Broccoli-Cheese Noodle Soup

by Kristen on January 22, 2014 · 21 comments

in Soup

Super Easy Broccoli Cheese Noodle Soup

I know I just posted a recipe for a broccoli soup, but I used a photo of the noodle version in a post recently, and you all asked for the recipe.

This is like a country cousin of the more sophisticated Cook’s Illustrated broccoli soup recipe I posted…the Cook’s recipe uses upper crust Parmesan and this one uses, uh, American cheese.

(I love that of all cheeses, this one is named after my country. It’s sort of a dubious distinction.)

Under most circumstances, I am strongly opposed to this kind of cheese, by which I mean that I think it’s disgusting.

I don’t even use it when I make my grilled cheese sandwiches…Swiss or any other kind of real cheese is so much better.

But I really don’t mind it in this soup, possibly because when it’s melted with milk and chicken broth, it just turns into a smooth, cheesy carrier for the noodles and broccoli.

broccoli noodle soup

Of course, meltable, processed cheese is not exactly a real food kind of ingredient, but it’s not like this soup is a less healthy meal than fast food, and it’s inexpensive, easy, and quick to throw together.

Also! As long as you use macaroni instead of ditalini, you can buy all of the ingredients at Aldi.

(They didn’t pay me to say that, though…they don’t know about this post, and I got my ingredients at Aldi just because that’s where I buy most of my groceries.)

I got this recipe from my aunt years ago, and I’m not sure where she got it from…maybe from a collaborative church cookbook or something along those lines.

Ok.

First, melt a tablespoon of butter in a saucepan, and add a half cup of chopped onions. Saute the onions until they’re a little bit softened.

sauteed onions

Then pour in 3 cups of chicken broth. The original recipe calls for 3 cups of water and a tablespoon of powdered bouillon, but I almost always have some homemade chicken broth in my freezer.

And since homemade chicken broth is so nutritious and so nigh onto free (Be still, my heart!), I prefer to use it.

chicken broth

Bring the broth to a boil, and then stir in a cup of small pasta. I used ditalini, but you can also use elbow macaroni or some other small pasta.

Ditalini

Next, add a package of frozen broccoli.

Aldi doesn’t carry the finely chopped stuff, so this is what I use.  It’s a few more ounces than the recipe calls for, but it seems to work just fine.

If the pieces are a little too big for your taste, you can always cut ‘em up.
Aldi broccoli

Oh, and you add garlic salt at this point too.
Aldi garlic salt

Let this boil for another 4 minutes or so.

IMG_5234

Then stir in cubed American cheese until it melts.

IMG_5236

Aldi sells this kind, which has enough for four recipes of this soup (!).  Other grocery stores do carry smaller packages if you prefer that.

Aldi american cheese

Add 3 cups of milk, and you’re done!  Just heat it to your desired serving temperature, but it’s best not to boil it after this point.

(At least, that’s what my recipe card says.  I presume that this type of cheese doesn’t do awesomely well when it’s boiled or something.)

IMG_5244

And there you go.

broccoli noodle soup

Broccoli-Cheese Noodle Soup

Printable Broccoli-Cheese Noodle Soup

1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 cups chicken broth
4 oz. macaroni or ditalini
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
12 oz. frozen broccoli
8 oz. Velveeta cheese, cubed
3 cups milk

Over medium heat, melt butter in a saucepan. Add chopped onion and saute for 3-5 minutes, or until softened.

Stir in chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add macaroni and boil 4 minutes. Add broccoli and garlic salt and boil for another 4 minutes.

Stir in cubed cheese until melted. Add milk and heat to desired serving temperature.
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Leave a Comment

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 SandyH January 22, 2014 at 9:43 am

I have no problem with Velveeta, I’m a Texas girl and it makes the best queso dip…but I find the name “American cheese” can mean anything from Kraft- singles type individually wrapped sandwich cheese, to a much higher quality cheddar cheese found at the deli counter, to this Velveeta. Actually I don’t think I’ve ever referred to Velveeta as “American” cheese! Although it undoubtedly is! for better or for worse!!

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2 Kristen January 22, 2014 at 9:48 am

To me, it all tastes the same…velveeta, the squares, the stuff from the deli. I think it’s mostly a textural issue I have with it, although the flavor isn’t super awesome to me either. I don’t even really like queso that much…salsa or guacamole are my favorites!

