It was a chilly start to the day here so I decided to make one of our favorite soups, broccoli cheddar, the copycat version from Panera Bread Company. We LOVE the broccoli cheddar soup. It was a huge hit with my boys and my brother who was here visiting. There was not a drop left and we all thoroughly enjoyed it. I served it with crusty Cuban bread.
To make this soup creamier, I put about 2 ladle-fulls in my blender to puree some of the carrot and broccoli pieces. I garnished with a few shavings of shredded cheddar cheese. This was enough for a late lunch but would be great served with 1/2 a sandwich or salad. Another serving suggestion is ladle into a bread bowl.
The week 3 recipe in the 52 Week New Recipe Challenge for 2016 is this Panera copycat broccoli cheddar soup. My family thinks it a keeper.
- 1 tablespoon butter, melted
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups half and half
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 pound fresh broccoli (about 3 cups), chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup carrot, julienned
- 8 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese (2 cups), grated
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Additional grated cheese for garnish
- In a medium skillet melt 1 tablespoon butter and saute onion until transparent. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan melt the 1/4 cup butter. Add flour and stir continuously over medium heat for 2 - 3 minutes, until golden in color and flour is cooked. Add half and half and whisk until combined. Add the chicken stock and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.
- Add the broccoli, carrots and reserved onions. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low heat. Cook 20 - 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Ladle 2 spoonfuls into a blender and puree. Add back to saucepan and heat. Over low heat, add grated Cheddar cheese. Stir until melted. Do not rush the melting process.
- Ladle into bowls for serving.
- Serve with crusty French, Italian or Cuban bread.
Serve with a sandwich and/or salad to complete the meal. As an alternative serving idea, serve in a sourdough bread bowl.