With all this glutenous food I’ve been indulging in here at Disneyland, and all the walking we’ve been doing, I am ready for a nice, big, hot bowl of creamy soup. Luckily for me, Dara from Cookin’ Canuck is always on top of healthy recipes that are jam packed full of flavor, and this Broccoli & Cheddar Soup is no exception.
I’m so happy to introduce you to Dara, you’re gonna love her.
Over the past months, I’ve had the privilege to get to know Shawn. We first met at Camp Blogaway in May, and a few months later in Park City at the EVO conference. As much as I loved meeting Shawn in person, one of the most rewarding things was something that we did virtually…the Red Faced Runners 5k Challenge. This red-faced group of 11 food bloggers brought many of our readers along on the ride with us, and were so inspired and excited by the dedication and fearlessness of everyone involved.
While Shawn and I haven’t had the chance to run together yet, I hope that we will someday. And then, of course, we could top the day off by breaking bread over a fabulous meal. Since we are both dedicated to working exercise into our lives and living healthier lifestyles (with fewer dishes at the end of the meal), I decided to make a healthier version of a classic. Broccoli and Cheddar Soup…a meal that can be made in one pot.
The challenge was to make a healthier version (in other words, no cream and less cheese) without sucking out all the flavor or sacrificing texture. The trick is to add cannellini (white) beans. When pureed with the broccoli, onions and garlic, they act as a thickener. A thickener with plenty of fiber and lean protein, and virtually no fat. Stir in some Cheddar cheese at the end for flavor and extra creaminess.
Healthy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup Recipe with Smoked Paprika & White Beans
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground pepper
- 3 cups broccoli florets, small
- 2 14 oz. can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
- 1 cup milk, reduced fat
- 1/2 cup sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
- salt and pepper
- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and smoked paprika and, stirring constantly, cook for 1 additional minute.
- Add the broccoli and cook until it is softened a little, about 3 minutes. Stir in the beans.
- Add the vegetable or chicken broth and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, partially cover the saucepan and simmer the mixture for 15 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender.
- Stir in the milk, remove the soup from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
- Using either a hand-held blender, or a blender or food processor (working in batches), puree the soup until it's almost smooth, leaving a bit of texture. If you used a blender, return the soup to the saucepan and reheat it over medium heat.
- Stir in the Cheddar cheese. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Serve.
Don’t forget to go and say hi to Dara over on her blog, Cookin’ Canuck!
seattle condos and lofts
What a information of un-ambiguity and preserveness of valuable knowledge concerning unexpected emotions.
Cant wait to try this. I think I will do it with roasted cauliflower sometime too. Love paprika and cauliflower.
Wow, roasted cauliflower would probably be out of this world! Great idea!!
Shannon @ moveeatcreate.wordpress.com
Yum! This sounds great. I’m quite fond of broccoli soup already, but I really love the idea of adding the beans to this!
Ahh, this is my kind of soup. I want a bowl for lunch. Great post!
Laura (Tutti Dolci)
Using cannellini beans is such a great trick! Love this soup!
Jen @ Savory Simple
I need this in my life!
This looks wonderful!
Okay, this looks so yummy I’m totally willing to give the healthier version a try. 🙂
I made a recipe very similar to this recently with the beans as a thickening agent. I was thinking that a little milk would enhance the recipe and I see you’ve done that. I think I will try your version next time…yum.
There is something about the texture of a whole bean that just is not appealing to me…I know they are good for you, but I have to swallow them whole – and even then I have to make a conscious effort to force them down. Lima beans are the most egregious offenders, but great northern beans are a close second. Using this recipe will give me the health benefits, without having to bite into them and then feeling repulsed. ( I know I sound petty and whiny, and I get told all the time to “just eat them!” but I want to like my food, not spend the whole meal forcing stuff down. This will be the perfect solution, thanks!)
stefanie @ sarcastic cooking
Sounds deelish! I love the addition of smoky paprika!
Liz @ The Lemon Bowl
Love the use of beans to thicken!!
claire @ the realistic nutritionist
OH SHAWN!! I love so very much that you made this light!! I have to try it 🙂
Oooooh, love the addition of smoked paprika to one of my favourite kinds of soup!
Liz @ Blog is the New Black
Looks great and so easy, too!