Creamy Chicken Quinoa & Broccoli Casserole:
Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 1 hour
Yield 6 servings
2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1 cup milk (I use 1%)
½ cup flour
2 cups water, divided
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
¼ cooked, crumbled bacon (optional but my preference)
1-pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
4 cups broccoli
Sauce: preheat the oven to 400 degrees and generously grease a 9x13 baking dish (seriously, be generous because it really sticks to the sides). Bring the chicken broth and ½ cup milk to a low boil in a saucepan. Whisk the other ½ cup milk with the flour; add the mixture to the boiling liquid and whisk until a smooth creamy sauce forms.
Assembly: in a large bowl, mix the sauce from step one, one cup water, quinoa, and bacon and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Slice the chicken breasts into thin strips and lay the chicken breast strips over the top of the quinoa mixture. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.
Broccoli: while the casserole is in the oven, place the broccoli in boiling water for 1 minute until it turns bright green and then run under cold water. Set aside.
Bake: remove the casserole from the oven, check the mixture by stirring it around in the pan, and if needed, bake for an additional 10-15 minutes to get the right consistency. When the quinoa and chicken are cooked and the sauce is thickened, add the broccoli and a little bit of water (up to 1 cup) until the consistency is creamy and smooth and you can stir it up easily in the pan. Top with the cheese and bake for 5 minutes, or just long enough to melt the cheese.
Simple Honey Glazed Carrots:
Ready in 30 minutes
3 pounds baby carrots
2 ¼ teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons honey
4 ½ tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 ½ teaspoons black pepper to taste
Directions: Rinse carrots under cold water and put in a medium saucepan. Cover with water and add salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and continue cooking for about 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain and set aside.
In a saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add honey and brown sugar and cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Gently stir in carrots, coating well. Continue heating, gently stirring, until carrots are hot and glazed. Serve immediately garnished with freshly ground pepper.