do not bake. Let it thaw for 24 hours in the fridge. Let it sit out for 30 minutes prior to baking or add 15 minutes to baking time.
    • The cracker/butter topping should be added at the end of baking.

The Nutritional information provided is an estimate and is per serving. This recipe makes 6 servings.

Nutrition

Calories: 511kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 23g, Fat: 33g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 100mg, Sodium: 1174mg, Potassium: 470mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 1068IU, Vitamin C: 35mg, Calcium: 376mg, Iron: 2mg
Did you try this recipe?Mention @TheCozyCook on Instagram or tag #thecozycook!

 

broccoli-cheddar-chicken-and-rice-casserole

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2,006 comments on “Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole”

  1. Hi can I substitute cheddar broccoli soup or should I use cream of chicken

  2. Kid approved. Next time I think I will add a little more fresh broccoli to the recipe but it’s great as is. 

  3. Great recipe, family loved it. I didn’t use sour cream because I didn’t have any but it still tasted great.

  4. Can you use basmati rice in this recipe ?

  5. Can you use brown rice for this recipe?

    • Brown rice usually requires more cooking time and a different liquid ratio, so I could just cook it according to package instructions (you can cook it in chicken broth for more flavor)! Then proceed with the recipe as outlined, using steamed broccoli for the casserole.

  6. Recipes for cheesy chicken and broccoli rice are such a hit or miss, but this is definitely a hit! This came together in under an hour and both of my picky boys 3&6 couldn’t eat it any faster 😅 the only thing I altered was the part where the chicken is seasoned in the italian seasoning salt and pepper – I added a healthy amount of garlic powder and onion powder to that before I threw the cubed chicken into my Dutch oven to brown/cook them. So easy! And I had everything in my fridge/pantry I didn’t even need to go to the market 😅 def making this again. I shall now provide a quote from my 6yo, “mom, when this is all gone, can you make this again??” 😊

    • I’m so happy it was such a hit with the kiddos! Nothing like seeing kids eat broccoli, and sneaking them in casseroles is the way to do it! I love the quote from your 6 year old, the best! Thanks so much!❤️

  7. I’ve made this recipe multiple times. I’ve even shared it with those on a meal train. My family has loved it every time and those I’ve gifted it to have loved it also.
    This is my go-to cozy food recipe!

    • I’m so happy the family is enjoying it so much Carey! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe with others and for taking the time to leave a review!❤️

  8. Made this tonight  chicken rice and broccoli… easy and delish
    My husband hates broccoli but he ate it in this casserole
    Thank you
    Will make this again
    I use rotisserie chicken

  9. Hi Stephanie, I pray you and your family are doing well and are blessed.

    Thanks for this recipe, my family really enjoyed this casserole.

    Be blessed

    T

  10. Great recipe. Well written. I follow to a tee and always comes out great. I prefer to do a rotisserie chicken and pick a part since it saves time but I have also cooked the chicken and comes out great either way. Works great for leftovers too and heats up perfectly. 

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