Broccoli Cheese Soup


What’s not to love about broccoli?

First, it is not kale.  (I rest my case.)

Second…no wait! Gimme a moment. I can think of something. Really.

Love it or hate it, nobody, it seems, takes a neutral position about broccoli. In fact, there are some very interesting theories why some people hate broccoli. It is not their fault. Here is an interesting link:

Nutrition scientists don’t mince words about broccoli’s nutritional benefits either . Broccoli, they remind us, is high in fiber, vitamins C and K, iron, and potassium and has more protein than most other vegetables. On top of that, a cup of broccoli has 31 calories. Wow!

So, the next time you have an opportunity to grab a fresh bunch of broccoli, why not make  this wonderful rich soup?

This soup is touted on any number of sites as a “take” on Panera Restaurant’s broccoli cheese soup served in a bread bowl. That bread bowl concept sounds pretty good to me, but, absent a boule of bread appropriate for the occasion, I decided to serve this beautiful soup in a traditional bowl.

This soup is an adaptation of a recipe from an inspired blog named Averie Cooks. The link to the original recipe appears at the end of this post.

Broccoli Cheese Soup
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  • 1 T. plus 4 T. unsalted butter (divided)
  • 1 medium onion cut into small dice
  • 1 clove garlic (diced)
  • 1/4 C. all-purpose flour
  • 2 C. vegetable broth
  • 2 C. half and half
  • 3 C. broccoli florets (diced into bite-sized pieces)
  • 2 large carrots peeled and sliced into thin rounds
  • 3/4 t. salt (or to taste)
  • 3/4 t. freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/2 t. smoked paprika (optional or to taste)
  • 1/2 t, dry mustard powder (optional or to taste)
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 8 ounces of high quality extra-sharp cheddar cheese


  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan. Sauté onion in the butter over medium heat for approximately five minutes while stirring intermittently. Onion should just be beginning to brown.
  2. Add garlic to the onion mixture and cook for about one more minute. Be careful that garlic doesn't burn. Set onion/garlic mixture aside.
  3. Using a large pan, melt 4 T. butter. Add flour and cook over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes, whisking constantly. You want mixture to thicken.
  4. Slowly add vegetable broth to the butter mixture, whisking constantly. Then, slowly whisk half and half into the mixture. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until reduced and thickened. Whisk mixture occasionally.
  5. Add chopped broccoli, carrots and onion/garlic mixture to the roux. Add salt, pepper, optional paprika, optional dry mustard powder and optional cayenne.
  6. Simmer soup over low heat for 20-25 minutes or until it has reduced and thickened. Whisk while the soup is simmering. After simmering for 20-25 minutes, add most of the cheese. Stir until cheese has melted and is incorporated fully into the soup
  7. Garnish soup with reserved grated cheese and smoked paprika.


Here is the link to the original recipe:


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