BROCCOLI CHEDDAR BITES

BROCCOLI CHEDDAR BITES

My Broccoli Cheddar Bites are crispy, cheesy, and gooey. Classic combination of broccoli and cheese, breaded, and fried crisp. Perfect for game day or a get together with friends.

broccoli cheddar bite with bite taken

Broccoli and cheese is a winning combination in my house.

I love soup, quiche, side dishes, and casseroles with broccoli and cheese. However, one of my favorite things are crispy broccoli and cheese bites. Before Ron and I had kids we used to hang out a a bar and grill close to our apartment. They had the most delicious broccoli cheese bites, and it was our favorite appetizer.

We sill grab dinner from our favorite place every so often, but I wanted to create my own Broccoli Cheddar Bites at home.

This recipe has a few steps, but is very easy to put together and is so delicious. The ingredients are simple, and once you get the hang of breading and frying making these are a breeze. These broccoli bites can also be baked if you aren’t into frying, and can be frozen for later use.

broccoli cheddar bites in a bowl

INGREDIENTS
fresh broccoli florets – fresh works best, but you can use frozen and steam. You will not have as many florets using frozen.
processed American cheese, cubed- velveeta bran cheese works well in Broccoli Cheddar Bites.
shredded cheddar cheese- I like to use a medium cheddar cheese.
shredded monterrey jack cheese- monterrey jack melts really well with the velveeta. Colby or muenster are other great options.
eggs – large eggs work well.
plain breadcrumbs- I use a traditional breadcrumb, but panko works well too.
black pepper
salt
flour
cornstarch- I always add cornstarch when frying because it makes the crust super crispy.
vegetable oil- canola oil works well too.
Ranch dressing
cast iron skillet

cooked chopped broccoli
ingredients in a bowl
unbreaded broccoli cheddar bites
rolled in flour
bite dipped in egg
bite dipped in bread crumbs
unfried broccoli cheddar bites
bites fried in oil
INSTRUCTIONS
Steam the broccoli florets. Set aside and allow them to cool for a few minutes.

Chop the broccoli to ½ – ¼ inch pieces and place in a mixing bowl. Add the cheeses, 1 egg, ⅓ cup breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper to the mixing bowl.
To mix, use a clean hands or a spatula. The broccoli should break down and fully blend with the cheese leaving smaller chunks.

Roll the broccoli mixture into ping pong ball sized pieces. Place on a plate and chill in the fridge for 45 minutes. The bite can be made a day in advance and stored in the fridge.
Once ready to cook the bites, remove the from the fridge. Set up breading stations in a line starting with flour and cornstarch, 1 beaten egg + 1 tablespoon of water, and then the breadcrumbs.
With your left hand dredge bites in the flour. Transfer to your right hand and dip it in the egg and then the panko. Press the breading into the bites so it is evenly coated. Place bite back on the plate. Repeat with remaining broccoli bites. Keeping one hand dry will be helpful to reduce sticking, and make the breading process more efficient.
Add oil to the cast iron skillet. You want there to be about2 inches of oil in the bottom. If you are using a smaller or larger skillet adjust amount accordingly. Heat oil oven medium high heat. The oil will sizzle if you sprinkle a few breadcrumbs in it when it is ready. Do not add the broccoli bites too soon.
Place bites in the pan using tongs. Keep them from touching so the pan is not too crowded and bites can cook evenly. Depending on the size of the pan you may need to do two batches.
Cook broccoli bites 90 seconds per side. Gently flip the bites, but if the breading begins to stick allow them a little more time.
Remove broccoli bites from the pan and place on a paper towel lined plate. Lightly sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately with ranch dipping sauce.
PREPARATION VARIATIONS
Baking Instructions: Follow above directions and bread prior to chilling. Once breaded, chill in the freezer for 45 minutes. To cook, preheat the oven to 400°F and bake on a lined sheet for 20 minutes.

Freezing Instructions: Prepare Broccoli Bites without chilling step. Place uncooked breaded bites on a lined cookie sheet and place in the freezer. Freeze for an hour. Remove from sheet and store in a freezer back in the freezer.

Broccoli Cheddar Bites

INGREDIENTS

1 ¾ cups fresh broccoli florets
4 oz processed American cheese, cubed
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup shredded monterrey jack cheese
2 eggs, divided
2 ⅓ cups plain breadcrumbs, divided
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon salt (plus extra for sprinkle on top)
⅓ cup flour
2 tablespoon cornstarch
vegetable oil
Ranch dressing, for dipping (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

Steam the broccoli florets. Set aside and allow them to cool for a few minutes.
Chop the broccoli to ½ – ¼ inch pieces and place in a mixing bowl. Add the cheeses, 1 egg, ⅓ cup breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper to the mixing bowl.
To mix, use a clean hands or a spatula. The broccoli should break down and fully blend with the cheese leaving smaller chunks.
Roll the broccoli mixture into ping pong ball sized pieces. Place on a plate and chill in the fridge for 45 minutes. The bite can be made a day in advance and stored in the fridge.
Once ready to cook the bites, remove the from the fridge. Set up breading stations in a line starting with flour and cornstarch, 1 beaten egg + 1 tablespoon of water, and then the breadcrumbs.
With your left hand dredge bites in the flour. Transfer to your right hand and dip it in the egg and then the panko. Press the breading into the bites so it is evenly coated. Place bite back on the plate. Repeat with remaining broccoli bites. Keeping one hand dry will be helpful to reduce sticking, and make the breading process more efficient.
Add oil to the cast iron skillet. You want there to be about2 inches of oil in the bottom. If you are using a smaller or larger skillet adjust amount accordingly. Heat oil oven medium high heat. The oil will sizzle if you sprinkle a few breadcrumbs in it when it is ready. Do not add the broccoli bites too soon.
Place bites in the pan using tongs. Keep them from touching so the pan is not too crowded and bites can cook evenly. Depending on the size of the pan you may need to do two batches.
Cook broccoli bites 90 seconds per side. Gently flip the bites, but if the breading begins to stick allow them a little more time.
Remove broccoli bites from the pan and place on a paper towel lined plate. Lightly sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately with ranch dipping sauce.

NOTES
Baking Instructions: Follow above directions and bread prior to chilling. Once breaded, chill in the freezer for 45 minutes. To cook, preheat the oven to 400°F and bake on a lined sheet for 20 minutes.
Freezing Instructions: Prepare Broccoli Bites without chilling step. Place uncooked breaded bites on a lined cookie sheet and place in the freezer. Freeze for an hour. Remove from sheet and store in a freezer back in the freezer.