For years my standard order at Panera was “pick two, broccoli cheddar soup and turkey bacon bravo with no turkey or bacon.” One employee asked if I was ordering that (strange) sandwich because I am a vegetarian and when I told him that I was, he informed me that the soup had chicken broth. Although I’m glad he told me what I was eating, I was also disappointed that I couldn’t eat the soup any longer. I found a new favorite order and forgot about the broccoli cheddar soup. Recently I came across this recipe on Pinterest and decided to try making a vegetarian version of broccoli cheddar soup.
I’m happy to tell you this version is just as good as I remember Panera’s soup tasting and best of all, it doesn’t have any hidden chicken broth. Blending the carrots in the broth creates an orange base which tricks you into thinking there is more cheese in here, but according to MyFitnessPal this soup has under 250 calories per serving.
- 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 cup chopped carrot (2 large carrots)
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1 cup milk (I used 2%)
- 3 tablespoons plain greek yogurt
- 3 cups broccoli, divided
- ½ cup gouda, grated
- ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese (medium or sharp)
- croutons or bread bowls for serving
- Add carrots and onion to vegetable broth in medium saucepan.
- Cover and simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes.
- While vegetables are cooking, measure milk and Greek yogurt and set aside.
- Use hand blender to blend carrots and onion.
- Add 2 cups of the broccoli, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add remaining 1 cup of broccoli and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
- Stir in milk and Greek yogurt.
- Lower to medium low heat.
- Slowly add cheese while stirring.
- Continue to stir until cheese is melted.
- Serve topped with croutons or in a bread bowl.
Have you been unpleasantly surprised by hidden chicken in your favorite restaurant meals?