A creamy, healthy bowl of roasted broccoli soup topped with melted cheddar croutons. This is the simplest recipe that you can make all winter long. The soup is flavored with onion, leeks, garlic, and za’atar (a very flavorful herby spice blend), plus all that delicious roasted broccoli. And of course the best part…the toasted, cheesy whole grain bread for dipping. It’s the best lunch or side dish for these cold January days!
roasted broccoli soup – the details
This roasted broccoli soup couldn’t be easier. The broccoli florets are roasted in the oven until slightly charred and tender. In the meantime, you’ll cook off all the remaining soup ingredients in a big pot over the stove, including the broccoli stems. Onion, leeks, and garlic add a nice base of flavor, while za’atar gives an added herby kick.
Za’atar is a middle eastern, savory blend of herbs and spices. Recipes can vary, but the store-bought jar I used included sesame seeds, thyme, lemon peel and lemon oil, and oregano. It’s rich and fragrant, with a zippy bite from the lemon.
Vegetable stock goes into the soup and it all simmers for just about 20 minutes. You’ll stir in half of the roasted broccoli along with some lemon juice and blend it all up until creamy.
The key is to blend the soup for at least 90 seconds and use a high-powered blender such as a Vitamix. The time plus power will allow all of the broccoli to break apart and result in a really creamy soup.
Finish touch? The melted cheddar croutons! I used whole grain bread to keep things nice and nutritious, plus lots of sharp white cheddar cheese and a little more za’atar. These croutons are absolutely delicious dipped into the vibrant soup.
Perfect for a cold day’s lunch, or add on a big salad to turn this roasted broccoli soup into a hearty dinner!Print
Roasted Broccoli Soup with Melted Cheddar Croutons
creamy roasted broccoli soup with melted cheddar croutons and za’atar
- 2 ½ lbs broccoli (whole stalks), ends trimmed
- olive oil, as needed
- kosher salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 large leek, thinly sliced
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tbsp za’atar spice blend
- 1 ½ qts chicken (or vegetable) stock
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 large lemon, juiced
- 2 oz fresh spinach
- 2 tbsp heavy cream
- 2 tbsp minced chives
for the croutons…
- 4 slices fresh grainy bread, about ½” thick
- olive oil, as needed
- 6 oz sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 tsp za’atar spice blend
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Divide the broccoli stalks into florets and stems. Peel the stems, dice them about a ½”, and set aside. Place the florets onto a sheet pan and drizzle with a generous coating of olive oil. Toss well and spread into an even layer. Season with salt and black pepper. Roast for 20 minutes until slightly charred and tender.
- Meanwhile, heat a large Dutch oven (or heavy-bottomed pot) over medium heat. Add the ¼ cup of olive oil. Add the onions and cook for about 5 minutes until tender. Stir in the leeks and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and za’atar, and cook for 30 more seconds.
- Add the diced broccoli stems and pour in the vegetable stock. Season with salt and black pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 25 minutes until the broccoli stems are tender, stirring occasionally.
- Add in half of the roasted broccoli, the lemon zest, lemon juice, and spinach. Stir until the spinach wilts. Ladle the soup into a blender and blend for 90 seconds until creamy, working in batches if needed. Transfer the soup back to the pot and stir in the cream. Season with salt to taste.
- For the croutons, place the sliced bread onto a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil on both sides. Toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Top each slice with a mound of cheddar cheese. Sprinkle the za’atar over top. Turn the oven to high broil and bake until the cheese is melted & golden (watch closely so they don’t burn).
- Place the sheet pan of remaining roasted broccoli back in the oven for just a couple of minutes to heat through. Serve the soup warm with a melted cheddar crouton and roasted broccoli on top. Garnish with the chives and more black pepper.
If you like lots of bread with your soup, I suggest doubling the crouton recipe and toasting 2 slices of cheesy bread per serving.
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