We eat a lot of mushrooms these days.  They add a meaty umami flavor to vegetarian dishes and everyone in my family finds them delicious, including my toddler.  Not surprisingly they’re also nutritious – this post from well-known Dr. Fuhrman discusses how mushrooms have cancer prevention properties.

Try this delicious one-dish vegetarian casserole from the Eat Happy Meal Plan as an easy way to get lots of veggies, whole grains and mushrooms into your diet:

Broccoli, Mushroom and Farro Casserole with Cheddar
From No Plan Meal Plan 12/10/12

Total Prep Time: 45 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Serves:  4

Ingredients
1 small onion or 2 shallots, minced
1 head broccoli, broken into small florets, or 1 lb frozen
1 lb mushrooms, roughly chopped or sliced
1 cup farro, rinsed (can sub another grain, such as rice or quinoa)
2 cups whole milk
2 cups, about 6 ounces, good-quality cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons minced garlic from about 2 cloves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or sub cornstarch
Paprika, optional
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper

Directions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a casserole dish or 13 x 9 inch pan.
  2. Fill a medium saucepan 2/3 full with water and bring to a boil.  Add broccoli and boil for 2 minutes, until bright green, then remove with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.  Add the farro and cook per package instructions, about 20 minutes.  Drain and add the bowl.
  3. While the farro is cooking prepare the mushrooms and cheese sauce: Heat a little EVOO over med-low heat in another medium or large saucepan.  Add the mushrooms and thyme, season with a little salt and pepper, and saute for about 7 minutes or until they have let off their moisture.  Place them in the bowl.  Add the onion or shallots and some EVOO to the pan and saute 3 or 4 minutes until soft and fragrant, then add the garlic and saute for another minute.
  4. Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and gently stir to cook the flour for 3 minutes.  (If using cornstarch, dissolve the cornstarch in a little cold water before adding).  Add the milk and increase the heat.  Stir until the mixture begins to simmer and has thickened, about 5 minutes.  Add the cheese and stir until melted, then remove from the heat and add the sauce into the bowl.
  5. Stir everything to combine and add the mixture to your casserole dish.  Sprinkle with a little paprika on top and bake for 30-35 minutes until bubbly and warmed throughout.
  6. Ideally let sit for 5 minutes before serving so the casserole can firm up a bit.

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