Vegan Cashew Cream of Broccoli Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Total Time
Prep: 20 min. Cook: 30 min.
Looking for an easy dairy-free dinner recipe that's quick to whip up on a weeknight? This vegan broccoli cheddar soup is creamy and flavorful—without any cheese.

Updated: Jan. 29, 2024

Vegan broccoli cheddar soup is a healthier alternative to classic broccoli cheddar soup. This 100% plant-based soup is packed with vegetables and has an ultra-silky texture. The original dairy version contains butter, cheddar cheese and half-and-half, but it’s easy to whip up a dairy-free batch of vegan broccoli cheddar soup by making three simple swaps.

In place of butter, use vegan butter-style sticks. Nutritional yeast is a simple substitute for the cheddar cheese and gives the broth a savory, slightly nutty and cheesy flavor. And instead of half-and half, blend together water and cashews to create a creamy cashew mixture. All of the flavor, none of the dairy.

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup Ingredients

Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup ingredientsTMB Studio

  • Broccoli
  • Water
  • Raw cashews
  • Vegan butter-style sticks, such as Earth Balance
  • Onion
  • Fresh sage
  • Fresh thyme
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Yukon Gold potatoes
  • Bay leaf
  • No chicken vegetable base or vegetable base
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Directions

Step 1: Cook the broccoli

Steamed Broccoli In Steamer Basket for Vegan Broccoli Cheddar SoupTMB Studio

In a large pan, place a steamer basket over one inch of water. Put the broccoli in the basket and bring the water to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and steam the broccoli, covered, until just tender, five to six minutes. Cool the broccoli, coarsely chop it and set it aside.

Step 2: Make the cashew cream

Shot Of Blended Cashews for Vegan Broccoli Cheddar SoupTMB Studio

Meanwhile, place the cashews and one cup of water in a blender or food processor. Cover and process until smooth, then set aside.

Step 3: Cook the vegetables

Ingredients Sturred Into PotTMB Studio

In an enameled cast iron saucepan, melt vegan butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion. Cook and stir until just tender, three to four minutes. Add the sage, thyme, garlic powder and onion powder and cook one minute longer. Add the potatoes, bay leaf, vegetable base and remaining four cups of water.

Step 4: Bring the soup to a boil

Pot With Hand Dropping In BroccoliTMB Studio

Bring the vegan broccoli cheese soup to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 12 minutes.

Step 5: Add the remaining ingredients

Vegan Cashes Cream Of Broccoli Soup Vertical Ap ShotTMB Studio

Stir in the nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, cashew mixture and broccoli. Heat through. Discard the bay leaf before serving.

How do you store leftover vegan broccoli cheddar soup?

Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to five days in the refrigerator or for up to three months in the freezer.

Tips for Making Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Do you have to soak the cashews ahead of time?

Yes! Don’t skip soaking the cashews. Just like when you’re making cashew cheese, soaking the cashews for this soup will result in a smooth and creamy base.

How can you thicken vegan broccoli cheddar soup?

To thicken this soup, add extra potatoes or carrots. Mashing or pureeing the extra potatoes creates an even thicker base.

What else can you add to vegan broccoli cheddar soup?

For an even cheesier consistency, stir in vegan cheddar-style cheese while cooking the soup. These are our favorite vegan cheese brands.

Top your bowl of vegan broccoli cheddar soup with a combination of fresh parsley, fresh chives, fresh dill, red pepper flakes, roasted broccoli, vegan bacon bits or croutons.

Vegan Cashew Cream of Broccoli Soup

Prep Time 20 min
Cook Time 30 min
Yield 8 servings (2 quarts).

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch broccoli, cut into florets
  • 5 cups water, divided
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 3 tablespoons vegan butter-style sticks, such as Earth Balance
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4-1/2 teaspoons no chicken vegetable base or vegetable base
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, place a steamer basket over 1 in. water. Place broccoli in basket. Bring water to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer; steam, covered, until just tender, 5-6 minutes. Let broccoli cool, then coarsely chop and set aside.
  2. Place 1 cup water and cashews in a blender or food processor; cover and process until smooth. Set aside. In a Dutch oven, melt vegan butter over medium-high heat. Add onion; cook and stir until just tender, 3-4 minutes. Add sage, thyme, garlic powder and onion powder; cook 1 minute longer. Add potatoes, bay leaf, vegetable base and remaining 4 cups water.
  3. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender, 10-12 minutes. Stir in nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, cashew mixture and broccoli. Heat through. Discard bay leaf.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 166 calories, 8g fat (2g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 224mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 4g fiber), 5g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1-1/2 starch, 1-1/2 fat.

To me, Sundays are a time for rest and spending time with your family. In this crazy busy world, I think we sometimes forget how important and special having a family is. This soup reminds me of Sunday dinners with my family because they always request it. I love making this for our weekly dinners because it is not complicated and I can get dinner on the table in about an hour. —Christine King, Vista, CA