Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup

5 from 33 votes

This vegan-friendly Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup has all the flavor of the traditional recipe but with no cream, less calories and less fat!

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This Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup is inspired by vegan cheese dip, which is made by pureeing potatoes and carrots. Combined, they create a velvety smooth texture and rich yellow color that looks like cheese, which lightens up this classic soup recipe while still keeping it hearty and delicious!

Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup in a brown bowl
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This Healthy Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese Soup recipe takes a much-loved classic and gives it a nutritious twist, combining a hearty medley of roasted veggies with a rich cheddar cheese melt.

The key to this broccoli cheddar soup’s appeal lies in its preparation. It starts by roasting the vegetables, which brings out their sweet and earthy flavors, adding depth and complexity to the soup. The incorporation of Yukon yellow potatoes and a dash of milk ensures the soup is wonderfully creamy and filling, without the need for heavy cream. The pièce de résistance is the generous sprinkle of shredded cheddar cheese, melting seamlessly into the soup for that irresistible tang and creaminess. Every spoonful of this soup feels like a warm, comforting hug that not only satisfies your taste buds but also nourishes your body.

Why You’ll Love This Broccoli Cheddar Soup

  • Nutrient-Packed: Made with a variety of vegetables, this broccoli cheddar soup is brimming with essential nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants. From vitamin-packed broccoli and carrots to heart-healthy olive oil, this recipe is as good for you as it is tasty.
  • Versatile: While this recipe suggests Yukon potatoes, carrots, onions, and broccoli, feel free to mix it up with your favorite veggies or whatever you have on hand. The recipe is flexible and forgiving.
  • Easy to Make: With straightforward steps and the use of an immersion blender, this broccoli cheese recipe is a cinch to pull together, perfect for a busy weeknight.
  • Indulgent yet Healthy: With a generous sprinkle of cheddar cheese, this soup feels indulgent but is much healthier than many creamy soups.
  • Hearty and Filling: This soup is satisfyingly hearty and filling, perfect for a standalone lunch or dinner.
  • Freezer-Friendly: Make a large batch of this broccoli cheese soup and freeze portions for a quick, healthy meal any time you need it.

How to make broccoli and cheese soup

Roast the vegetables

Start by roasting one tray of the broccoli and another tray of the onions, potatoes and carrots. Roasting them gives a cozy and caramelized notes to deepen the flavor of the soup. You can also just sauté the onions with the carrots and potatoes in the pot if you prefer.

Collage of two images showing a tray of broccoli and a tray of potatoes, carrots and onions for roasting

cook everything in a pot

  1. Once the vegetables are roasted, transfer just the onions, potatoes and carrots to the pot. And add the seasoning.
  2. Pour vegetable or chicken broth on top. My vegetable broth is very orange so it does lend an orange hue to the recipe. Chicken broth will look much lighter.
  3. Use an immersion blender to blend everything together to create a cheese-like soup base.
  4. Add the roasted broccoli to the pot and then use an immersion blender again to roughly chop the broccoli.
  5. Add shredded cheddar cheese and milk for a balanced creamy and cheesy taste.
  6. Stir until it’s all heated through, and then it’s ready to be served!
6 images showing the steps for making the soup all in one pot

Tips for making homemade broccoli cheese soup

  1. Use starchy potatoes rather than waxy in this recipe. Starchy potatoes will break down and create a creamier texture. I like to use Yukon Gold, and Russet would also work well.
  2. Use an immersion blender to create a smooth and creamy soup. You can also use a stand blender, and blend it in portions, but this can take more time and create more dishes to wash.
  3. Cook the vegetables in the pot instead of roasting them. To limit use of extra dishes and the oven, you can also cook the onions, carrots and potatoes in the pot for 6-8 minutes and then add the broth in.
  4. Use nutritional yeast instead of cheddar cheese to keep it vegan. Nutritional yeast offers some umami and “cheesy” flavor as well as an added yellow color to the soup.

Frequently asked questions

Why roast the vegetables for soup?

Roasting the vegetables helps to bring out their natural flavors and sweetness so much more than boiling them with the soup liquid. It takes a little longer this way, but it’s definitely worth it.

Can you make it ahead of time?

