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 626 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. I’m a fairly good home cook. I’ve made Broccoli Cheese soup many different ways BUT this recipe is now my go to Broccoli Cheese soup recipe. I’ve always puréed it and I’ve discovered that I prefer it in blended. It’s a forgiving recipe. I had an odd small sweet potato and diced that up with the carrots and broccoli. 😋

  2. This recipe gave me the base way to make the soup. But ofcourse I pizazzed it with my own seasonings. Thank you

  3. Delicious! I used sharp cheddar, vegetable broth, nutmeg, and added a bit of mustard powder. I also used a whole onion. My only suggestion is that if you used chopped carrot, you will need to cook longer before that is done. So next time, I will grate that. And I plan to try subbing part swiss cheese next time. (Have always done that for broccoli quiche.)

  4. Great soup recipe. Easy and anyone can add delete and make it their own. I followed the recipe snd found to be perfect for us. Happy cooking everyone!

  5. I had been craving broccoli cheddar soup for at least a week, but had never made it myself. I found this recipe, and holy cow! It was fantastic!! After reading comments, I added about 1 extra cup of chicken stock and about 4 extra ounces of (extra sharp) cheese but otherwise followed it as written (maybe some extra broccoli)….and YUM!!

  6. Delicious! I made this tonight after having a broccoli cheddar soup craving and I chose this recipe and I am so glad I did! I’ll be having leftovers for lunch tomorrow! Thank you for sharing!

  7. My 18 year old granddaughter requested I make a broccoli cheddar soup and I chose your recipe. She loved it. Said it was better than Panera. I had to try it even though I m doing weight watchers. Great and easy recipe. Thanks for the recipe.

  8. Delicious soup way better than Panera bread. I do buy the bread bowls and put this soup in it amazing a must try.

  9. this was soooo good. I did use half and half and some 2% and a little less cheese. Hey we all do our little things but this was so good.

    1. Oh my god. Hands down one of the best soups I’ve made to date! Was a HUGE hit with my mom and sister and they demanded I print this one to make again and again! So easy to make too, and takes no time! Thank you for the recipe, this one is a long time keeper!

  10. I’m not a fan of cooked onion, would I be able to add it in raw or completely leave it out?

    1. onion powder to give it the flavor you need

  11. Smokey remix.

    I finely diced about 4oz of bacon and rendered it down over med-low heat until there were a few tbsps of visible liquid fat. Then (after separating the solids), I used the rendered fat to sauté the aromatics and make the roux. I added the bacon solids back with the other veggies.

    I also subbed smoked paprika and swapped half my cheddar (4oz) for smoked gruyere. Fantastic!

  12. This is a great recipe and tastes exactly like Panera bread but wayyy better. I make my own veggie broth to control for sodium so pairing this with a salad (usually copycat Fuji apple), I don’t feel even the slightest bit guilty about digging into a bowl. Highly recommend sticking to the recipe and giving it a try. Thanks for posting!

  13. My husband said “can we have this soup on a routine basis?” He never says that.

  14. Amazing! We are soup lovers, and this is now on our regular rotation. We used 3 cups of homemade broth, and I don’t know how this recipe would have worked without the extra cup; there was just enough liquid to keep the veggies submerged. I used smoked paprika and doubled the amount, and then I added a half a bottle of some stout beer. Before adding the heavy cream and cheese, I used an immersion blender to make it a smooth consistency. I used a little extra cheese, butter, and garlic, too. We used Walmart’s Great Value brand shredded Triple Cheddar. Next time, I am planning to add some chipotle chili powder for a little kick and some more smoky flavor.

    1. This was good! Had to double the broth… 2 cups is nowhere near enough. Even the 4 cups was barely enough. But everything else was spot on!

  15. Loved this soup. Made a couple of substitutions: used 2% milk, extra sharp cheddar, replaced chicken broth with vegetable broth and omitted garlic (not a fan of garlic). Was so delicious. Loved some of your reviewers suggestions. Next time we will try adding 1 stalk diced celery, 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast 1/2 tsp dry mustard and a dash of cayenne. Thanks for the great recipe and your reviewers great suggestions.

