Tasty Tuesday: Copy Cat Recipe – Panera’s Broccoli Cheese Soup

Warm soup is perfect on a cold day!

Warm soup is perfect on a cold day!

With the weather as absolutely frigid as it is in Central Ohio right now, who doesn’t want a nice, warm bowl of soup? I love the broccoli cheddar soup at Panera. However, it can be pricy to eat there often… so I started looking around for copy cat recipes to try making it at home.  I came across a great blog with many wonderful copy cat recipes from various restaurants, if you’d like to check out Budget Savvy Diva, please click here. 

Before I feature her recipe, I just wanted to post what Panera has on their site for this soup. Here’s a list of the ingredients:

Broccoli Cheese IngredientsAlso, here’s the nutritional breakdown they have listed for the soup:

Broccoli Cheddar Nutrition InformationWhat I like about Budget Savvy Diva’s recipe is that you have the option to swap out the half-and-half and use 2% or even skim milk, for a “skinnier” version of this recipe, which I believe would have less fat than what is in the restaurant’s soup. I tweaked the recipe slightly, but if you want her original version, please click here.

Ingredients
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 tsp plus 1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup flour
2 cups half-and-half (or milk – skim to 2% is fine)
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 pound fresh broccoli florets
1 cup carrots, julienne
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon pepper
8 oz cheddar cheese, grated

Steps:
1. Melt 1 tsp butter and saute the chopped onions, then set aside.

2. Melt the additional 1/4 cup butter in a large stockpot, then add flour. Mix for 3 minutes.

3. Slowly add half-and-half (or milk if you prefer), stirring constantly.

4. Gradually add chicken stock while continuing to stir constantly.

5. Once all ingredients have been added, let the mixture simmer for 20 minutes on low.

6. Then add the veggies (sauteed onions, broccoli florets, and carrots) to the mix, continue to cook on low for an additional 25 minutes.

7. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

8. Puree the mixture in a blender or with a hand blender (but leave a few chunks of veggies like they do at Panera).

9. Put the mixture over low head and add the cheddar cheese until it’s melted.

10. Enjoy!!

Again, you can find the original copycat recipe and some nice pictures of these steps by visiting Budget Savvy Diva. I hope you enjoy this recipe and it helps you stay warm on these very cold days!

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