It’s getting pretty cold over here in Tennessee, something this California girl is not used to! There has been a bit of an adjustment for me regarding the weather (they actually have seasons, haha!) but I kind of like it. It actually rains. The smell of blossoming dogwood trees in the spring is fresh and inviting. The fireflies in the summer are magical. The leaves turn the brightest orange and red I’ve ever seen. The wind and lightning in a thunderstorm has reminded me of God’s fierce power. And now there is a fresh blanket of snow outside! Each season has it’s own beauty and wonder, but the forecast for temperatures in the 20s and 30s has me wanting to stay indoors and snuggle in a blanket.
I got this recipe from my Taste of Home magazine several years ago and it has become a winter staple ever since. This lightened version of the original broccoli cheese and potato soup is one of my favorites for cool weather. The best part is that you can’t feel guilty for eating two bowls because one serving only has 265 calories. Just looking at this soup makes me feel warmer!
Start with 1 medium diced onion and 3 cups of cubed potatoes. I like yukon gold the best. When cutting, try to keep the shapes fairly uniform so they will all cook at the same rate.
Measure out 2 cups of lower sodium chicken broth.
Now put the broth, potatoes, and onion into a stock pot. Add 2 cups of water, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon of kosher salt. Bring all of these to a boil with the lid off.
Once it has reached a rolling boil, cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft.
When the potatoes are softened, add in 3 cups of broccoli. Fresh or frozen, it doesn’t matter. Let that return to a boil.
Meanwhile, whisk up 1/3 cup of non-fat milk and 3 tablespoons of flour. This mixture will act as the thickening agent.
Pour it into the broccoli cheese and potato soup and stir it while it thickens. It will probably take 2-3 minutes. Now remove it from the stove and let it cool for a few minutes.
Process the chunky broccoli cheese and potato soup in small batches in the food processor. My food processor is the 9 cup version so I fill it about halfway. If you have a smaller size, make sure not to overfill it or you will have soup everywhere!
Once a batch is blended, I pour it into another stock pot until I have finished all the soup.
If you don’t have a food processor, a blender will do the job just as well. Return the soup back to the stove and heat again if you prefer. One side note, broccoli cheese and potato soup freezes well and makes great leftovers throughout the week. It is also a wonderful treat to bring to a new mama or ailing friend.
Now pour that scrumptious soup into a bowl and top it with a little sharp cheddar cheese. What a healthy, clean lunch!
For something more substantial at dinner time, I serve the soup with a side salad and bread. The salad in the picture is my Cranberry and Candied Pecan Salad. I have also served it with Apple Blue Cheese Salad and Pecan and Goat Cheese Strawberry Salad.
Broccoli Cheese Makeover Soup
- 3 cups cubed potatoes
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- 1 diced medium onion
- 2 cups lower sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups water
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups broccoli
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1/3 cup of fat-free milk
- cheddar cheese for topping
- Boil first 7 ingredients altogether.
- Reduce heat, cover, simmer for 15 minutes.
- Stir in broccoli and return to boil.
- Whisk flour and milk in separate bowl, add to soup.
- Stir soup while it thickens, 2-3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool.
- Process batches of soup in food processor or blender.
- Return to heat if necessary.
- Top bowls with cheddar cheese as desired.