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Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

This keto garlic chicken and broccoli recipe is chock full of deliciousness! It combines cheese, chicken, garlic, and broccoli into a super yummy dish!


Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli
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WHAT IS KETO GARLIC CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI?

Keto garlic chicken and broccoli is a main course dish that combines chicken, cheese, broccoli, and garlic into a wonderfully delicious meal.

The cream cheese reduces to create a delectable sauce that coats the mixture, covering everything with cheesy, garlicky goodness.

This makes the perfect dish for you to make for lunch or supper. We also guarantee that anyone and everyone will love it, so it also makes for a great dish to make for family gatherings!

GARLIC CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI INGREDIENTS

To make this cheesy, garlicky dish, you’ll need to make sure you have the following ingredients on hand first.

  • 2 lbs chicken breasts
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 4 tbsp minced garlic
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • pink Himalayan salt
  • fresh ground black pepper

You might even have these laying around in the pantry and fridge, since they are pretty simple and standard!

HOW TO MAKE KETO GARLIC CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI

Begin by cutting your chicken of choice (more info on using thighs instead of breasts below) into small pieces or chunks.

Next, coat the bottom of a skillet with olive oil, then place the skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken to the skillet and season liberally with salt and fresh ground black pepper.

As the chicken begins to whiten on the outside, add the broccoli florets and minced garlic.

As the broccoli begins to soften, add the cream cheese and mozzarella cheese to the skillet and stir until the cheeses melt and incorporate into the dish.

Cook the mixture until most of the water has evaporated, leaving you with a thick cheese sauce that coats the chicken and broccoli.

Remove from heat, serve, and eat!

CAN I USE FROZEN BROCCOLI?

Yes, you can. However, there are some things you should keep in mind before using frozen garlic in this recipe.

Frozen broccoli is an easy solution to your broccoli needs, since it can be kept in the freezer much longer than fresh broccoli will keep.

It also provides for broccoli to be pre-cut into florets, which saves lots of time. This is especially helpful if you are on a time crunch and don’t have the time to cut and prepare fresh broccoli.

However, there are a few issues with using frozen versus fresh broccoli.

SHORT THAW NEEDED…

The first of which is added time needed in the form of thawing. Even though it is convenient, it is actually harder to cook frozen broccoli than you may think.

Because of this, you need to thaw the broccoli for at least 15 minutes or so before adding it to whatever you are using it in. You can speed this along by placing the broccoli in warm water or running hot water over it in a mesh strainer.

Without letting it thaw at least somewhat, it will take longer to cook since it will have to thaw in the skillet before beginning to cook.

This can cause other issues, like burning or over cooking the other ingredients in the mix just because the broccoli is frozen.

ADDED WATER CONTENT

The second issue is the added water content the frozen broccoli brings with it. Of course, this is from the simple fact that the broccoli is frozen, as well as ice crystals that form in the bag and around the florets.

While this is not a big deal, if you don’t thaw your broccoli like mentioned above, you will end up having to cook the mixture a bit longer or over a higher heat to steam off the water content.

And ultimately, if you’re on a time crunch, even a few extra minutes to steam off added water can feel like a long time!

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

CHOOSING A GOOD GARLIC

When it comes to cooking with garlic, you have several different options. Choosing the one that best suites you is very important.

Most importantly, however, is choosing the option that will give you the best garlic taste for the dish at hand.

Of course, the best choice for garlic is to use fresh garlic you mince yourself. This is by far the most work intensive choice, since it requires skinning the cloves and then mincing them.

However, there truly is no substitute for fresh garlic when cooking. The taste isn’t quite as strong as the type in the jar, but it is often a hint of a richer, sweeter taste.

Next on the list is the minced garlic in a jar. This garlic is often found right next to the fresh garlic, but provides a pre-minced option that is ready to use right out of the gate.

To be honest, this is the kind of garlic we use a lot, since time is often an issue.

The jar is also full of oil, which helps to keep the garlic fresher for longer. It is stored in the refrigerator for up to several weeks, and makes for an incredibly convenient source of garlic.

Jarred garlic is not quite as flavorful as fresh, but it still offers that nice garlic taste you are looking for.

And last, but not least, there is the powdered garlic option. While not the best option, it is certainly the one most people have already sitting in their cabinet or pantry.

The bad news is, powdered garlic can often have added ingredients that can work against a low-carb lifestyle. These normally include, or are limited to anti-caking agents that keep the garlic powder from sticking together.

Anti-caking agents contain carbs, though in small amounts, but are not recommended if they can be avoided.

Make sure to check whatever garlic powder you buy for added ingredients before selecting it!

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

CAN I USE MORE AND/OR DIFFERENT CHEESES?

Well of course you can!

It’s very important to remember that cooking is all about making each dish your own and tailoring it to your likes and dislikes.

Just because a recipe might call for a certain ingredient, doesn’t necessarily mean you have to use exactly that to achieve the same result.

In this case, we are talking about exchanging or adding different types of cheeses to this dish. The recipe calls for mozzarella and cream cheese, but other types of cheeses would also be delicious used.

HEADS UP: KEEP THE CREAM CHEESE…

Before we dive further into the cheese discussion, we’d like to offer a word of advice to you.

Keep the cream cheese.

The cream cheese is what helps to bind all of the ingredients together and create the sauce that coats all of the parts of the dish. Without it, you won’t be able to achieve quite the same taste profile.

