Zucchini Rice Casserole


We pack extra vegetables into this cheesy baked rice casserole. Plus we substitute brown rice for white, reduce the cheese by half and swap turkey sausage for pork sausage. If you're bringing it to a potluck, plan to reheat it before serving.

Cook Time:
40 mins
Additional Time:
1 hr 20 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
12 cups
Nutrition Profile:


  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain brown rice

  • 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 4 cups diced zucchini , and/or summer squash (about 1 pound)

  • 2 red or green bell peppers, chopped

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • ¾ teaspoon salt

  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat milk

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 2 cups shredded pepper Jack cheese, divided

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen (thawed) corn kernels

  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 8 ounces turkey sausage, casings removed

  • 4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese , (Neufchâtel)

  • ¼ cup chopped pickled jalapeños


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  2. Pour rice into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Bring broth to a simmer in a small saucepan. Stir hot broth into the rice along with zucchini (and/or squash), bell peppers, onion and salt. Cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking until the rice is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, 35 to 45 minutes more.

  3. Meanwhile, whisk milk and flour in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until bubbling and thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Add 1 1/2 cups Jack cheese and corn and cook, stirring, until the cheese is melted. Set aside.

  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add sausage. Cook, stirring and breaking the sausage into small pieces with a spoon, until lightly browned and no longer pink, about 4 minutes.

  5. When the rice is done, stir in the sausage and cheese sauce. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup Jack cheese on top and dollop cream cheese by the teaspoonful over the casserole. Top with jalapenos.

  6. Return the casserole to the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, about 10 minutes. Let stand for about 10 minutes before serving.

    Zucchini Rice Casserole


Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 5; cool, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. To finish, bake at 375°F until the casserole is hot and the cheese is melted, about 45 minutes.

Tip: To remove corn from the cob: Stand an uncooked ear of corn on its stem end in a shallow bowl and slice the kernels off with a sharp, thin-bladed knife. This technique produces whole kernels that are good for adding to salads and salsas. If you want to use the corn kernels for soups, fritters or puddings, you can add another step to the process. After cutting the kernels off, reverse the knife and, using the dull side, press it down the length of the ear to push out the rest of the corn and its milk.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

242 Calories
9g Fat
28g Carbs
12g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Serving Size 1 cup
Calories 242
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 28g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 12g 25%
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 4g 22%
Cholesterol 32mg 11%
Vitamin A 986IU 20%
Vitamin C 35mg 39%
Folate 42mcg 10%
Sodium 596mg 26%
Calcium 167mg 13%
Iron 1mg 5%
Magnesium 54mg 13%
Potassium 374mg 8%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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