Healthy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup Recipe with Smoked Paprika & White Beans

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.


Healthy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup Recipe with Smoked Paprika & White Beans

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.

Healthy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup Recipe with Smoked Paprika & White Beans

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.

Healthy Broccoli & Cheddar Soup Recipe with Smoked Paprika & White Beans

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

Broccoli and Cheddar Soup…a meal that can be made in one pot.

  • Author: Dara
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  • 3 cups small broccoli florets
  • 2 cans (14 oz. each) cannellini (or Great Northern) beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 cup reduced fat (2%) milk
  • 1/2 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. 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.
  2. Add the broccoli and cook until it is softened a little, about 3 minutes. Stir in the beans.
  3. 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.
  4. Stir in the milk, remove the soup from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  5. 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.
  6. Stir in the Cheddar cheese. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Serve.

Keywords: broccoli, cheddar cheese, soup, white beans

Don’t forget to go and say hi to Dara over on her blog, Cookin’ Canuck!


About the author

Shawn is the Owner and Creator of I Wash You Dry. She loves to create and share simple, family-friendly recipes. Mom to 5 adorable children and dwells in the desert of Southern Utah.
16 Responses
  1. Celeste B.

    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.

  2. Lynne

    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!)

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Shawn Syphus Hi, I'm Shawn and I'm a busy mom of five; pretending to live on a budget. I love to cook, and explore new recipes, but they have to be quick and easy with as few dishes as possible.

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