Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cheesy Vegetable Soup

First post on my first blog, and it's a recipe that isn't even a set recipe.  I'm starting off good, no?  This soup is a new favorite at our house - I've made several variations of it, and my family always compliments it.  My littlest is especially a fan of this creamy soup.

First, start with a lot of veggies.  Today I didn't have as many fresh veggies on hand, other times we've enjoyed a greater variety.  Somehow I lost the picture of all the chopped veggies (cauliflower & peppers are missing from this picture) but this will give you an idea of proportions:

Add the veggies to a good sized stockpot - this is my 7 quart pot.  Add enough chicken broth to just cover the veggies.  I had just over 10c of veggies and approximately 7c of broth.
Oops, forgot the green peppers!  Red peppers are especially good, but I only had frozen green peppers left.
Peel & thinly slice two very large potatoes - these were close to a pound each.  Add them to the pan.  
Boil until all the veggies are tender.
 Remove from heat and add cream cheese, butternut squash puree, and diced ham.
Now, at this point you have two options.  If you diced your veggies (including potatoes) small enough, you can just stir it together well.  Or if you were in a hurry and left your veggies in large chunks, you can use an immersion blender to mix & chop.  Just don't be like me and over do it - tonight's batch was a little too thick & smooth.
Adjust seasonings to your tastes - I typically add 1tsp paprika, seasoning salt, and fresh ground black pepper.  This seasoning salt is from Mountain Rose Herbs, and has several herbs that remind me of chicken bouillon.  Perfect addition to soup!
Last step is stirring in shredded cheese.  My current combination is medium cheddar, fontina, and provolone.
If you really want the soup to be a wild success, have fresh rolls ready to go in the oven.  This picture is fairly washed out, but these are 100% whole wheat - I'll add the recipe soon :)
And the rolls are ready!  Dinner is served.

Cheesy Vegetable Soup    (serves 10-12)
10c chopped veggies (broccoli, carrots, celery, cauliflower, sweet peppers, onion)
7c chicken broth
4-5c thinly sliced potatoes
2c butternut squash puree
4c diced ham
8oz cream cheese
8oz shredded cheese (cheddar, provolone, fontina)
1tsp paprika
salt & pepper to taste

1.  Cook chopped veggies & potatoes in chicken broth until tender.
2.  Use potato masher or immersion blender to combine.
3.  Stir in butternut squash puree, diced ham, cream cheese, shredded cheese, paprika, salt, and pepper.


  • This is super easy to make with leftover ham & mashed potatoes.  Simply add the mashed potatoes when the veggies are almost tender - they will dissolve into the broth.
  • Try adding more veggies!  Red peppers are excellent, as are orange & yellow peppers.
  • Play with the proportions of the ingredients, make it your own :)
Picture of the veggies from a different batch of soup - this time I used my smart chopper to chop the veggies more finely, so I didn't need to use the immersion blender at the end.
And here is a picture of the end result from yet another batch of soup - the veggies & ham were a little too chunky for my toddler in this batch, which was made with Easter dinner leftovers:

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