If I could give you only one piece of advice to make the best ever homemade broccoli cheese soup, it would be this: Do not buy pre-shredded cheese. Buy a brick of the best cheddar you can find and shred it yourself.
Pre-shredded cheese has anti-caking agents added which prevent it from melting properly and make it taste not as amazing as when you use freshly shredded cheese.
I promise this will be the last cream of broccoli cheese soup recipe you will ever search for.
Broccoli cheese soup ingredients:
- Butter: Please do not substitute butter with oil (unless you can’t eat butter). It gives the sauteed veggies and the soup a delicious creamy flavor. We will use it to make a roux and thicken the soup.
- Onion and garlic: To me, this amazing combo is essential to make any recipe taste good. They are always in the background but provide the base for all other ingredients to shine.
- All-purpose flour: To make a roux, we need to cook the flour in butter for a few minutes before adding the stock. This mixture will give the soup its thick consistency.
- Vegetable stock: You can use chicken stock as well, but I prefer to use vegetable stock for my veggie soups.
- Half and a half: Your soup will be absolutely creamy if you use half and half. Some recipes call for milk, others for heavy cream. I think half and half is a healthy middle which makes the soup extra creamy without the calories of heavy cream.
- Broccoli: One of the stars of the show! Cut your florets bite size so they are small enough to fit into the spoon, but still provide a good bite. There is nothing better than fresh broccoli to get the best results.
- Carrots: This may be an optional ingredient, but I think carrots give this broccoli cheese soup recipe a nice sweetness.
- Chicken bouillon: Sometimes just adding salt and pepper to me is not enough. Adding a little chicken bouillon makes soups taste a whole lot better!
- Salt and pepper: As with all recipes, you should add these ingredients to taste.
- Paprika: Just a little smoked paprika will give this soup another layer of flavor, but if you don’t have it at home, it’s ok. The soup will be delicious even without it.
- Cheddar cheese: The other star! Please use a good quality cheddar and shred it yourself. It takes no time to do it and the result will be way way better than using pre-shredded cheese. I like to use sharp cheese, but you can use your favorite.
How to make Broccoli and cheese soup?
This broccoli cheese soup recipe comes together fairly easily, just follow these steps:
- In a medium-sized pot, melt one tablespoon of butter over medium heat and saute the onion until translucent. Be careful not to burn the butter. Once the onion is cooked, add the minced garlic and cook it for about 30 seconds.
- Add three more tablespoons of butter to the pot and wait for it to melt. Once the butter has melted (do not let it brown), sprinkle the flour on top and cook this mixture for about two minutes, stirring it constantly.
- Whisk in the vegetable stock and half and half until no lumps remain and simmer for about 15-20 minutes until the soup base is nice and thick.
- Throw in the broccoli florets and the carrot slices and let them cook until tender but still a bit firm, about 15 more minutes. Add the chicken bouillon, paprika, salt, and pepper. Stir occasionally to prevent the soup from burning on the bottom.
- Remove from heat and add the shredded cheddar. Sir the soup to let the cheese melt and enjoy!
Will frozen Broccoli work?
I would not recommend using frozen broccoli to make this broccoli cheese soup recipe. We want a creamy and thick soup, and if you use frozen broccoli florets, not only will they water the soup down, but they will be very mushy.
I like my broccoli to still have a bit of a bite to it and you will not be able to accomplish this using frozen broccoli.
What is the best cheese to melt in soup?
The right answer is the one you shred yourself. You can use your favorite cheese, but please shred it yourself.
Pre-shredded cheese does not melt properly and will give your soup a grainy texture. I myself believe the best cheese to use for this broccoli cheese soup recipe is sharp cheddar.
What to serve with Broccoli Soup?
This soup is so delicious, you can serve it with anything really! But to give you a few ideas, take a look at my Easy Sesame Chicken Recipe, or One Pot Black Pepper Chicken Recipe. Both these recipes are on the tangy side so they are a good contrast to the creamy soup.
Another great thing to serve with this soup if you want to have it as a main meal is my amazing Italian Bread Recipe. You will need pieces of this amazing crusty bread to scoop up all that creamy soup! And for dessert, how about a fresh one like The Best Lemon Brownies with Glaze? You will be the absolute queen if you serve these to your family!
Get ready to make the best broccoli cheese soup recipe ever!
- 3 tablespoons butter, divided
- ½ yellow onion, diced small
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 2 cups half and half
- 4 cups broccoli florets, cut into bite size pieces
- 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced carrots
- 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon (I like Better than Bouillon)
- ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 8 oz freshly shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- In a medium-sized pot, melt one tablespoon of butter over medium heat and saute the diced onion until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more until fragrant.
- Add 2 more tablespoons of butter and let them melt over the sauteed veggies (be careful not to let the butter brown). Once the butter has melted, sprinkle the flour over it and cook this mixture for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly
- Whisk in the vegetable stock and half and half until no lumps remain. Let this soup base simmer for about 15-20 minutes until it thickens
- Throw in the broccoli florets and the sliced carrots and cook them for 15 more minutes until tender but still a little bit firm.
- Stir in the chicken bouillon, paprika, salt, and pepper, and cook for about a minute more.
- Remove from heat and add the freshly shredded cheddar. Stir until it’s all melted and serve the most amazing broccoli cheese soup while hot!