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overhead view of a bowl of creamy gluten-free broccoli cheddar soup on a white background

Easy Gluten-Free Broccoli Cheese Soup

  • Author: Emily Dixon, One Lovely Life
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4-5 servings 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Craving comfort food? Our Gluten-Free Broccoli Cheese Soup recipe is calling your name! Thick, creamy, cheesy, and delicious. (Panera Copycat)


  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup diced onion (1 small onion)
  • 1/4 cup gluten-free measure-for-measure flour (30 grams)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 12 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 2 cups half & half*
  • 3 cups chopped broccoli (I use mostly florets & some finely diced stems) 
  • 1 cup grated carrots or julienned carrots
  • 8 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, grated (2 heaping cups)
  • 1/21 teaspoon hot sauce, like Frank’s (optional)


  1. Melt Butter. Start by melting butter in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat.

  2. Saute Onion. Add the onion to the melted butter and stir, 5-7 minutes, or until onion is softened and turning translucent.

  3. Add Flour & Seasonings. Next, sprinkle in the gluten-free flour, salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic. Stir constantly for 3-4 minutes over medium heat, or until the flour has browned slightly and the mixture looks golden. (This helps remove any floury taste, so don’t rush this step!)

  4. Mix In Broth and Half & Half. Pour in the broth and half and half and stir to combine. Heat just until the mixture starts to bubble, then reduce heat to a simmer to thicken slightly, about 5-7 minutes.

  5. Add Vegetables. Then, add the broccoli and carrots. Cook just 6-8 minutes or so, until the broccoli is softened and the soup is quite thick.

  6. Mix In Cheese a little at a time, stirring to fully melt the cheese before adding the next handful. (I add mine in 3-4 increments)

  7. Finish The Soup by stirring in hot sauce. Garnish with a little more pepper and cheese, if desired.

  8. Serve & Store. Enjoy the broccoli cheddar soup right away, or store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge 3-4 days. (This thick soup will get even thicker in the fridge, but will loosen back up when you reheat it.)


  • Half & Half. I prefer the texture of half and half in this soup. If you want it even thicker and richer,  you can absolutely use heavy cream. If you want thinner soup, you can use whole milk. I don’t recommend low-fat milk here since it makes the soup a bit watery. 
  • Use Freshly Grated Cheese! Pre-shredded cheese or bagged shredded cheese is usually coated in anti-caking agents that can make it harder for the cheese to melt and add grittiness to soup. Freshly grated cheese melts much better, which is crucial for the velvety smooth texture we’re going for in this broccoli cheddar soup. I promise it’s worth it!
  • Sharp VS Medium Cheddar. I love the more pronounced cheese flavor of using sharp cheddar cheese, but if you’re nervous, medium cheddar cheese is a great option. I find mild is just too, well, mild. If you want an even more assertive cheese flavor, try extra sharp white cheddar! 
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: gluten free broccoli cheese soup, gluten free broccoli cheddar soup, panera broccoli cheddar soup