Move over Panera! There’s a new soup chef in town… ūüėČ

Broccoli Cheddar Soup has long been a favorite of mine since the middle school days of my mom taking us to the local TGIF Friday’s¬†after school back in the day… I. Just. Love. It.

Then I grew up¬†and now get my fix with¬†Panera Broccoli Cheddar. We often¬†go after Church on Sundays… not by the hubs’ choice (He’s not a fan¬†as he thinks he pays way too much to leave hungry every time¬†haha). But I LOVE it.¬†Panera is always a¬†hit with all the wives… however,¬†our hubbies would rather go for a big ol’ burger. The never ending battle of man vs woman… hah¬†

Anyhow, we get out of Church around 10:30 and head on over where I ALWAYS¬†try to order the soup… one time they told me the¬†it wasn’t ready (Not ready? It’s soup… don’t they just heat it up?!)…

Well, I now¬†have a panic attack every time wondering¬†whether or not they’ll¬†serve¬†me my beloved soup.¬†¬†Until now.

Not to toot my own horn, but this version of Broccoli Cheddar is by far my favorite to date¬†(dare I say it, better that the ‘aforementioned’ varieties)!

I am already looking forward to eating the leftovers for my lunch today (drool). It took all the will power in me to not dig into it for breakfast… seriously.

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Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

Cook Time: 35-40 minutes

Total Time: 45-55 minutes

Ingredients:

4 tablespoons butter
1/2 sweet onion, chopped (about 1 cup chopped)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup flour
3 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups fat free milk
1 1/2 cups fat free half and half
1 cup shredded and chopped carrots
18 ounces broccoli florets
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
8 ounces Velveeta cheese, cubed into 1/2" squares
dash cayenne
dash nutmeg
Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:

Heat butter in a large heavy bottomed stockpot over medium high heat. Saute onions for 4-5 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and saute for another minute or two. Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir until combined well. Heat mixture for another 1-2 minutes (stirring constantly).

Add the chicken broth, half and half, and milk; bring mixture to a simmer. Add the Broccoli and Carrots and simmer for 15-20 minutes (until broccoli is tender). Add both cheeses and stir until combined well. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes.

Season with a dash of cayenne, a dash of nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot with warm crusty bread and additional cheddar cheese if desired.

Adapted from Sugarcrafter via Mangio da Sola