This lusciously creamy Potato Cheese Soup is here to feed your body, comfort your soul, and please the part of you that secretly wishes we could eat cheese for dinner every night.
With their flexible ingredients, ease of prep, leftover prowess, and all-around comfort factor, soups are one of the most important genres in my healthy dinner collection.
When it comes to ultimate comfort, however, cheese and potatoes have magical powers (I love you Cream of Asparagus Soup, but it’s just not the same.)
Even within the potato soup family, we have options:
- Crockpot Potato Soup Recipe. For when you are going hands-free and can prep ahead.
- Instant Pot Potato Soup. Another hands-free option in less time.
- Vegan Potato Soup. For when you want to skip the cheese and dairy.
- Potato Leek Soup. For a burst of spring.
But when you want a soup recipe that will envelop you in a warm hug, make your tummy happy, and your cheeks glow?
This potato cheese soup recipe is the one you choose.
5 Star Review
“Just like all of Erin’s other recipes I’ve tried, this one turned out amazing and was a huge hit with the whole family!”— Barb —
This thick and creamy potato cheddar cheese soup is everything a soul-soothing soup should be.
- It’s creamy. Buttery Yukon gold potatoes are blended perfectly smooth to a velvet-like consistency.
- It’s cheesy. Made with plenty of sharp cheddar cheese (like this Slow Cooker Broccoli and Cheese Soup) that melts smoothly and contributes not only color but richness and flavor too.
- And it’s healthy. Unlike other cheesy potato soups, this recipe contains ZERO heavy cream (neither does this Cauliflower Chowder). Instead, a simple flour-based rue and nonfat milk thicken the soup fabulously without adding excess fat or calories.
How to Make Potato Cheese Soup
Healthy, comforting, and cheesy. Need I say more?
This easy potato cheese soup topped with bacon and chives is the perfect soup recipe for a cozy night, and you’ll feel good about its ingredient line-up too.
- Potatoes. Yukon golds are my favorite type of potato for this soup (and Crockpot Mashed Potatoes). Their buttery flavor gives the soup inherent richness, and they puree velvety smooth while still adding plenty of thickness and body to the soup.
- Broth. Chicken broth enriches with more flavor and taste than water can.
- Nonfat Milk. Keeps this cheesy soup lower in fat, cholesterol, and calories (I also use nonfat milk for this creamy Broccoli Cauliflower Soup).
- All-Purpose Flour. Creates a roux when stirred into the butter used to saute the vegetables. It thickens the soup without needing to use heavy cream, half-and-half, or whole milk.
- Cheddar Cheese. The classic! Use sharp cheddar for max flavor; you can get away with adding less without sacrificing flavor.
- Onions + Garlic. Like many fantastic soup recipes, this potato cheese soup begins with a traditional base of onions sautéed with butter and cloves garlic.
- Carrots. For hidden veggies, a lovely “cheesy” color, and a subtle sweetness. (If you enjoy carrots in your soup, give this Roasted Carrot Soup a try.)
- Cayenne. For just a little kick that adds the right amount of spice.
- Jalapeno. An optional addition for those who like extra heat.
- Toppings. Crisp crumbled bacon, diced green onions or fresh chives and extra cheddar cheese take this soup to next-level delicious.
- Saute the vegetables and spices in melted butter in large saucepan or dutch oven.
- Add the flour, cook until golden, then slowly stir in the milk.
- Once the mixture has thickened, stir in the broth, add the potatoes, and bring to a boil on medium heat. Simmer until the vegetables are tender.
- Blend the soup until smooth.
You can either puree the soup in a high-powered blender or food processor. You can also use an immersion blender to blend the soup right in your pot for easier clean-up.
- Stir in the cheese until melted then garnish with chives, bacon, and additional cheddar cheese. Ladle into bowls and ENJOY!
Slow Cooker Option
Transfer the vegetable mixture to a 5-quart or larger crockpot before adding the chicken stock and potato. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 to 6 hours on low. Proceed with the recipe as directed.
- To Store. Leftover potato cheese soup may be refrigerated for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
- To Reheat. Warm gently on the stovetop or in the microwave (at a reduced power level) until steaming. Do not warm too quickly or the soup may separate.
- To Freeze. Potato cheese soup can be frozen for up to 3 months. For best results, allow the soup to cool completely before putting it in the freezer and defrost overnight in the fridge before warming. Note that dairy-based soups and potato soups do tend to curdle and separate when frozen and thawed. If this bothers you, then I would not recommend freezing this soup.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Dutch Oven. A soup lover’s perfect partner for stovetop soup recipes like this one.
- Blender. A high-powered blender is the secret to getting pureed soups perfectly silky smooth.
- Immersion Blender. A great option for pureeing soups without having to make a messy transfer to a blender or food processor.
Thanks for the hug, potato cheese soup. I’m always happy to have one.
Frequently Asked Questions
The best cheese to use in soup is a good-quality melting cheese with some sharpness. Cheese varieties like cheddar, gruyere, and swiss will melt smoothly and contribute the most flavor to cheesy soup recipes like this one. I also recommend freshly grating cheese from the block for soups rather than buying preshedded cheese which often contains additives that prevent it from melting smoothly. No need for cream cheese here!
I have not experimented with making this particular potato cheese soup vegan. However, I do have this awesome Vegan Potato Soup if that’s more your style.
If you would like your soup to be a little thicker, you can make a simple slurry with a few tablespoons of cornstarch and water (or chicken broth) and mix it in the soup while it simmers. Within a few minutes, it should thicken up. For a thinner soup, you can gradually add extra chicken broth or nonfat milk to the soup until it reaches your desired thickness.
Potato Cheese Soup
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 medium jalapeño seeded and diced, optional for a little heat
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 cup nonfat milk
- 4 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes peeled and chopped
- 1 3/4 cups freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese plus additional for serving
- Chopped fresh chives or green onions for serving
- Cooked and crumbled bacon for serving (use Oven Baked Bacon or Air Fryer Bacon for easy cooking methods)
- Melt the butter in a large, deep stockpot or Dutch over medium-high heat. Add the onion and carrots and sauté until just beginning to soften; about 5 minutes. Add the jalapeno, garlic, salt, and cayenne pepper and cook the garlic is fragrant; about 30 seconds.
- Sprinkle the flour over the top of the vegetables, then cook for an additional minute until lightly golden and no white bits remain. Slowly stir in the milk and cook until the mixture thickens, about 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Stir in the broth, then add the chopped potato. Bring to boil, then partially cover and let simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Stir from time to time and adjust the heat as needed so that you maintain a steady simmer (but not a full-on boil).
- Transfer the soup to a blender or food processor and puree in batches until smooth (alternatively, you can use an immersion blender directly in the pot).
- Stir in the cheese a half-cup at a time, allowing it to melt completely before stirring in the next half cup. Serve garnished with chives, bacon, and additional cheddar cheese.
TO MAKE IN A SLOW COOKER: After Step 2, transfer the vegetable mixture to a 5-quart or larger crockpot. Add the chicken stock and potato. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 to 6 hours on low. Proceed with the recipe as directed.
- TO STORE: Leftover potato cheese soup may be refrigerated for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
- TO REHEAT: Warm gently on the stovetop or in the microwave (at a reduced power level) until steaming. Do not warm too quickly or the soup may separate.
- TO FREEZE: Potato cheese soup can be frozen for up to 3 months. For best results, allow the soup to cool completely before putting it in the freezer and defrost overnight in the fridge before warming. Note that dairy-based soups do tend to curdle and separate when frozen and thawed. If this bothers you, then I would not recommend freezing this soup.
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