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Recipe Makeover: Broccoli Cheese Casserole

There's a secret to making anyone like broccoli...just add cheese. That's why I've taken a classic Broccoli Cheese Casserole and made my own version that will still create novice broccoli lovers, but that also carries an amazing nutrition profile. My recipe combines broccoli with 2 types of cheeses and even some real butter all while slashing 130 calories, 12 grams of fat, 11.5 grams of saturated fat, and 300 milligrams of sodium off of the traditional version. Try it out on the broccoli skeptics in your life, and see if you can make broccoli believers out of them!

Broccoli Cheese Casserole:


30 ounces frozen (thawed) or fresh (lightly steamed) broccoli

1 1/2 cups skim milk

2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 cup reduced-fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 cup (4 ounces) reduced-fat cream cheese

1 cup reduced-fat mayo made with olive oil

1/2 medium onion, chopped

8 ounces sliced mushrooms

3/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs

2 teaspoons butter, melted


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray an 11x7-inch baking dish with cooking spray and fill with broccoli in a single layer. 

Combine milk, flour, salt, and pepper in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Stirring constantly, cook for 1 minute or just until it thickens. Remove from heat and add cheddar and cream cheeses and stir until cheeses begin to melt and mixture is smooth. Stir in mayo, onion, and mushrooms. Spoon creamy mixture over the broccoli in the baking dish.

Toss the Panko breadcrumbs with the melted butter in a small bowl. Sprinkle coated breadcrumbs over the casserole evenly. Bake for 25 minutes or until bubbly in the middle and golden brown on the top. Enjoy! 

Yield: 10 servings (about 3/4 cup each)

Nutrition facts per serving: 240 calories, 16g fat, 4.5g saturated fat, 25mg cholesterol, 490mg sodium, 15g carbs, 3g fiber, 5g sugars, 8g protein.