Also, it is worth repeating, make sure you are using real cream cheese. Often, cream cheese and Neufchatel cheese are side-by-side on the grocery store shelves.

Neufchatel is packaged and looks exactly like cream cheese, but contains only a portion of the fat content and is not ketogenic.

Unfortunately, we’ve made that mistake a time or two, so be careful when grabbing your cream cheese!

MOZZARELLA REPLACEMENT IDEAS

Now that we’ve given you that piece of advice, let’s talk about replacing the mozzarella.

In truth, you could replace it with whatever cheese you’d like, as long as it can be easily melted. Some cheeses like halloumi, kasseri, manouri, queso blanco, and paneer, though delicious, don’t melt well and wouldn’t be a good option.

Some really delicious options for this dish would be:

  • Cheddar cheese
  • Parmesan cheese (shredded, not grated like the kind in the shake bottle)
  • Muenster cheese
  • Feta cheese (this really has a unique, tasty flavor!)
  • Swiss cheese
  • Pepper jack cheese (especially a good idea for those who love their meals to have a little “kick”)
  • Smoked gouda cheese (truly a must try!)

There are plenty of other delicious options in your local grocery. Check out their artisan cheese section for a wide assortment of ideas.

Though artisan cheeses are more expensive than the regular name or store-brand variety, they are definitely worth the extra money for their fresh taste!

Do stay away from any of the highly-processed slice cheeses such as American singles, white American singles, and Velveeta.

These are all cheese products and should definitely not be considered to be real cheese.

COMBINING CHEESES

Combining multiple cheeses in this recipe is a great way to have a cheese “explosion.” And let’s be honest, who doesn’t love lots of cheese?!

Combining cheeses is also a great way to add and diversify the flavor of this dish.

Pick a couple of your favorite cheeses and go to town!

As always, if you are watching calorie intake, be sure to calculate your own nutritional info for the dish with the different cheeses you used.

Calories in cheese can really add up fast, so make sure to keep that in mind as you go!

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

WHAT ABOUT USING CHICKEN THIGHS INSTEAD?

Using chicken thighs in this recipe instead of chicken breasts would be a totally acceptable substitution!

For this recipe, we chose chicken breasts due to the fact there were plenty of other ingredients in the dish that provided fat content (the cream cheese and mozzarella cheese, specifically).

However, if you’re looking to maximize your fats and limit your protein intake, substituting chicken thighs for breasts is a great idea.

Let’s take a look at a few difference in the two cuts of chicken in case you are having a hard time deciding which would be best for you.

THE CHICKEN THIGH VS. CHICKEN BREAST DIFFERENCE

While it might not seem like a big deal, there is actually quite a bit of difference in chicken thigh and chicken breast.

The first and most notable difference for anyone aiming to eat more fat in their diet, is that chicken thigh has a much higher fat content than breast.

In fact, thighs contain about 2x more fat than chicken breasts. They also contain a slightly (around 4g less) smaller amount of protein, helping to make them a better keto option for those aiming for certain macros.

The second difference has to do with the taste. For clarification, we aren’t suggesting that chicken breast and chicken thighs taste much different than one another, but there is a slight, yet noticeable difference in texture alone.

Due to its higher fat content, thigh meat has a juicier, sometimes considered more “soft” texture than breast meat.

This makes it great for use in a lot of Asian-inspired cuisine, since lots of Chinese dishes use thigh meat to start with.

If chicken thigh is your preferred cut of chicken for cooking, feel free to use it. It certainly won’t hurt the dish and will help make the dish more your own.

On the flip side, if chicken thigh is just not something you are able to get behind for whatever reason, using chicken breast is always a great go to!

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

WHAT SIDES GO GREAT WITH THIS DISH?

This recipe make an absolutely perfect main course that is sure to please anyone and everyone.

But even the most delicious of dishes needs a great side (or two) to make it an unforgettable meal.

Here are some of our favorite sides to go with this recipe!

For more ideas, you can check out our recipe index, or check out all of our side dish recipes.

TOOLS TO MAKE GARLIC CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI

  • Cast Iron Skillet – While not a necessity to make this dish, a 10″ – 12″ cast iron skillet provides a wonderful vessel in which to cook. Not only is cast iron cookware incredibly durable, it is also incredibly versatile and can be used to cook all kinds of tasty and delicious dishes! In fact, you can even take a look at some of our recipes that recommend using a cast iron skillet!
Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

Keto Garlic Chicken and Broccoli

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
This keto garlic chicken and broccoli recipe is chock full of deliciousness! It’s combines cheese, chicken, garlic, and broccoli into a super yummy dish!

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken breasts
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 4 tbsp minced garlic
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • pink Himalayan salt
  • fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut the chicken into small pieces or chunks
  2. Coat the bottom of a skillet with olive oil, then place over medium heat
  3. Place the chicken into the skillet and season liberally with salt and pepper
  4. As the chicken begins to whiten on the outside, add the broccoli and garlic
  5. When the broccoli begins to soften, add the cream cheese and mozzarella cheese
  6. Cook the mixture until most of the water has evaporated, leaving you with a thick sauce that coats the chicken and broccoli
  7. Remove from heat, serve, and eat!
Nutrition Information
Yield 4
Amount Per ServingCalories 570 Total Fat 29g Carbohydrates 4g Protein 70g
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If you make this recipe, leave us a comment and a ★★★★★ review! Then, share a pic on Instagram! Tag @betterthanbreadketo or #betterthanbreadketo!

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