As much as I love them, I try to stay away from soups with a cream base. There are some people who live in this house who are not afraid of cream and LOVE broccoli cheese soup. These people I speak of also swim about 3 hours a day and have teeny, tiny waistlines.
My version makes us all happy. I’ve reduced the amount of heavy cream called for to just 1/2 cup with just 1 cup of whole milk. This is far less than most recipes call for. Yes, there is still cheese. You can’t have broccoli cheese soup without cheese and I’m not a fan of the reduced fat variety. So, while you can’t exactly call this a lowfat recipe, it’s definitely a far lighter version than the standard. The best part is that you’d never know it by the taste. It’s creamy, rich, and wonderful!
The true test is putting in front of teenage boys and watching it disappear.
The grocery list – Butter, onion, minced garlic, all-purpose flour, chicken broth, fresh broccoli florets, whole milk, heavy cream, sharp cheddar cheese, Velveeta cheese, salt, and fresh ground pepper to taste.
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a Dutch oven and add the diced onion. Cook and stir for a few minutes till onions have softened.
Add the minced garlic. Continue to cook for just a minute or two.
Add the flour and cook, stirring, for a couple minutes.
Slowly whisk in the chicken broth.
Turn heat up to medium-high and cook, stirring, until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 2 or 3 minutes. Mixture will be slightly thickened.
Add the broccoli florets, cover the pot and simmer on low for 25 minutes, or until broccoli is very soft.
While the broccoli is simmering, shred up about 1 cup of sharp cheddar cheese and cube up 4 ounces of Velveeta. Don’t be afraid, Velveeta is magic. Trust me.
When the broccoli is very soft, remove the pot from the stove and puree the mixture using an immersion blender. I love my Cuisinart Immersion Blender but don’t fret if you don’t have one. This can also be done by transferring the mixture, in batches, to a food processor or blender.
Return the pot to the stove and over low heat, add the whole milk and heavy cream. Heat for about 5 minutes or till warmed through.
Then in goes the cheese. Allow the soup to simmer, stirring occasionally, until cheese has completed melted. Season with salt and pepper.
There’s something really special about serving this soup in a bread bowl. I like to save the piece I cut from the top to serve along with the soup for dipping.
Broccoli Cheese Soup
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup onion diced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1 12-ounce package fresh broccoli florets (approximately 5 cups)
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese shredded, plus additional for garnish if desired
- 4 ounces Velveeta cheese cubed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- In a Dutch oven, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring for a few minutes, or until onions are soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook and stir for another minute. Add the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, whisking as you add it. Turn up heat to medium-high and and cook the mixture until it comes to a boil, whisking occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 2 or 3 minutes until it begins to thicken. Add the broccoli and place the cover on the Dutch oven. Cook for 25 minutes or until broccoli is very tender.
- Remove the pot from the heat and puree the mixture with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender or food processor, returning to Dutch oven when smooth.
- Return the pot to the stove and over low heat, add the milk and cream and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the cheddar and Velveeta cheese and cook and stir until cheese is completely melted. Add salt and taste. Season with additional salt, if needed, and pepper to taste.
- Serve with additional shredded cheese on the side for garnish.