A low-carb broccoli cheese soup recipe that is delicious and comforting — perfect for an easy dinner any night this fall. Bonus: the leftover soup reheats well and makes a great low-carb lunch the next day!
Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe
Can comfort food be keto? You bet. This fall, I’m keto-fying all my favorite comfort food recipes. And I’m starting with broccoli cheese soup.
Low on carbs but packed with flavor, this is the best recipe for broccoli cheese soup. Don’t forget to top it with extra cheese and crumbled bacon.
I love having quick and dinner recipes in my back pocket. This broccoli cheese soup takes just 30 minutes to make — so its perfect for a busy weeknight.
Is broccoli cheese soup keto?
It can be! This keto soup recipe is creamy, delicious, and low-carb.
Unlike most broccoli cheese soup recipes you’ll find, this low-carb recipe doesn’t call for flour, potatoes, carrots, or can of “cream soup”. Prepared as directed below, this recipe has grams of carbs per serving.
How to thicken broccoli cheese soup
Most traditional broccoli cheese soups are thickened with a flour roux or potatoes. Without thickening agents, low-carb broccoli cheese soup usually has a thinner, broth-like consistency.
But if you are like me, you might want a thicker, creamier, broccoli cheese soup. So, how can you make broccoli cheese soup thick without using flour or potatoes? There are a few options.
One of the easiest ways to thicken gluten-free soups is by adding a small amount of xanthan gum.
Xanthan gum is a plant-based thickening agent that is commonly used in gluten-free foods. You can find xanthan gum at almost all large grocery stores, or online.
With xanthan gum, a little goes a long way. To thicken this recipe for broccoli cheese soup, you can add up to 1/2 tsp. or xanthan gum.
Another way to thicken broccoli cheese soup is to add an extra 2-3 oz of cream cheese. The cream cheese will melt into the soup and thicken the broth. The additional cream cheese will also make the soup even creamier. (Remember: the carb count of the soup will be slightly higher if you add additional cream cheese.)
A third way to thicken broccoli cheese soup is to puree part of the soup. Using an immersion blender or a traditional blender, you can blend half of the soup, and then add it back into the pot with the remainder of the soup.
Ways to thicken low-carb cream soups:
- add optional xanthan gum
- add additional cream cheese
- puree part, or all, of the soup
How to Keep Cheese from Clumping in Soup
The key to getting a smooth cheese soup is choosing the right cheese, preparing it correctly, adding it to the liquid at the right time. Here are my recommendations for a smooth cheese soup.
1. Make sure the soup isn’t too hot. Temperatures over about 150 F break down the protein bonds in the cheese — which can lead to clumps.
2. Add in small handfuls of cheese at a time. Just bit by bit. Whisk or stir the soup until each handful of cheese is thoroughly melted and incorporated before adding the next.
3. If you still have clumps, try using blocks of cheese that you shred yourself. Sometimes pre-shredded cheeses can contain stabilizers that might make them harder to melt.
What goes with broccoli cheese soup?
This recipe would go great with a keto dinner roll and salad. You can serve it with a simple roasted chicken recipe, or grilled sausages.
Variations on Broccoli Cheese Soup
- Use part cheddar and part blue cheese for a variation on broccoli cheddar soup
- Use part cheddar and part smoked gouda for a smokey broccoli cheese soup.
- Add diced jalepenos for spicy jalapeno popper style soup.
- Replace part of all of the broccoli with cauliflower for a cauliflower cheese soup
- Add cooked chicken or bacon for added protein and flavor
Can you freeze broccoli cheese soup?
Sometimes soups with a cream base separate during the freezing process. But, you can whisk them back together with a bit of fresh cream when you reheat them.
The good news is that xanthan gum is very stable with temperature variations — so it can handle freeze/thaw cycles.
Broccoli Cheese Soup in a Crockpot / Slow Cooker
You can make low carb broccoli cheese soup in a crockpot too, if you like.
For a slow cooker: Add the olive oil, onion, chicken broth, cream, salt, black pepper, and broccoli to the slow cooker. Stir, place on the lids, and set the slow cooker on high for 4 hours.
Add the cream cheese and shredded cheese, and stir until smooth.
if desired, puree part of the soup, or add the optional xanthan gum.
Broccoli Cheese Soup in an Instant Pot / Pressure Cooker
You could also convert this stove top recipe into a recipe for your Instant Pot.
For a pressure cooker: Add the olive oil, onion, chicken broth, salt, black pepper, and broccoli to the slow cooker. Stir, place on the lids, and set the pressure cooker on manual, high pressure, for 5 minutes. Release the pressure naturally, then open the lid.
Add the heavy cream, cream cheese and shredded cheese, and stir until smooth.
If desired, puree part of the soup, or add the optional xanthan gum.
For the Soup
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 14 oz frozen broccoli floret
- 3 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp xanthan Gum, optional thickener
For the Garnish
- 2 pieces of bacon, crumbled
- 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil, onions, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until onions and garlic translucent and tender.
- Add chicken broth and heavy cream. Stir, then bring to a simmer.
- Add broccoli and cook for 10 minutes, until the broccoli is tender.
- Reduce heat to low, and add the cream cheese. Add the shredded cheese one cup at a time, stirring until the cheese is melted and the soup is smooth.
- Optional: to thicken the soup, add 1/2 tsp of xanthan gum. Stir well.
- Taste for seasoning, and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove from heat.
- Serve with shredded cheese and crumbled bacon.
Nutrition: The easiest way to reduce fat and calories would be to add less heavy cream.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 385Total Fat: 35gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 105mgSodium: 886mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 14g
The nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. It was calculated by My Fitness Pal with the recommended brands and ingredients. All brands are different, so please verify the macros with your specific ingredients to ensure accuracy.