Crock Pot Cheesy Broccoli Chicken and Rice is the definition of home-cooked comfort food. Your family will be licking their plates clean!
When it feels like life is running a million miles a minute, yet I still need to get dinner on the table for my family, I always reach for a good crockpot recipe. Dump all your ingredients in, let them cook all day (make your house smell amazing), and plate a meal that tastes like you’re a restaurant chef!
This recipe is one of my absolute favorites because it’s got the simple ingredients of chicken and rice and broccoli, but it tastes incredible. Crock Pot Cheesy Broccoli Chicken and Rice is the easy family dinner you’ve been looking for!
CROCK POT CHEESY BROCCOLI CHICKEN AND RICE
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I love testing out new and exciting recipes. Food trends are so fun to follow and experiment with. In 2020 everyone was raving over whipped coffee and extravagant charcuterie boards. But, when it comes to a fool-proof meal for my family, I can’t go wrong with my tried-and-true classics.
I grew up devouring my grandma’s chicken and rice casserole. It was creamy, savory, and just tasted like home. But, I know my grandma worked long and hard to get that casserole to perfection. Lots of prep work and lots of baking time.
As a busy mom, I don’t always have time to do multi-step recipes. Instead I reach for my instant pot favorites and crock pot classics. I decided that my boys deserve that same delicious chicken and rice meal that I grew up on, so I turned it into a recipe that works for me – crock pot chicken broccoli and rice!
Ugh, this recipe is SO good and it really couldn’t be any easier. It’s like I’m eating grandma’s casserole, but without any of the work!
Crock Pot Cheesy Broccoli Chicken and Rice Ingredients
Obviously for a recipe called “cheesy broccoli chicken and rice” you’ll need those ingredients… here are some of my recommendations when it comes to those ingredients!
Chicken – for this cheesy chicken broccoli and rice casserole, I recommend using boneless, skinless chicken breasts. They’re super lean and cook up perfectly tender in the crock pot. You’ll need 2 chicken breasts.
Sauce – any good casserole has a delicious, creamy sauce binding it all together. This chicken rice and broccoli casserole uses a combination of dijon mustard, sour cream, chicken broth, and cheddar cheese to make up the mouthwatering sauce!
Rice – I personally choose to use brown rice for my casserole because it makes it slightly healthier than using white rice. You’ll cook the rice right in the crock pot, so no need to pre-cook it!
How to make Cheesy Broccoli Chicken and Rice in a crock pot
For this deliciously cheesy, family-friendly crock pot chicken, broccoli and rice, you’ll need about 15 minutes of prep time and 2 1/2 hours of cooking time. I personally love to throw this recipe together after lunch and it’s ready in time for dinner!
- Start by placing the rice, chopped onion, minced garlic, and dried thyme in the bottom of a slow cooker. Then pour in the chicken broth.
- Now it’s time to prep your chicken. Rub the chicken breasts all over with onion powder and salt. Then slather them with Dijon mustard. Place the chicken on top of the rice.
- Now you’ll cover the slow cooker and set it to HIGH for 2 hours. Then walk away and let your crock pot work its magic! (If you need more time, cook on LOW for 5-6 hours.)
- After 2 hours, take the chicken out and place it on a cutting board. Once the chicken has cooled enough to handle, chop it up into small pieces.
- Next, steam the broccoli florets in the microwave and drain it. Then add the broccoli to the crock pot.
Pro Tip: I like to use frozen broccoli that steams in the bag to keep things easy. You could also pop some fresh broccoli in a microwave-safe bowl with 1 1/2 tablespoons of water. Then put an upsidedown plate on top and heat for 2 1/2 to 4 minutes until the broccoli is tender.
- Next, add in the chicken and sour cream and stir everything together. At this point, you want to test the rice for doneness and add up to 1 more cup of broth if need. Stir in the broth if you added some.
- Now it’s time for the most important step (in my humble opinion) the CHEESE! Add the shredded cheddar cheese all over the top and replace the lid. Cook everything for another 30 minutes on HIGH or until cheese is melted and rice is soft. That’s it!
- Be sure to serve this dinner up warm while the cheese is all nice and melted. You can even sprinkle some chopped parsley on top for garnish.
Is it ok to put raw chicken in a slow cooker?
