This gluten free broccoli cheddar soup is cheesy, savory and full of flavor, perfect for a rushed weeknight meal.
Team it up with some crusty bread on the side, and you’ve got yourself your next favorite comfort food- I promise!
This healthy and nutritious soup is actually one of the most delicious ways to enjoy the veggie, and if you haven’t tried it earlier, now’s the perfect time to.
The easy broccoli cheddar soup recipe has just the right balance of creamy and garlicky flavors, and will fill you up nicely without weighing you down, quite literally ticking all the boxes.
- What's So Great About the Recipe?
- Ingredients For the Gluten Free Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe
- How to Make the Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Substitutions & Variations
- 💭Top Tip
- How to Store the Leftover Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Tips & Tricks to Nail the Recipe
- How to Serve the Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Related Recipes
- Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Food Safety
What's So Great About the Recipe?
This vegetarian broccoli soup is one of my all time favorites and for a good reason.
Not only is it a great way to get more veggies on my plate (read bowl), but it is also supremely easy to whip up, which makes it a total savior for all those rushed weeknight dinners.
If you’re one of those who don’t enjoy broccoli, or have kids that need to be friends with the veggie, this easy recipe is an absolute must try- you’ll love this recipe.
Ingredients For the Gluten Free Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe
Ready to try this easy broccoli cheese soup recipe? Here’s what you’ll need.
Broccoli: Use fresh broccoli that has a bright green color. Cut it into florets, keeping some portion of the stem intact. Make sure the broccoli is tender. You can also use frozen broccoli if you want to.
Vegetable stock: You can use homemade or packaged vegetable stock. For extra flavor, you can use chicken broth or mushroom stock.
Onion: Chopped onion lends the soup an incredible warm sweetness that is unmatched. Consider this an absolute essential.
Garlic: Garlic is another important part of the dish. It compliments the creaminess of the cheese and helps build flavor.
Heavy cream: Half and half lends richness and creaminess to the soup, and ties all the flavors together.
Cornflour: Typically, a broccoli cheese soup uses all purpose flour as a thickener, but we’ll be using some cornflour to get that creaminess and keep the soup gluten free at the same time. You can also use a gluten-free flour blend if you want to.
Cheddar cheese: You’ll need to use sharp cheddar cheese for this recipe. Use pre-shredded cheese to make things easier. You can also use a combination of two or more cheeses if you want to. Velveeta cheese, Parmesan cheese and Monterey Jack are some good alternatives.
Seasonings: I’ve used red pepper flakes, ground black pepper and salt for this recipe. You can also choose to add some garlic powder (if you love garlic), a dash of Italian seasoning and/or some paprika to lend the soup a bit of heat and turn it into a spicy broccoli soup.
See recipe card for quantities.
How to Make the Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
Ready to make this recipe? Here’s the step by step process of making this soup.
Bake broccoli florets seasoned with salt and pepper and some butter for 10 minutes in a preheated oven.
Heat oil in a large pot or Dutch oven, and add the chopped onions and garlic and sauté on medium heat until softened. You can also use your Instant Pot if you want to.
Next, add the cornflour and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously. Now add the vegetable broth and heavy cream and bring to a simmer.
Add the broccoli florets, reserving a handful to add in towards the end. Bring to a boil and let the broccoli cook for 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and blend the soup using an immersion blender.
Bring the pot back to heat and add in the remaining broccoli, the seasonings and grated cheese and stir for 2-3 minutes before you serve.
Substitutions & Variations
You can actually try lots of different variations to your homemade broccoli cheddar soup. Here are a few good ideas.
Broccoli and Pea Soup
Frozen peas and broccoli are a wonderful combination, and you can use that to your benefit by trying this version of the broccoli cheddar soup. Not only is this soup a bright green color, but is also a protein rich meal you can put together for your entire family
Broccoli Zucchini Soup
The combination of broccoli and zucchini is another great one you can experiment with. The green of both these veggies work well together, and you won’t end up with a soup that looks strange. Plus, zucchini has a very subtle, versatile taste, which works in your favor.
Broccoli Asparagus Soup
This one’s another easy and healthy way to get more veggies on your plate. Bake the asparagus stalks along with the broccoli, add them into the soup base and blend into a uniform mixture before topping with your choice of seasonings and toppings- it is that easy.
