This paleo broccoli cheese soup is rich and creamy, easy to make, and a perfect paleo fall recipe. Whole30 compliant and totally dairy-free, there’s plenty of cheesy flavor with none of the lactose and no weird ingredients! You’ll fall in love with this paleo broccoli cheese soup, and it’ll definitely become one of your favorite paleo fall recipes.
There’s this memory I have of my childhood, a collage of moments recounted to me, flash photography prints I’ve been shown, a slice of my early narrative pasted together over time. I’m standing on the wooden chair with a blue balloons tied onto the hooped back in a dark restaurant with thrift store finds tacked on the walls.
I’m wearing a lavender dress with white trim, and my hair’s pulled half back, secured with a grosgrain bow. My bangs are heavy, my eyes are big and dark, my smile is tiny yet cartoonishly exaggerated. My face is illuminated with the glow from 5 candles, waving gently in front of me, burrowed into the white buttercream frosting atop a Betty Crocker cake mix cake brought from home.
Happy birthday to YOU, happy birthday TO you, happy BIRTHday dear Cheryl, happy BIRTHday to you…
And everyone’s clapping, and I’m blowing out the candles, still grinning, and asking my mom if I can lick the frosting off the bottom of the little pink wax sticks. We’re at the Broccoli Cheese Soup Place, aka TGIFriday’s, as we are every childhood birthday during this particular stretch. We went often, my parents certainly thrilled by knowing I’d actually eat what I ordered and by the fact I’d willingly eat something green. And for kid birthdays, they’d stand me up on a chair, provide a latex balloon, sing loudly, and clap heartily.
To this day, broccoli cheese soup is one of my all-time favorite soups, if not my hands-down forever-and-ever favorite. And what’s not to love? Heaps of rich, gooey cheese stirred into an already creamy base with tender broccoli to make you feel better about your choices. I could eat it every day, except…
Heaps of rich, gooey cheese stirred into an already creamy base with only a handful of tender broccoli to make you feel better about your choices. With fall on the horizon, I knew I had to create a healthier, dairy-free version of the American favorite, leaving out all of the ingredients that make you feel sluggish and integrating more nutrient-dense foods.
This paleo broccoli cheese soup is Whole30-compliant, too, making it a perfect fall weeknight dinner on a round, reappearing as early-lunchtime-inducing leftovers the next day. And since it’s dairy-free, it’s easy to freeze!
I based this paleo broccoli cheese soup on the offerings at Panera and TGIFriday’s, hoping to convert the dairy-loving diehards to my paleo broccoli cheese soup substitution. It’s rich and creamy with plenty of cheesy flavor, tender broccoli, and carrots. It’s easy to make and comes together quickly, made originally one night when a bout of nausea left me uninterested in the chicken dish we’d meal planned. Instead, I whipped together this paleo broccoli cheese soup and hurriedly snapped photos before diving in.
And oh, oh, oh. The little girl at the Broccoli Cheese Soup Place has certainly grown up.
To make this paleo broccoli cheese soup, I used…
Paleo Broccoli Cheese Soup (Whole30, Vegan, Dairy Free, GF)
This paleo broccoli cheese soup is rich and creamy, easy to make, and a perfect paleo fall recipe. Whole30 compliant and totally dairy-free, there's plenty of cheesy flavor with none of the lactose and no weird ingredients! You'll fall in love with this paleo broccoli cheese soup, and it'll definitely become one of your favorite paleo fall recipes.
- 2 tablespoons ghee or olive oil for vegan
- 1 small onion , diced
- 1-2 cloves garlic , minced
- 2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock for vegan
- 4 cups broccoli florets
- 1 1/2 cups shredded carrot , about 2 medium
- 1 cup raw cashews , soaked for 4 hours if you don't have a high-speed blender
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice , about half a lemon
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- Cayenne pepper , dash
- Sea salt
- Freshly cracked pepper
- Fresh parsley , to serve, optional
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, heat ghee or olive oil. Add onion and sauté until translucent, stirring often. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, about 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
Add stock, broccoli, and carrots, then cover with a lid. Simmer until broccoli is tender, about 10-15 minutes.
In a high-speed blender, combine cashews, water, mustard powder, smoked paprika, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, almond milk, and cayenne pepper. Blend at high speed until very, very smooth. Pour mixture into broccoli mixture and stir until smooth. Add plenty of sea salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste. Spoon into serving bowls and top with fresh chopped parsley.