Broccoli cheese soup in a white bowl with shredded cheese on top and a spoon in it.
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5 from 2 votes

Broccoli Cheese Soup

This easy and delicious Broccoli Cheese Soup is made with real cheddar cheese and tons of fresh vegetables. The flavor is soo incredible, it belongs in a restaurant!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Servings: 8
Calories: 390kcal
Author: Lauren Allen

Ingredients

  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup grated carrot , about 1-2 carrots
  • 1 cup finely diced celery , about 2 ribs celery
  • 2 small/medium potatoes , grated (Yukon Gold or Russet)
  • 4 1/2 cups chopped broccoli , about 3 small heads of broccoli
  • 1 medium yellow onion , finely chopped, (about 1 cup)
  • 5 Tablespoons butter , divided
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups half and half (fat free works well!)
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • Salt and Pepper , to taste
  • 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Instructions

  • Prepare vegetables by grating or chopping. Shred cheese and set aside to allow it to come to room temperature.
  • Add vegetable broth to a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the carrots, celery and potatoes, cover pot, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 3-5 minutes.
  • Add chopped broccoli and simmer for another minutes or two, depending on how chunky or fine you chopped it. Remove from heat.
  • In a separate skillet over medium heat, sauté onion in 1 tablespoon butter until tender and lightly browned.
  • Add onion to pot with vegetables. Add remaining 4 tablespoons of butter to the skillet, over medium heat. Once melted, whisk in ¼ c. flour and stir well to make a roux.
  • Add the half and half and milk, one cup at a time, stirring constantly. Cook roux, stirring continually with whisk until thickened, smooth and bubbly. Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Slowly add rue to the pot of cooked vegetables, stirring carefully to combine. Cook for 2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and add grated cheese, stirring until melted. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper or vegetable bouillon base, to taste, if needed.

Notes

Broth: I LOVE the better than bouillon vegetable base, (3 teaspoons mixed with three cups of water), for the vegetable broth. It's also a great way to add flavor at the end of cooking the soup, if you feel it needs it. You could also substitute chicken broth.
Potatoes: This is not a super traditional ingredient in broccoli cheese soup, but it's my secret weapon! The grated potato cooks down so you don't notice it but it ends up giving an extra depth and creaminess to the broth. I grate the potatoes with the skin on, but you can peel them first. 
Cheese: I use sharp cheddar cheese, and it makes a huge difference to use a good quality aged cheddar cheese, for optimal flavor, and smooth melting. Also, freshly shredded cheese is a ESSENTIAL! The pre-shredded kind will not melt very well, or taste as good.
Instant Pot: Add broth and all veggies to the instant pot. Cook on high pressure/manual for 2 minutes. Quick release steam. Cook roux in a separate skillet and add to the pot. Stir in cheddar cheese. 
Slow Cooker: Add broth and all vegetables to the slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours. Cook roux in a separate skillet and add to the pot. Stir in shredded cheddar cheese. 
Storing and Freezing: This broccoli cheese soup will keep well in the fridge for 3-4 days. Because this soup is made with cream, it doesn't freeze well.  If you freeze it, the milk and cream will separate upon reheating and the soup will develop a slightly grainy texture.

Nutrition

Calories: 390kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 761mg | Potassium: 446mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 4168IU | Vitamin C: 49mg | Calcium: 460mg | Iron: 1mg