This Cauliflower Soup Tastes Just Like a Loaded Potato but Without All the Carbs
There's nothing quite like a steaming bowl of soup to set your mood right. The ultimate comfort food, soup can be made a billion and one different ways. We LOVE soup here at EatingWell (so much so that we dedicated an entire cookbook to all things soup). One of our all-time favorites is this easy Cauliflower Soup. A healthy take on a loaded baked potato, this creamy cauliflower soup has all the fixings of a loaded potato (bacon included) but with fewer calories and carbs. Ready in a quick 20 minutes, this easy soup is great for busy weeknights or can be meal-prepped ahead of time to take for lunch or frozen for a ready-made meal down the road. This recipe was originally made for one serving, but can be easily adapted to serve more.
Don't Miss: Healthy Cauliflower Recipes
People just can't seem to get enough cauliflower, whether it's a traditional side dish or a recipe where cauliflower takes the place of a carb-heavy ingredient (like in these Cauliflower Everything Bagels). Cauliflower is still having its moment in the spotlight, and we don't see that changing anytime soon, especially since low-carb diets like keto, paleo and Whole30 (which use cauliflower as a low-carb replacement for everything from rice to pizza crust) show no signs of slowing down. Whether you're looking to eat low-carb, or just want a delicious vegetable soup recipe to make for lunch or dinner, this 20-minute cauliflower soup is a healthy, easy option.
3 Ways This Cauliflower Soup Is Healthier Than a Loaded Potato
Now, don't get us wrong-you can totally make a healthier version of a loaded potato (browse our healthy baked potato recipes here). And potatoes themselves are a healthy food and just tend to get a bad rap. But we're talking a loaded baked potato that you'd find in a chain restaurant that can be upwards of 450 calories with 65 grams of carbs and 550 mg of sodium. The benefits of cauliflower over potatoes in this recipe is that it helps to keep the carbs in check, provides nutrients like vitamin C and fiber and, being part of the cruciferous vegetable family, is known to have anti-cancer properties. A delicious alternative, this Cauliflower Soup is healthier than a traditional loaded potato in three major ways.
1. It swaps in low-carb cauliflower for potatoes.
Cauliflower acts as an ultimate carb replacer, taking the place of potatoes and cutting the carbs down to just 15 grams per serving. And while the carbs that come from potatoes aren't bad, if you're looking to eat fewer carbs, substituting cauliflower is an easy way to do that. And with two full cups of cauliflower per serving, you're getting a healthy serving of vegetables in each bowl. Additionally, Greek yogurt, cream cheese and bacon combine to provide 21 grams of satisfying protein, helping to give this meal more staying power.
2. It has all the toppings of a loaded potato without going overboard.
What would a loaded potato be without all the toppings? While add-ons like cheese, bacon and sour cream make the dish what it is, it doesn't take long until you're over the edge on calories and sodium. We doctored this recipe to still include those delicious flavors but in healthier amounts, and we opt for low-calorie or low-sodium versions of some foods like bacon and cream cheese. Plus, we added in an extra kick of flavor from fresh parsley and lemon zest.
3. It's super-creamy without the need for tons of cream.
Using cream cheese in place of heavy cream, and blending the cauliflower to a smooth consistency, gives this soup the same rich flavor and creamy texture you'd find in a cream-based soup. Love this hack? Don't miss our Creamy White Chili with Cream Cheese recipe.
How to Make Cauliflower Soup in 20 Minutes
For 1 serving
2 cups cooked cauliflower florets
2/3 to 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth, divided
Dash of garlic powder
Dash of black pepper
1 ounce reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchâtel)
1/3 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
2 slices lower-sodium, less-fat bacon, crisp-cooked and crumbled
1 teaspoon snipped fresh parsley
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1. Get Blending
Make the base of the soup by combining cooked cauliflower with broth, garlic powder and pepper in a blender or food processor. Keep blending until you get that smooth consistency we're looking for. Add more broth if you find the soup is too thick to blend smoothly.
2. Heat It Up
Transfer the blended cauliflower to a saucepan and heat until just boiling. Mix in cream cheese until it's fully incorporated, plus more broth as need to reach desired consistency.
