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Creamy Vegetable Casserole

This Creamy Vegetable Casserole is a comforting meal with broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots baked in a creamy cheese sauce. Topped with a sprinkle of crunchy breadcrumbs and baked to a golden, bubbly, saucy perfection, it will become your next go-to casserole!

Overhead close-up shot of cooked broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower in a baking dish.

Indulge in the simple pleasure of this veggie casserole, a versatile dish that’s perfect as a side or a vegetarian main course. With the combination of fresh broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots baked in a luscious Italian cheese sauce and a touch of herbs and classic spices, it’s a pleasure to both make and eat. Topped with crispy breadcrumbs and baked until bubbling, this casserole isn’t just a way to eat your veggies – it’s a way to truly enjoy them. Whether you’re catering to picky eaters or simply craving something comforting and flavorful, this casserole has you covered.

Why You’ll Love This Vegetable Casserole

  • Creamy and Comforting: With its cheese sauce and variety of vegetables, it’s one cozy dish.
  • Easy to Make: The recipe is simple and requires no special skills or tools.
  • Versatile: It can be served as a main dish for vegetarians or as a tasty side to accompany meat or fish.
  • Customizable: You can add or substitute vegetables, adjust seasonings, or even change up the cheese.
Close-up shot of vegetable casserole in a cream sauce.

Ingredients

  • Broccoli and Cauliflower Florets: You’ll need a pound of each.
  • Baby Carrots: I use baby carrots, but you can use whole carrots cut into 1-2 inch sections.
  • Butter: For the cheese sauce.
  • Garlic: Minced or pressed.
  • Cornstarch: Just a couple of tablespoons to thicken the sauce.
  • Heavy Cream: You can use half-and-half or milk, but the sauce won’t be as thick and rich.
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Chili Powder and Nutmeg: To flavor the cheese sauce.
  • Italian Blend Cheese: You can also use other cheeses like cheddar, Gruyere, or a different blend.
  • Panko: For the crunchy topping. Feel free to substitute pork-rind Panko.

How To Make A Vegetable Casserole

  1. Pre-Cook the Vegetables: Boil all the vegetables in a large pot for 8 minutes.
  2. Make the Cream Sauce: Melt the butter in a skillet, stir in the garlic, and whisk in cornstarch; add cream, and boil until thickened.
  3. Add Cheese and Seasonings: Remove from the heat, stir in Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, chili powder, nutmeg, and cheese until melted.
  4. Assemble the Casserole: Layer cheese sauce, veggies, and more sauce in the baking dish; season with salt and pepper as you go. Top with Panko crumbs.
  5. Bake at 400˚F for 20 minutes until bubbly, then rest for 10 minutes to set.

Make Ahead Method

To make the casserole ahead, I suggest pre-cooking the veggies and sauce and storing them separately in the fridge for up to 2 days before using. Assemble and bake the casserole the day you want to serve it.

Close-up shot of cooked vegetable casserole with broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower in a baking dish.

Recipe Tips

  • Choose Fresh Vegetables: Selecting fresh and crisp vegetables will enhance the flavors of the casserole.
  • Don’t Overcook the Vegetables: Boiling the vegetables until just fork-tender will keep them from getting mushy in the final bake.
  • Season to Taste: Adjust seasonings like salt, pepper, or herbs to suit your taste preferences.
  • Shredded Cheese: Experiment with different types of cheese to find your perfect flavor combination.
  • Allow to Rest: Letting the casserole rest for a few minutes after baking will allow it to set, making serving easier.

Serving Suggestions

Overhead close up shot of a creamy vegetable casserole.

Storing Leftovers

  • To refrigerate, store leftovers in airtight containers, and place in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up to 2 months.
  • To reheat, place the desired portion of leftover casserole in an ovenproof dish and bake at 350˚F until heated through.