Broccoli Almond Soup
By simply adding some whole almonds into the soup and slivered almonds as a topping, you can really elevate the flavors and the nutritive value of the soup in minutes.
The heavy cream or half and half helps add a nice touch of richness and creaminess to the soup while thickening it up. If you want to enjoy a lighter version of this soup, you can use milk instead.
How to Store the Leftover Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
If you have any leftover creamy broccoli cheddar soup, you can transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate it for 2-3 days. Just remember to allow the soup to cool down completely before you do.
The soup can then be reheated on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
This soup is freezer friendly too, which means you can make it in a batch over the weekend and enjoy it at any time the upcoming weeks.
Just remember to store the soup in a freezer safe container or in freezer safe bags to prevent freezer burn.
You’ll also need to make sure that the soup has thawed completely before you reheat it over low heat. Doing this will help keep the soup from curdling.
Tips & Tricks to Nail the Recipe
- If you want the soup to have more bold flavors, you can allow the chopped onions to caramelize a bit before proceeding with the next steps.
- When adding shredded cheese to the soup, remember not to add too much in one go. Sprinkle a little cheese, and then stir after adding the cheese. This will help prevent clumps and ensure the cheese has melted.
- If you don’t have the heavy cream, but still want the soup to be rich and creamy, you can add some evaporated milk into the mix. I also love adding some cream cheese if I have it at hand.
- You can also add a dash of mustard powder to the soup towards the end. It can really elevate the flavors of the soup.
- This soup is one of those recipes that can be a bit high on sodium with all the cheese. If you’re concerned about that, use low sodium stock.
- If you don’t have stock at hand, just mix some stock powder or bouillon with water and use it instead.
- You may also need to adjust the consistency of the soup depending on how thick it is. If it seems thicker than you need it to be, you can add some water or stock and let it simmer for a few extra minutes.
- Julienned or grated carrots can be another excellent addition to the soup. You can add them after you’ve blended the broccoli, and turn the soup into a delicious and healthy carrot broccoli soup.
- Don’t forget to top the soup with some homemade or store bought croutons for some added texture and deliciousness.
How to Serve the Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
The simplest and easiest way to serve this vegetarian broccoli cheddar soup is to team it up with some crusty bread.
I actually went ahead and compiled a whole list of sides to serve with broccoli cheese soup- it’s got everything from soups to salads.
I personally love going the extra mile, and drizzle a bit of olive oil and some of my homemade garlic bread seasoning over the slices of bread before I pop them in the oven to get them nice and crispy.
Want to go beyond the crispy bread? You can put a quick grilled cheese together and serve it with the soup! Use a mix of two or more cheeses and use at least one melty cheese to really take the texture and flavor of the sandwich up a notch.
I also love serving this gluten-free soup with some spicy edamame.
If you don’t want to roast the veggies, you can put a fresh salad together quickly and serve it with the broccoli soup if you want to. Remember to stick to simple veggies with a mild and subtle tasting vinaigrette or dressing to allow the flavors of the broccoli soup to shine through.
Don’t skimp on the toppings- you can top the soup with some crumbled feta, chopped fresh herbs and a drizzle of olive oil with a crackle of crushed black pepper.
If you want to make this vegetarian broccoli cheddar soup more filling, you can add some boiled pasta or orzo into it. Broccoli noodle soup can be a really nice and healthy meal for your kids!
A lot of broccoli cheddar soup recipes call for the use of boiled potatoes to add some bulk or thickness to the soup. In fact, you can also whip up a quick broccoli sweet potato soup using boiled and mashed sweet potatoes as the thickening agent.
Rice flour can also be another good addition to this broccoli and cheese soup recipe.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Vegetarian Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- 1 head broccoli
- 2 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ½ teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 onion chopped
- ½ teaspoon black pepper powder
- 3-4 large garlic cloves chopped
- 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- Bake broccoli florets seasoned with salt, pepper and butter for 10 minutes in a preheated oven.
- Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pot and add the chopped onions and garlic and saute until softened.
- Next, add the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring continuously. Now add the stock and heavy cream and let this mixture simmer for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the broccoli florets, reserving a handful to add in towards the end. Let the broccoli cook for 5-7 minutes, remove from heat and blend everything using an immersion blender.
- Bring the pot back to heat and add in the remaining broccoli, the seasonings and cheddar cheese and cook for 2-3 minutes before you serve.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove