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Lightened Up Cheesy Broccoli Potatoes

Baked potatoes stuffed full of roasted broccoli and topped with a delicious lightened up cheese sauce. Lightened Up Cheesy Broccoli Potatoes are such a simple filling meal!

Lightened Up Cheesy Broccoli Potatoes

I am sooooooo excited about these potatoes, you guys.

I mean EXCITED.

I love a good baked potato, but really if you wanna know the truth I love CHEESE.

You’re with me on that, right?

Usually though we have to go all easy on cheese because elastic pants are not cool.

But I found a work-around.

Oven Roasted Broccoli

First things first: Broccoli.

Are you mad at me? Don’t be mad. I love broccoli. I love it raw or stir fried or chopped into a salad or turned into slaw. It’s the vegetable my mom served us most as kids, so I guess she likes broccoli, too.

Roasting vegetables is my most favorite way to cook them, while still keeping them crisp and full of color. It’s like oven magic.

So I worked oven magic on the broccoli AND the potatoes. Rubbing the potatoes with olive oil and then sprinkling them with kosher salt gives them that crisp skin – you know the stuff that makes potato skins so delicious? Like that.

But the insides stay nice and fluffy.

Skinny Cheese Sauce Recipe

The hero here though — the stuff you are gonna flip over and then put on EVERYTHING is this cheese sauce. CHEESE SAUCE. I lightened it up and you seriously can’t even tell the difference.

I use the same basic sauce for my Philly Steak and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and my Lightened Up Loaded Cheese Fries, but I went the distance and lightened it up even more without sacrificing flavor or texture.

There are lots of low fat cheeses on the market, but you all know I am a Cabot cheerleader (full disclosure: they do send me product on a regular basis, but I have always bought their cheese anyway and it is consistently amazing). They have two varieties I use to make this sauce–50% less fat and 75% less fat. Sometimes light cheese doesn’t melt, it glops. But not THIS cheese. Oh no. It melts all smooth and creamy and perfect.

Cheesy Broccoli Potato Recipe

With a little low fat milk and a little olive oil, you get this sauce that pours and coats the veggies just perfectly.

You could also pour the sauce on pasta. Or chicken. Or dip your sandwiches in it.

Or get a spoon.

Lightened Up Cheesy Broccoli Potatoes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Perfect baked potatoes with a crisp skin and a fluffy inside, stuffed with roasted broccoli and a lightened up cheese sauce you'll want to put on everything!
Author:
Serves: serves 4
Ingredients
  • 4 medium Russet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 2½ tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 large heads of broccoli, stems trimmed off
  • ½ cup cold 2% or skim milk
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup reduced fat cheese (I used ½ cup Cabot Light Cheddar and ½ cup Cabot Extra Light Cheddar)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° F. Rub each potato all over with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and then pierce each potato several times with a fork. Over a plate (to catch the excess) sprinkle the potatoes with the kosher salt and then place the potatoes directly on the oven rack to bake for 45 - 50 minutes.
  2. During the last 10- 15 mins of baking toss the broccoli florets with another 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Scatter it evenly across a baking sheet and sprinkle with the leftover kosher salt (to taste). Place the broccoli in the oven and roast for about 10 minutes. The broccoli will be bright green and just a little bit crisp on the side touching the baking sheet.
  3. While the broccoli and potatoes finish baking, place a medium saucepan on the stove. Stir together the milk and cornstarch and then bring it to a simmer (keep the heat medium to medium low). It will thicken. Stir in the remaining ½ tablespoon olive oil. Then stir in the cheese until the sauce it smooth.
  4. To serve, split the potatoes and top each with the roasted broccoli and then spoon the cheese sauce over them.
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Sammie Jo

Tuesday 19th of January 2016

Wonderful texture and flavor without velveeta. Reheats smooth. This was delicious and so easy to make. Makes a bigger batch than I was expecting.

Heather Tullos

Tuesday 19th of January 2016

Thanks so much Sammie Jo! It's one of my favorites

Sommer

Saturday 16th of January 2016

HELP!! Tried to make this twice and both times came out as lumpy ball of cheese mixed with watery mess. Even went to 3 stores to find the Cabot light cheddar. Second try I let the milk/cornstarch mixture cool slightly before adding cheese thinking maybe it was too hot and scorched the cheese first time around. Same result :( SO disappointed! I was so excited for this. Any thoughts on what might have happened?

Heather Tullos

Saturday 16th of January 2016

Hey Sommer! I am SO sorry to hear that! I have NEVER EVER had this cheese sauce go wrong for me -- I use it often for mac n cheese, etc. You do need to use COLD milk, and you do need to mix the cornstarch into the milk completely before pouring it into the sauce pan to simmer. Here is basically what you are doing straight from the cornstarch website: http://argostarch.com/Recipe/Classic_White_Sauce Instead of butter or margarine, I use olive oil. And instead of a full fat cheese, I use the Cabot light. Did you shred the cheese? Do you maybe have a non-stick pan that is no longer non-stick? I'm trying to think of how this might go wrong. I scrolled through thread comments to see if there was some help for you, but I think most of the feedback has been via Facebook or email. I haven't had anyone tell me it didn't work for them before now and I sincerely want to help! I'm going to post on Facebook for other cooks to give you some tips :)

ariel

Thursday 5th of February 2015

How many calories is this dish?

Heather Tullos

Thursday 5th of February 2015

Hi Ariel -- I don't include calorie counts because products and portions can vary so much. I use My Fitness Pal to calculate all my personal stuff. And if you are looking to cut the calories I SUPER recommend Cabot's 50% less fat cheese. It's delicious.

Jaren (Diary of a Recipe Collector)

Monday 10th of November 2014

I'm in love with this cheese sauce!! Love this recipe!

Heather Tullos

Tuesday 11th of November 2014

Thanks so much Jaren!

Lauren @ Healthy Delicious

Monday 10th of November 2014

That cheese sauce looks like its to die for! I'm totally craving one of these for lunch now.

Heather Tullos

Tuesday 11th of November 2014

Thanks so much Lauren! I swear by this cheese sauce. On everything.