More Broccoli Casserole Recipes

More Casseroles To Try

overhead close up shot of cooked broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower in a baking dish

Creamy Vegetable Casserole

Katerina | Diethood
Broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots are lightly coated in a creamy cheese sauce, topped with crunchy breadcrumbs, and baked to bubbly deliciousness.
4.97 from 27 votes
Servings : 8 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400˚F.
  • Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  • Boil a large pot of water over high heat.
  • Add all vegetables to the boiling water and bring water back to a boil; cover, lower heat to a steady simmer, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until veggies are fork-tender.
  • In the meantime, melt butter in a 10-inch skillet; add garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
  • Whisk in cornstarch until blended; cook for 1 minute.
  • Add heavy cream; bring to a boil, whisking frequently. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until thickened.
  • Remove from heat; stir in italian seasoning, salt, pepper, chili powder, ground nutmeg, and cheese; whisk until cheese is melted.
  • Spread ½-cup of the cheese sauce on the bottom of the baking dish.
  • Drain the vegetables, then transfer to the baking dish; season with salt and pepper and stir.
  • Add remaining cheese sauce; stir to coat all the vegetables.
  • Sprinkle top with pork rinds panko crumbs.
  • Bake for 20 to 23 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.
  • Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper, and adjust accordingly.
  • Serve.

Notes

  • Choose Fresh Vegetables: Selecting fresh and crisp vegetables will enhance the flavors of the casserole.
  • Don’t Overcook the Vegetables: Boiling the vegetables until just fork-tender will keep them from getting mushy in the final bake.
  • Shredded Cheese: Feel free to experiment with different types of cheese to find your perfect flavor combination.
  • Low Carb: Note for those making the low-carb variety – if you make the sauce without cornstarch, it will not store and reheat very well.
  • Low-Calorie: For those following low-calorie diets, you can use Fat-Free Half & Half instead of the heavy cream and Fat-Free Shredded Mozzarella Cheese instead of the Italian Blend Cheese.
  • Allow to Rest: Letting the casserole rest for a few minutes after baking will allow it to set, making serving easier.
  • Season to Taste: Adjust seasonings like salt, pepper, or herbs to suit your taste preferences.

Nutrition

Calories: 350 kcal | Carbohydrates: 13 g | Protein: 9 g | Fat: 30 g | Saturated Fat: 17 g | Cholesterol: 98 mg | Sodium: 204 mg | Potassium: 470 mg | Fiber: 4 g | Sugar: 4 g | Vitamin A: 5293 IU | Vitamin C: 79 mg | Calcium: 117 mg | Iron: 1 mg

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: broccoli casserole, easy casserole recipe, low carb recipes, vegetarian side dish
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22 comments on “Creamy Vegetable Casserole”

  1. Looks good. I maybe wouldn’t tag it as vegetarian with pork rinds as an ingredient. Obviously they can be substituted. But I’d say it’s mislabeled.

  2. I microwaved my veggies, Potatoes, Brussel and Carrots. Then roasted them, before putting them in the oven to bake. Love the versatility of this dish.

    1. To make the casserole ahead, I suggest pre-cooking the veggies and the sauce, and storing them separately in the fridge for up to 2 days before using. Assemble and bake the casserole the day you want to serve it.

  3. Delicious and healthy. The cheese gives the dish a richness I added a few extra herbs and a dab of hot sauce for a little kick. Will make again

  4. Delicious!! I substituted Gruyère cheese for Italian cheese mixture and used Skyr no fat yogurt instead of heavy cream. I added left over Moroccan beef sausage and extra garlic.

  5. If I want to substitute zucchini for the broccoli, should I buy a pound of zucchini or more, considering the different textures and size reduction from cooking? Also how should I prepare the zucchini? Should I chop them up, slice them? Boil them in with the cauliflower or just put them in raw with the cooked cauliflower and let the oven cook them?

    1. Hi!
      You can add zucchini, or even more broccoli. Root vegetables will also work, like turnips or potatoes, but you’ll need to dice them up smaller so that they cook at the same time as everything else.

  6. Does the Italian seasoning dominate the taste in the recipe? What could you use as a substitute for the Italian seasoning packet? Thanks

    1. Katerina - Diethood
      Katerina Petrovska

      Hi!
      Yes, it does contribute to the overall flavor of the dish. If you don’t have Italian Seasoning on hand, you can use a blend of dried basil, dried thyme, dried rosemary, and dried marjoram. Hope that helps! 🙂

  7. Delicious recipe, especially for those, who don’t like original taste of veggies 😁 I made a lighter version and it was great. I steamed vegetables for ~4-7min so they were still crunchy. Then made sauce with coconut milk instead of cream. Also omitted bread crumbs.
    Many different veggies can be used in this caserolle. Thanks again! 👌

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