Delve into the rich, creamy goodness of our Hearty Broccoli Cheddar Soup - a comforting bowl of cheesy delight coupled with a surprise twist of garlicky, buttery croutons. Warm up on a chilly evening or uplift your mood on a sunny afternoon with this spoonful of joy.
There's nothing more welcoming than the tantalizing aroma of a wholesome soup simmering on the stove.
Our Broccoli Cheddar Soup is a heartening embrace that wraps you in a blanket of flavor, nourishment, and warmth, while the homemade croutons add a touch of fun to the mix.
With simple, fresh ingredients, we create a comforting dish that's a treat for all your senses.
This cheesy creamy soup is a classic dish often enjoyed during chilly winter evenings or light spring afternoons.
It's also a popular choice for holiday dinners or potluck parties due to its easy-to-prepare nature and crowd-pleasing appeal.
More so, it's an excellent way to include the nutrition powerhouse - broccoli - into your meals in a flavorful way.
What You'll Love About This Recipe
- The richness of cheddar and cream providing a velvety texture
- Crunchy, homemade garlic-butter croutons adding a delightful contrast
- Nutritious punch of broccoli and carrots
- Easy to make with simple, accessible ingredients
- Perfect for all seasons and occasions
Broccoli Florets: The star of our soup, they offer a vibrant color and a mild, sweet flavor that perfectly complements the sharpness of cheddar. We used fresh broccoli for our soup, but frozen broccoli would work too.
Cheddar Cheese: For its beautiful melting quality and robust flavor that provides a creamy richness to the soup. I suggest using freshly grated cheddar as it melts way better than pre-shredded cheese.
Garlic: Infuses a depth of flavor into the soup base and brings out the aroma in the croutons.
Dill: Its unique, slightly lemony and bitter taste enhances the flavor complexity.
Baguette: Cubed and toasted, it transforms into crunchy croutons that add an exciting texture contrast.
- Soup Pot: A medium-size one should suffice.
- Rimmed Baking Sheet: For toasting the baguette croutons. If you don't have one, any baking tray would work.
- Knife and Chopping Board: For chopping the veggies.
Start by preheating your oven so we can turn the baugette into golden, crunch croutons.
In your soup pot, warm your olive oil and butter until it gently sizzles. The mix of these two fats gives our soup a distinct, mouth-watering base.
Toss in your finely diced onions, carrots, and some minced garlic. Season generously with salt and pepper, and let them soften in the heat.
Once the carrots are softened and the onions are translucent you can add in the flour and dried dill.
Stir until the raw flavor of the flour is cooked out, forming a lovely, thick base for our soup.
Next it's time to pour in the vegetable broth. Let it simmer, allowing all the flavors to meld together beautifully.
Meanwhile, let's prepare our crunchy topping! Melt the remaining butter, toss the baguette pieces in it with some garlic, season, and let it roast in the oven until golden and crispy.
Back to the soup - once it starts simmering, add the broccoli florets. Let them cook until tender. Here's a tip - you want the broccoli to be cooked, but not mushy to maintain some texture in the soup.
Pour in milk, heavy cream, and lots of cheddar cheese. Stir until the cheese completely melts, turning the soup into a creamy, dreamy delight.
And that's it! Serve up your broccoli cheddar soup and top with your croutons. Enjoy!
Patience is Key: Don't rush the simmering process. Allowing the soup to simmer gently helps the flavors to develop and marry beautifully. This slow and steady approach will pay off with a deep, complex taste that simply can't be rushed.
Toast Evenly: When making croutons, make sure the baguette pieces are of even size for uniform toasting. Uneven pieces might lead to some croutons being burnt while others are still soft.
Cheese Matters: Use a good quality cheddar cheese, as it's one of the key flavor contributors to the soup. A sharp cheddar will give a wonderful tang that complements the sweetness of the vegetables.
Final Seasoning: Always adjust seasoning at the end since the cheese can also add to the saltiness. This is particularly important if you are using store-bought broth, which can vary in its salt content.
Don't Overcook Broccoli: Keep an eye on the broccoli to ensure it doesn't become overly soft. Maintaining some texture in the broccoli will improve the overall texture of the soup.
- For a dairy-free version, use almond milk and vegan cheese.
- You can substitute broccoli with cauliflower for a different yet delicious variant.
- Add some crispy bacon bits for a meaty twist.
- Sprinkle some red pepper flakes for a spicy kick.
Our Broccoli Cheddar Soup is not just a soup, but an experience - creamy, rich, wholesome with a delightful crunch. Try it, and it will soon be your favorite comfort food!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 5 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 medium onion, finely diced
- 2 carrots, finely diced
- 5 garlic cloves, minced and divided
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 3 cups broccoli florets, broken into bite-sized pieces
- 1 small baguette, cubed into bite-sized pieces
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven at 350° F.
- Warm up the olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter in a soup pot over medium heat.
- Stir in onion, carrots, and 2 garlic cloves. Season as desired with salt and pepper.
- Stir the vegetables occasionally for 2-3 minutes until they begin to soften.
- Add the flour and dill, mixing thoroughly. Cook for a minute to remove the flour's raw taste.
- Gradually add the vegetable stock, stirring continuously, until the soup begins to simmer.
- Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter, mix it with the baguette cubes and remaining garlic, season with salt and pepper, then bake until golden and crispy for about 10-15 minutes.
- When the soup is simmering, stir in the broccoli florets. Cook for 10-12 minutes until they are tender.
- Finally, add the milk, heavy cream, and cheddar cheese to the pot. Keep stirring until all the cheese is melted. Adjust the seasoning according to your taste.
Keep an eye on the broccoli to ensure it doesn't become overly soft. Maintaining some texture in the broccoli will improve the overall texture of the soup.
Refrigeration: Allow the soup to cool completely before storing it. Leftover soup can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat it in a saucepan over medium heat until it is hot. You may need to add a bit of water or broth to thin it, as it might thicken upon cooling.
Freezing: This soup also freezes well for up to 3 months. To freeze, cool the soup completely and transfer it to freezer-safe containers or heavy-duty freezer bags, leaving some space for the soup to expand. To reheat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir well to reincorporate any separated ingredients.
Croutons: The homemade croutons can be stored separately in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. Avoid storing them in the fridge as they can become soggy. If you made a large batch of croutons, they can also be frozen for up to 3 months in a freezer-safe bag. Reheat them in the oven to refresh their crunchiness before serving.
Remember, it's best to keep the soup and croutons separate until serving to maintain the textural contrast.