Why is the combination of broccoli and cheddar SO good? I guess that asks the question why any famous pair is so delicious…seafood and lemon, pork and apples, tomato soup and grilled cheese, strawberries and chocolate? Pepperoni pizza and pregnant women? Maybe that’s just me, but pizza is bae right now. BAE 😍.
But for reals, broccoli and cheddar. What up with that?! Any time you mix broccoli and cheddar cheese together, the stars just align in a beautiful pattern of flavor awesomeness.
Whether it be soup, casserole, or this delicious skillet, the combo of these two flavors is out of this world. Because of how yummy they are together, you really don’t need to fuss over the rest of the dish that much. Keep it simple, yo. As long as you’ve got that broccoli and that cheddar…YOU GOOD.
This recipe takes “keeping it simple” to the EXTREME. There are…wait for it…four ingredients in this entire recipe. Minus the basics like salt and water.
- Brown rice
- Veggie stock
- Cheddar cheese
If you think the ingredients are simple, wait until you hear how to make it…First you cook your brown rice (rice cooker! Rice cooker! Get one puh-LEASE. Your life will be made). Then you steam your broccoli in the microwave (more on that later). Then you grate your cheese. Stir it all together in a skillet and broil until the cheese on the top melts.
It’s like…the most painfully easy recipe ever. But it is so yummy because of that broccoli cheddar mix, man!
So, as for the steaming the broccoli in the microwave…I know, I’m so lame aren’t I? It’s totes cheating and totes what college kids who don’t have a real kitchen do. But waaaiiitttttt. When I was making this recipe, I knew I wanted steamed or boiled broccoli. I didn’t want it roasted for this, which is my usual broccoli prep. So I had three choices:
- Boil water and add the broccoli to that. But waiting for water to boil is annoying and takes some time.
- Place a steam basket over a shallow pot of water. I wasn’t feelin’ the multiple-dish cleaning on that one.
- Microwave the broccoli in a bowl with a little bit of water.
Maybe I was feeling lazy that day, but I went with option number 3. The lazy option. Well, I am now a convert, people. Steaming broccoli in the microwave is the bomb.com. It takes literally four minutes (in my microwave) and leaves you with perfectly tender broccoli, one bowl to clean, and no added fat from oil like you’d get from roasting or sauteing. It’s so simple! Add broccoli to a big, microwave safe bowl with about an inch of water. Add some salt. Toss to combine. Microwave for 4 minutes. Drain in a colander. DONE!
I’m fooor sure going to be lazy and use this trick way more often. If you are a microwaved broccoli veteran, please don’t judge my newb-ness of only just recently discovering this awesome little shortcut.
Can we talk about pizza again, as mentioned at the beginning of the post? Here’s a question: why, oh why, do I suddenly in my second trimester of pregnancy, ONLY want either fast food burgers or pizza? It’s specific too…not just burgers…not just pizza. McDonald’s burgers (say whaaaaaaaat, I hated McDonald’s before a small human started growing in my stomach), and thin crust pepperoni pizza from Pizza Hut.
Why can’t I crave like kale salad and fruit? Maybe this little baby in my belly is about to be a huge fattie and is forcing my brain to only want the most unhealthy, greasy junk food ever.
Now, before you go worrying that I am ingesting like 5,000 calories of fast food a day, let me put your mind at ease. It’s only 4,500. Just kiidddinnnggg. I don’t succumb to my cravings on a daily basis, but we’re definitely talkin’ one or a few times a week that I’m hittin’ up Pizza Hut or a fast food burger joint.
I try to eat really healthy breakfasts and lunches so that I can be a little bit more relaxed on my dinners to satiate what I may be craving that day. I know that’s not exactly how it’s supposed to work…but…yeah. If next time you see me, I’m morbidly obese, this is why.
Maybe I can make a broccoli cheddar pizza! Oh man…now I legit want to try that…
For my 21 Day Fix people, here are your container amounts (per serving!):
- 2 yellow (brown rice)
- 1 green (broccoli)
- 1 blue (cheddar cheese)
- 1 cup uncooked brown rice
- 2½ cups veggie stock, divided
- 3 cups broccoli florets (bite sized pieces)
- 1 cup fresh grated cheddar cheese
- In a rice cooker*, combine your brown rice and 2 cups of veggie stock. Season with salt, and cook on the brown rice setting until done.
- Meanwhile, add your broccoli to a large, microwave safe bowl and add about an inch of water
- Season lightly with salt and toss so that the broccoli is evenly seasoned
- Microwave broccoli until tender. My microwave took about 4 minutes for perfectly tender broccoli, but cook time may vary
- Remove broccoli from the oven and drain in a colander
- When your rice is done, heat a non stick skillet over medium high heat and add your rice, broccoli, ¾ cups of the cheddar cheese, and the remaining ½ cup of veggie stock. Stir to fully combine
- Let this cook for a few minutes, stirring often, until the cheese has melted
- Season to taste with salt and pepper
- Turn your oven onto broil, sprinkle the remaining cheese over top of the skillet, and bake until the cheese has melted fully
- If you don't have a rice cooker, just cook the brown rice according to package instructions!
Nutrition info is for one serving, and each serving is 1 1/2 cups.
If you make this or any of my other recipes, be sure to Instagram it and hashtag #thegarlicdiaries!
In the mood for more yummy broccoli recipes? Check these out: