Potato, Cream Cheese, Bacon and Chive Soup

Potato, Bacon & Chive Soup

This is a recipe for a thick and creamy Potato Soup flavored with Cream Cheese, Bacon and Chives. Cubed potatoes are simmered in broth with sauteed onion and thyme until tender then milk, bacon, chives, cream cheese and Parmesan cheese are mixed in. It’s another Panera knock-off and one of my favorites. I always assumed that it was sour cream that I was tasting in their soup. But a quick scan of the ingredient list on their website and I found cream cheese in the list sans the sour cream.

Just like the Broccoli Cheddar Soup knock-off this one is thicker than Panera’s but with many of the same distinguishing flavors. And it’s another super quick and easy soup that’s rich, hearty, filling and extremely comforting for a rainy May day.

I’m sending this to Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays.

Potato Cream Cheese Bacon & Chive Soup
(by Reeni)(Serves 4)

1 Yellow Onion, diced
2 tablespoons Olive oil
1 teaspoon Thyme
Sea or Kosher salt and Fresh Black Pepper
6 cups Potatoes, 1/2-inch cubes
4 cups Vegetable or Chicken Broth
2 cups Milk
4 ounces Cream Cheese (not fat-free)
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1/4 cup Chives or Green Onion, chopped*
5-6 slices Bacon, cooked and crumbled

1. In a large heavy bottomed saucepan saute the onion and thyme in oil until soft and tender, season well with salt and pepper.

2. Add potatoes and broth. Simmer for 20 minutes until potatoes are tender. Carefully remove two cups of the potatoes and puree with a blender/immersion blender.

3. Add the pureed soup back in along with the milk, cream cheese, Parmesan, chives and bacon. Bring to a simmer and stir the cream cheese into the soup as it melts. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve.

*An easy way to ‘chop’ chives or green onion is by snipping with kitchen scissors.

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Potato, Cream Cheese, Bacon & Chive Soup

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Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

I have a hearty soup recipe today for Italian Wedding Soup. The name refers to the meat and vegetables marrying well together. Minestra Maritata means married soup. And it truly is a harmony of flavors with tasty, tender, little meatballs swimming in an herby broth with tubettini pasta, spinach, carrots, onion and garlic. It is the sort of soup you wish was served in a bottomless bowl…

This is a main course soup that is fairly quick and easy to make. Depending on how fast you get the meatballs made and the veggies chopped this can be ready for the table in about 45 minutes from start to finish.
 

Italian Wedding Soup
(by Reeni)
Meatballs:
1 pound Ground Beef, 80-85% lean
1/4 cup Bread Crumbs
2 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese
1 egg, beaten
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1/2 teaspoon Sea or Kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon Fresh Black Pepper
Soup:
1/2 cup Carrots, diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
2-3 tablespoons Olive Oil
Sea or Kosher salt and Fresh Black Pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Basil
6 cups Chicken Broth
1/2 – 2/3 cup Tubettini or Ditalini*
2/3 cup Chopped Spinach, frozen or 2 cups Fresh, chopped
1/4 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated, plus more for serving

1. Mix all the meatball ingredients together in a large bowl using a fork. Form into small meatballs about the size of a quarter using your hands. Set aside.

2. In a large soup pot saute onion and carrot in 2-3 tablespoons of Olive oil over medium-low heat until soft and tender, season well with salt and pepper. Add garlic and basil; saute until fragrant.

3. Add chicken broth and turn up heat and bring to a slow boil. When it begins to boil add meatballs carefully one at a time. Add tubettini and spinach. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 25 minutes.

4. Stir in parsley and Parmesan cheese. Taste and re-season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve with additional Parmesan and crusty bread.

*For a heartier soup with less broth add 2/3 cup pasta, for more broth add 1/2 cup.

Broccoli Cheddar Cheese Soup

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

I have a recipe for a deliciously simple soup today: Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese. I have developed such a love for soup since starting this blog. But not just any soup – it must be homemade. Canned soup makes me cringe. I suppose I’m spoiled… But when fresh, wholesome soup is as easy and fast as this one there should be no excuse for opening up a can.

I ate Panera’s Broccoli Cheddar Soup for lunch the other day and while it was totally satisfying at the time I wanted more! So much so that the very next day I adapted this Food Network knock-off. Although it is similar to Panera’s it isn’t an exact rendition.

My version is thicker and has a stronger, fresher broccoli flavor compared to Panera’s. The recipe did have an option of adding water at the end to thin out the soup but I skipped that step, not wanting to water down the flavor. The original recipe calls for simmering the broth first and adding the broccoli later…I added the broccoli sooner, shortening the cooking time and bringing out more flavor.

The soup is also flavored with onion, carrots, bay leaf, and a pinch of nutmeg. It all gets blended until smooth and creamy with little flecks of orange and green veggies throughout. It’s every bit as good as Panera’s if not better, and totally satisfied my every craving.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup
(adapted from Food Network)
2 tablespoons Butter
2 tablespoons Olive OIl
1 small Onion, diced
1/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
14 ounces Evaporated Milk or 1 + 3/4 cups Half-and-Half
3 cups Chicken Broth
4 cups Broccoli Florets, frozen or fresh
3/4 cup Carrots, diced
1 bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 + 1/2 cups Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese, plus more for garnish
Bread Bowls, for serving, optional
1. Melt the butter in a large, heavy-bottomed sauce pan. Add the olive oil and onion, cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the flour and cook until golden, 3 to 4 minutes, then gradually whisk in the evaporated milk or half-and-half until smooth.
2. Add the chicken broth, broccoli, carrots bay leaf, and nutmeg, then season with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered, until thickened, about 20 -25 minutes.
3. Discard the bay leaves. Puree the soup, carefully in batches in a blender until smooth or use an immersion blender and puree right in the pot; you’ll still have flecks of carrot and broccoli. Return to the pot. Add the cheese to the soup and whisk over medium heat until melted.
4. Serve in bread bowls if desired with a garnish of cheese.

Broccoli Cheddar Cheese Soup

I’m sending this to my lovely friend, Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays round-up!

I’m also sending this to my equally lovely friend Chaya of My Sweet and Savory for Meatless Mondays!

Chicken and Wild Rice Soup with Coconut Milk

Coconut Chicken & Wild Rice Soup w/ Edamame

I’m giving you a healthy, hearty and satisfying recipe today for Chicken Soup with Wild Rice.

It is not the traditional chicken & rice soup you might remember from your childhood.

This is a modern, re-invented version with coconut milk and edamame.

Of course the more familiar, classic flavors like carrots, celery and corn are still there.

Coconut milk has tons more flavor than milk and adds a rich, silky ‘body’ to this soup.

The wild rice is kind of chewy with a nutty flavor and since it’s a whole grain a whole lot better for you than white rice.

It does take a while to cook and I like to cook it separate from the soup so it doesn’t have a chance to soak up the broth.

I know that some of you will think the cinnamon and nutmeg are strange additions. But it’s just a pinch. No one will detect their presence and it does nice things for the cream flavor.

I love the edamame in here! A little something different to set it apart from your run-of-the mill soups.

Coconut Chicken & Wild Rice Soup w/ Edamame
Coconut Chicken & Wild Rice Soup
(by Reeni)
1 + 1/2 cups Wild Rice or Brown Rice (like Goose Valley)
1 cup Carrots, sliced in thin rounds
2 stalks Celery, diced
1 large Yellow Onion, diced
2 teaspoons Thyme
Olive oil for sauteing
4 cloves Garlic, minced
Sea/Kosher Salt and fresh Black Pepper
2  +  1/2 to 3 cups Chicken Breast, raw, chopped in bite size pieces, seasoned with salt and pepper
5 cups Chicken Broth
1 cup Edamame/Soy Beans, shelled
1 cup Corn
1 Bay Leaf
Dash of Cinnamon
Pinch of Nutmeg
1/4 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
14 ounces Coconut Milk
1. Start the rice cooking according to package directions in a separate pot from the soup.
2. Meanwhile in a large soup pot saute the carrots, celery, onion and thyme in enough oil to cover bottom of pan on medium-low heat. Season well with salt and pepper. When the vegetables begin to soften add garlic and chicken, mix every few minutes until all sides of the chicken pieces are no longer raw.
3. Add broth, edamame, corn, bay leaf, cinnamon and nutmeg. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon of Black Pepper. Simmer for 20 minutes.
4. Add parsley and coconut milk. Simmer for ten minutes.
5. When rice is cooked stir into the soup. Taste and re-season if needed. Remove bay leaf before serving.

SouperSundaysI’m sending this over to Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper (Soup, Salad, Sammie) Round-up.

Coconut Chicken Soup with Wild Rice & Edamame

Thank-you Goose Valley for the complimentary samples of Rice!

Chipotle Corn and Potato Chowder

Chipotle Corn & Potato Chowder

I have a spicy soup recipe today for Chipotle Corn & Potato Chowder. It’s a simple but satisfying soup brimming with pieces of potato and corn. The chipotle pepper gives it a lingering heat that adds a nicely robust flavor without overwhelming you. It’s thick, creamy and a little bit sweet from the cream-style corn. Half-way through some of the potatoes are removed, pureed and added back in to thicken it even further.

It’s a breeze to make and you probably have everything in your cupboard to make it right now. It’s hearty and totally comforting, perfect to curl up with on a cool Spring night.

Chipotle Corn & Potato Chowder

Chipotle Corn & Potato Chowder
(by Reeni)
1 large Yellow Onion, diced
2 stalks of Celery, diced
2 Carrots, diced
Olive oil for sauteing
1 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Cumin
Sea/Kosher Salt and fresh Black Pepper
5 cloves Garlic, minced
1 Chipotle Pepper in Adobo Sauce, seeded, minced
1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
7 cups Potato, cubed
5 cups Chicken or Vegetable Broth
1 – 14 ounce can Cream Style Corn
1 cup Corn, frozen or canned, drained
1/4 cup fresh Parsley, chopped
Sour Cream, for serving
Chopped Chives or Green Onion, for serving
Crumbled Bacon, optional, for serving
1. In a large soup pot saute onion, celery, carrots, thyme, paprika and cumin in enough olive oil to cover bottom of pan over medium-low heat until soft and tender. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, add Worcestershire and Chipotle, saute for a minute or two.
3. Add potatoes and broth, bring to a simmer and continue simmering for 15 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
4. Remove 2 cups of the potatoes including broth and puree with a blender, food processor or just mash really well with a potato masher. Add back to soup with both types of corn and parsley. Continue to simmer for ten -15 minutes. Taste and re-season with salt and pepper if needed.
5. Serve with sour cream, chopped chives or green onion and crumbled bacon if desired.
SouperSundays

I’m sending this to Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sunday round-up.

Chipotle Corn & Potato Chowder

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White Chicken Chili

White Chicken Chili

I made this Chicken Chili to go along with the Cheddar & Green Chile Beer Bread from my last post. After seeing White Chicken Chili all over the Internet lately I couldn’t resist its temptations any longer. I contemplated adding diced tomatoes, even going so far as to take the can out and put it on the counter. But this was white chili and adding tomatoes just felt wrong. Even with the milk.

Instead of the tomatoes that chili is known for chicken broth and evaporated milk make up the broth. I used leftover roasted chicken, meaty cannelini beans, crispy corn, and generous amounts of onion, green pepper, garlic, Chipotle peppers and spices. I like my chili pretty spicy, adjust it to suit your own taste. You can also double the beans for a thicker chili, this has a lot of broth to it. The flavor is almost indescribable; largely in part from the cinnamon and nutmeg. It adds a delicious note to the flavor, not quite sweet, and it might be that you can smell it more so than you can taste it. Either way it was incredibly warming, hearty, and satisfying. And different. In a good way.

White Chicken Chili
White Chicken Chili
(by Reeni)
1 yellow onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
Vegetable oil, for sauteing
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 Chipotle Peppers in Adobo, deseeded, minced*
1 tablespoon Chile Powder
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Oregano
1 teaspoon Sea or Kosher Salt
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
4 cups Chicken**, cooked, rough-chopped
1 – 14 and 1/2 ounce can White Beans, like Cannelini (can be doubled)
1 cup Corn, frozen or canned, drained
1 – 14 and 1/2 ounce can Chicken Broth
1 – 14 and 1/2 ounce can Evaporated Milk
Toppings:
Sour Cream
Extra Sharp Cheddar, shredded
Avocado/Guacamole
Shredded Lettuce
Soft Bread Croutons
Tortilla Chips
Diced Tomato
Diced Green or Yellow Onion
Salsa
1. In a large soup pot or heavy bottomed sauce pan saute the onion and green pepper in two tablespoon of oil over medium-low heat until soft and tender. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add the Chipotles and all of the dry spices along with little more oil if the pan is dry. Mix well and continue sauteing for 4-5 minutes.
2. Add the Worcestershire and chicken mixing well with the onion/spice mixture. Add the beans, corn, chicken broth, and milk. Simmer for 25 minutes. Taste halfway through and re-season with salt/spices if desired, and again before serving.
3. Serve with toppings of your choice.
*The Chipotles can be omitted or substituted with another type of pepper or with cayenne pepper.
**To use raw chicken breasts, trim of fat and rough chop, add them in after all the vegetables are sauteed and pan-fry on all sides.

