Cauliflower cheese soup

    50 min

    A classic combination as a vegetable dish, cauliflower and Cheddar cheese are equally good partners in a soup. Here the cauliflower is gently simmered in milk and stock, then puréed to a velvety-smooth texture. This is a warming soup that makes a simple lunch or supper dish, served with crusty rolls.

    20 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 15 g (½ oz) butter
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • ¼ tsp mustard powder
    • 1 large cauliflower, about 900 g (2 lb), broken into small florets
    • 600 ml (1 pint) semi-skimmed milk
    • 150 ml (5 fl oz) vegetable stock
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 2 tsp sunflower oil
    • 100 g (3½ oz) mature Cheddar cheese, grated
    • salt and pepper
    • chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley to garnish

    Prep:30min  ›  Cook:20min  ›  Ready in:50min 

    1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook over a moderate heat for 3 minutes, stirring frequently, until soft. Sprinkle over the mustard and stir it in.
    2. Reserve about 85 g (3 oz) of the cauliflower florets; add the rest to the saucepan together with the milk, stock and bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.
    3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan. Break the reserved cauliflower into tiny florets and fry for 4–5 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Set aside.
    4. Remove the bay leaf from the soup. Purée in the pan with a hand-held blender, or in a blender or food processor. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then reheat until just bubbling.
    5. Remove from the heat, add the grated cheese and stir until melted. Ladle into warmed soup bowls and sprinkle with the sautéed cauliflower florets and parsley. Serve immediately.

    Plus points

    Cheddar cheese, like most other cheeses, is a good source of protein and an excellent source of calcium, but it is high in fat. Reducing the amount of cheese that would normally be used in a dish like this, and choosing a mature cheese with a strong taste, keeps fat levels healthy, and the cheese still makes a valuable nutritional contribution. * Cauliflower is a member of the brassica family of cruciferous vegetables. Its distinctive sulphurous compounds are believed to play a part in protecting against certain forms of cancer and heart disease. * Onions are not only believed to help reduce the risk of cancer but also to help lower blood cholesterol levels.

    Some more ideas

    Use all the cauliflower in the soup. For the garnish, mix together 4 tbsp plain low-fat yogurt and 2 tbsp chopped parsley or snipped fresh chives. Swirl a spoonful of this herb yogurt on top of each bowl of soup. * For a spiced parsnip and cheese soup to serve 6, soften 1 finely chopped onion in 15 g (½ oz) butter. Stir in 550 g (1¼ lb) finely diced parsnips, 1 tsp cumin seeds and ½ tsp ground coriander. Cook for 2 minutes, then add 600 ml (1 pint) semi-skimmed milk, 450 ml (15 fl oz) vegetable stock and a bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until the parsnips are tender. Remove the bay leaf and purée the soup with a hand-held blender, or in a blender or food processor. Reheat until piping hot. Ladle into warmed bowls and sprinkle with 115 g (4 oz) grated Red Leicester or Double Gloucester cheese. Garnish with a few torn fresh coriander leaves and serve hot.

    Each serving provides

    C, calcium * A, B1, B6, B12, folate, potassium, zinc * B2, E, niacin, iron

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    Reviews in English (2)


    Altered ingredient amounts. added 2 tsp of wholegrain mustard instead of powder and needed little more stock than listed above.  -  05 Feb 2009


    Really lovely soup, easy peasy to do and lovely result.great for 1 of ur 5 a day and good lot of dairy (great for my 2 yr old!)  -  05 Feb 2009