Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

My kids love Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Panera (which contains processed cheese, whole milk, cream, butter, flour and fillers). It may be good, but it's not healthy. I reviewed my vegan cheese sauce recipes, researched cheddar flavor and experimented with combinations. The thick and creamy result was taste-tested and approved.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 Bowls

Ingredients
  

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

  • 2 heads broccoli substitute 1-2 bags frozen broccoli
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1 Sweet Onion chopped
  • 6 cups veggie broth
  • 1 cup cashews soaked if possible, substitute almonds
  • 14 oz full fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup arrow root substitute tapioca flour for gluten free
  • 4-5 garlic gloves
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric

Optional Ingredients:

  • 1 cup yeast flakes
  • 1/2 Tbsp. miso paste
  • 1 tsp. ume plum vinegar

Instructions
 

  • Separate broccoli florets from the stems. Set aside the florets. Loosely chop the stems and carrots.
  • Add stems and carrots to blender or food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. (You can also add the onions if you don't feel like chopping, or want them more minced.)
  • Place chopped broccoli stems, carrots, chopped onion and veggie broth in a stock pot. Turn on medium heat. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until vegetables soften (You'll cook another 10 minutes after adding the cheddar cream, so don't over-cook).
  • For cream sauce, add cashews, coconut milk, arrow root, garlic, apple cider vinegar, tomato paste, salt, smoked paprika and turmeric to the blender. If you have the optional ingredients, add those as well. I highly recommend all of them. But if you don't keep such things on hand, proceed. The optional ingredients add a subtle depth. You'll appreciate them, but you won't miss them. Blend on high until creamy.
  • Add cream sauce from blender to the veggie broth in the stock pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer. Stir continuously and whisk any lumps that form. Soup will thicken in 8-9 minutes.
  • Add broccoli florets about 1 minute before removing from heat. They will soften and turn bright green. Over-cooking will result in pale green, mushy florets. Of course, if that's preferred, let it happen.

Notes

Whenever I cook, I always try to use what I have. I've added cauliflower, greens, peas, corn, cabbage and even zucchini. It all works. 

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

My kids love Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Panera (which contains processed cheese, whole milk, cream, butter, flour and fillers). It may be good, but it's not healthy. I reviewed my vegan cheese sauce recipes, researched cheddar flavor and experimented with combinations. The thick and creamy result was taste-tested and approved.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 Bowls

Ingredients
  

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

  • 2 heads broccoli substitute 1-2 bags frozen broccoli
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1 Sweet Onion chopped
  • 6 cups veggie broth
  • 1 cup cashews soaked if possible, substitute almonds
  • 14 oz full fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup arrow root substitute tapioca flour for gluten free
  • 4-5 garlic gloves
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric

Optional Ingredients:

  • 1 cup yeast flakes
  • 1/2 Tbsp. miso paste
  • 1 tsp. ume plum vinegar

Instructions
 

  • Separate broccoli florets from the stems. Set aside the florets. Loosely chop the stems and carrots.
  • Add stems and carrots to blender or food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. (You can also add the onions if you don't feel like chopping, or want them more minced.)
  • Place chopped broccoli stems, carrots, chopped onion and veggie broth in a stock pot. Turn on medium heat. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until vegetables soften (You'll cook another 10 minutes after adding the cheddar cream, so don't over-cook).
  • For cream sauce, add cashews, coconut milk, arrow root, garlic, apple cider vinegar, tomato paste, salt, smoked paprika and turmeric to the blender. If you have the optional ingredients, add those as well. I highly recommend all of them. But if you don't keep such things on hand, proceed. The optional ingredients add a subtle depth. You'll appreciate them, but you won't miss them. Blend on high until creamy.
  • Add cream sauce from blender to the veggie broth in the stock pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer. Stir continuously and whisk any lumps that form. Soup will thicken in 8-9 minutes.
  • Add broccoli florets about 1 minute before removing from heat. They will soften and turn bright green. Over-cooking will result in pale green, mushy florets. Of course, if that's preferred, let it happen.

Notes

Whenever I cook, I always try to use what I have. I've added cauliflower, greens, peas, corn, cabbage and even zucchini. It all works. 

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