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Cheesy Sausage, Broccoli, and Quinoa Casserole

Prep Time

    •    Prep and cook time: 50 minutes
    •    Yield: Serves 12


    •    2 cups whole milk
    •    2 tbsps unsalted butter
    •    1/2 cup chopped carrot
    •    1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    •    1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, divided
    •    1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
    •    1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
    •    1/2 cup whole-wheat panko
    •    1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
    •    2 cups unsalted chicken stock
    •    2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    •    4 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
    •    1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme, divided
    •    6 cups chopped fresh broccoli florets
    •    2 cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
    •    4 (4-oz) links sweet chicken Italian sausage, casings removed


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Bring 2 1/2 cups water and quinoa to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 12 to 14 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove pan from heat; let stand 5 minutes.
  3. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, carrot, and sausage; cook 7 minutes, stirring to crumble sausage. Remove sausage mixture to a bowl with a slotted spoon.
  4. Add flour, butter, and garlic to drippings in pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add milk and stock; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Reduce heat to medium; stir in broccoli, 2 teaspoons thyme, 3/8 teaspoon salt, 3/8 teaspoon black pepper, and red pepper. Cover and cook 2 minutes. Stir in quinoa and sausage mixture.
  5. Coat 2 (8-inch) square microwave-safe glass or ceramic baking dishes with cooking spray. Divide quinoa mixture between dishes. Combine remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and panko in a bowl; add remaining 1 teaspoon thyme, remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and cheddar. Sprinkle cheese mixture evenly over casseroles. Bake at 400°F for 18 minutes or until browned, or follow freezing instructions.
  6. How To: FREEZE: Cool unbaked casseroles completely; cover tightly with aluminum foil. Freeze up to 2 months. THAW: Remove foil. Microwave at HIGH 20 minutes or until thawed. REHEAT: Cover with foil and bake at 375°F for 25 minutes; then broil 5 minutes or until golden brown.

This great family recipe is thanks to my recipes at


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