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It’s mid-winter. Most of us are waiting around for Spring, but some days I’m perfectly content settling into the cold, cozy winter! I’m loving soup and homemade bread these days. One of my favorite soups from my childhood is broccoli cheddar soup. It’s absolutely decadent and I had a craving for it a few weeks back and thought I’d try my hand at a whole-foods focused recipe that didn’t require cream. Keep reading to find out how to make this delicious dairy-free broccoli cheddar soup.

Dairy-Free Broccoli Cheddar Soup

I used to get broccoli cheddar soup at Panera in a bread bowl. It was my favorite meal. However, since I’ve educated myself a bit on what types of ingredients are used in some restaurants, I much prefer to make my own food at home! This way I know exactly what’s in it and I can use whole foods sourced locally, when possible.

I love this specific recipe I created because if has the added benefits of carrots and cauliflower. You can’t tell that there are extra veggies in there, so this is a perfect way to get in those vegetable servings through a tasty and decadent meal!

You can modify this recipe to be dairy-free by simply using nutritional yeast as the “cheesy” flavor, or you can use vegan cheddar cheese if you aren’t super strict about eating whole foods-focused meals. For us, I actually used raw cheddar one time, and the other time, I did it with just nutritional yeast. Both taste delicious, so do what works for your family’s needs!

Dairy-Free Broccoli Cheddar Soup

A whole foods based broccoli cheddar soup with added veggies. Can be modified for dairy-free and plant-based diets.
Course Dinner, Lunch, Soup
Servings 6 people


  • 1 tbsp. avocado oil
  • 1 yellow onion minced in food processor
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 head cauliflower chopped into florets
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 4 cups veggie broth (can sub bone broth)
  • 6 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 3-4 crowns broccoli, roughly chopped
  • 1-2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • green onion (for serving)
  • handful of raw cheddar or vegan cheddar cheese (for serving)


  • In a food processor, mince the garlic and onion until finely diced.
  • Heat oil in a large pot and toss in the garlic and onion. Cook for about 3-5 minutes.
  • Add cauliflower florets, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add broth to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes, or until cauliflower is soft.
  • While the cauliflower is simmering, prepare the carrots and broccoli. Pulse the carrots in the food processor and place in a large bowl. Repeat the same steps for the broccoli. You should have a mashed carrot and broccoli mixture to add to the soup.
  • Once the cauliflower is soft, transfer the mixture to a high-speed blender (or you can use an immersion blender) and blend until smooth.
  • Pour the cauliflower mixture back into the pan and add the broccoli and carrot mixture.
  • Simmer for about 20-25 minutes, or until the broccoli and carrots are soft.
  • Once soft, take about 3/4 of the soup and blend it in the Vitamix once more to give it a creamy texture. (You can also use an immersion blender for this).
  • Transfer back to the large pot and turn burner on low heat. Add in nutritional yeast and salt and pepper to taste. If you're adding raw cheddar or vegan cheddar cheese, you want to add it during this step.
  • Serve and enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this dairy-free broccoli cheddar soup recipe! Let me know if you try it in the comments below! I can’t wait to hear what you think. Thank you so much for reading!

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