Who else loves Panera? Their Broccoli Cheddar Soup is insanely delicious, wouldn’t you agree?! If you are on any kind of diet, you may want to look away now as I take no responsibility for anyone quitting over this velvety smooth cheese soup. Happy Cooking!
Still here? Alright then. A few years ago I visited friends in New York and they took me to Panera’s. Guess what I ordered?! Yup, Broccoli Cheddar Soup. Ever since then, their Broccoli Cheddar Soup is
one of my favorite order and I almost always have it when I go there for lunch (I recently gave a research talk at another university and asked them to take me to Panera’s afterwards! I know – we had a good laugh!). If you’ve never had it you’re missing out (big times!) because this thick and creamy soup is pure comfort food. The good news is, you can also have Panera’s Broccoli Cheese Soup at home (any time you want!). Obviously, I had to make a copycat version of this delicious soup. In my opinion, it comes pretty close to the real thing. Let’s do this!
The recipe itself is simple. You will need chopped broccoli, shredded carrots, Half & Half, and lots of cheese (and a few other yummies!). It’s important to use aged cheddar instead of mild cheddar as it adds more flavour. Please please PLEASE use freshly grated cheese as pre-grated cheese won’t melt and blend well (trust me on this!). The original recipe calls for chicken broth but I always use vegetable broth to make it vegetarian (feel free to use whichever you prefer!). Having said this, keep in mind that the flavour might change a little depending on the broth used. Also, I am super excited to tell you that you can EASILY make a vegan version of this soup, which is just as delicious. Simply use vegetable broth and substitute the butter, cream, and cheese with vegan products. Easy, isn’t it?
This Broccoli Cheddar Soup is simple to whip up in under 60 minutes (30 minutes if you prep ahead of time!) AND insanely delicious. Be warned though, if you are anything like me, you probably won’t stop eating. I made it the other day and ended up having it for lunch AND dinner TWO DAYS IN A ROW until it was gone (ooops!). If you have yet to try this soup – go ahead! Just do it! Happy Cooking!
Panera's Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Copycat)
Yield 10 servings
- 4 cups broccoli florets, chopped
- 2 cup carrots, julienned
- 1 white onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup and 2 tbsp salted butter, melted
- 4 cups vegetable broth*
- 4 tbsp corn starch
- 4 cups Half & Half**
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp white pepper
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
- 4 cups aged cheddar, freshly grated***
- Prepare the veggies: (1) chop the broccoli and onions and (2) julienne the carrots. Put in separate bowls and set aside.
- Saute onion in 2 tbsp of melted butter. Set aside.
- Prepare the vegetable stock. Set aside.
- In a large pot, over medium heat, melt 1/2 cup of butter and whisk together with corn starch. Stir constantly and slowly add the Half & Half, followed by the vegetable broth. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. Stir frequently.
- Add the broccoli, carrots, and onions. Cook for another 15 minutes or until the veggies are tender. Stir frequently.
- Add the Dijon mustard and spices and combine well. Adjust to own liking.
- Add cheddar cheese and continue cooking until melted.
- Serve with warm baguette or ciabatta.
*Feel free to substitute with chicken broth.
**You can make your own Half & Half by combining 2 cups whole milk with 2 cups cream.
***Use freshly grated cheese as pre-grated cheese won’t melt and blend well.
Quick Tip: This soup can easily be made vegan by substituting the butter, Half & Half, and cheese with vegan products. I use Earth Balance (butter), Belsoy and So Nice Barista Blend (Half & Half), and Daiya (cheese).
Cuisine American, vegetarian, nut-free
Serving Size 305 ml (1 serving)
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value
Total Fat 24.8 g
Saturated Fat 15.3 g
Cholesterol 72 mg
Sodium 670 mg
Total Carbohydrates 14.4 g
Dietary Fiber 1.9 g
Sugars 2.7 g
Protein 8.8 g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.