This Three Cheese Broccoli Bake was created one day when my partner really fancied cauliflower cheese for dinner and I had to compromise with her to create a variant which would prevent me from producing as much wind as a North Sea wind farm. I really envy people who can tolerate cauliflower, but I simply can’t. I’ve tried reintroducing it numerous times, but every time it results in gale force winds being created in my house, so I just don’t even try anymore. Too much info? 😉
On the plus side, now that Monash have done more research on the FODMAP content of broccoli it transpires that whole broccoli can be safely consumed as low FODMAP in portions of up to 75g. (However, whole broccolini – the taller, spindlier version of broccoli – is only low FODMAP in portions of up to 45g.) As a result, I realised that I could make a three cheese broccoli bake instead of cauliflower cheese and avoid the unpleasant after-effects.
Broccoli is a great vegetable to incorporate in our diets because it contains loads of vitamin C and K, along with B-vitamins and other essential nutrients. It’s also a brilliant source of fibre, which is extremely important to maintain good gut microbiome health.
On a side note, I read a lot of comments in low FODMAP support groups online from people who say that they are only eating extremely low FODMAP foods (in other words, they’re existing long-term in the FODMAP exclusion phase). Although I can completely understand that they are afraid of the pain and discomfort that may accompany the reintroduction phase, it’s a really bad idea to remain in the exclusion phase permanently because it means that they’re omitting valuable vitamins, minerals and fibre from their diet. I don’t mean to lecture, but if you’d like more information on the importance of the reintroduction phase and how to go about it, check out the guide at Alana Scott’s A Little Bit Yummy website.
To make this three cheese broccoli bake I used my recipe for dairy-free cheese sauce which is based on nutritional yeast (aka ‘nooch’) and if you choose to use non-dairy versions of the cheeses you can easily make a completely dairy-free version.
If you’d like to try reintroducing broccoli into your diet then I’d highly recommend this three cheese broccoli bake. It’s rich, creamy and extremely cheesy, but remains quite light thanks to the fresh broccoli. You can serve it on its own as a main meal or as a side dish, but we had it with chips on the side and salad and it was a great mid-week meal. As always, if you make it, let me know what you think!
300g whole broccoli
40g grated lactose-free cheddar cheese (or non-dairy version)
180g cubed feta cheese (or non-dairy version)
30g grated parmesan (or non-dairy version)
Ingredients for the non-dairy cheese sauce:
1 tbsp non-dairy butter
1 tbsp gluten-free flour (I use Dove’s Farm G/F flour because it’s made with low FODMAP ingredients whereas many other gluten-free flours are made with high FODMAP options.)
200ml rice milk
60g (4 tbsps) nutritional yeast (nooch)
1 tsp cornflour dissolved into 2 tbsps cold water
Salt and pepper (to taste)
Preheat your oven to 200C/180C Fan/400F/Gas Mark 6 and have a casserole dish to hand.
Steam or boil the broccoli until tender and then drain it well and place it in the casserole dish.
To make the dairy-free cheese sauce, put the butter and flour in a saucepan over a medium heat and make a roux by stirring it until it has melted down. Whisk in a little of the rice milk at a time until a smooth sauce is formed. Add the nutritional yeast and cornflour mixture and stir in. Continue to cook until the sauce is hot and thickened. Taste and season accordingly.
Pour your cheese sauce over the broccoli and add the feta, if you’re using it. Season with black pepper.
Scatter the grated cheddar on top and then sprinkle the parmesan over it.
Bake it in the oven for 25-30 mins until it is golden brown and the cheese is crispy on top. Serve.
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