Temperatures Have Dropped
The air’s become quite bitterly cold. Brrr! It’s COLD outside! Makes you want to stay inside, enjoying a nice, WARM bowl of rich and creamy, homemade Broccoli Cheddar Soup. In addition to making a roux, the soup thickens more when you add the cheese. Plus, you can make it Gluten Free!
All Cheese Isn’t Created Equal
For best results, use quality, block sharp cheese and grate it yourself, over purchasing store-bought grated cheese. Pre-grated cheeses often include the ingredient, cellulose that prevents the shreds from sticking, plus prevents them from melting smoothly too. Of the block cheese “in-house” brands that melt nicely, Walmart’s Great Values sharp cheese melted easily and very well. Winco’s “in-house”, block cheese, didn’t melt as smoothly, yet still tasted fine, after I pureed the soup again with my immersion blender.
Gluten Free Variation
Being there is dairy, i.e.: cheese and milk, I can’t help you with those dietary restrictions, but I’d love to know your ideas in the comments below. Now, if you’re like me, hand don’t have dairy issues, but and you just require a Gluten Free soup… well then, I’ve got you covered!
I’ve tested and substituted America’s Test Kitchen’s Gluten Free flour mix (1:1) for the regular, all-purpose flour. Even my gluten-loving husband loved the results. My d-i-l also said the flavors also were very good. I’ve made it twice now in 10 days, and I’ll make it again, here on out.
Broccoli Cheddar Soup
4 cups fresh or frozen broccoli florets
3 cups chicken broth or water
1 bay leaf
2 lg carrots, matchstick cut
2 ribs celery, diced
1-2 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp butter
1 med yellow onion, diced
1 lg clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup reg. all-purpose flour
OR 1/4 cup ATK GF Flour Mix*
1/2 cup COLD milk, 1% worked fine
Béchamel White Sauce:
3 cups broccoli water (reserved)
3 tsp chicken base
1 1/2 cups WARM milk, 1%
Dash nutmeg, freshly grated (yes!)
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 cups (8-oz) sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Dash cayenne pepper, optional
Veggies: Place the broccoli florets in the steaming basket of a steaming pot. Add the 3 cups broth or water, and the bay leaf to the pot. Steam broccoli on HIGH until fork tender. Uncover and remove from heat.
Meanwhile, in a 4-qt stockpot on MED-HIGH, melt 1 Tbsp butter. Saute the matchstick carrots 1 minute, and then celery. Cook until tender, and then add to the broccoli. Reserve broccoli water. Set aside.
Roux: In the stockpot, on MED, melt 3 Tbsp butter. Add diced onion and saute until clear without browning. Add minced garlic, don’t burn. Now, slowly add the flour or GF blend, until the mixture becomes golden brown. Next, steadily stir in 1/2 cup COLD milk, must be cold.
Béchamel White Sauce: Heat 1 1/2 cups milk, just until WARM, either in a saucepan or a microwave.
Meanwhile slowly mix the 3 cups broccoli water with the roux. Stir in the warm milk. With an immersion blender, blend the Béchamel sauce smooth. Using a Microplane Zester/Grater, grate the fresh nutmeg into the pot. Season with salt & pepper.
Cheddar Soup: With a food processor or by hand, grate the sharp cheddar cheese. Slowly add in – by handfuls – and heating through between each addition. Finally, add the cayenne pepper to give it a fun kick. Taste to adjust seasonings, as necessary.
Serve garnished with freshly, steamed broccoli, alongside some crisp crackers. Schar brand, gluten-free tastes great.
America’s Test Kitchen’s
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