But in this soup, all is well.

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3 SandyH January 22, 2014 at 1:39 pm

Now I want some guacamole! Lol

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4 Kathy January 24, 2014 at 10:26 am

Sandy, I’m a native of Corpus so I so know what you mean about Velveeta for queso (along with Rotel.) Yum!!!!!!!!

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5 Hope :) January 22, 2014 at 9:54 am

This looks fantastic! I love, too, that you’re posting this during what’s decidedly soup weather here in the Mid-Atlantic. I’ll add this to the rotation posthaste. :)

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6 Lili@creativesavv January 22, 2014 at 10:01 am

I never would have thought to add noodles to a creamy soup — interesting.
We may not have any snow, here, but it’s been soup weather nonetheless.
I hope everyone who has snow is enjoying it, and staying warm!

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7 Judith January 22, 2014 at 10:02 am

The printable version is missing broccoli in the ingredient list.

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8 Kristen January 22, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Ack! So is the regular version. And because of the formatting issues currently happening on my blog, I can’t fix it! I promise I’ll fix it as soon as I can.

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9 Kristen January 22, 2014 at 2:32 pm

Done! Both should be correct now.

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10 WilliamB January 22, 2014 at 10:07 am

If you don’t want to use processed cheese, you can use Boursin, Alouette, or any goat cheese. The soup will taste like the cheese you add – goat cheese tastes quite different than Velveeta.

I just learned from Cooks Illustrated Family Cookbook that you can use these cheeses as the basis of cream sauce as well, thus avoiding having to make a roux and – for those who care – avoiding the roux’s carbs as well.

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11 MaryBrodie January 23, 2014 at 4:53 am

This looks delicious! I will have to give it a try. I think I will give it a go with WilliamB’s suggestion of using goats cheese. Purely because I love it haha! We have been eating a lot of soup lately so I’m sure the other half will appreciate the variation in recipe!

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12 EngineerMom January 22, 2014 at 11:55 am

If you’re interested, there’s a recipe for making American Cheese from scratch in the “America’s Test Kitchen DIY Cookbook”

It doesn’t look hard – blending a bunch of different ingredients together, mostly sharp cheddar and gelatin.

So if you really wanted a “real food” American Cheese, you could make your own. You know, in all your extra free time. ;-)

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13 Rebecca January 22, 2014 at 9:46 pm

Yep it’s awesome

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14 Rebecca Sutton January 22, 2014 at 11:59 am

There is REAL American cheese and then there is Velveeta and its ilk (“processed cheese food product or similar”). The 2 are similar in color and appearance in the package, but not in texture or taste (real American cheese has a “drier” appearance and texture). One has to be very careful to find the REAL as even Kroger tries to fool customers into buying the processed cheese food vs. real American cheese with packaging and wording of labels.

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15 Gladys January 22, 2014 at 2:00 pm

This looks perfect especially on this cold weather! I can’t wait to make this for our family.

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16 Sarah G. January 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm

This looks soooooooo good!!! My tummy is rumbling at the sight of the pictures (in a very good way). The fact that I’m pregnant and craving cheesy, salty food doesn’t help matters. Definitely making this. Soon.

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17 Kris January 22, 2014 at 3:38 pm

Ya know, I also don’t typically buy Velveeta or its generic equivalents (although I have seen this at Aldi), but my mom always made grilled cheese sandwiches with Velveeta and I loved them–I think maybe the creamy gooey-ness of Velveeta lends itself well to being heated …

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18 Katherine January 22, 2014 at 4:41 pm

I loved this soup, I made it a few weeks ago and got it at Comfy in the Kitchen blog. (Super blog that you all should check out!) Her recipe uses thin spaghetti noodles broken into small pieces and it was great the day of with the noodles but don’t refrigerate and reheat with noodles or they are swelled up and mushy. I chopped up my broccoli super fine and used real Velveeta and did like it better than the Aldi brand which is not bad just not quite as good to us after trying both.

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19 Rita Block January 23, 2014 at 1:26 pm

New to aldis on my Kindle. Love you and your specials. With a family of 13, aldi is my hero store.

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20 gail Parrish March 12, 2014 at 10:06 am

Is this cheese like velvetta?? I use grated mozzarella/cheddar mix on some of my soups. Thank you

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21 Kristen March 12, 2014 at 11:59 am

Yup!

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