Lightened up Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Winter and soup go together like peanut butter and jelly!

Broccoli cheddar has always been one of my favorites.

Being the foodie that I am and always cooking and "nibbling" it's necessary to lighten up my everyday meals!

This comes in at just under 250 calories per serving.

Having said that, you will not miss a thing in this soup. It's still creamy, cheesy and comforting.

If you're not watching your calories, by all means use half and half or cream in place of the low fat milk and full fat cheese, but I promise you won't miss it if you follow the recipe!

I like to gild the lily so to speak by roasting some broccoli and adding a little crumbled bacon to the top. It makes for a pretty presentation as well as adds texture and extra depth of flavor to the soup.

Lightened up Broccoli Cheddar Soup

makes 6 servings

prep and cook time 40 minutes

2 Tb butter

1 Tb Worcestershire sauce

1 cup diced white onion

3 garlic cloves minced

3 cups good quality chicken stock

3 med size broccoli heads chopped and stems discarded separate 1 head and save for roasting

(if you make vegetable stock save your stems and freeze them for that)

2 1/2 cups low fat or skim milk

1/3 cup flour

8 oz low fat grated cheddar cheese (you could also use the light Velveeta cube it before adding)

chopped green onion for topping soup

In a medium stock pot over med/low heat melt butter and sauté onions and garlic until translucent.

Add in the stock and chopped broccoli from 2 heads. Raise the heat to med/high and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat to med and cook for 10 minutes or until broccoli is tender.

In a separate bowl combine milk, flour and Worcestershire sauce whisk to combine well.

Add to broccoli/stock mixture and let cook for a few minutes to thicken whisking constantly.

When your mixture has thickened, take off the heat and puree 1/3-1/2 of the soup depending on how much texture you like.

Return puree to remaining soup mixture and stir in cheese cook just until cheese is melted.

Season with salt and pepper.

Ladle into soup bowls and top with roasted broccoli and bacon.

Roasted Broccoli and Bacon

Pre heat oven to 425

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with olive oil spray.

add the remaining 1 head of chopped broccoli and the chopped bacon.

Spray with olive oil spray and bake for about 10 minutes until bacon is cooked and broccoli is beginning to char on the edges.

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