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Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup

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A classic favorite, broccoli cheese soup was one dish I missed after going dairy-free, so I worked hard to come up with this deliciously satisfying vegan version that is loaded with flavor by the spoonful.

vegan broccoli cheese soup in bread bowl being spooned out

I make a lot of soups, and this cheddar Vegan Broccoli Soup is my husband’s absolute favorite!

Seriously! No one will ever guess that this amazing soup is dairy-free and much lower in fat than the traditional version. It’s so rich and creamy, only you will ever know that it’s actually healthy.

We love this broccoli cheese soup because it’s…

  • Warm & filling
  • Loaded with cheesy flavor
  • Packed with wholesome ingredients
  • Crowd-pleaser
  • Amazingly delicious
overhead shot of vegan broccoli cheese soup in bread bowl being spooned out

The secret ingredient

What makes this soup so delicious and healthy is that my Creamy Vegan Cheese Sauce is one of the main ingredients.

When I first switched over to a healthy plant-based lifestyle back in 2013, one thing that I really missed was CHEESE. Cheese for pizza, tacos, baked potatoes, lasagna, and so much more. That’s why I came up with this amazing recipe.

Believe it or not, it’s made with wholesome ingredients like potatoes, onions, carrots, cashews (or white beans), and spices. And, it is super easy to make.

vegan cheese sauce poured from white gravy boat into white bowl

How to make vegan broccoli cheddar soup

To make this soup, the first thing you will need to do is make the cheese sauce which takes about 20 minutes. The great thing is that this cheese can be used with so many other meals.

Making the cheese sauce

Normally, I have some of this vegan cheese already on hand because we use it with so many other dishes. If I don’t happen to have some in the refrigerator, there’s likely some in my freezer.

Making the cheese sauce is as simple as boiling a pot of potatoes, onions, and carrots, adding them to a blender with spices, and blending until smooth. I have a Vitamix blender, so it can whip this cheese sauce up in just about 1-minute. Set this sauce to the side until it’s time to add it to the soup.

vegan cheese sauce in blender

Making the broccoli cheese soup

Next, it’s time to start on the soup recipe by dicing up all of the veggies–onions, garlic, broccoli, and carrots.

diced broccoli and carrots on wood cutting board

In a large stockpot, saute onions and garlic in approximately 3 Tbsp. water. Cook until slightly browned which should take about 5 minutes. Add additional water, one tablespoon at a time, if needed to keep the pan from becoming dry.

onions and garlic sauting in red pot on white background

Add 2-1/2 cups water, broccoli florets, and carrots. Cover and cook on medium heat approximately 10-15 minutes, until slightly tender, but still bright green. Don’t overcook to mush.

broccoli and carrots in red pot on white background

Remove from heat and put 1/2 of the veggies in a blender with the cheese sauce (leave the other 1/2 in your pot, but not on heat), plus 1/2 cup of reserved veggie broth from cheese sauce). Blend for just a minute or less.

vegan cheese broccoli and carrots in vitamix on white background

Pour blender mixture into the pot with other 1/2 of the cooked broccoli and veggies. Add almond milk, 1/2 cup water, Dijon mustard, chili powder, salt, pepper.

Place back on the heat and allow to cook approximately 10 minutes on low heat. Remove and serve in a bowl or in hollowed out crusty bread.

vegan broccoli cheese soup in spoon over pot

It tastes AMAZING and is one of my top recommended and shared recipes of all time!

Tips and suggestions

Since we use this cheese sauce in so many other recipes, I like to make double-batches to keep it on-hand.

The cheese sauce even freezes well. After defrosting, I place it back into my blender to make it smooth again before adding it to recipes like this soup.

Though this soup is usually served in a bowl at my house, when we have guests, I love to put it in a bread bowl because it’s such a beautiful table display.

vegan broccoli cheese soup in bread bowl

Made with broccoli, carrots, onions, garlic, and spices this soup is loaded with phytonutrients and antioxidants.

*Originally posted September 2015.

Followers comments

“Oh my gosh! I have FINALLY found a plant-based cheese sauce that I like! After the last failed attempt, I had decided that I was not going to try anymore, but then decided to give yours a try and I’m SO glad that I did. It is delicious.”

“I made it a few minutes ago, used 1/2 c. navy beans instead of the cashews, and it was wonderful on a baked potato. I am most excited that I have found something that my four-year-old granddaughter will be able to eat since she cannot tolerate dairy products. Yeah!”

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vegan broccoli cheese soup in bread bowl

Vegan Cheddar Broccoli Soup

Yield: 5 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

A classic favorite, cheddar broccoli soup was one dish I missed after going dairy-free, so I worked hard to come up with this deliciously satisfying vegan version that is loaded with flavor by the spoonful.

Ingredients

Creamy Vegan Cheese Sauce

  • 1 cup potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup carrots, diced
  • 1/4 cup onions, diced
  • 1 cup broth from veggies
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, unsoaked, (or 1/2 cup white beans, cooked)
  • 4 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 pinch paprika
  • 1 pinch cayenne, optional

Soup Ingredients

  • 4 cup broccoli florets, (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 cup carrot, diced
  • 3/4 cup onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1/2 cup broth from veggies, (this will come from making cheese sauce)
  • 1 cup almond milk, plain
  • 3 cups water 
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt, (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper, (or to taste)
  • 2 cups Creamy Vegan Cheese Sauce, (recipe below)

Instructions

Vegan Creamy Cheese Sauce

  1. In a medium pot, boil potatoes, carrots, and onion in a pot with enough water to cover well and allow to cook until veggies are tender, approximately 15 minutes. Cooking time will vary based on how small the veggies are diced.
  2. When veggies are tender, drain and place them in a blender. NOTE: reserve the broth, and add 1 cup of it to the blender. Add all the remaining ingredients, and blend until smooth. Reserve the rest of the broth from veggies to use in soup.
  3. This 'cheese' sauce is excellent and can be stored in the refrigerator (when not making this soup recipe) and used for many things. It makes approximately 2-3 cups.
  4. Including a baked potato topping, over steamed broccoli, with salsa for nachos, and so many more options! This picture is a loaded baked potato.
  5. For now, just leave the cheese sauce in your blender. You will be adding soup ingredients shortly.

Vegan Cheddar Broccoli Soup

  1. In a large stockpot, saute onions and garlic in approximately 3 Tbsp. water.
  2. Saute until slightly browned.
  3. Add 2-1/2 cups water, broccoli florets, and carrots. Cover and cook on medium heat approximately 10 minutes, until slightly tender, but still bright green. Don't overcook to mush.
  4. Remove from heat and put 1/2 of the veggies in a blender with the cheese sauce (leave the other 1/2 in your pot, but not on heat), plus 1/2 cup of reserved veggie broth from cheese sauce). Blend for just a minute or less.
  5. Pour blender mixture into the pot with other 1/2 of the cooked broccoli and veggies. Add almond milk, 1/2 cup water, Dijon mustard, chili powder, salt, pepper.
  6. Place back on the heat and allow to cook approximately 10 minutes on low heat. Remove and serve in a bowl or in hollowed out crusty bread.

Notes

Detailed instructions, in-process photos, and my personal helpful tips can be found in the article above.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 169Total Fat: 1.7gCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 9gProtein: 11.7g

To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.

Did you make this recipe?

Please rate and leave a comment because I love hearing from you. Remember SHARING IS CARING!

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Vegan Cheddar Broccoli Soup
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