The holidays are around the corner and Broccoli Casserole with Ritz Crackers is a perfect side dish for any special meal. It’s so easy to make that it’s a great side dish to make with any meal, whether you’re celebrating the holidays or not!
Scroll down for a printable recipe card or read on for detailed instructions and tips!
BROCCOLI CASSEROLE WITH RITZ CRACKERS
Broccoli Cheese Casserole with Ritz Crackers is a side dish I remember from my childhood. My grandmother made it fairly often so it has a comfort food feel for me.
I make this casserole with frozen broccoli in the steamer bags but you can use fresh broccoli if you need too. The combination of cheesy goodness and crispy Ritz crackers packs the comfort vibe. Even if your family isn’t a fan of fresh broccoli, try cooked broccoli with cheese sauce. This holiday side dish is an easy to make take on the classic side dish.
CAN I SUBSTITUTE FRESH BROCCOLI FOR FROZEN IN A CASSEROLE?
If you’re planning to use fresh broccoli, it’s easy to prepare if you buy the bags of broccoli florets that you can find in the vegetable section at the grocery store. Or chop up a larger floret of broccoli. Whether you use frozen broccoli or fresh broccoli, you will need to cook it first.
I prefer getting the frozen broccoli florets that can be prepared by putting the bag in the microwave and steaming the vegetables. It’s an easy way to save time.
No matter how you cook your broccoli, be sure to drain any excess water from it before adding it to the Broccoli Casserole recipe. You don’t want any extra moisture.
This recipe does not use any cream of mushroom or cream of chicken type soups like a lot of other recipes. It’s got a bit more of a homemade feel to it but it is still so easy to prepare.
VELVEETA BROCCOLI CHEESE CASSEROLE INGREDIENTS
Heavy cream and Velveeta are two of the ingredients that really up the savory, creamy flavors of this casserole. The rest of the ingredient list is very familiar as well:
- Steamer Bag Frozen Broccoli
- Heavy Cream
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Black pepper
- Italian seasoning
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- Ritz Crackers
The exact measurements for each ingredient are in the recipe card near the bottom of the post.
This recipe makes about 6 servings and only takes about 10 minutes to prepare. It has a total of about 30 minutes of bake time in the oven. It’s a great casserole to prepare and then pop in the oven while you work on other parts of your holiday meal.
Heat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9×13 casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.
After preparing and draining the broccoli, spread it in an even layer in the baking dish.
Heat the milk, heavy cream, Velveeta, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning over medium heat. Cook until the cheese is completely melted. Be sure to stir it constantly until melted.
Take the pan off the heat and stir in the cheddar cheese until it is completely melted.
Pour the cheese sauce over the broccoli and bake for 20 minutes.
While the broccoli and cheese sauce is baking, combine the crushed Ritz crackers, butter, and the rest of the Italian seasoning. Stir the ingredients together until they are well mixed.
Take the casserole out of the oven and sprinkle the cracker mixture on top. Put it back in the oven and back for 10 more minutes or until the crackers are browned.
CAN YOU FREEZE BROCCOLI CASSEROLE?
You can freeze this broccoli cheese casserole. The first thing to remember is not to add the cracker topping. Freeze the broccoli and cheese before cooking.
When you’re ready to make the casserole, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight and then bake as directed in the recipe.
You want to make sure you store it in a freezer tight container to avoid freezer burn.
HOW LONG DOES BROCCOLI CASSEROLE LAST?
Once you’ve made your Broccoli Casserole with Ritz Crackers, it can be kept for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.
Leftovers heat up well in the oven and in the microwave.
Broccoli Casserole with Ritz Crackers
- 2 16 oz packages of Steamer broccoli florets (prepared)
- 1 cup milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 8 ounces Velveeta (cubed)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning (divided)
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 sleeve Ritz crackers (crushed to fine crumbs)
- 1 tablespoon butter (melted)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare a 9x13 casserole dish by greasing it with nonstick cooking spray.
- Prepare and drain the broccoli florets. Spread the cooked broccoli in an even layer in the dish.
- In a large saucepan, heat the milk, heavy cream, Velveeta, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning over medium heat. Cook until the cheese is fully melted, stirring constantly.
- Remove the pan from heat and stir in the sharp cheddar cheese until melted.
- Pour the cheese sauce over the top of the broccoli in the pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
- While the casserole is cooking, combine the crushed Ritz crackers, butter, and remaining Italian seasoning. Stir until well mixed.
- Remove the casserole from the oven and top with cracker mixture. Return to oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes, until crackers are browned.