Vegan Broccoli “Cheddar” Soup (Paleo)

Thick, creamy, chunky, dairy-free vegan broccoli “cheddar” soup. You’ll never guess the secret ingredients that make this soup taste rich, creamy, and cheesy!

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup - dairy-free, gluten-free, healthy, paleo, and delicious

This soup is one of those ideas I’ve had mulling around my head for months but didn’t press the go button until I knew from start-to-finish how I was going to execute it. You see, true to my non-perfectionist ways, it isn’t atypical for me to just fling myself into a recipe and see what surfaces, but as I age I’ve realized the true value in waiting it out until I can fully wrap my mind around the task at hand. #Progress.

At first, I thought I was going to blend this broccoli “cheddar” soup to make the whole thing silky-smooth and creamy, but truth be told, I’ve been more into the chunky soup lately. There’s just something about the chewing process that makes a meal feel more substantial.

Needless to say, I arrived at this broccoli-carrot-potato trifecta chunk soup with a super flavorful broth that will blow your mind when you find out what it’s made out of in the next paragraph.

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup - dairy-free, gluten-free, healthy, paleo, and delicious

I’ve learned the secret to creamy creamless soups is blending a boiled potato with the broth (in this case, I used store-bought vegetable broth), coconut milk, and some tapioca flour to give it that thick, creamy consistency without the use of dairy. If tapioca flour isn’t an ingredient you regularly carry, you can omit it. If you have potato starch or corn starch, you can replace the tapioca flour with either, or simply leave out any added starches.

To give the soup that cheesy flavor while keeping it dairy-free, I use nutritional yeast. If you are new to nutritional yeast, it’s basically the alpha omega when it comes to making vegan sauces and soups taste cheesy and is a great topper for your salad and rice bowls.

You’ll notice I use two Yukon gold potatoes for the recipe – one gets blended for the broth for that creamy texture, and the other gets chopped to go into the soup. If you’re trying to keep this lower on the carb end of the spectrum, you can absolutely omit the potato that gets chopped up.

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup - dairy-free, gluten-free, healthy, paleo, and delicious

AND if you’ve been into creamy soups lately, you can absolutely blend the whole thing for that ultra thick, silky soup.

If you aren’t vegan and love the concept of adding bacon, you can absolutely do so! If you aren’t sensitive to corn, you can toss in some fresh corn kernels as well and make this a sort of broccoli-corn chowder. I also love this soup with chicken bone broth instead of vegetable broth, so there’s always that option as well!

Chunky soup for president!

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup - dairy-free, gluten-free, healthy, paleo, and delicious

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Course: Soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Author: Julia
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Ingredients

  • 2 medium yukon gold potatoes boiled for 15 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
  • 2 cups carrot peeled and chopped
  • 2 crowns broccoli chopped into florets (4 cups)
  • 1/2 leek chopped
  • 32 ounces vegetable broth
  • 1 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon tapioca flour optional
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

Instructions

  1. Place potatoes in a pot and fill with water. Bring to a full boil and cook 12 to 15 minutes, until very soft when poked with a fork. Drain and place one potato in a blender and place the other potato on a cutting board to cool. Once cool enough to handle, peel and chop the potato.

  2. Add the broth, coconut milk, cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, tapioca flour, and sea salt to the blender and blend until completely smooth.

  3. Heat the oil to medium heat in a large stock pot. Add the carrot and broccoli and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened but are still al dente, about 5 minutes. Add the leek and sauté until fragrant, about 2 to 3 minutes.

  4. Add the chopped potato and the broth mixture to the stock pot. Bring to a full boil, reduce the heat and simmer 10 minutes.

  5. Serve soup with bread or side salad.

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Comments

    1. Julia Post author

      Hi Mary!

      The bowls and mug were actually made by a friend of mine, Paul Yoo (He’s on Instagram as @Paulharimyoo and @Paulyoopottery). He currently doesn’t have a website where you can purchase his work, but you might try to send him a message through instagram to see if he’ll make a custom order. At this point, pottery is his hobby and not his profession, so I’m not sure what his response will be, but it’s worth a try! xo

      Reply
  1. Ashley@CookNourishBliss

    I LOVE the sound of this! I used a potato in a vegan cheese sauce a few weeks ago and was amazed out how creamy it made the dish! So I definitely can imagine how awesome it must make this soup! Looks deelicious – especially with that mug of tea 🙂 And now I need to go make some tea… haha

    Reply
  2. Melonie G

    I made this recipe last night and it was delicious! I love that it’s vegan, although I am not vegan I often eat that way because I am extremely lactose intolerant. It’s nice to get a creamy consistency in something without using milk products. I am a big fan of leeks and I did use the entire white parts of the stalk. Elevate the onion flavor by topping your serving with caramelized onions. Another modification was that I used an extra gold potatoes to add thickness. The type of potatoes you use will impact flavor and texture so I recommend not substituting with red or Idaho potatoes unless you must. In place of flour I substituted corn starch. Looking forward to left overs for dinner tonight with a salad. Thank you for the fantastic recipe!

    Reply
    1. Julia Post author

      I’m so glad you made and enjoyed the soup, Melonie! Thanks for letting us know your additions and thoughts…much appreciated! xo

      Reply

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