Creamy, quick and easy Broccoli Cheese Sauce features real cheddar cheese and makes a delicious topping for baked potatoes!
Baked potatoes make a great lunch or dinner when you have leftover meat, but not quite enough for another full meal. Whether leftover taco filling, carnitas, chopped BBQ brisket, or shredded beef, a plain baked potato is an excellent vehicle for a variety of toppings!
But what if you’re craving a baked potato for dinner but don’t have leftover meat? Might I suggest making your own homemade Broccoli Cheese Sauce instead? It comes together in minutes while the baked potatoes are baking, and it’s basically like pouring veggie-flecked queso all over your spud. Who’s going to argue with that?!
I first fell in love with Broccoli Cheese Baked Potatoes during my college years…back when Jason’s Deli was considered fine dining. They had the most enormous baked potatoes there, which my roommates and I eventually figured out were not two, but three baked potato halves all squished together. It took some sleuthing to determine this, of course, because the whole plate was smothered in a yummy, decadent, Broccoli Cheese Sauce. Nevertheless, the fact that broccoli was in there somewhere meant that we could feel at least a tad bit virtuous about our dining choice. Hey, we could have just ordered pizza rolls again.
So I guess you could say that these Baked Potatoes with Broccoli Cheese sauce take me back to my college days. Except I have a feeling that this variation is a bit more “real food,” seeing as how there’s nary a block of processed cheese in sight. All it takes is a quick roux of butter, flour, and milk, a bunch of freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese, and a few seasonings. Then voilà…cheese sauce! Stir in some cooked broccoli florets, give it a quick whirl with your trusty immersion blender, (*affiliate link) and voilà…broccoli cheese sauce! Pull those baked potatoes out of the oven and dinner is served.
If you live with carnivores who must have meat to consider it a legit dinner, you can even sprinkle a bit of diced chicken or ham on top of your sauced-up baked potatoes. I can’t think of a better use for that leftover rotisserie chicken or crock pot ham.
This recipe makes quite a bit of sauce — we’re talking 6 cups here — which will top quite a few baked potatoes (estimate using about 3/4 cup of sauce per baked potato, give or take a bit, depending on the size of the potato). So unless you have a huge family, you have a few options here…
1. Cut the sauce recipe in half.
2. Make a full batch of sauce and bake extra baked potatoes for lunch the rest of the week.
3. Make a full batch of sauce and mix the leftovers with some pasta or rice, diced poultry or ham, and veggies.
4. Make a full batch of sauce and treat it as you would condensed soup…albeit a much tastier, fresher, all-natural version. Simply thin out the leftovers to enjoy as Broccoli Cheese Soup! I typically heat together about 2 parts Broccoli Cheese Sauce with 1 part milk and/or chicken broth (but it really depends on how thick you’d like your soup to be). So 2/3 cup leftover sauce plus 1/3 cup milk or broth gives me a nice, warm bowl of soup. Hello, mid-week lunch!
Who would have guessed that you’re just a few potatoes, a block of cheddar, and a bag of frozen broccoli away from dinner?! And if you’re already stocked up on those items, well…I say consider tonight’s dinner quandary solved. 😉
More cheesy favorites…