Are you one of the millions of people that is in love with Panera’s cheddar and broccoli soup? Then this cheesy vegetable soup is just for you, only slightly lighter (and healthier).
Unlike Panera’s soup, this broth is thinner, soupier and less sinful. Don’t get me wrong, we all love a creamy soup now and then, but when the calories are listed right next to the name you tend to make better decisions.
This recipe has been adapted from Lulu the Baker’s Cheesy Vegetable Chowder. While her soup looks thicker than how mine turned out, I’m kind of OK with that, hence the name change from chowder to vegetable soup. I took the liberty to add more celery and carrot so that it became a hearty vegetable soup. There’s just enough cheese to give it good flavor and color. I’ll take her advice and work on this recipe until I get it exactly how I want it. Right now, it’s good enough for me.
Cheesy Vegetable Soup
Makes 4 servings
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 4 cups chicken broth (I used bouillon cubes)
- 2 1/2 cups red potato, diced (I left the skin on, you can go skinless if you prefer)
- 1 tbsp flour
- 1/2 cup water
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- Salt and pepper
Melt butter in a large dutch oven. Add onion, celery and carrot and cook until tender. Add garlic and cook 1-2 minutes.
Add potato and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Cook until potatoes are tender, about 10-15 minutes.
Mix flour and water, then add to the soup. Add milk and broccoli and bring back to a boil. Stir in cheese, just a small handful at a time. Season with salt and pepper and serve. We cooked up some thick bacon slices and ate them alongside our soup, of course