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Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe

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Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe

Making a homemade broccoli cheddar soup is simple and rewarding. You only need basic ingredients like butter, flour, milk, chicken stock, broccoli, carrots, and cheddar cheese to create a creamy and comforting dish.

This recipe promises a rich, velvety texture that rivals any restaurant version. Whether you’re looking for a quick weeknight dinner or a cozy meal to warm up your day, you’ll find this soup hits the spot.

Learn the tips and tricks to perfect this dish and impress your family with a delicious, homemade bowl of broccoli cheddar soup.

Exact Ingredients (+ Possible Substitutes)

To make broccoli cheddar soup, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • Butter: About 4 tablespoons. You can use margarine if you prefer.
  • Onion: 1 medium, chopped. Shallots work too.
  • Garlic: 2 cloves, minced. Garlic powder can be a substitute.
  • Flour: 1/4 cup. Cornstarch or gluten-free flour works for gluten-free options.
  • Chicken Broth: 4 cups. Vegetable broth can be used for a vegetarian version.
  • Broccoli: 1 large head, chopped. Frozen broccoli is okay.
  • Carrots (optional): 1/2 cup julienned.
  • Half and Half: 2 cups. You could use milk for a lighter version or heavy cream for a richer one.
  • Cheddar Cheese: 3 cups, shredded. Sharp cheddar gives the most flavor.
  • Salt and Pepper: To taste. Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper are best.

Here is a handy table for quick reference:

IngredientAmountPossible Substitutes
Butter4 tbspMargarine
Onion1 mediumShallots
Garlic2 clovesGarlic powder
Flour1/4 cupCornstarch, gluten-free flour
Chicken Broth4 cupsVegetable broth
Broccoli1 large headFrozen broccoli
Carrots (optional)1/2 cupN/A
Half and Half2 cupsMilk, heavy cream
Cheddar Cheese3 cupsSharp cheddar
Salt and PepperTo tasteKosher salt, freshly ground pepper

This soup is flexible with its ingredients, so feel free to make adjustments based on your preference or what you have available.


Melt butter: In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.

Cook onions: Add chopped onion and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent (about 3-4 minutes).

Add garlic: Stir in minced garlic and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute).

Whisk in flour: Add 1/4 cup of flour, whisking constantly, until it’s lightly browned (1-2 minutes).

Add liquids: Gradually whisk in 4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth.

Simmer with broccoli: Add chopped broccoli, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in cream: Add 1 cup of heavy cream and bring the mixture back to a simmer, uncovered.

Cheese time: Gradually stir in 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese, stirring until melted and smooth.

Adjust seasoning: Taste and adjust seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed.

Serve warm: Pour the soup into bowls and enjoy! You can also top it with extra cheese or some croutons for added texture and flavor.

Tip: For a thicker soup, blend a portion of it using an immersion blender before adding the cheese.

Tips, Tricks & Storing

  • Use Fresh Ingredients: Always use fresh broccoli and sharp cheddar cheese. Fresh ingredients make a difference in flavor and texture.

  • Cheese Matters: Grate your own cheese instead of buying pre-shredded. It melts better and gives a smoother texture to the soup.

  • Blending: If you like a creamier soup, use an immersion blender. For a chunkier texture, blend half of the soup and leave the rest as is.

  • Season Gradually: Taste as you go. Add salt and pepper in small amounts until you reach your preferred taste.

  • Avoid Boiling: Keep the soup at a simmer rather than a rolling boil. Boiling can cause the cheese to curdle and the soup to become gritty.

  • Storing: Let the soup cool to room temperature before storing. Pour it into airtight containers.

  • Refrigeration: Store the soup in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat on the stovetop over low heat, stirring occasionally.

  • Freezing: For longer storage, freeze the soup. Use freezer-safe containers or bags.

  • Reheating Frozen Soup: Thaw overnight in the fridge. Reheat gently on the stovetop, stirring often to maintain a creamy texture.

Here’s a quick tip list to keep handy:

  1. Use fresh ingredients.
  2. Grate your own cheese.
  3. Simmer, don’t boil.
  4. Taste and season as you go.
  5. Cool before storing.
  6. Use airtight containers.
  7. Reheat slowly to maintain texture.

Happy cooking and enjoy your broccoli cheddar soup!

Recipe Variations & Serving Suggestions

Cheese Varieties
Switch up the types of cheese to create new flavors. Gruyère will give your soup a nutty taste. A mix of cheddar and Monterey Jack can add creaminess.

Added Veggies
Add more vegetables to your soup for extra texture and nutrition. Carrots, celery, and cauliflower work well. Chop them finely and add them with the broccoli.

Protein Boost
Add protein by including cooked chicken or bacon. Stir them into the soup after it has simmered. It turns your soup into a more filling meal.

Spice It Up
For a kick, add some cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes. A dash will do if you prefer mild heat.

Creamy Texture
For extra creaminess, add a bit of cream cheese or a splash of heavy cream. Stir them in just before serving.

Bread Bowls
Serve your soup in bread bowls for a fun presentation. Hollow out the center of a round loaf and pour the hot soup inside.

Top your soup with croutons, extra shredded cheese, or chopped fresh herbs like parsley or chives. These small touches make a big difference.

Broccoli cheddar soup pairs well with a crisp green salad or a side of garlic bread. These sides balance the richness of the soup.

Low-Carb Option
Skip the flour for a low-carb version. Blend the cooked vegetables to thicken the soup naturally.

Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.