Panera Copycat: Broccoli Cheese Soup

This week, Jackson’s preschool is holding a little Teacher Appreciation week for the amazing teachers at the school. Parents are to bring in some cozy soups, salads, and donate a slew of gift cards. And to make it a little more special, parents sign up to write “I’m Thankful” letters to their child’s teacher.

I was a teacher for almost a decade and I’ve got to say that the days that I didn’t have to bring a lunch were just as special to me as the days that we could wear jeans. 😉 It was the little things that made the days easier and we felt so very appreciated.

So as soon as the sign-up came out, I jumped all over it! Anything I can do to show those teachers how much I appreciate them, I’m on it.

I made a batch of this Panera Bread Copycat Broccoli Cheddar Soup…and then made a second batch for me. 🙂 Thirty minutes and you have a full pot of coziness, cheesiness, and one of my very favorites at a fraction of the cost!


4 Tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

2 large carrots, peeled and julienned

2 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 cup flour

3 cups milk

24 oz. chicken broth

3 cups broccoli florets, chopped

3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Additional salt and pepper, to taste


Melt butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium low heat. Add onion, celery, carrots, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook until vegetables begin to soften and fragrant, about 4-5 minutes.

Add in flour and mix until vegetables are evenly coated. Slowly pour in milk, stirring constantly. Add in chicken broth. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep from sticking.

Stir in broccoli and continue simmering for an additional 10 minutes. Turn heat off.

Add sharp cheddar cheese and salt and pepper and mix well.

Serve immediately with warm bread, crackers, grilled cheese, or just gobble several bowls! 🙂

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Listen, we could be best friends and we don't even know it yet!

Subscribe and never miss a recipe, a renovation, a much-needed mommin' idea, or a great pair of leggings.