Healthier Broccoli Chicken Casserole

The Healthier Broccoli Chicken Casserole recipe is made with your choice of pasta, tender chicken and broccoli, and the most delicious creamy cheddar mushroom sauce.

Healthier Broccoli Chicken Casserole

Raise your hand if you ate broccoli chicken casserole as a child! If you always have a can of cream of mushroom soup in your hand, make that two! Ah, well, it’s what all the cool kids were doing in the 1980s, I guess. I have a contemporary rendition of the classic chicken casserole today that I think you are going to appreciate for those of you who still occasionally yearn for it.

Meet my chicken and broccoli casserole recipe, which is made entirely from scratch, lighter, but still extremely creamy and cheesy!

It incorporates all of the traditional components of my childhood’s broccoli chicken casserole recipes, but it has been slightly updated for the year 2019. We’re talking a lot of fresh or frozen broccoli, tender chicken (you can use a rotisserie as a shortcut), your choice of pasta (I used whole-wheat, but you can use any kind), and a lot of sharp cheddar cheese (get the good stuff!). Then, instead of using canned cream of mushroom soup, this broccoli chicken casserole uses a simple homemade creamy mushroom sauce made with a lot of fresh mushrooms and zesty seasonings to make it anything but bland.

Healthier Broccoli Chicken Casserole

It’s modern, creamy, and perfect for a cozy dinner party. Additionally, be prepared for its rapid disappearance.
Make some chicken casserole, please!


  • 8 ounces of raw pasta (I used whole-wheat rotini)
  • 1 substantial head of broccoli*, separated into bite-sized florets (about 1 pound of florets)
  • two tablespoons of butter or oil
  • 1 finely sliced tiny white onion
  • 8 ounces of finely sliced baby bella (cremini) mushrooms
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • flour, 3 tablespoons
  • 1 cup of vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1.5 cups of milk
  • Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon
  • 0.5 teaspoons of sea salt, fine
  • freshly cracked black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon
  • Two cups of chopped (or shredded) cooked chicken and two cups of grated cheddar cheese


Healthier Broccoli Chicken Casserole

  1. Turn oven on to 400°F.
  2. In a large stockpot of salted boiling water, cook the pasta until al dente. Nonetheless, stir the broccoli into the boiling pasta water about one minute before it is finished cooking. Set aside the broccoli and pasta that have been drained.
  3. In the meantime, in a large sauté pan, heat the butter (or oil) over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion for three minutes, stirring frequently, before adding it. Sauté the garlic and mushrooms for an additional 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the mushrooms are tender.
  4. Mix the onion mixture with the flour until it’s well combined. Cook for one minute, occasionally stirring. Stir everything together after adding the stock until most of the clumps are gone. Stir in the milk, Dijon, salt, and pepper until everything is incorporated. The sauce should continue to cook until it reaches a simmer. After that, turn off the heat and stir in one cup of the shredded cheese until everything is well-combined. If necessary, season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
  5. Combine the chicken, cooked pasta, broccoli, and mushroom sauce in a large 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Combine by tossing. Layer the casserole evenly by smoothing it out.
  6. Cover and bake for 15 minutes. After that, take the casserole out of the oven and sprinkle the remaining cheddar cheese evenly over it. Bake for an additional ten minutes, or until the cheese is melted.
  7. If desired, top with additional black pepper and/or fresh herbs and serve warm.


  • Pasta: Traditional (semolina), whole-wheat, egg, gluten-free, and alternative-grain pasta are all acceptable options for this dish.
  • Broccoli: If you prefer, you can substitute 1 pound of frozen (thawed) broccoli florets for fresh broccoli.