This Cheddar Cheese Soup is a classic cheese soup recipe, and it’s made completely on the stovetop. Enjoy!
The BEST Cheddar Cheese Soup
We mean it! This cheddar cheese soup packs in a whopping SIX CUPS of shredded sharp cheddar. Pair that with an amazingly creamy roux and you’re off enjoying the best cheddar cheese soup on the internet.
why you’ll love it!
Super duper creamy: the combination of a creamy roux and a ton of shredded cheddar gives you the creamiest of creamy soups!
Pairs with quick croutons: we’re teaching you how to make 5 minute croutons that you can top this delish soup with.
Feeds a crowd: this soup will feed 6-8 hungry tummies!
Cheddar Cheese Soup Ingredients
- Sharp cheddar cheese: we recommend shredding your own cheddar cheese! Why? Store-bought shredded cheese is tossed in additives to prevent clumping, and this makes melting a bit more difficult.
- Diced onion: we used a yellow onion, but white will also work.
- Butter and all-purpose flour: this creates your roux!
- Chicken broth: we love the flavor of chicken broth, but any broth will do!
- Heavy cream: for optimal creaminess, don’t substitute this! Milk will work, but you will miss out on the creaminess that heavy cream provides.
- Hot sauce: a little heat goes a long way in this soup! Feel free to omit if you don’t like things hot.
- Salt & pepper: these simple seasonings bring out the deliciously cheesy flavors of this soup.
Quick Croutons Ingredients
- Sandwich bread: you’ll chop the bread into crouton-sized pieces. Don’t have sandwich bread? Any bread will do.
- Unsalted butter: butter gives these croutons amazing flavor.
- Garlic powder and crushed red pepper: we love the flavor combo of these two! Don’t like things hot? Sub the crushed red pepper for cracked black pepper.
don’t have shredded cheese?
Don’t have shredded cheese, but have a block of cheese? Check out our post on how to grate cheese WITHOUT a cheese grater!
How to Make Cheddar Cheese Soup
Heat a Dutch oven over low/medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and the minced yellow onion and sauté until the onions are soft and golden.
Make the Roux
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and flour to the cooked onions, and whisk. Remove from heat, and slowly whisk in the chicken broth and heavy cream. Continue whisking until all of the lumps are gone. Stir in the hot sauce, kosher salt, and cracked pepper.
Fold in Cheese
Next, fold in 5 cups of the shredded cheddar cheese. Return to heat, and cook on low for 10 minutes.
Make Quick Croutons
Place a large skillet over medium/high heat. Add the 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan. When the butter is completely melted, stir in the garlic powder and crushed red pepper. Then toss the chopped bread pieces into the butter mixture, and cook until all of the pieces are nicely toasted.
Serve & Enjoy!
Serve the soup topped with shredded cheddar and the quick croutons.
Cheddar Cheese Soup Pro Tips
DON’T MELT CHEESE OVER HIGH HEAT
While it’s definitely okay to sauté the onions over higher heat, DO NOT add in the cheese over high heat. Cheese is finicky and drastic temperature changes can cause it to become clumpy and grainy.
Why is my cheddar Cheese soup curdling?
Sometimes cheesy soups will curdle because the soup has gotten too hot too quickly. The proteins have tightened in the cheese because of the sudden change in heat.
To avoid this, we removed the broth from the heat and slowly whisked in the heavy cream so that the liquid isn’t scorching hot, but still warm enough to melt the cheese.
USING A DIFFERENT CHEESE
This is cheddar cheese soup after all, and we love the flavor and color that sharp yellow cheddar offers soup, but feel free to sub any semi-hard cheese 1:1. We recommend the following:
- White cheddar
- Medium cheddar
Make it vegetarian
Instead of using chicken broth, feel free to sub for a vegetable broth to make this soup vegetarian.
Toppings for Cheddar Cheese Soup
This cheddar cheese soup is oh so yummy on its own, but who doesn’t love a topping or two. We recommend:
- Quick croutons! (the recipe is below!)
- Bacon bits
- Chopped chives or green onion
- Shredded cheese
- Go ahead and dip a soft pretzel in this delicious soup!
How to Store Cheddar Cheese Soup
Store this cheddar cheese soup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
When Reheating Cheddar Cheese Soup: we recommend reheating just like it’s cooked — LOW AND SLOW! Reheat on the stovetop on low, stirring frequently. This will help prevent any separating or uneven reheating. You may need to add broth when reheating if your soup is too thick. Start with a tablespoon and increase from there.
Freezing Cheddar Cheese Soup: because cheese has a difficult time with drastic temperature changes, we do NOT recommend freezing this soup.
Cheddar Cheese Soup
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter divided
- ¼ small yellow onion minced
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- 24 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided (~6 cups)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon cracked pepper
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 slices sandwich bread chopped
- Heat a Dutch oven over low/medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and the minced yellow onion. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onions are soft and golden.
- To make the roux, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and flour to the cooked onions. Whisk often for 1 to 2 minutes. The roux should be a blond color.
- Remove from heat, and slowly whisk in the chicken broth and heavy cream. Continue whisking until all of the lumps are gone. Approximately 5 minutes.
- Stir in the hot sauce, kosher salt, and cracked pepper.
- Next, fold in 5 cups of the shredded cheddar cheese. And return to heat to cook on low for 10 minutes.
- While the soup is simmering, prepare the croutons.
- Place a large skillet over medium/high heat. Add the 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan. Allow the butter to melt.
- When the butter is completely melted, stir in the garlic powder and crushed red pepper.
- Next, toss the chopped bread pieces into the butter mixture. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until all of the pieces are nicely toasted.
- Serve the soup topped with ¼ cup of shredded cheddar and the quick croutons.
Tips & Notes
- Skip the crushed red pepper in the croutons to get rid of the heat.
- Make this vegetarian by using vegetable stock.