Yes! Cooking raw meat in the crock pot is one of the best things about this handy dandy kitchen appliance! Plop that chicken right in there with the rest of your ingredients and let the slow cooker work its magic.
The ceramic bowl of the crock pot keeps an even, consistent temperature that helps to cook the chicken to tender perfection. As long as you cook the cheesy chicken broccoli and rice casserole long enough, the chicken will be heated to a safe eating temperature.
Can you put frozen chicken in a crock pot?
Were you planning on making some delicious chicken rice and broccoli for dinner tonight, but totally forgot to defrost the chicken? Been there, done that. Don’t worry – you won’t need to order takeout instead. You can definitely still make this casserole recipe!
The best thing about chicken is that it is super lean, so it cooks up fairly quickly in a crock pot. You’ll need to slightly increase your cooking time, but not by a ton. You’ll definitely want your chicken cut up into bite-sized pieces because that helps them cook faster. Just make sure that your chicken reaches 165 degrees internal temperature before turning off that slow cooker!
Need more family-friendly dinner ideas? Check out these other Real Housemoms recipes!
- Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole
- Bacon Ranch Chicken
- Cheesy Broccoli Ham Casserole
- Crock Pot Mac and Cheese
- Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken
- more DINNER recipes…
Tools used to make this Crock Pot Cheesy Broccoli Chicken and Rice recipe
Crock Pot: this appliance should be called “Mom’s Best Friend,” seriously….the BEST.
Microwave Steamer: definitely not an essential, but I use this handy dandy little contraption to steam ALL my veggies!
- 1 cup brown rice uncooked
- 1 small yellow onion peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (plus up to 1 cup extra)
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 cups broccoli florets cut into smaller pieces as needed
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
- Fresh parsley chopped, for garnish
- To a slow cooker, add rice, onion, garlic, and dried thyme. Pour chicken broth over rice.
- Season chicken all over with onion powder and salt. Then rub both sides with Dijon mustard. Place in the slow cooker on top of rice.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 2 hours or on LOW for 5-6 hours.
- Uncover the slow cooker and transfer chicken to a cutting board. Once cool enough to handle, chop chicken into small pieces.
- Steam broccoli in the microwave and then drain. Add steamed broccoli to the slow cooker and stir to combine. (see notes)
- Add sour cream and chopped chicken to the slow cooker and stir to combine. Test rice for doneness - add up to 1 cup more of broth as needed if rice is now fully cooked yet.
- Sprinkle cheddar cheese all over the top of the chicken and rice mixture.
- Cover the slow cooker and cook on HIGH for another 30 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the rice is soft. Serve warm with chopped parsley on top for garnish, if desired.
To the chef’s credit, not all crockpots are made equal. If yours takes too long to rise to temp, it might be time to replace it. Use a little common sense (and extra liquid as needed) to dial in this recipe for your individual crockpot. Recipe worked great for me. As always, season to your taste.
I used rice that I normally cook on the stove in 15 minutes and it wasn’t cooked at all after 2 hours on high in the crockpot. Had to transfer everything to a large pot on the stove and cover it for another hour. Everything was just bland. Wish I had read the reviews first but the picture looked so good! LOL
I don’t understand the comments about the rice being undercooked. I wasn’t able to get back to my crockpot until it had been on high for about 2h45m, but my rice was over-cooked, not under, but I didn’t mind! Especially since it had been longer than the 2 hours, I expected it. Maybe because I used instant brown rice? Either way the flavor was delicious and it was so easy. Hubs and I both loved it and agreed that we should add it to our regular rotation.
Rice was nowhere near done after 2 hours. I left it on for another 45 mins and still not done. Chicken will be very over cooked by the time the rice is actually done. Please edit this recipe.
Two hours for brown rice in the crock pot on high DOESN’T work. I had to transfer everything to the stove. I also flavored everything per exact recipe… kids weren’t thrilled. It looked better than it tasted. When you have to add salt and pepper to your food, you know it’s not up to standard. I wanted to love this recipe but I don’t. I’ve definitely made worse but this won’t be a staple in our home unfortunately; two stars for having to finish the cooking on the stove.
The rice was no where even close to being done after 2 hours on high. Had to cook two more hours longer than it said to.