This creamy Paleo Chicken, Broccoli, and ‘Rice’ casserole is packed with flavor and is incredibly satisfying! It’s full of protein and vegetables. Even though there is some prep involved, it’s a great dish to make ahead of time for easy meals. It’s entirely dairy free, grain free and low carb.
Winter is the time for casseroles. A cozy, bubbly, nutritious, all-in-one-dish is exactly what we need right now to warm us from the inside out.
In this recipe chicken, broccoli and cauliflower ‘rice’ are baked in a light, dairy free cream sauce flavored with Italian herbs. Make it on Sunday and you’ll have lunch and dinner ready for the week ahead.
Ingredients In This Chicken Broccoli ‘Rice’ Casserole
The ingredients are pretty simple in order to bring this nutritious, creamy, comforting casserole together. Everything is fresh and can be found in your supermarket.
- boneless chicken breasts
- broccoli florets
- cauliflower rice (most supermarkets have this or make your own in a food processor)
- coconut milk
- Italian seasoning and thyme
- arrowroot or tapioca flour
- spicy brown mustard
- nutritional yeast (optional but recommended)
- vegan parmesan or toasted sesame seeds or roasted salted cashews
- sundried tomatoes (optional)
Steps To Make This Chicken Broccoli Casserole
Even though there are a few steps to achieve the maximum deliciousness and freshest texture in this casserole, the end result is worth it. The best part is you’ll have a few ready made meals.
- Roast Chicken and Vegetables: We’re going to briefly roast the chicken breast, broccoli and carrots to keep everything bright and crisp tender.
- Make the Sauce : While the chicken and vegetables are cooking make the sauce. Saute onions, garlic in ghee or olive oil, add broth, coconut milk, arrowroot as thickener, salt, pepper, and herbs. I use nutritional yeast and some spicy brown mustard to give the sauce a yummy cheesy taste.
- Cauliflower Rice: The cauliflower rice is mixed into the sauce at the very last minute to avoid overcooking.
- Assemble: Shred the chicken and add it to the sauce along with the broccoli and carrots. Mix it all together and pour into a casserole dish.
- Toppings: Top the casserole with sun dried tomatoes and vegan parmesan. The sun dried tomatoes provide a rich zesty flavor that is delicious but if you don’t have them it’s good without too! Vegan parmesan gives a nice crunchy salty taste but if not available top with toasted sesame seeds or roasted salted cashews.
- Bake: Bake uncovered for 20 minutes just until it’s a little bubbly on the sides.
This casserole is a satisfying comfort dish for a chilly winter evening.
It’s so tasty that you won’t believe how nutritious it is! The left overs might even taste BETTER since all the flavors have a chance to blend.
This nutritious, high protein, saucy, cozy batch of comfort food is an excellent choice any day of the week.
If you like this recipe, try these other cozy chicken dishes:
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This casserole is a satisfying comfort dish for a chilly winter evening. Full of protein and vegetables, entirely grain free and low carb.
Chicken and Vegetables
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
- Celtic sea salt
- Crushed red pepper or black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme or oregano
- 3 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 4 cups broccoli florets
- 1 1/2 cups carrots cut into ¼” half moon slices
- 1 Tablespoon ghee or olive oil
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 4 Tablespoons arrowroot or tapioca flour
- 2 cups chicken bone broth or vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup coconut milk, full fat
- 1 Tablespoon spicy brown mustard
- 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast, optional
- 1/4 teaspoon Celtic sea salt or to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
- 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
- 3 cups (12 oz) riced cauliflower – you can purchase this already prepped to save time*
- 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes in olive oil coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup Vegan Parmesan or toasted sesame seeds or roasted cashews for topping
Cooking the Chicken & Vegetables
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Place chicken on a baking sheet and coat with 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle both sides with salt, red pepper flakes, thyme.
- Roast chicken for 20 minutes or until cooked through. Midway through, flip the chicken for even roasting.
- While the chicken is cooking, on a separate baking sheet, arrange broccoli and carrots and toss with 2 tablespoons oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Roast broccoli and carrots for 10-15 minutes or until just barely fork tender, stirring midway through.
- Once done, lower the oven temp to 400 degrees.
- While the chicken and vegetables are cooking prepare the sauce.
Preparing the Sauce and Assembling the Casserole
- Heat a large saute pan over medium-low heat and add 1 tablespoon oil. Add the onions, cook until translucent and fragrant, 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and continue to cook until fragrant, 1 minute.
- Measure broth and whisk in the arrowroot flour.
- In a separate measuring cup, measure coconut milk, add mustard and nutritional yeast, mix together.
- Add broth/tapioca to onions while whisking. Add coconut milk mixture and continue to stir.
- Raise the heat and bring to a boil, stirring. Once boiling, lower to a simmer and continue to stir and cook for another minute, until nice and thick.
- Add the Italian seasoning. Stir in salt and pepper to taste.
- Stir in the cauliflower rice, cook 1 minute to soften and remove from heat. It will be thick.
- Shred chicken or cut into bite size pieces.
- Add the chicken, broccoli and carrots to the sauce/rice mixture, stir mix evenly.
- Pour into a 2-quart baking dish. Top 2 tablespoons of sun dried tomatoes and sprinkle just enough vegan parmesan or other topping to lightly cover the top.
- Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes, until bubbling and cauliflower rice is soft.
- Serve hot with additional vegan parmesan and chopped sun dried tomatoes on the side!
- Store covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Reheat in 350 degree oven 5-8 minutes until hot.
- You can freeze the casserole covered for up to 1 month.
To make your own riced cauliflower there are two techniques you can use. Either one is good.
1. Shred on a box grater with the medium-size holes traditionally used for cheese.
2. Cut into florets and place in a food processor, pulse into small pieces. With both techniques you’re aiming for little pieces the size of rice.
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Category: Main Dish, Lunch
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Whole30, Low Carb
Keywords: chicken broccoli casserole, paleo chicken broccoli casserole, paleo chicken casserole