Allow me to introduce you to the ultimate side dish, Broccoli Cheese Casserole! Topped with a homemade cheesy cream of chicken soup and buttery ritz crackers, you can't go wrong with this incredible, easy to make side dish!
Shred the 8 ounce block of Cabot cheddar cheese, this should produce about 2 1/2 cups of shredded cheese. Measure out 1/4 cup of shredded cheese, then set the rest aside.
Add the 2 tablespoons butter to a large skillet on the stove over medium-high heat, once melted, add the garlic and saute 1 minute.
Add the salt, pepper, paprika and cornstarch, stir to combine and cook for 3-4 minutes.
Add the chicken broth to the skillet, stir to combine everything, then simmer 1-2 minutes.
Reduce the heat on the stove to medium-low and add the half-and-half.
Simmer on the stove for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the shredded cheese, reserving ¼ cup for topping the casserole
Add the broccoli florets to a large oven-safe baking dish. I used a 9 inch by 13 inch casserole dish.
Cover with the creamy, cheesy sauce from the skillet.
Toss until the broccoli florets are coated in the sauce.
In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, crushed crackers and reserved ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese.
Sprinkle the cracker topping evenly over the casserole.
Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
Vegetarian Option - to make this recipe vegetarian, simply use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.
Low Carb Option - omit the buttery cracker topping. Simply top the casserole with the reserved 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese. This will reduce the carbs per serving from 19, down to 12 and the net carbs down to 9 per serving.
Gluten Free Option - use the low carb option above, or replace the buttery crackers with a gluten free cracker or gluten free panko breadcrumbs.