You guys may have seen me Instagram about this one a few weeks ago, and I am back now to share the recipe! And oh gosh, you guys. This is a good one. It’s quickly becoming one of our favorites! This colorful dish is jam-PACKED with flavor. It’s reminiscent of super cheesy broccoli soup with added chicken, bacon, and spicy tomatoes. You can’t go wrong with that combo!! :) It makes a ton and it’s super filling, which makes it perfect for a hungry family. It’s delicious enough for picky eaters and easy enough for a weeknight meal.
This hearty one-dish skillet dinner will warm you right up on a cold winter’s night. Make this one ASAP!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Bacon — I chose to go with Turkey bacon this time. Give it a try if you’re looking to cut back on fat and calories, it’s not that bad! :) Or feel free to use the real stuff. :) You can also simplify this recipe even more by using pre-cooked bacon (real or Turkey); I’ve done it both ways depending on what I have on hand.
- Chicken Broth
- Broccoli Florets
- Extra Sharp Shredded Cheddar Cheese — Make sure to keep an eye out for extra sharp cheddar so the cheesy flavor will really shine through in this dish.
- Diced Onions — I used the frozen, diced onions in a bag found in the freezer section of the grocery store.
- Chicken — This is a great recipe to use up boneless, skinless chicken breasts, but feel free to use a leftover cooked, chopped chicken or a rotisserie chicken as well.
- Ro-Tel Diced Tomatoes & Green Chiles
Get started by dicing the bacon. I like to use two slices per person, but feel free to make this extra special by using three or four if you wish. :)
Add the bacon to a very large skillet or dutch oven and turn the heat to medium-high. Cook the bacon until crisp, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, dice the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Season generously with salt and pepper.
I FORGOT TO DO THIS.
Don’t let this happen to you. It needs flavors.
NOTE: Now would be a good time to start the rice. I always prepare my rice on the stovetop like this: 1 cup rice, 2 cups water, 1 teaspoon salt. Add all to a saucepan, bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 14 minutes. Makes four servings. Lighty, fluffy, delicious rice, works perfect every single time!
When the bacon is crisp, use a slotted spoon to remove to a plate.
Since I used turkey bacon, I didn’t have enough grease left in the pan to cook the chicken, so I added a little butter and olive oil, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan.
Add the chicken in a single layer and cook on one side for two and a half minutes.
Flip the chicken to the other side (as best you can) and cook for another two and half minutes.
Five minute chicken! Done! Add the chicken to the plate with the bacon.
This time I had enough butter and olive oil left in the pan, so go ahead and add the diced onions…
And top with the broccoli. If you have picky eaters you may want to give the broccoli a rough chop before adding it just to make the pieces smaller and blend in easier. I speak from experience.
Cook, stirring occasionally until broccoli is tender and onions are brown and caramelized, about 10 minutes.
Add in minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly until just fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Then add in the tomatoes…
And by now your rice should be done, so add it along with the chicken, bacon, and any juices that may have accumulated on the plate. Stir all to combine, then reduce heat to low to keep warm.
Now for our creamy, cheesy sauce. Add butter to the bottom of a small saucepan over medium heat, I used the same one I cooked my rice in.
When the butter is just melted…
Add an equal amount of flour…
And whisk (or stir with a fork) until just combined.
Pour in the chicken broth (I just thought about this, but you could also use milk here, if you’re not the type of person to keep chicken broth on hand. Me, I buy it by the case.) and turn the heat to high and cook until it starts to thicken and bubble.
Now remove the sauce from the heat and add in the shredded cheese and plenty of salt and pepper to taste. I like to use 1/2 teaspoon each.
Stir until the cheese is melted, then pour that cheesy deliciousness all over the skillet. Stir to combine.
Easy. Gorgeous. Lovely. Delicious.
And cheesy, spicy, and creamy.
This hearty, flavorful dinner is sure to please! Hope you enjoy! :)
Cheesy Chicken Bacon Broccoli and Rice
8 slices bacon, diced
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup long grain white rice
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup diced onion
12 oz (about 4 cups) broccoli florets, roughly chopped into small, bite-sized pieces
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
2 (10-oz) cans Ro-Tel Diced Tomatoes and Green Chiles
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup extra sharp shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, each
1. Add the diced bacon to a very large skillet or dutch oven and turn heat to medium high. Cook the bacon until crisp, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, dice the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Season generously on both sides with salt and pepper. When the bacon is crisp, use a slotted spoon to remove to a plate. If needed to grease the bottom of the pan, add butter and olive oil to the skillet. Add the chicken in a single layer and cook for five minutes, flipping once halfway through. Remove the chicken to the plate with the bacon.
2. Add the rice, water, and salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 14 minutes. When done, remove from heat.
3. Meanwhile, add the onion and broccoli to the skillet where you cooked the bacon and chicken. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until broccoli is tender and onions are brown and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Add in minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly until just fragrant, about 30 seconds. Top with tomatoes, rice, chicken and bacon and stir to combine. Reduce heat to low to keep warm.
4. Melt the butter in a small saucepan and whisk in the flour until just combined. Add in the chicken broth and stir well. Increase heat to high and cook until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat and add in cheese and salt and pepper. Stir until cheese is melted, then pour in the skillet with the chicken and rice. Stir to combine and serve.
Makes 5 servings. Click here for Nutritional Information.