Thursday, March 18, 2010

Creamy Broccoli Cauliflower Soup

Did you miss out on green food for St. Patrick's Day? Look no further: this broccoli cauliflower soup has the perfect amount of green in it to sass up your month. The nice thing about this recipe is that it is easily altered for people with special diets, whether they are vegetarian, vegan, or just on a gluten-free or dairy-free restriction.

The secret of this soup is that it uses pureed vegetables as a thickener so there is no need for a roux. It is very creamy in texture, but without the use of cream. If my roasted red pepper soup hasn't convinced you to purchase an immersion blender, this soup might do the trick!

  • olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 carrot, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 head fresh cauliflower, chopped
  • 1 head fresh broccoli, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • big pinch of parsley
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth **
  • up to 1 cup milk or more broth (for thinning soup) ****
  • up to 1 cup cheddar cheese (optional) ** / ****
  • salt and pepper to taste
**for gluten-free diets, use broth made from gluten-free bouillon, as well as a brand of cheese that uses gluten-free caking agents, such as Cabot cheese.
****for dairy-free diets, use broth instead of milk, and omit the cheese.

  1. Heat stockpot on medium-low. Add oil, then garlic. Cook for about 1 minute.
  2. Add carrot, celery, bay leaves, and parsley. Cook for about 1 minute.
  3. Add broccoli, cauliflower, and 2 cups of broth. Put top on pot and cook for about 15 minutes until veggies are tender.
  4. Remove soup from heat. Remove both bay leaves and discard.
  5. If you wish to have some chunks of veggies in your soup, remove about 1 cup of veggies and put off to side.
  6. With immersion blender or regular blender, puree soup until smooth. Add enough milk or broth to thin soup to desired consistency. Stir well.
  7. If using cheese, add now and stir well so heat from the soup can melt the cheese.
  8. If you removed some veggies for texture, add them back in now.
  9. Salt and pepper as desired.

I enjoyed this for a light dinner. We paired it with a loaf of roasted garlic bread and I still felt satiated even a few hours after the meal. The texture I ended up with is not like broccoli cheddar soup you might find at a cafe - it has much more of a body to it. However, you could get it to be thinner by adding more liquid if you wanted.

Dan the Man's feedback: "It looks like baby food, but it tastes a lot better." You can't get more honest than that, I suppose. :)


  1. This looks great! I created and posted a recipe that was very similar last month and it was a big hit.

  2. Rachel -

    It was actually you and about three other bloggers who inspired me to try my own version of this soup. :) Yours looked interesting with the vinegar and smoked paprika so I might try that next time I make this!

  3. Ally-
    I'd love to see the other three blogger's recipes! It is such a unique recipe, I had never seen anything like it until I created and posted my soup.

  4. Besides your soup, I also used these recipes as references:

    I scaled it down to how much I wanted (since I'm cooking for only two) and omitted some of the extra things (like potatoes, zucchini, etc.) I also liked the idea of using cauliflower as the thickener so I left out a roux or evaporated milk as a thickener (as I think the last recipe recommended). I just mixed and matched ingredients and techniques until it came out how I liked.