Look at those delicious beer bread croutons soaking up all that flavor!

White Chicken Chili

Chicken and White Bean Chili on FoodistaChicken and White Bean Chili

Taco Soup

Snowy Day Taco Soup

I wish I could cook up clever and creative names for my recipes. I’m going to make that my foodie resolution for the new year. My names are so boring. I mean Taco Soup? Really? Does that pique your interest? It feels plain and uninspired. I could name it Reeni Soup; it worked for Ceaser and his salad! But that’s too easy. I need a system for invention. I guess the best place to start is at the beginning. It was a snowy, blustery day that woke up my craving for this hearty, stick-to-your ribs soup. I had a roasted chicken carcass destined for the soup pot and a taste for something on the spicy side. Hmmm. How about Snowy Day Soup? See it’s easier than I thought. All it takes is getting to the heart of it. Snowy Day Taco Soup. There. That’s a little better. Yes?

Anywhoo… this soup was everything I anticipated. The smell as it simmered was exactly that of a taco and it did not let me down in the flavor department. It tasted exactly like one too with its richly spiced broth, tender meat and juicy corn. Chunky potatoes add to its heartiness. I know potatoes aren’t typically associated with tacos but I’ve included them in a beef taco before and they really go well. On its own it was delicious but I felt like it was missing something. And it was. The toppings, especially the cheese and lettuce bring everything together and round out the flavors tremendously. Don’t skimp on them(!) and you’ll have all the familiar flavors of a taco plus some.

You don’t have to wait for a snowy day to make this soup. But if you find yourself snowed in amidst a storm this is precisely what is called for to warm your body as well as your soul; from the top of your head to your tummy to your cold little tippy toes!

Snowy Day Taco Soup

Snowy Day Taco Soup
(by Reeni)
1 pound ground beef
1 large yellow onion, diced
Vegetable oil for sauteing
4 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon Chile powder
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Paprika
1 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 and 1/2 teaspoons Oregano
1 teaspoon Salt
3/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
A dash (or more) of Cayenne Pepper
1 and 1/2 teaspoons Worcestshire Sauce
4 cups Chicken or Beef Broth
3-4 cups Potatoes, cubed
1 and 1/2 cups Corn, frozen or canned, drained
1/3 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
Essential Toppings:
Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
Shredded Lettuce
Sour Cream
Optional Toppings:
Tomato, diced
Onion, diced
Salsa
Avocado/Guacamole
Tortilla Chips
1. In a large skillet brown the beef, breaking it apart as it cooks. At the same time in a large sauce pan or soup pot saute the onion in enough vegetable oil to cover the bottom of the pan, until soft and tender. In a small bowl measure out and combine all of the dry spice ingredients together. Add garlic, and all of the spices to the onion. Continue to saute for five minutes, adding a little more oil if the onion and spices start to stick to the bottom.
2. Drain the grease from the beef. Add the Worcestershire and beef crumbles to the pot. Combine well with the onion/spice mixture. Add the broth, potatoes, corn and parsley. Simmer for 20-25 minutes until potatoes are tender. Halfway through taste and adjust seasonings, adding more spices if needed.
4. Serve with generous amounts of fixin’s!

Snowy Day Taco Soup

Snowy Day Taco Soup on FoodistaSnowy Day Taco Soup

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Baked Potato Soup

I am really enjoying soup weather! Although someone forgot to tell the roses that are in bloom behind my house that summer’s over. If you love loaded baked potatoes you will love this. Maybe even more. I do. … 

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