  16. This broccoli cheddar soup was super delicious!

  17. Fixed this for my parents. They loved it. When the conversation stops and all you hear is spoons hitting bowls…it’s gooooood.
    Thanks for sharing.

  18. OMG! Delicious!! Just had this for supper with salmon sandwiches on fresh, homemade buns. Perfect meal. I left the cheese out cuz one family member cant eat it. Thosebwho wanted cheese, grated it over the hot bowl. Amazing.

  19. Way too fatty with the flour, butter, and tons of cream and cheese. No wonder we are so obese these days. Substitute with a potato, cashews, and nutritional yeast to make it a little more healthy.

    1. It’s called broccoli CHEDDAR soup! Obviously, there’s going to be lots of cheese and will be fatty. It’s not a potato/cashew/nutritional yeast soup. Give me a break.

    2. Good grief life is too short! I feel bad for you.

  20. A great recipe! My family loved it and this will be our go to from now on. I did add a bit of chopped celery, and I like a bit of bite from cayenne and dry mustard, but otherwise, perfect!!! Oh yes, and be sure to use extra sharp cheese.

      1. Before I start making this should mix in the flour with a little chicken broth so it does not come out clumpy?

  21. This is delicious!! I’m replacing my other broccoli cheese soup recipe with this one! I added a little thyme, but it was great without it.

  22. Made this tonight and my family loved it! I did double the broccoli and I added 1/2 cup more each chicken stock and cheddar cheese. Topped with bacon bits. Will keep this recipe

  23. So good!!! I added some chopped up leftover chicken and my family loved it. The only thing that could have made this experience better is removing the annoying pop-up ads from your blog. I almost stopped coming to these blog sites because of the frustrating experience trying to just find the recipe in all the ads.

    1. Polly, if you want to not be annoyed the whole time you’re making a recipe off of a blog, the trick is to click “print recipe” and just follow the recipe on the print page. No need to print, and no annoying ads!

  24. Absolutely. Fantastic. This is the second time I’ve made and I think it’s better. Making it at the house is better than anything I’ve bought. I added a little more more stock but not too much to mess up the roux or the thickness of the soup. I find the half / half gives it a great consistency. It heats up really well. I will say though, I went to Panera and bought a bread bowl. Cause you can just buy a bread bowl and they will cut it for you. Thanks for this recipe.

  25. Omg I made this soup today it is so delicious. You have to prep before hand and get everything ready. The only differences were 1. I peeled the large broccoli stems and simmered them in chicken broth for 20 mins to get soft then puréed them and added them to the soup. I also used an Emerson blender before adding cream and cheddar. So so good.

    1. So easy. So good. Thank you. Will deff made again.

      1. Quick and easy to make very good I really enjoy it

  26. I made this today. It was delicious. I used frozen broccoli as I have a bunch in my freezer that needs to be used up. I also used 1 cup of heavy cream and 1 cup of 2% milk, as I didnt have half &half. Otherwise I followed the recipe. I’ve only made chicjen soup from scratch but I will be making this more often now. Easy and delicious.

  27. I made this simply wonderful soup two days ago and can’t wait to make it again! It is exactly like Panera’s Brocolli Cheddar soup, only better because it’s made fresh, at home. I read comments first and was glad I used block cheese instead of pre-shredded cheese. The recipe is simple and straightforward, easy for any level cook to master. My husband raved about it and is eager for me to make it again, too. An elegant starter or main entree, this soup is a definite winner!

    1. So glad you and your husband enjoyed the soup, Jeryl!

  28. Tasty, easy to follow recipe. I don’t think I let the flour thicken enough before adding broth, but otherwise a simple and delicious soup!

  29. This was absolutely amazing! I only had 6oz of cheese and it still worked great. I had looked at the comments about powdery cheese so I decided to rinse the shredded cheese and there was no powdery taste! Highly reccomend, just like Panera!!