There’s comfort in eating the iconic broccoli and cheddar soup, much like eating good ‘ol mac and cheese. Some of that comfort comes from an expected, mild flavor. This soup builds on that iconic flavor by using one sweet and one white potato instead of cream and butter and stirring in much less cheese at the end. The addition of some garam masala gives this soup a warm and cozy flavor, not quite as simple as the recipe from which it was inspired.

bowl of sweet potato and broccoli soup with spoon and grated cheese on top, shown from above.

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The inspiration for this soup comes loosely from the iconic and comforting broccoli and cheddar soup. However, that soup is big on creamy and cheesy goodness, but small on flavor and nutrition. This soup is based on a sweet potato and a white potato, the absence of butter or cream for more nutrition. The addition of garam masala, as well as the use of gruyere cheese, gives the soup a more complex flavor that I think you will really love. In essence, it is still comforting and creamy tasting without being so rich.

What are the Features of this Soup?

  • Broccoli Cheddar Soup Vibe -Gruyere cheese is stirred into the soup at the end for incredible flavor. This Swiss melting cheese has a full complex flavor and it lends a wonderful creamy texture.
  • Flavor Profile – Unlike its milder cousin, broccoli cheddar soup, this soup has a subtle warming spice flavor that comes from just a teaspoon of garam masala, a spice that includes cumin, coriander, cardamom, pepper, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and saffron! Unlike many sweet potato soups that get their sweetness from the addition of maple syrup or other sweeteners to play up the sweetness, this soup is savory.
  • Velvety smooth texture – The combo of sweet potato, white potato, and Gruyere cheese give this pureed soup a wonderfully smooth and velvety texture.
sweet potato and broccoli soup with spoonful in front, shown from above.

Above: Scallions, grated cheese, and crispy onions make great toppings for this soup, as do small bits of broccoli.

Ingredient Notes + Substitutions

  • Sweet Potatoes – While this recipe is built around a typical orange sweet potato, you can certainly substitute any sweet potato you have or want to use. There is probably some subtle taste differences between the different types, but nothing significant. Any yam or sweet potato will do.
  • Broccoli – The broccoli is chopped small and cooked separately in some water, and added to the pureed soup at the end of preparation so that the soup remains orange. The broccoli cooking water can be used as needed to thin the soup at the end of cooking and lend more broccoli flavor.
  • White potato – The white potato acts to thicken the soup and balance the sweetness of the sweet potato.
  • Puree – I’ve pureed the soup in its entirety, before adding the broccoli and cheese, but you can also puree less, and leave some of the potato chunks intact for a chunkier soup.
  • Gruyere Cheese – Gruyere cheese lends a complex stronger cheesy flavor. You could use fontina or gouda for a similar flavor. Cheddar would be plainer (and a bit greasier) but would certainly work.

Above: The broccoli is cut up smaller than usual for this soup, before boiling quickly. the water used to cook the broccoli can be added to pureed soup to adjust the thickness of the soup.

Ingredients for sweet potato and broccoli soup.

Above: The ingredients are simple and humble, but yield a nutritious and wonderfully tasty soup.

Method + Timing

  • Prep – A few minutes spent washing and chopping the ingredients is all that is needed.
  • Cook – This soup couldn’t be easier. Saute the aromatics, add the potatoes, spices, and broth then cook for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, you blanch/boil the broccoli.
  • Blend and Finish – The cooked soup is blended, then the broccoli and goat cheese are stirred into the soup.

Above: This soup uses a simple process of sauteing the aromatics (garlic, onion), then adding the chopped potatoes, spices, and broth to cook.

Above: Once the potatoes are cooked, the soup is pureed and returned to the pot, where the cooked broccoli and cheese are added and stirred in until the cheese melts and is incorporated.

crispy onion package.

Crispy Onions!

I don’t usually promote packaged foods, but I love these crispy onions found in the produce section of my local grocer, near the tofu and croutons, etc. They taste just right without too much grease or salt. Homemade fried shallots (just fry shallots in a shallow pan of oil) are also amazing, but I recommend these.

sweet potato and broccoli soup topped with scallions, grated cheese and crispy onions

Serving + Reheating

This soup is fun to top with any of the following for visual impact as well as added flavor and crunch:

  • Extra grated Gruyere cheese
  • Reserved cooked broccoli
  • Scallions
  • Crispy Onions – see the info box above about these.

The soup reheats beautifully on the stove-top or in the microwave. Take care not to bring it to a rolling boil on the stove-top, or the melted cheese might separate.

potato and broccoli cheese soup with a spoon and toppings.
bowl of sweet potato and broccoli soup with spoon and grated cheese on top, shown from above.

Sweet Potato Soup with Broccoli and Gruyere Cheese

Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Servings4
Calories307
This soup builds on the flavor of the iconic broccoli n' cheddar soup by using one sweet and one white potato instead of cream and butter and stirring in much less cheese at the end. The addition of some garam masala gives this soup a warm and cozy flavor, not quite as simple as the recipe from which it was inspired.
Kitchen Tools
  • 1 3 qt soup pot
  • 1 blender

Ingredients
 

  • 2 olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion (chopped (I used the food processor))
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 tsp garam masala (contains: cumin, coriander,cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg + saffron.)
  • 1 medium-large orange sweet potato chopped
  • 1 medium potato chopped (russet or any type)
  • 1 quart vegetable broth (I use low sodium)
  • 1 crown broccoli (about 2 cups chopped smallish)
  • 4 oz gruyere cheese (aged swiss melting cheese- could sub fontina or gouda for similar flavor.)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method:  

  • Chop broccoli into small pieces as shown in photo. We don't want large chunks. Steam/boil in about 1 cup of water a few minutes, until tender (leftover water can be used to thin soup later). Set aside to add to soup after it is pureed. See note.
  • Heat olive oil in pot, add onion and garlic and saute 5 minutes until soft. Add cumin, cilantro, oregano and saute briefly, then add potatoes (both) and broth and cook about 10 minutes until potatoes are tender.
  • Puree soup in blender, food processor or with immersion blender until smooth.
  • Return pureed soup to pot on med-low heat. Stir in broccoli and gruyere cheese (reserve some broccoli and cheese for garnish if you like).
  • Once cheese is incorporated, then taste and add salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

Soup Note: I intentionally keep the broccoli aside from the rest of the soup until after it is pureed, to keep the hue of the soup purple. There is no reason you cannot include it and puree it with the potatoes if you prefer.
Nutrition Facts Note: The nutrition facts are calculated based on the avocado crema being divided into four servings. You may not find you eat a full 1/4 of it, per serving.

Nutrition (an estimate)

Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 252mg | Potassium: 600mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin C: 52mg | Calcium: 335mg | Iron: 1mg | Magnesium: 47mg | Net Carbohydrates: 23g
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