Healthy broccoli cheddar soup packed with carrots, broccoli, garlic, and cheese. This creamy velvety soup is much better than Panera’s broccoli cheddar soup and can be made in under 30 minutes for a fraction of the price! 30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)Soup is an essential winter meal and when it comes to picking our absolute favorite soup, this cheddar broccoli soup has earned the #1 spot. It’s a favorite of kids because of it’s creamy texture and cheesy flavor, and loved by parents because it’s secretly loaded with a ton of nutritious veggies.

If you’ve ever had Panera’s broccoli cheddar soup then you will LOVE this soup. It’s almost a copycat version of it except with much more flavor and texture.

The soup is made with an almost caramelized onion and garlic-based and thickened with a roux (butter and flour mixture) then simmered with veggie stock, broccoli, and carrots. At the very end, half & half and freshly grated cheddar cheese are added to give it a velvety smooth texture.

The result is a deliciously rich, thick and creamy broccoli soup that is loaded with the comforting flavors of broccoli and cheddar. 30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)


To make this delicious cheddar cheese you will only need a handful of ingredients, a large pot, and 30 minutes. Gather all your ingredients and let’s get cooking! 

Broccoli: Fresh broccoli florets along with the stems chopped into small bite-size pieces. A 12oz bag of frozen broccoli will also work. The instructions and cooking time are exactly the same.

Carrots: You will need about 1 cup of grated, finely minced, or julienned carrots. It is about 1 large carrot or 2 small carrots. This ingredient is optional and can be adjusted to your taste preference.

Cheddar: To get the best possible flavor, we like to use an 8oz block of mild or medium cheddar cheese. You can also use 2 cups of pre-grated cheddar cheese.

Half & Half: Half and half will yield a texture that is not too thick or too thin. It can also be replaced with milk for a light soup or heavy cream for keto dieters.

Stock: Veggie or chicken stock will work great and if you don’t have any on hand, replace the stock with water and add a bouillon cube

You will also need a chopped onion, minced garlic, butter, flour, salt pepper and paprika (can be subbed with nutmeg if desired).

Scroll down for the full recipe, video, and nutritional facts. Please don’t forget to rate the recipe below and tag us on Instagram @gimmedelicious

30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)CAN YOU FREEZE BROCCOLI CHEDDAR SOUP?

To refrigerate: Place any leftover soup in airtight containers and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days. Reheat on the stove-top over medium-low heat.

To freeze: Place in freezer-safe zip bags and freeze flat or in freezer-safe containers. To reheat, thaw completely then warm on low heat to prevent curdling.


This delicious soup is packed full of veggies and texture and can be perfectly eaten stand-alone and will make a filling meal. It can also be served in a bread bowl (like in Panera) or with crusty bread for dipping or topped with croutons! If you’re a meat-eater, you can top it with chopped grilled or shredded chicken or mix them in.
30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)

4.72 from 642 votes

30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)

Healthy broccoli cheddar soup packed with carrots, broccoli, garlic, and cheese. This creamy velvety soup is much better than Panera's broccoli cheddar soup and can be made in under 30 minutes for a fraction of the price! 
Prep10 minutes
Cook20 minutes
Servings 4 people


  • 4 tablespoons butter, ½ stick
  • ½ medium onion, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoon AP flour
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp paprika, or ground nutmeg, optional
  • 3 cups broccoli florets, or 1 large head, cut into small pieces
  • 1 large carrot, grated, julienned or finely chopped
  • 2 cups half & half, or milk or light or heavy cream
  • 8 oz block grated cheddar cheese, or 2 cups (mild, medium, or sharp )


  • Melt butter in a large dutch oven or pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook 3-4 minutes or until softened and light gold. Add the garlic and saute for another minute.
  • Add flour and whisk for 1-2 minutes or until the flour begins to turn golden in color. Pour in the chicken stock, broccoli florets, carrots, and seasoning. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes or until the broccoli and carrots are cooked through.
  • Stir in half & half and cheddar cheese and simmer for another minute. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  • Serve with toasted crusty bread or in a bread bowl if desired.



Serving: 1bowl (1/4th recipe), Calories: 570kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 45g, Saturated Fat: 28g, Cholesterol: 134mg, Sodium: 1225mg, Potassium: 529mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 4381IU, Vitamin C: 65mg, Calcium: 603mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: broccoli, cheddar, cheese, Panera, soup
like this recipe? Rate & Comment below!

30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)

30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)
30 Minute Broccoli Cheddar Soup (Better than Panera!)

