It has the perfect blend of both broccoli and cauliflower, and of course some carrot, too, for the just-right balance.
Ingredients for Broccoli Cauliflower Soup
This soup needs just a handful of simple ingredients that come together to make this magical soup. Find the full recipe card below for ingredient amounts and specific instructions.
- Onion and Garlic: our flavorful aromatics! The two create a savory base.
- Broccoli: adds heartiness, texture, and crunch to the soup. Not to mention it’s basically cheddar’s BFF when it comes to recipes.
- Cauliflower: why not throw two cruciferous vegetables into a soup? Cauliflower helps mix up a typical broccoli cheddar soup, adding additional nutrients, texture, and a very subtle flavor that pairs well with broccoli.
- Carrots: a nod to the classic Panera soup, carrot adds a nice color, and grating them adds another textural element to the soup. The slight sweetness balances out the bitterness from the broccoli and cauliflower too.
- Use a box grater or a food processor to shred the carrots. You can also buy pre-shredded carrots to save a little bit of time if needed.
- Vegetable Stock: The base of the soup’s liquid. If you are not vegetarian, you can also use chicken stock.
- Half-and-Half: bringing creaminess and richness to the soup is the job of half-and-half. You can also use whole milk for a lighter soup, or heavy whipping cream to make it extra rich.
- Cheddar Cheese: creamy and smooth, this cheese is top-notch in this soup. I highly recommend buying a block of cheddar and shredding it yourself using a box grater or food processor. Pre-shredded cheeses often have an anti-caking agent on them and don’t melt as well.
- Butter, Salt, Pepper, and Flour: used to help assemble the soup and add flavor, and the flour works as a thickener. Use cornstarch to make this recipe gluten-free.
To use frozen broccoli and cauliflower, simply replace them 1:! but they will cook for less time. Be sure to test them for doneness throughout the cooking process to prevent them from becoming mushy.
Broccoli Cheese Soup on the Stovetop
Like any delectable soup, this starts with the comforting combination of butter and onion, sauteeing away in a large dutch oven.
Really, is there any better aroma while cooking? Then it’s taken to the next level with the addition of garlic, which comes next. You know there’s got to be garlic. Remember to add a pinch of salt to layer in the flavors, too.
Whisk in a bit of all-purpose flour to help thicken the soup slightly. Then, add in the liquids: vegetable stock and half-and-half.
Right away, the vegetables are added along with the liquids. They simmer away in the soup, becoming perfectly tender while infusing with flavor.
Don’t bring the soup to a boil as it cooks, otherwise, you’ll risk the dairy separating. Rather, make sure it’s at a light simmer for about 15-20 minutes until the veggies are fork-tender.
Once the veggies are tender, remove the soup from teh heat (or just turn it off) and stir in the shredded cheese in batches until melted. This method ensures that it melts evenly, without breaking apart or clumping together.
Be sure to taste test and adjust salt and pepper levels throughout the cooking process, too, but definitely after adding the cheese!
If you prefer a smoother broccoli cheese soup, use an immersion blender to puree to your desired consistency. You can also transfer half of the broccoli and cauliflower to a blender and blend until smooth, then return to the soup.
How to Make Soup in the Instant Pot
Yeah, the stovetop version is super easy too, but if you’re short on time or really want a hands-off process, you can surely make it in the Instant Pot, too!
To make this recipe in the Instant pot, combine everything in the bowl except for the dairy. That means you are leaving out the half-and-half AND the cheese to start.
Set the Instant Pot to run at high pressure for ZERO minutes. Yes, zero, none, nada… zero minutes.
By the time everything inside the pot comes to pressure, the veggies will be perfectly tender. If the Instant Pot was set to cook any longer, the vegetables would become mushy, which is something we definitely do not want.
After it’s come to pressure, quick release the pressure and remove the lid. Stir in room temperature half-and-half, and the cheese in batches, until it is all melted into the soup. Don’t forget to taste test and adjust the salt levels, since you weren’t able to while cooking.
What to Serve with Broccoli Cheese Soup
It’s a big given that broccoli cheese soup has got to be served with some sort of carb. Think: a hearty slice of sourdough bread, drop biscuits or homemade flatbread. And if you need even more added texture, top it with homemade croutons!
Whether you’re storing leftovers or meal-prepping the soup for easy lunches throughout the week, just store the soup in individual portions in an airtight container for up to 4-5 days. I prefer using glass jars or food containers to make sure no other flavors seep into the soup.
Reheat it in the microwave or on the stovetop until hot.
Freezing the soup is a little tricky because of the dairy. If you need to freeze it, make it ahead of time without the half-and-half or cheese. Once it’s thawed and warmed through either using the microwave or stove, add the dairy.
More Vegetarian Soup Recipes to Love:
- Vegan Broccoli Butternut Squash Soup
- Healthy Vegetable Lentil Soup
- Curried Carrot Squash Soup
- Butternut Squash Sweet Potato Soup
- Roasted Tomato Carrot Ginger Soup
Be sure to check up the round-up of our favorite vegetarian soups, too!
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating and review in the form below. I appreciate your feedback, and it helps others, too!
Get the Recipe Broccoli Cauliflower Cheddar Cheese Soup
- 3 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups yellow onion, diced (1 small onion)
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- Salt, to taste
- 3 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
- 2 cups half-and-half, room temperature
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1/8 tsp white pepper
- 2 cups broccoli florets, chopped
- 2 cups cauliflower florets, chopped
- 1 large carrot, shredded*
- 8 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded* (2 cups once shredded)
- In a dutch oven or stockpot, melt butter over medium heat and add diced onion. Sautee for a minute, then add garlic with a pinch of salt; continue sauteing for 2 minutes.3 Tablespoon unsalted butter, 1 1/2 cups yellow onion, 4 garlic cloves, Salt
- Whisk in flour, continuing to whisk for 1-2 minutes to cook the flour down. Whisk in vegetable stock, incorporating with the flour mixture. Add half-and-half, salt, and pepper (to taste), and white pepper. Then add broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot. Simmer – do not boil – for 15-20 minutes until vegetables are just tender enough to be pierced with a fork.3 Tablespoon all-purpose flour, 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock, 2 cups half-and-half, Black pepper, 1/8 tsp white pepper, 2 cups broccoli florets, 2 cups cauliflower florets, 1 large carrot
- Remove from heat, and stir in shredded cheese in batches. Adjust salt and pepper as your taste desires, and serve!8 oz. cheddar cheese
Instant Pot Directions:
- Using the sautee function of your Instant Pot, melt butter and add diced onion. Sautee for a minute, and add garlic with a pinch of salt. Whisk in flour, continuing to whisk for 1-2 minutes to cook the flour down. Add white and black pepper, and an additional pinch of salt. Whisk in 2 cups vegetable stock, incorporating with the flour mixture. Add broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot.
- Put the lid on the Instant Pot, making it is sealed. Set to high pressure for zero minutes. Once it's come to pressure, carefully quick release the pressure.
- While the Instant Pot is working its magic, warm the half-and-half in a small saucepan on the stove. Once you've released the pressure after cooking, stir in half-and-half. Add shredded cheese in batches, stirring to melt in between each addition. Adjust salt level according to taste (since you weren't able to while cooking).
- To save on packaging and price, buy carrots whole and shred them yourself. For this recipe, I use the large holes on my box grater.
- I highly recommend shredding your own cheese! This eliminates having the anti-caking agents that are often in pre-shredded cheese and that can make your cheese gritty and separate during melting.
- Storage: store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
- Reheating: heat in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove.
- *Look for cheese specifically labeled vegetarian, if needed.