3. Add the Toppings
The last step is to add all the tasty toppings that make this a "loaded" cauliflower soup. A dollop of Greek yogurt (or if you want to pipe on a design like we did, here's a hack for doing so), crumbled bacon, fresh parsley and a little lemon zest go a long way in bumping up the flavor. Want to keep this recipe vegetarian? Use "no-chicken" broth and try topping the soup with a different salty, crunchy topping instead of bacon, like french-fried onions.
Meal-Prep a Big Batch and Freeze for Later
This Cauliflower Soup can easily be made ahead of time and refrigerated or frozen for a quick ready-made dinner on a busy weeknight or a packable work lunch.
Bump Up the Servings
This recipe was originally made for one serving and is easily adaptable to serve more. Here are the ingredient amounts if you're looking to increase the servings.
For 2 servings: 4 cups cauliflower + 1 1/3 to 1 1/2 cups broth + garlic powder and black pepper to taste + 2 oz. cream cheese + 2/3 cup Greek yogurt + 4 slices bacon + 2 tsp. parsley + 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
For 4 servings: 8 cups cauliflower + 2 2/3 to 3 cups broth + garlic powder and black pepper to taste + 4 oz. cream cheese + 1 1/3 cups Greek yogurt + 8 slices bacon + 4 tsp. parsley + 1 tsp. lemon zest
For 8 servings: 16 cups cauliflower + 5 to 6 cups broth + garlic powder and black pepper to taste + 8 oz. cream cheese + 2 2/3 cups Greek yogurt + 16 slices bacon + 8 tsp. parsley + 2 tsp. lemon zest
1. Prepare through Step 2 and allow the soup to cool.
2. Transfer to a container with a lid and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
3. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop and add toppings just before serving.
Other Healthy Cauliflower Soup Recipes to Try
This cauliflower cheese soup recipe is made with extra-sharp Cheddar cheese to give the dish that deep Cheddar flavor good cheesy soups are known for. Sautéed leeks and simple spices help add even more flavor in this easy-to-make cheesy cauliflower soup.
"This was delicious! Even my 2-year-old ate it up! I followed the directions exactly, and we sopped up the bottom of our bowls with some garlic bread. I will be making this again soon!" -- Sasha
The trick to keeping this creamy cauliflower soup recipe vegan without the need for cream is pureeing everything in a blender until silky smooth-we found the blender is more effective than using an immersion blender or food processor. This easy vegan cauliflower soup starts off by roasting cauliflower and leeks together until golden brown and caramelized, which amps up the flavor of the veggies, and is finished with a bright and flavorful parsley and chive puree. Make extra of this soup and freeze for a ready-made lunch or dinner down the road.
You'll quickly fall in love with this 5-star recipe for roasted cauliflower soup. In this healthy cauliflower soup recipe, roasting the cauliflower first adds depth and prevents the florets from turning to mush. A little tomato sauce and coconut milk give the broth a rich, silky texture. Top with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt and some freshly sliced chile peppers if you need a little extra heat.
"Amazing! I've made it several times and find that I crave it in between. The spices make a perfect curry, so savory, so amazing. Wow." --Beth in Indy
Power-up your bowl with even more veggie-packed goodness with this broccoli cauliflower soup recipe. Another member of the cruciferous vegetable family, broccoli packs in the same cancer-fighting nutrition as cauliflower. We add savory ham and a perfectly poached egg on top to add satisfying protein, making this soup a delicious main-course dish.
A combination of smoked paprika and smoked Gouda gives this cheesy cauliflower soup deep, delicious flavor. We top this creamy soup with a crunchy crouton topping and fresh thyme leaves for an impressively easy main dish. If you can save a serving to have for lunch the next day, you won't be sorry-this soup just gets more and more flavorful overnight in the fridge.
"Delicious! The smoked paprika and smoked Gouda gave it awesome flavor! I used vegetable broth and an immersion blender. I wasn't going to make the croutons, but was so glad I did. They were super yummy and added a nice flavorful crunch. Will definitely make again!" -- georgesfamilynova
Toasted spices take this creamy cauliflower soup recipe to the next level, adding warmth, richness and tons of flavor. While it's not a 20-minute recipe like the loaded cauliflower soup, it's a standout recipe that's definitely worth the extra time it takes to make. Fun fact: you can deepen the color of this soup further by making it with a head of orange cauliflower, sometimes labeled "Cheddar."