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  1. Good recipe to use up extra broccoli substituted celery for carrots and added 1/2 the half and half/ replaced w extra stock.

  2. Made this soup today! Amazing!!! I added 1 diced potato but other than that followed your recipe and LOVED it!

  3. As a Weight Watcher, I was able to lighten the calories and still enjoy this recipe. I used 1% milk, low fat cheddar cheese. I added the cheese to my own bowl and a splash of Half n Half. So delicious!

  4. This recipe worked out great. I used 3 heads of broccoli because 1 didn’t seem like enough. I will make this again.

  5. I doubled the recipe and made it for our small group. It was so delicious! I also used an immersion blender before adding the cheese and half and half and it was the perfect texture. Everyone loved it!

  6. Awesome soup. Friends loved it. I doubled recipe. Used extra broccoli since it was frozen. Just used the whole bag

  7. This is my second time making this soup, it is so good. I will never buy this soup from Panera Bread again.

  8. To be honest, the measurements are off. It’s impossible for 3 cups of broccoli to simmer in only 2 cups of chicken broth. I had to add another cup of broth so the broccoli was covered.

  9. The flavor is good but mine turned out gritty 😩 the temperature was turned down I used 2cups heavy cream and 2 cups milk as I did a double the recipe.

    1. The grittyness is most likely from the pre-shredded cheese as they use fillers to keep it from clumping. Next time, please try freshly shredded cheese!

  10. Made as noted, with the exception of using vegan heavy cream. It was delicious and perfect for dipping your favorite bread. My 93 years Mom loved it. Will definitely make it again.

  11. I always double the recipe and use 2 percent milk. My family loves it. I sometimes put some bacon pieces in.

    1. Great recipe! Delicious! Very simple and its basically the same as any cream soup. I used a couple dollops of Better than Boullion base for stock as I like being able to control the amount of liquid and the flavor is more robust than plain cubes or basic stock. I happen to have leftover smoked ham from Easter a diced a cup and tossed it in. Gace it another layer of flavor.

  12. This was easy, delicious and tasted just like Paneras! Left out the nutmeg. Saved to my favorites!

  13. This may be one of the best recipes I’ve ever tried! I don’t really remember what the Panera soup tastes like, but however it does this recipe tops it for sure! The only tweaks I made were I used a half a cup more vegetable broth than called for, and I added about 4 pieces of bacon cut up into small pieces at the end.

  14. Absolutely fantastic recipe, I doubled it and we love it. ❤️

  15. This has become a family favourite! My son loves the Panera soup & was blown away the first time I made this. He requests it when he comes home from college. Thanks!

  16. Great recipe-We love this soup! Making it today for the 3rd time.
    I’m looking forward to enjoying today as we watch the snowfall here in the North East.

  17. Great soup. I doubled the ingredients for my family.

  18. Just made this today and it is outstanding! So easy, turned out fantastic and makes a nice amount. I will double it next time to freeze some.

  19. Turned out exactly as described! We doubled the batch and it’s delicious! Perfect texture, flavor, taste! Right on!

  20. This is one of my favorite recipes ever!! My only alteration (personal preference) is next time I would use a little less cheese and maybe serve with a salt shaker available instead of adding to it while cooking. My husband has to watch his salt intake. With the salt (which is naturally occurring in the cheese), I suggest it’s not necessary to add salt to the recipe.

  21. This recipe has good flavor even though I cut the butter back a tbs and switched out 1 1/2 c of half with Almond milk. I think I can cut the butter back another tbs. I also added big chunks of broccoli stems and took them out to serve.

  22. Turned out amazing. So many compliments. Love love love this recipe

  23. Wonderful and easy recipe. I scaled the recipe up by 1.5x and made big pot of this to take to my daughter and her family when they were all nursing a cold, two nights ago, and it was so good I did it all over again last night so my wife and I could have some. I did notice during both batches that after you add the chicken broth there’s still not quite enough liquid to cover the veggies so I added more broth and then increased the amount of half & half to match (so it was 3.5 cups of each in total), and it came out silky smooth and very cheesy, just perfect. This will be my go-to recipe for B&C soup from now on!

    1. I did the same, extra chicken broth to cover the veggies! Other than that, all the same. WOW! Great recipe, very filling too!!

  24. Made this to go with dinner tonight and LOVED it!

    Only thing I did different was a little extra garlic & paprika, and I used frozen broccoli because the grocery was out of fresh. Put the broccoli in totally frozen, so mine did take longer overall to cook, but it was worth it!