This Instant Pot Broccoli Cheddar Soup is just like Panera Bread’s – it’s a delicious, creamy soup that also freezes well.
How to make broccoli cheddar soup in the Instant Pot
- Melt butter in the Instant pot, then saute onions, celery and carrots for 5 minutes until softened.
- Stir in garlic, salt & pepper and flour, tossing to combine.
- Whisk in the liquids (milk and chicken broth) then add your broccoli.
- Set the Instant Pot soup to pressure cooker and allow to pressure cook for 1 minute.
- Stir in the cheese to the soup.
- Serve soup in large bowls and enjoy!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Butter – you can use any neutral cooking oil like avocado oil, olive oil or sunflower oil in place of butter to saute the vegetables.
- Yellow onion – white onions or shallots are great alternatives to yellow onions in this recipe.
- Celery – if you’re not a fan of celery or are in a pinch, you can feel free to leave it out.
- Carrot – if you’re not a fan of carrots or are in a pinch, like the celery, you can feel free to leave it out.
- Garlic – fresh garlic is preferred but jarred minced garlic will also work.
- Salt & pepper (to taste)
- Flour – to make this recipe gluten free, you can use brown rice flour in place of regular flour. If you are doing this, only use half of the amount listed.
- Milk – any dairy or nondairy milk of your choice can be used in this recipe. You can also use half and half cream instead of milk for a thicker soup.
- Chicken broth – vegetable broth can be used instead of chicken broth.
- Broccoli – broccoli is the star of the show in this soup so you will want to include it. It is up to you to use either fresh broccoli or frozen.
- Cheddar cheese – mild cheddar, sharp cheddar, white cheddar or mixed are great options for this soup.
What to serve with broccoli cheese soup
If you’re looking to create a total Panera copycat meal, you can serve your broccoli cheddar soup with a sandwich of your choice or a salad of your choice. These are truly perfect pairings, but they’re not your only options. You can pair your soup with:
- Sauted vegetables
- Mixed green salads
- Baguettes or garlic bread
- Grilled cheese sandwiches
- And more!
Storing and reheating
Any leftover soup can be stored as individual servings in airtight glass containers or mason jars. I enjoy storing my leftover soups in mason jars because they make future meals that much easier. All you have to do is warm up the mason jar of soup and enjoy- no extra bowls necessary! The leftover soup will last in the fridge for up to five days, making this a great meal prep dish.
When you’re ready to enjoy your soup, warm it up in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or in a pot on the stovetop until warmed.
Freezing this soup
This soup is also freezer friendly making it the ultimate meal prep dish! Allow your soup to cool down to room temperature before freezing. Once the soup has cooled down, pour the soup into freezer bags, mason jars or airtight glass containers in individual servings. You can store the soup in the freezer for up to two months.
When you’re ready to enjoy your soup, move the serving to the fridge the night before to thaw out completely. Then pour it into a pot on the stove to warm, while stirring frequently. If you’re in a rush then you can go ahead and microwave your soup for up to two minutes after it has thawed in the fridge overnight.
More Instant Pot soup recipes
Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on storing leftovers in the fridge
- Freeze this recipe in glass microwave-safe bowlsup to 3 months
Instant Pot Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 carrot, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 cup milk
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 2 heads broccoli, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
- Turn Instant Pot to saute mode. Melt butter, then saute onions, celery and carrots for 5 minutes until softened. Stir in garlic, salt & pepper and flour, tossing to combine. Whisk in milk, stirring to remove lumps, then add in chicken broth and broccoli. Turn off saute mode.
- NOTE: You will want to scrap bottom of the Instant Pot very well after liquids are added to avoid the burn message. If you do receive the burn message, scrape the bottom of the pot and then try one more time. All the Instant Pot really needs to do is come to pressure to cook the broccoli, it doesn't need to pressure cook for an extended period of time.
- Place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal. Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 1 minute. Instant Pot will take about 5-10 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook for 1 minute.
- Do a quick release of the pressure on the Instant Pot by flicking the switch at the top with a spoon. Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily.
- Stir in cheese, then serve soup in large bowls. Enjoy!