The Speckled Palate
December 4, 2013

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Broccoli Cheddar Soup // The Speckled Palate

It’s going to be 80° F today, but I’m sharing soup with y’all anyway.

It’s kind of absurd, really, but I’ve been told this is what Texas weather is like for most of the year… which definitely explains why we might be having a “winter storm” starting tomorrow and bleeding into the weekend, if the weathercasters are to be believed.

I grew up in Memphis, and as a Memphis girl, I have a deep skepticism of what weathermen/weatherwomen say.

I know, that sounds kind of absurd, but I have my reasons. Mainly because the weatherfolks would get everyone riled up during the wintertime about “an ice storm coming across Arkansas,” telling us to run out to the grocery store to get bread and milk. (Because those are the foods you’d want during an ice storm, right? Uh…) And inevitably, this horrible ice storm that was clearly going to debilitate the city for days would either pass north or south of the city or just dissipate in the middle of Arkansas, leaving us all with questioning looks on our faces and an abundance of milk and bread that needed to be consumed before they expired.

My experience has taught me to doubt, which makes me really sad because I know some wonderful weathercasters and meteorologists who should be believed because they DO know what they’re talking about.

So I’ve made this soup today just in case the weather gets bad tomorrow, and I need something warm to eat while it ices outside. Not that I believe it’s gonna get bad, but because I like to be prepared… even if I don’t subscribe to the idea that purchasing a gallon of milk (that I can no longer drink) and a loaf of bread are all you need to weather a winter storm, which was strongly supported by the local weatherpeople of Memphis during my childhood.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup // The Speckled Palate

The making of this soup is pretty traditional, as far as Broccoli Cheddar goes, and it’s scrumptious. It’s more heavy on the vegetable part of the soup than the dairy, which makes me happy, and it works well as a leftover. I know this because I may have eaten this soup for several days after it was initially conceived back in the fall.

Here’s how you can make your own. You know, if you’re potentially going to be waiting out a “winter storm” like we are here, and you want some home-y recipe to get you through the chilliness:

Broccoli Cheddar Soup // The Speckled Palate
5 from 1 vote

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Course Entree
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8
Author Adapted from Emeril by Erin @ The Speckled Palate


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups yellow onions , diced
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic , minced (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 heads broccoli , roughly chopped (about 5 cups)
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1 1/4 cups extra sharp white cheddar cheese


  1. In a large Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onions, salt and pepper and saute until soft while stirring constantly. (This took around 10 minutes for me, but my stovetop is sometimes less-than-effective.)
  3. Add the garlic and thyme, then cook until fragrant. (This should take a few minutes, but be sure to watch it, as you don't want burned garlic.)
  4. Add the flour, stirring until the mixture is well blended and smells fragrant.
  5. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, whisking constantly to avoid lumps, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened.
  6. Add the broccoli and cook until tender while stirring constantly.
  7. Remove the pot from the heat and puree with either a hand-held immersion blender or in a food processor, then return to the pot.
  8. Add the cream and bring to simmer to heat through.
  9. Add the cheese and cook over low heat, stirring, until melted.
  10. Remove from the heat, and serve warm with fresh bread. Enjoy!


Broccoli Cheddar Soup // The Speckled Palate

What is your winter weather essential food to get through a potential storm?


  1. Reginia {}

    This couldn’t have come at a better time. I love broccoli cheese soup. I think I love it more than vegetable beef.

    • Erin

      Glad that this recipe came at a good time for you! And I agree — broccoli cheddar is WAY better to me than vegetable beef. Never thought I’d say that, but alas…

  2. Jenn @ Party of One

    Well that just looks DELICIOUS! Thanks for sharing- pining this for the colder days for sure! I love a good Broccoli Cheddar soup 🙂

    • Erin

      Thanks, Jenn! I’m glad it looks delicious to you… and like you, I love a good cup of Broccoli Cheddar when the weather gets all chilly.

  3. Rachel

    Mmm, I love broccoli cheddar soup! It’s 80 degrees here in Florida too.. some winter!

    • Erin

      Ha. I feel ya on the some winter comment… even though the ice storm I spoke about actually DID happen in Dallas… and shut down the city for a few days, including our internet, which took a snow day of its own all weekend. 😉 Ha. Here’s to hoping we see a bit more of winter this year without it being too cold or terrible or shutting down the city again…

    • Erin

      Like you, I love it, too, and it doesn’t matter what the temperature is. Whenever I crave a soup, it’s Broccoli Cheddar, for whatever reason.

  4. Cara @ Craftdictator

    Oh man I love Broccoli Cheddar Soup! Yum Yum Yum! Heading over to pin this!

    • Erin

      Thanks, Cara! I’m a sucker for the soup, too, so I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

  5. Cait

    I have been meaning to try a broccoli cheddar soup recipe! This looks so yummy.

    • Erin

      Thanks, Cait! This recipe is wonderful, and I hope you enjoy it if you do, indeed, make it!

  6. Jayne

    I’ve never had broccoli and cheddar soup. We grew up on brothy soups, which is mostly how Asian soups are. But I’ve developed an immense love for creamy soups that NOONE makes. My blender isn’t heat proof and I don’t own an immersion blender. Do you think it’d be really gross to pre-blend the brocolli before adding into the broth? I’m afraid it wouldn’t turn into an emulsion. Ack!

    • Erin

      Whoa, whoa, whoa. YOU’VE NEVER HAD BROCCOLI CHEDDAR SOUP? While I love those brothy soups that you grew up on (assuming I’ve had some of the same ones as you), there’s nothing to me as comforting as one of these more cream-based soups… even if this one is more heavy on the broccoli and lighter on the cream and cheese.

      To answer your question, no, I don’t think it would be gross to pre-blend the broccoli before adding it to the broth. It might look weird for a while, but it should blend right in. OR you could add the broccoli (steamed and cooled?) in the blender with a bit of the broth to smooth it out, then add the rest to the soup? Maybe that would work? Hopefully?

  7. Alli

    I love soup all year round, but there is nothing better than soup on a cold wet day. I’m definitely making this recipe some time this winter!

    • Erin

      I completely agree with you, Alli, and there have been some majorly miserable cold, wet days around these parts recently. I know it’s been the same for y’all up in NYC, and I hope that you enjoy this soup as much as I do!

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