This paleo, Whole30 comfort meal can’t be beat! A fun twist on a beloved American soup – this paleo chicken broccoli cheese skillet is easy, quick, and definitely hits the spot. Dinner in under 30 minutes with big flavor, juicy chicken, and the power veggie otherwise known as broccoli.
Comfort food is broccoli cheese soup. Am I right?! Come on, you KNOW sometimes you just want to smash your face in a massive bread bowl from Panera and lick off every last drop of their broccoli cheese soup from the bowl. It’s one of those meals I remember ordering all the time, growing up in the Midwest when it was like 8 million degrees below zero.
I can’t do their broccoli cheese soup anymore – not that I don’t LOVE it, but I don’t love the way I feel after eating it. Bloat, headache, bleh. I don’t know why (dairy? salt? processed junk?) but it totally sucks. Maybe one day I’ll be able to eat a big bowl again, paired with one of their massive cookies, then go on with my day like I’m a rockstar, but until then, I’ll just make this chicken broccoli cheese skillet and enjoy my favorite soup in a paleo, dairy free one-pan form.
It’s still comfort food, but reinvented. You’re cool with that, right?
So how the heck do I count this healthy, dairy free, no-processed-crap ‘comfort food’? It’s the creamy cashew-based cheese sauce. I love it in this meal, I love it over veggie noodles, I love it dripping straight into my mouth. Slightly tangy and nutty like a sharp gourmet cheese, but completely dairy free and EASY.
Paleo Chicken Broccoli Cheese Skillet
The first step is soaking the cashews – this ensures they are soft enough to break down in the blender to create a smooth, creamy consistency. No time to soak? No problem – I have an easy ‘hack’. When I forget to soak my cashews for a recipe, I simply boil them in water for a few minutes. They’ll get nice and soft just like soaking overnight. BOOM.
This paleo chicken broccoli cheese skillet is the perfect easy dinner that might be your best kept secret for all the broccoli cheese lovers of the world. Love dairy-free cheese substitutes? Double the recipe and keep this ‘cheesy sauce’ in your refrigerator (for emergencies and stuff).
Are you a fan of skillet meals like me? Try this easy paleo Greek chicken skillet, one pot creamy whole30 mushroom and sage chicken, 15 minute paleo orange chili shrimp, meaty marinara eggs and squash, and this tomato basil beef goulash with eggplant.Print
Paleo Chicken Broccoli ‘Cheese’ Skillet
This dairy free, Whole30, paleo chicken broccoli ‘cheese’ skillet is the ultimate comfort food with a cashew-based cream sauce. A delicious dinner in under 30 minutes!
- Yield: 3-4 servings
- 3 cups broccoli florets
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 large chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon oil of choice
- 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in water overnight
- 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable broth
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- Pour 1/2 cup water into a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and add the broccoli florets. Cover and cook for 5-6 minutes until broccoli is slightly soft but not mushy. Turn the heat off and remove the broccoli, set aside
- Wipe out any moisture from the pan and add 1 tablespoon oil of choice. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper if desired. Turn the heat back on to medium and place the chicken breasts into the pan. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side, until chicken is thoroughly cooked and internal temperature is 165 degrees
- While the chicken is cooking, drain the soaked cashews and place them into to a blender. Add the broth, salt, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, and dijon mustard. Blend until creamy, scraping the sides of the blender when needed
- Once the chicken is finished cooking, turn the heat to medium-low and add the broccoli back into the pan. Pour the cashew cheese sauce over the top
- Heat a few minutes until everything is warm throughout and serve
If unable to soak the cashews overnight, follow this shortcut: boil 1 cup water and add the cashews to the boiling water for 1-2 minutes, until the cashews have softened. Drain the water and follow directions to make the cheese sauce.