5-Ingredient Broccoli Cheese Soup

As I fixed this soup, I became very aware I am eliminating many readers from enjoying this week’s post. There seems to be an increase in people going dairy-free for various reasons including its supposedly addictive element casein. Well, strap me down and send me to rehab then, because I AM A DAIRY ADDICT! In that spirit, I pinned one of my favorite soups, trying to change it up from the Asian food posts.

Author: Sara at Budget Savvy Diva posted on January 4, 2015

4 cups chicken stock
2 cups chopped broccoli florets, fresh or frozen
1/2 small onion, diced
15oz can evaporated milk
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a large stockpot, place chicken stock, onion, and healthy amount of salt and pepper over medium heat. Add broccoli. Cook for 15 minutes
  2. Stir in cheese and milk and cook at lower heat for 15 minutes.
  3. Serve and enjoy!

Pro 1: Fast, easy, yum. Maybe that’s more like three pros.

Step 1

I saw sharp cheddar cheese, and my heart melted. My dairy addiction was in full swing. It took everything in me not to snort the cheese up…I mean, eat it. Obviously I shredded probably a little more than two cups of cheese. I freshly grated my whole stick of Cracker Barrel Sharp Cheddar Cheese and still had enough to snack on while chopping the 1/2 onion. RECIPE SUGGESTION 1: Grate it all! JUST GRATE IT ALLLLL! MUHAHAHA! (That damned dairy addiction, creeping up again!)

Step 2

What are those little orange things you got in there, Pinned Foodie Kat D.? Well, that would be carrots, my friends. My favorite broccoli cheese soup is not at Panera Bread (SHOCKER!) but at McAlister’s Deli, where their version of the soup has carrots. (Well, Panera has it in their’s, too. So. McAlister’s is still better.) It was a tasty preference I couldn’t do without. RECIPE SUGGESTION 2: BREAK THE BANK AND GO WITH A 6-INGREDIENT SOUP. ADD CARROTS. Since all the veggies cooked at once in the chicken stock, I thought that would be the best time to also introduce the carrots, which actually came out wonderfully crunchy! They added a texture greatly needed in a mostly “no-denture required” recipe. I also decided to go with frozen broccoli and used the whole bag of it. Honestly, I don’t think it changed a thing and made the prep experience faster and cleaner.

Step 3

Then the dairy! All my cheese melted easily and beautifully. I dumped in all my evaporated milk. (Side Note: At my grocery store, I didn’t find one 15oz can of evaporated milk. I instead had to buy 3 5oz cans. Just in case you are looking for a 15oz can, you may not find it.) And here it is! Before something TERRIBLE happened……

Final Product

Those little chunky looking clumps aren’t cheese. Oh, no. My milk curdled! Or something along those lines…Con 1: I wasn’t informed to temper, preheat, stir frequently. Going into this recipe, I thought it was a fairly easy, occasionally stir, dump everything in kind of thing. But my final product taught me this isn’t so. RECIPE SUGGESTION 3: PREHEAT YOUR MILK AND CHEESE IN A SEPARATE POT. This will allow you to seamlessly add your dairy without worry of curdling or creating these odd and texturally disastrous clumps.

Broccoli Cheese Soup Leftovers

And there you have it! Fast, easy, yum. I had a very good amount of leftovers (almost 2 and 1/2 pints). Despite the curdling, I didn’t throw it out and decided to keep it. To soothe my dairy addiction for the day, I partook in one of these pints for lunch just today. The curdling/clumping had subsided slightly, and it was actually better the second go around! I would deem this a great make-ahead recipe.

Suggestion 1: Add some carrots for a great texture and little added flavor.
Suggestion 2: Preheat your dairy.
Suggestion 3: Maybe try a little garlic? I felt it was well rounded enough, but if you want to add a little something-something

What worked in this recipe: Good for your pocketbook (do people have those anymore?); Great leftovers; Fast, easy, yum
What didn’t work: My dairy curdled.
Will I go back for seconds?: And thirds, and fourths, and…well, at that point, I’ll need to probably make another batch

Pinned Foodie’s revised recipe:

4 cups chicken stock
1 bag frozen chopped broccoli florets
1/2 small onion, diced
1 bag shredded carrots
15oz can evaporated milk (or 3 5oz can evaporated milk)
1 stick shredded sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
Salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a large stockpot, place chicken stock, onion, carrots, and healthy amount of salt and pepper over medium heat. Add broccoli. Cook for 15 minutes
  2. In a separate small pan, preheat cheese and milk.
  3. Stir in cheese and milk and cook at lower heat for 15 minutes.
  4. Serve and enjoy!

With our dairy addiction hopefully satiated for a time, did you get enough to eat?