Cheeseburger Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep: 30 min. Cook: 25 min.
Find out why this easy cheeseburger soup recipe is one of the top-rated recipes on our site!

Updated: Feb. 22, 2024

This easy cheeseburger soup is one of those recipes that has stood the test of time. It first hit newsstands in a 1996 publication of Taste of Home magazine, and it’s been going strong ever since. The creamy, cheesy soup perfectly captures the flavor of your favorite diner burger. A few hearty add-ins like carrots, celery and potatoes add to the soup’s warm and comforting vibes, especially on a cold winter’s day. Whip up a batch, and you’ll see why this recipe remains one of our highest-rated recipes ever.

Ingredients for Cheeseburger Soup

  • Ground beef: Lean ground beef is best for cheeseburger soup. You can use a higher-fat blend like 80/20, but be sure to drain off all the excess grease to avoid an oily finish.
  • Flour and butter: These ingredients come together to create a roux, which is commonly used to thicken sauces.
  • Vegetables: The aromatic combination of onions, carrots and celery gives the soup depth and adds a burst of color.
  • Potatoes: Use your favorite type of potato in cheeseburger soup. You can even use frozen cubed hash brown potatoes!
  • Chicken broth and milk: The combination of savory chicken broth and creamy milk gives this soup some serious cheeseburger vibes. For a richer flavor, use half-and-half.
  • Velveeta: We love Velveeta cheese recipes! This processed cheese gives the soup a thick texture and an extra-cheesy finish.
  • Sour cream: This tangy ingredient thickens the soup and adds a light acidity to balance all the rich flavors.


Step 1: Brown the beef

Cooking beef in saucepanTMB Studio

In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook and crumble the beef until no longer pink, six to eight minutes. Remove the beef from the pan, and drain the excess grease. Set aside.

Step 2: Saute the vegetables

Cooking vegetable in saucepanTMB Studio

In the same saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Saute the onion, carrots, celery, basil and parsley until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

Step 3: Simmer the soup

Adding Potatoes and broth into the mixture TMB Studio

Add the potatoes, broth and cooked ground beef. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 12 minutes.

Step 4: Prepare the roux

Mixing dry ingredients in skillet with butterTMB Studio

Meanwhile, in a small skillet, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter. Add the flour. Cook and stir until bubbly, three to five minutes.

Step 5: Thicken the soup

Stirring the roux mixture in soup TMB Studio

Add the roux to the soup, and bring the mixture to a boil. Cook and stir for two minutes.

Step 6: Melt the cheese

Cheese cubes melting in pot full of soupTMB Studio

Reduce the heat to low. Stir in the cheese, milk, salt and pepper. Cook until the cheese melts.

Step 7: Finish with sour cream and garnishes

Stirring Sour Cream in Soup MixtureTMB Studio

Remove the soup from the heat, and stir in the sour cream. If desired, serve the soup with onion rings and green onions.

Test Kitchen Tip: To prevent soup from curdling, remove the saucepan from the heat before adding sour cream.

Cheeseburger Soup Variations

  • Add bacon: To turn this recipe into bacon cheeseburger soup, simply top each bowl with crumbled bacon. Here are our tips for how to cook bacon.
  • Change the protein: Use ground turkey, chicken, pork or sausage in place of ground beef. Or make the soup meatless, and add extra veggies like mushrooms, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli or frozen peas.
  • Make it spicy: Add chopped jalapenos or crushed red pepper flakes to the soup. Or top each bowl with your favorite hot sauce.
  • Change the starch: Skip the potatoes, and substitute cooked macaroni, egg noodles, orzo (Psst: What is orzo?) or rice. Add the cooked grains just after thickening the soup, and cook until warmed through.
  • Use another cheese: Try American cheese, cream cheese, cheddar, pepper jack cheese or Colby jack cheese.

How to Store Cheeseburger Soup

Store leftover cheeseburger soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days. Reheat the soup in a saucepan over gentle heat.

Can you freeze cheeseburger soup?

Cheeseburger soup is not a soup you can freeze. Dairy can separate in the freezer. It will become gritty and grainy when thawed.

Cheeseburger Soup Tips

Cheeseburger Soup served with onion rungs in it on blue wooden surfaceTMB Studio

What type of potato is best for cheeseburger soup?

You can use any type of potato for this recipe. Waxy potatoes (like red potatoes) hold their shape better than starchy potatoes (like russet potatoes). However, starchy varieties will absorb more flavor and help to thicken the creamy liquid. All-purpose potatoes (like Yukon gold potatoes) offer the best of both worlds. Their skins are very thin, so you can leave them unpeeled for a rustic look.

What do you serve with cheeseburger soup?

The beauty of this soup is in its versatility, so you can add any of your favorite burger toppings. Try bacon, green chiles, pickle relish, chopped pickles, tomatoes, onions or shredded cheese. If you want to go all in, top the soup with crispy fried onion rings or homemade seasoned croutons made from sesame seed buns.

Watch how to Make Cheeseburger Soup

Cheeseburger Soup

Prep Time 30 min
Cook Time 25 min
Yield 8 servings (2 quarts).


  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup shredded carrots
  • 3/4 cup diced celery
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1-3/4 pounds (about 4 cups) cubed peeled potatoes
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 8 to 16 ounces Velveeta, cubed
  • 1-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • Optional: Onion rings and thinly sliced green onions


  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook and crumble beef until no longer pink, 6-8 minutes; drain and set aside. In same saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Saute onion, carrots, celery, basil and parsley until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add potatoes, broth and ground beef; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender, 10-12 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter. Add flour; cook and stir until bubbly, 3-5 minutes. Add to soup; bring to a boil. Cook and stir 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Stir in cheese, milk, salt and pepper; cook until cheese melts. Remove from heat; blend in sour cream. If desired, serve with onion rings and green onions.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 354 calories, 20g fat (11g saturated fat), 70mg cholesterol, 1012mg sodium, 31g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 3g fiber), 14g protein.

A local restaurant serves a similar cheeseburger soup but wouldn't share its recipe with me. I developed my own, modifying a recipe I already had for potato soup. I was really pleased with the way this all-American dish turned out. —Joanie Shawhan, Madison, Wisconsin