Broccoli Cheddar Soup
Cheddar Broccoli Soup is the ultimate comfort food! I love it for lunch with a salad or half sandwich, sandwich, or for weeknight dinners as a first course. Healthier and lighter than Panera’s since most recipes us heavy cream and a lot of butter. My lighter version is made with milk and whole cheese, blending part of the soup to help make it creamy without the need to add heavy cream! More Broccoli Soup recipes that are popular here are Macaroni and Cheese Soup with Broccoli and Broccoli Cheese and Potato Soup.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- A Lighter Broccoli Cheese Soup. Most broccoli and cheese soups are very high in calories and fat, add butter and/or heavy cream to cheese, which is already a high fat food. Instead I make a roux to thicken the soup, plus I blend part of the vegetables making it creamy without the extra saturated fats.
- A Perfect Make Ahead Meal. You can make this soup 4 days in advance to heat up for quick lunches or dinners throughout the week.
- A Great Way To Eat More Veggies. If you’re trying to get more veggies into your diet, this kid-friendly, vegetarian soup will adds a whole portion of veggies into your meal.
- Easily Made Gluten-free. I tested this with gluten-free flour and it came out perfect, and creamy.
- Small onion, medium carrot, celery stalk, and garlic: These vegetables create the base flavor of the soup, known as mirepoix, which adds depth and aroma to the dish.
- Butter: Used for sautéing the vegetables and as a fat component in the roux. Additionally, it adds a rich, savory flavor to the soup.
- Flour (all-purpose flour, whole wheat, or a gluten-free blend): Used to create a roux, which serves as a thickening agent for the soup.
- Less sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth: This liquid provides the main body of the soup and adds more flavor. Using a low-sodium option allows for better control over the soup’s saltiness.
- Fat-free milk: Adds creaminess to the soup while keeping it light and lower in fat.
- Kosher salt and fresh black pepper: Enhances the flavors of the soup and can be adjusted according to personal preferences.
- Fresh broccoli florets: The star ingredient of the recipe, chopped into small sized pieces for even cooking and easy blending.
- Shredded sharp cheddar: This cheese adds a bold, tangy flavor and creamy texture to the soup. I like to shred it myself off the block, but you can also use pre-shredded cheese.
- Grated Parmesan cheese: Adds a slight nuttiness and depth of flavor to the soup, while also helping to thicken it slightly.
How To Make Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Prepare the vegetables: Using a chopper or mini food processor, chop the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic.
- Cook the vegetables: In a large pot, melt the butter over low heat. Then add the chopped vegetables, kosher salt, and black pepper, and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Make the roux: Stir in the flour, and cook for 2 minutes to remove the raw flour taste.
- Add the broth: Gradually whisk in the chicken or vegetable broth, making sure there are no lumps.
- Add milk and other ingredients: Pour in the milk, and increase the heat to high until the mixture comes to a boil. Add the broccoli florets, and grated Parmesan cheese, and stir well. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Simmer uncovered over low heat until the broccoli is tender, about 10 minutes.
- Blend the soup: To thicken the soup, use an immersion blender to puree part of the soup for a quick second or two. If you don’t have an immersion blender, remove 1-2 cups of soup, then add it back to the pot.
- Add the cheese: Gently stir in the shredded sharp cheddar cheese, allowing it to melt smoothly.
- Serve: Serve the soup hot, garnished with additional cheddar cheese if desired.
Is Broccoli Cheddar Soup Healthy?
Broccoli Cheddar Soup is not only delicious but nutritious as well. Broccoli is loaded with vitamin C and K, potassium, and fiber, offering numerous health benefits like improved digestion, reduced inflammation, and boosted immunity. Cheddar cheese, provides a good dose of protein, calcium, and other essential minerals. The combination of these ingredients creates a nutrient-dense and filling meal.
What To Eat With Broccoli Cheddar Soup
I used to buy soup for lunch when I worked in the city, and if Broccoli Cheddar Soup was on the menu, I ordered it! My homemade version is much lighter and healthier. You can serve this for lunch with a piece of bread, fruit or a side salad to make it a meal. For dinner, this would be great with a half sandwich or as a starter to a light meal. If you want to make a bread bowl, you can hollow out a small round bread to serve it in.
More Broccoli Recipes You Will Love!
- Broccoli and Orzo
- Crustless Broccoli Cheddar Quiche
- Roasted Broccoli Parmesan
- Broccoli Salad
- Easiest Pasta and Broccoli Recipe
Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 medium carrot, chopped
- 1 celery stalk, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour, AP, whole wheat or gluten-free flour
- 3 cups less sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth
- 1 cup fat free milk
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- fresh black pepper, to taste
- 6 cups broccoli florets, chopped into small pieces, about 2 heads
- 1-1/4 cups shredded sharp cheddar
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- Chop onion, carrot, celery, garlic in a chopper or mini food processor.
- In a large pot, melt the butter. Add the chopped vegetables, salt and pepper and sauté on low heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the flour to create a roux, cooking for 2 minutes to remove the raw flour taste.
- Gradually whisk in the chicken broth, ensuring there are no lumps.
- Add the milk and increase heat to high until it comes to a boil, then add broccoli florets, Parmesan cheese, and stir well.
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Cook uncovered over low heat until broccoli is cooked, about 10 minutes.
- Using an immersion blender quickly blend part of the soup for a quick second or two. If you don’t have an immersion blender, remove about 1-2 cups of soup and blend, then add it back to the soup. This helps thicken it a bit.
- Gently stir in the shredded cheddar cheese, allowing it to melt smoothly.
- Serve the soup hot, garnished with additional cheddar cheese, if desired.