Broccoli Cheese Soup – lightened

How can it already be Halloween weekend? The month of October breezed by about as fast as the wind has been whipping these past few nights. It crept up so quickly that I didn’t even finish buying pumpkins. This is the first year that neither of my Beauties carved a pumpkin and while I was a bit bummed, they didn’t give it a second thought what with three parties between this weekend and next. So it was just me and the Hubby who turned pumpkins into works of art this year — all freehand, thank you very much. We hung out at the end of the driveway, stayed toasty by the fire pit, and passed out candy to all of the princesses, cowboys, monsters, super heroes, ladybugs and one particularly adorable little grandpa who was at most 4 years old. Just goes to show that looks can be deceiving.

Our pumpkins, for example, looked like this…

halloween pumpkins

But come dark, they turned into this:

halloween pumpkins

Just as my week #3 soup -a lightened broccoli cheese soup – might have looked rather questionable as I was cooking the other night.

preparing lightened broccoli cheese soup

Broccoli, onion, carrots and a bit of garlic simmering in chicken broth would make a delicious soup on its own. The magical transformation of this soup, however, comes after preparing a small bit of roux and adding one cup of 1% milk, thus making a light white cream sauce. Adding the white sauce to the pot and tossing in a cupful of shredded Monterrey jack/cheddar blend transformed what was a brothy broccoli soup into a light and creamy broccoli cheese soup.

light broccoli cheese soup

Divine I tell you. Not a drop of  leftovers was a sure sign that my Loves agreed. We all enjoy cream soups and I hope I am teaching my girls that reducing fat grams does not equate to reducing flavor.

For all of you broccoli cheese soup lovers out there, do give this light version a try. No trick, it’s all treat. Enjoy!

Broccoli Cheese Soup - lightened
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic, or 2 cloves
  • 1 (12-ounce) package broccoli florets
  • 1 large carrot, sliced thinly into coins
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (I prefer Trader Joe's)
  • 1 cup 1% reduced-fat milk
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup shredded Monterrey Jack / Cheddar Cheese blend
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat.
  2. Add onion and carrot and sauté 3 minutes; add garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add broccoli and saute for another minute.
  4. Add broth and black pepper; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until broccoli is tender.
  5. In a small sauté pan, heat remaining tablespoon of oil; add flour and whisk for 1 minute. Gradually add 1 cup of milk, continuing to whisk constantly; cook until thickened. Remove from heat and add to soup pot. Stir well; add cup of cheese and stir until melted.
  6. Using a hand blender, blend to desired consistency. (Or carefully pour into blender and process until smooth.)
  7. Adjust seasoning to taste.


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