This is the BEST Broccoli Cheese Soup ever – you won’t believe its lightened up!!!
This Broccoli Cheese Soup is SO FLAVORFUL, creamy, comforting, easy, and on your table in just over 30 minutes (20 of those minutes are simmering!)!! It’s deceitfully decadent without packing on the pounds and undeniably delicious without taking all night to prepare. Hello to a new favorite EASY Fall soup!
Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe Video
Broccoli Cheese Soup
Its finally “soup season” AKA my favorite foodie season! I love lightening up classic soups like Creamy Cauliflower Soup, Creamy White Chicken Chili, Crock Pot Potato Soup, Mexican Chicken Corn Chowder and now it’s time for one of the greats – Broccoli Cheese Soup! I am fairly certain you are going to LOVE this wonderfully creamy Lightened Up Broccoli Cheddar Soup! I was basically drinking it from my bowl because I couldn’t shovel it in fast enough.
While there are many Broccoli Cheese Soup recipes out there and many copycat Panera Broccoli Cheese Soup recipes out there – I can honestly claim this is the best Broccoli and Cheese Soup I’VE ever had. I hope you agree! Its SO good and SO easy in fact, it’s my new go-to soup and favorite last minute meal made with pantry ingredients. This Broccoli Cheese Soup also makes a fantastic company meal (especially when served in a bread bowl!), make ahead meal or keep-in-the-fridge-so-you-can-eat-soup-any-time-meal.
This Broccoli Cheese Soup is also my new favorite easy “take dinner to a friend meal.” In fact, I just made this Broccoli Cheese Soup two days ago and I’m making it again tonight to bring to a friend with a new baby (and of course doubling the batch so we can devour it again). I always take soups when I’m taking dinner to someone because they keep well, are easy, a meal-in-one and everyone loves soup. Unlike many soups, however, this Broccoli Cheese Soup recipe is even easier because there is hardly any chopping involved. And if you have an onion chopper and garlic press (two of my kitchen musts), then it really does take just minutes to do all your chopping.
What kind of cheese is in broccoli soup?
I think sharp cheddar cheese is essential to add the strong cheddar flavor to the soup. Gruyere would also be a welcome addition to this Broccoli and Cheese Soup recipe, but I would only add it in addition to the cheddar and not in place of, unless you are willing to loose some of the cheddar flavor.
How do you make Creamy Broccoli Soup?
The key to Creamy Broccoli Soup is threefold:
- Roux: Make a roux of flour, olive oil and butter and then add chicken broth to create a thick, creamy sauce-like base. This eliminates our need to use heavy cream.
- Cream cheese: Cream cheese adds a rich, creamy tanginess.
- Pureed broccoli: Pureeing some of the broccoli with the cream cheese adds creamy body to the Broccoli Cheese Soup. It also allows us to use light cream cheese without any melting problems.
How do you make broccoli cheese soup?
- Melt butter in olive oil in a Dutch oven/soup pot over medium heat. Add onions and saute for 3 minutes. Sprinkle flour over onions and cook, while stirring for 2 minutes. Add garlic and continue to cook 1-2 minutes or until onions are soft.
- Turn heat to low and add chicken broth and milk. Add chicken bouillon and all seasonings. Add broccoli and bring soup to a simmer, stirring constantly. Once it starts to thicken, continue to simmer one minute. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until broccoli is tender to your liking.
- Working in batches, remove half of soup (more or less to your liking) to a blender along with cream cheese. Puree until smooth, taking care to let smoke escape or it will explode (I leave a corner open and cover with a paper towel). Pour pureed soup back into pot. Stir in cheese, a handful at a time, stirring after each addition until mostly melted.
- Taste and season with additional salt/pepper if desired. Garnish individual bowls with additional cheese (optional).
Lighter Broccoli and Cheese Soup
To make this Broccoli Cheese Soup lighter, I used half olive oil and half butter instead of all butter and created a simple roux as our thickener so we don’t have to use any half and half or heavy cream or velveeta. After our soup has been simmering for 20 minutes, we puree half (more or less depending on how “chunky” you like your soup) with 2 ounces 1/3 less fat cream cheese. These cream cheese not only adds a delightfully subtle tang but adds additional velvety rich creaminess to the soup and when pureed with the broccoli, works as a natural thickener.
Is broccoli and cheese soup low carb?
Yes! While many soups contain pasta, rice or potatoes, this Broccoli Cheese Soup is loaded with broccoli and cheese for a delicious low-carb meal!
Tips and Tricks for Broccoli Cheese Soup
- CONSISTENCY. You can customize the consistency. You can use smaller or larger florets depending on your personal preference and you can puree as little or as much as the soup as you would like depending on if you prefer more of a smooth texture or more whole pieces of broccoli.
- FRESHLY GRATED CHEESE. It is important that you use high quality freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese for your Broccoli CHEESE Soup. Freshly grated cheese not only tastes much better and boasts a stronger flavor but melts much easier than the pre-shredded bagged variety. Pre-shredded bagged cheeses often contain potato starch or another similar anti-clumping agent that keeps the cheese separate in the bag – this separating agent also makes it difficult for the cheese to melt smoothly in the soup. So just stay away from bagged cheese and this Broccoli Cheese Soup is sure to please 😉 !
- GOAT CHEESE. If you want to get a little decadent for guests or because you just have amazing taste, then trying substituting the cream cheese with garlic and herb goat cheese (from a log). I did this the last time I Broccoli and Cheese Soup and it was heavenly!
- AD-INS. This Broccoli Cheese Soup is a fabulous base for all sorts of add-ins such as ham, potatoes, corn, rice, etc. In other words, use it to clean out your pantry and enjoy one of the best soups of your life – because everything is better with cheese!
Make Ahead Cheddar Broccoli Soup
Unlike soups with pasta which sometimes soaks up the broth, this Broccoli Cheddar Soup is perfect to make ahead for lunches or dinners. You can reheat the soup on low on the stove or in the microwave, stirring occasionally. If you would like the soup to be thinner after you’ve reheated it, simply add in additional water until it reaches desired consistency.
CAN YOU FREEZE BROCCOLI CHEESE SOUP?
While Broccoli and Cheese Soup reheats well, it does not do well if reheated from frozen, so NO, I do not recommend freezing this soup. As a general rule of thumb, soups that contain diary do not freeze well because milk fat separates which results in a grainy, funky texture.
What goes with broccoli and cheese soup?
Broccoli and Cheese Soup can be a meal all by itself or it goes fabulously well with:
- hearty bread, garlic bread or fresh dinner rolls
- grilled cheese (of any variety like ham and Gruyere!)
- any sandwiches like Philly Cheesesteak
- green salad
- fruit and/or fruit salad.
- rice pilaf or noodles
Broccoli Cheese Soup – SO FLAVORFUL, creamy, comforting, easy, and on your table in just over 30 minutes!
Looking for more Easy Soup Recipes?
- Chicken Tortilla Soup
- New England Clam Chowder
- Cheesy Taco Soup
- Italian Vegetable Soup
- Tomato Basil Soup
- Bacon Ranch Chicken Chowder
- White Chicken Chili
Want to try this Easy Broccoli Cheese Soup?
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