Creamy, rich and packed with flavor, this dairy-free Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup is a quick and easy dinner to make for hearty dinners throughout the week.
Even though we live in hot and humid Malaysia, we still enjoy soups fairly often. My kids are obsessed with this vegan tomato soup (especially with a side of grilled cheese). I personally love me some red lentil pumpkin soup with lots of lemon juice. And a soup that the whole family enjoys is this rich and creamy Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup! It's basically a twist on my broccoli potato soup. The soup is a base of broccoli and potatoes and then I pour in our family's favorite cashew nacho cheese sauce for a rich, cheesy flavor. Yum!
Why This Recipe Works!
- This is the perfect weeknight recipe as it's very easy to make and stores beautifully in the fridge if you have leftovers.
- Creamy potatoes and cashews create a rich mouth feel in this vegan broccoli cheddar soup, without including any dairy whatsoever!
- Not only is this cheddar soup dairy-free, but it's also gluten-free. This makes it a great recipe to serve to friends and family who many have allergies.
- Potatoes - Potatoes create a hearty base to this simple broccoli cheddar soup. I love to buy pre-washed, smaller white potatoes as they make the prepping process super simple and they taste sweet and creamy!
- Broccoli - Obviously you'll need some broccoli to make this vegan broccoli cheddar soup. I never weigh or measure my broccoli, yet simply choose a large head and add the whole thing to the pot!
- Cashews - To replace all the dairy in regular cheddar-filled soup, you'll be making a quick and easy cashew nacho cheese sauce which starts with a base of raw cashews. I like to soak my cashews if I think about it in advance, but if you have a high speed blender you don't need to soak your cashews.
- Nutritional Yeast - To make the cashew sauce taste cheesy, you'll be adding in some nutritional yeast, in addition to other spices. Nutritional yeast is a plant-based foodie's best friend, so definitely get your hands on some!
- Spices - This vegan cheddar soup calls for a handful of commonly used spices. Be sure to read through the recipe card for the full list of spices you'll want to have on hand!
See recipe card for full list of ingredients and quantities.
🧀 If you don't mind using store-bought cheddar cheese, you can simply add some vegan shredded cheddar cheese to this soup instead of the homemade cashew cheese. Just make sure the brand you use melts!
🍋 Sometimes if I don't have a lemon on hand when making my nacho cheese sauce, I'll add a splash of apple cider vinegar instead. You'll just want to add something tangy to give your sauce that subtly cheesy flavor.
This soup is very adaptable. If you don't have broccoli, just add more potatoes for a potato cheddar soup. Personally, I think cauliflower would work beautifully in this soup instead of broccoli as well. Basically, whatever veggies you like to eat with potatoes and cheese are going to be winners!
How to Make Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup
In a large pot, heat some olive oil over medium heat. Add in your chopped onion and sauté until translucent. Add in the minced garlic and cook for another minute or so. Add in the vegetable broth and chopped potatoes, bring the broth to a boil and then reduce the liquid to a simmer. Allow the potatoes to cook for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, add in the broccoli florets and place the lid on the pot. Let the broccoli steam for about 5-10 minutes or until soft.
While the broccoli is steaming, make your cashew cheese sauce. Once the broccoli is fork tender, pour in the cashew cheese sauce and stir everything together.
Leave the soup chunky, blend half with an immersion blender, or blend everything in a blender until smooth. Serve warm with something carby and delicious!
Hint: I love blending half of this soup with an immersion blender. The texture is perfect (half smooth, half chunky) and I also don't have to wash my blender! Yay for easy clean up!
This soup tastes amazing even after sitting in the fridge for a few days. I love to make a large batch or even a double batch so we can enjoy this soup all week long. It should stay fresh for up to a week thanks to the lemon juice in the cashew cheese sauce.
- Cut your potatoes into similar sizes so that they cook evenly. Same with the broccoli florets!
- If you don't have a high speed blender, soak your cashews before making the cashew cheese sauce.
- Use an immersion blender to blend half of the soup right in the pot your made the soup in. It creates the best texture and makes for easy clean up!
Yukon gold potatoes, white potatoes and yellow potatoes are great potatoes to use in potato soup. They are more moist than russet potatoes and create a wonderful texture.
Mild cheddar, Colby, Monterey jack, mozzarella and swiss cheese all work well in soups. However, if you want to make this vegan broccoli cheddar soup, I love using my cashew nacho cheese sauce for a cheddar cheese taste without all the dairy.
Yes, you can make broccoli cheddar soup dairy-free! You can use a meltable vegan cheddar cheese, or in this case, I love to use cashew nacho cheese sauce. It stirs in beautifully to the soup and creates a rich and creamy taste.
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Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- 1 Soup pot
- 1 blender high speed if possible
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or use water
- 1 onion chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 1 lb. small white potatoes chopped into 1 inch cubes
- 1 large head broccoli (stem included!) cut into florets
- 1 batch Cashew Nacho Cheese Sauce
- Heat some olive oil in a large soup pot and sauté the onion until translucent. Add in the garlic and cook the garlic for a minute or so.
- Add in the vegetable broth and the chopped potatoes and bring the broth to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and let the potatoes cook for about 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, add in the broccoli florets. Press them down into the broth and place the lid on the pot. Allow the broccoli to simmer for 5-10 minutes or until fork tender.
- While the broccoli cooks, prepare the cashew cheese sauce by blending all of the ingredients together in a high speed blender until smooth.
- Stir the cheese sauce into the broccoli soup. Leave the soup as is or blend some of it with an immersion blender. Alternatively, you can also blend all of the soup in a blender until completely smooth. Enjoy warm!
- Cut the potatoes and broccoli florets into similar sizes so that they cook evenly!