Soup is one of my favorite dishes for meal prep. Allow the soup to cool and then transfer it to a covered container. It will keep well in the fridge for up to 4 to 5 days and can be gently reheated on the stovetop or in the microwave to serve.

Can you freeze it?

Yes! Soup is great for freezer meals. I often make double batches! Place the cooled soup into ziplock bags or a safe container and it will keep well for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup in the fridge overnight before reheating.

Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup in a bowl with a spoon next to it

This broccoli and cheese soup will feel like a lightened up version of the classic soup with all the flavors we crave in winter and that cheesy goodness.

For more soup recipes, check out:

If you’ve tried this feel good Broccoli and Cheese Soup recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

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Broccoli and Cheese Soup

This vegan-friendly Healthy Broccoli and Cheese Soup has all the flavor of the traditional recipe but with no cream, less calories and less fat!
5 from 33 votes
Servings 4 servings
Course Soup
Calories 207
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
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Ingredients
  

  • 4-5 yukon yellow potatoes peeled and sliced
  • 2 large carrots sliced
  • 1 small onion sliced
  • 1 small head broccoli cut into florets
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt divided
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper divided
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese plus more for serving
  • 1 cup milk

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F, and line a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Arrange the potatoes, carrots and onions on the baking dish, drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil, season with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper and toss to coat. Roast the vegetables in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  • In another small baking sheet lined with parchment paper, add the broccoli, drizzle with remaining olive oil, and season with remaining salt and pepper; toss to combine. Roast the broccoli for 10 minutes.
  • Transfer all the vegetables, except for the broccoli to a deep pot. Season with paprika and mustard powder and toss to combine. Pour the vegetable broth over the roasted vegetables and bring to a boil.
  • Lower heat to a simmer, and blend using an immersion blender until smooth and creamy. Add the broccoli and pulse a few times to incorporate the broccoli. Stir in cheddar cheese and milk.
  • Serve warm with extra cheese on top, if desired.

Notes

Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. It  will last about 4-5 days in the fridge.
Make Ahead: You can roast the vegetables in advance when you have the oven turned on for another recipe. Then when you’re ready to cook the soup, you can use the roasted vegetables
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. To make the soup vegan, you can use nutritional yeast to give that cheesy flavor, or you can skip the cheese all together.
Equipment: I love using an immersion blender to make this soup. You can also use a traditional blender, like a Vitamix which has a soup setting to puree the soup to the perfect consistency and actually warm it up in the process.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl, Calories: 207kcal, Carbohydrates: 33g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 14mg, Sodium: 1115mg, Potassium: 996mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 9230IU, Vitamin C: 155.1mg, Calcium: 204mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Soup

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Comments

  1. Bryan says:

    If you want to use nutritional yeast for the 1/2 cheese do you know the conversion?

    1. Yumna says:

      I’d start with 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast and add more to taste as needed.

  2. Vielka says:

    Another great soup recipe. Soup is so good even without the cheddar cheese which I didn’t use because I ran out. I would think it’s even better with cheese. Thank you Yumna for taking the mystery out of the soups I love to order at Panera. Your soups are superb!

  3. Nicole Burns says:

    Maybe I am missing it but at what point do you add the paprika and mustard powder?

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Nicole, so sorry for the oversight! The recipe has been updated. I hope you enjoy!

  4. ida says:

    can i cook the vegetables the day before making the soup?

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Ida! You sure can – just store it in an air-tight container in the fridge until you’re ready to make the soup. Hope you enjoy!

  5. Hesper says:

    First off, I’m obsessed with your recipes. They’ve been a hit every time! Thank you! This one turned out ok for me. I used a block of grass fed cheddar bc that’s what I had on hand. Kind of a mild different flavor – but I really think the soup would have turned out a bit better if i had used a sharp cheddar instead. Just wanted to mention for people who read the comments looking for suggestions. Haha

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much! The kind of cheese can definitely make a difference. Thank you for the suggestion!

  6. Rebeca Castellanos says:

    I made this recipe & it’s delicious! My husband requested more cheese, but I didn’t think it needed anything else! It tastes even better the next day. Will be making this for lunch when I have my friends over!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! That’s so great to hear!

  7. Hajar says:

    Yumna please create an application with all your recipes
    I keep googling your recipes.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      You can search for them on my website – hope it’s easier to find that way!

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