While the record breaking cold streak seems to be behind us, it is Feb. here in Upstate, NY which = still cold and we’ve got a
little ways to go until the season is behind us.
The cold weather sparked a craving for a bowl of warm soup. Cheesy warm soup. Cheesy warm soup that is low cal. Cheesy warm soup that is low cal and healthyish. Cheesy warm soup that doesn’t taste low cal and healthyish. Does this sound good? Raise your hand if you’re with me. Good. And while you’re at it, Jenn…. Can you make it easy? I’m really busy this week and need something quick. No problem!
Hmmm…. That 99 cents 5 pound bag of potatoes looks lonely, begging to be diced up and become part of a soup. That’s nice but potatoes aren’t exactly low cal…. But, but, but…. I love potatoes! And a potato soup is sure sounding good right about now. Focus, Jenn. Focus.
I know cauliflower is a great substitute for potatoes and falls into the healthy, low cal categories. I’m really starting to dig cauliflower but I haven’t gotten into the whole sub-cauliflower-for everything-potatoes thing. But I’m not opposed to combining the two and calling them potatoes :).
We all know broccoli is super healthy and low cal. But well… it’s broccoli and sometimes it tastes like…well…broccoli. I do, however, have very fond high school memories of Saturday lunches with my girlfriends at T.G.I. Friday’s where we always ordered broccoli cheese soup and half a sandwich. Mmmmm. So good. Good times.
With my thoughts running in several directions, I had a moment of clarity and decided to combine said potatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli with cheese and make a heart warming soup. Use frozen cauliflower and broccoli florets and you’ve got a really easy, quick, heart warming soup with dicing a few potatoes as your only prep (but feel free to sneak in a 1/4 cup of minced carrot in). I can handle that. I hope you can too!
P.S. I cannot express how difficult it was to refrain from frying some bacon for this and stir in a heaping pile of grated pepper jack cheese because that’s just what I like to do and I’m a believer that bacon and cheese make great things even greater! But I stuck to my healthier guns and the soup still tastes awesome and cheesy and I can basically eat this to my heart’s content!
- 2 (14.5 oz.) cans low sodium chicken broth or 4 cups
- 1 Tbsp. flour or corn starch
- 3 cups (about 3 regular) potatoes, diced
- 2 cups frozen cauliflower florets
- 2 cups frozen broccoli florets
- 1 (8 oz.) package ⅓ less fat cream (neufchatel) cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste (I used ½ tsp. each)
- ¼ tsp. turmeric (optional)
- Whisk chicken broth and flour/corn starch together in a large pot and bring to a boil on high heat.
- Add potatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli and return to a boil.
- Add cheese. Cover and reduce heat to medium - medium/low. Simmer 5 minutes or until potatoes are soft.
- Turn heat to low. Stir and break up the cheese.
- Use a slotted spoon to remove potatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli and transfer to a blender or food processor. Fill half way with the liquid and blend smooth.
- Whisk the liquid in the pot to evenly mix in the cheese. Add blended vegetables and whisk everything together. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve.