This broccoli cheddar soup recipe is loaded with lean beef or turkey, nutrient-rich broccoli, and creamy, comforting Cheddar cheese.
In fact, broccoli is filled with so many vitamins and minerals that it is known as the "Crown Jewel of Nutrition". This hearty member of the cabbage family has been blessing mankind with its flavorful benefits for over 2000 years.
In addition, research has shown that broccoli is important in the prevention of cancer and other diseases. Broccoli and the other members of the cabbage family (cabbage, kale, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and collard greens) should be eaten several times a week to help keep our bodies strong.
5 strips bacon
1 pound ground beef or turkey
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
4 cups beef or chicken stock
3 cups fresh broccoli, cut into bite-sized pieces
1-1/2 cups milk
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
1. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crispy. Place strips on paper towel lined plate to drain.
2. Pour the bacon drippings into a non-plastic container to be discarded later.
3. In the same large skillet, cook ground beef or turkey and chopped onions until meat is no longer pink. Drain off fat.
4. In a Dutch oven, add stock and heat to a boil.
5. Reduce heat and add fresh broccoli pieces. Cook until tender, about 4 minutes.
6. While broccoli is cooking, measure flour and pour into medium-sized bowl.
7. Stir milk into the flour and mix until combination is smooth.
8. Add browned meat and milk/flour mixture to Dutch oven.
9. Keep stirring over medium heat until thickened.
10. Add the dried oregano, salt, and black pepper.
11. Add the shredded cheese and stir until cheese is melted.
12. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with crumbled bacon. Enjoy!
Fresh broccoli becomes woody and fibrous when it is left unrefrigerated. And wet broccoli (washed) quickly becomes limp and moldy.
For these reasons, fresh broccoli should be refrigerated unwashed and then for no more than 3 to 5 days. After that period of time, even though it may still appear to be relatively fresh, its flavor as well as its nutritional value is diminished.
The best way to wash fresh broccoli is under cool running water. Allowing it to soak in water is not recommended as it causes the loss of water soluble nutrients.
Instead of throwing away the broccoli stalk, the thick skin of the stalk merely needs to be trimmed away. The remaining center portion can then easily be cut into bite-sized pieces. You may have eaten chopped broccoli (from frozen packages) which contained thick, unpalatable pieces of stalk. I'm sure this has turned away many would-be broccoli fans.
But don't worry, with proper storage and preparation techniques, your broccoli soup will be splendid.
"Exploring California Broccoli." California Department of Public Health. Accessed June 2, 2017. http://harvestofthemonth.cdph.ca.gov/Documents/Winter/Broccoli/Brocco_Edu.pdf.
University of Illinois Extension. "Broccoli Vegetable Directory Watch Your Garden Grow." University of Illinois Extension. Accessed June 2, 2017. http://www.extension.illinois.edu/veggies/broccoli.cfm.