Quick Cauliflower Soup or Quick Broccoli Soup
One Recipe, Two Soups!

A quick weeknight or lunch-time soup recipe, made with either broccoli or cauliflower and only four more pantry ingredients. This recipe is a dieter's staple, something to make again and again because it's so filling and satisfying yet adds up to just a few calories and for Weight Watchers, just one Weight Watchers point.

Quick Broccoli Soup

"It was fabulous!" ~ Adrienne on A Veggie Venture
"Great, easy recipe, amazing site!" ~ lmassey621
"I ... like or LOVE [your recipes]. This was no exception." ~ Anonymous
"This was great! ... Delicious ...!" ~ Anonymous
"WOW! Talk about a homerun!" ~ Cathy on A Veggie Venture
"This is awesome." ~ Anonymous on A Veggie Venture

And snows shall fly, the big flakes fat and furry.
– Donald Justice, poet

With a few post-holiday pounds settling all too comfortably around our waists, it’s time for a few weeks of more judicious intake. Start with this pair of fast, healthful soups, cooked the same but tasting so different.

Conventional diet wisdom says to avoid snacks between meals. Instead, I leave snacks on the counter for the taking – a measured amount of healthful foods, that is. In winter, you’d find carrot sticks or almonds, in summer blueberries or chunks of cantaloupe.

Lately, however, I’ve fallen for crunchy, spicy croutons, a slice’s worth in a small bowl, ready for the grabbing.

HOMEMADE CROUTONS Cut whole-grain bread into cubes and toss with salt and spices such as oregano, thyme, sage or whatever smells good. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake at 350F for 30 minutes, longer if needed, turning once or twice. Transfer to freezer bags for storage.

ALANNA's TIPS This soup is so simple and yet it's full of flavor and texture. It's filling and satisfying. For Weight Watchers, it tastes more like four points than just one or two, especially the cauliflower soup. The soup cooks more quickly when the broth is heated beforehand. But if you’re in no hurry, skip this step. Do be careful when puréeing the hot mixture. If you put too much into the blender or food processor at once, it’ll blow sky high. Watch for subtly flavored Turkish bay leaves the next time you’re out.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite soup recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Become a Kitchen Parade fan on Facebook!


Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Time-to-table: 25 minutes
Makes 6 cups
  • 4 cups chicken broth or vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 dried bay leaves, optional
  • 1 head cauliflower OR 1 pound of broccoli crowns and stems, chopped into small pieces (or frozen cauliflower or broccoli)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat broth to a boil in microwave.

Meanwhile, heat a large pot on medium high. Heat olive oil, then add the onion and bay leaves, stirring to coat with fat. Cook until onions begin to soften and turn gold, stirring often.

Add cauliflower or broccoli, stirring to coat with oil and onion flavor. Let cook, turning occasionally for 1 - 2 minutes. Stir in hot broth. Cover and cook for 5 – 10 minutes or until the vegetables are fully cooked. Remove the bay leaves.

Transfer a third of the hot mixture (see ALANNA’s TIPS) to a food processor or blender. Purée until smooth while continuing to cook the rest. Repeat with another third, then the final third.

Season to taste and serve topped with a small spoon of low-fat sour cream or croutons. Or both!

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per Cup: 72 Calories; 2g Tot Fat; 0g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 645mg Sodium; 10g Carb; 3g Fiber; 4g Sugar; 4g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 1 & PointsPlus 2

LATER NOTES With the cauliflower version, sometimes, I skip the blender step and just roughly mash the cooked cauliflower with a fork. For a little more zip, try the Spicy Cauliflower Soup from A Veggie Venture. I now use Homemade Vegetable Bouillon for the liquid portion of this soup. From my experience with No-Cream Creamy Cauliflower Soup, I think you could substitute water for stock, resulting in a creamy-white color.

Quick Cauliflower Soup

Quick Cauliflower Soup

This is such a versatile recipe, all broccoli, all cauliflower or, from a tip from a reader, a combination of broccoli and cauliflower! The soup doesn't TASTE plain but it does look plain so if aesthetics are important, be sure to plan ahead for something to garnish the top. I happen to love the look of flat layers of cauliflower, cooked until just soft and then removed before puréeing the soup.

More Broccoli Recipes

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Power Food Broccoli Salad Smashed Potatoes & Broccoli Casserole Grilled Vegetables in Foil
~ more broccoli recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade

~ Perfect Pan-Fried Broccoli ~
~ Broccoli & Tomato Thai Curry ~
~ Broccoli, Potato & Cheddar Soup ~
~ more broccoli recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture, my food blog

More Cauliflower Recipes

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Cauliflower Salad with Fresh Herbs Cauliflower Risotto Lighter Mashed 'Potatoes' (Cauliflower Mashed 'Potatoes')
~ more cauliflower recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade

~ Cauliflower Spanish 'Rice' ~
~ Roasted Cauliflower ~
~ Creamy Cauliflower Gratin ~
~ more cauliflower recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture, my food blog

Quick Links to This Page

(for easy bookmarking and searching)
~ Homemade Croutons ~

As my New Years resolution I am trying to eat healthy and add more veggies to my diet. I stumbled accross your blog and this is the first recipe I have tried. Great, easy recipe, amazing site! Thank you for helping me make my New Years resolution a little easier.
Like lots of people, my Mom and I have decided to lose weight this year. The first place I turned was your blog to get recipes - I've only made one of them I didn't like or LOVE. This was no exception. I put the onion in the blender with half of a shallot I had left over from making your Bouillon today. I used 2 cups chicken broth and 2 cups of homemade veg broth from the trimmings from making the bouillon. It was tasty. I added 1 tablespoon of Kraft 3 Cheese Blend to about 1 cup of soup to make it a little richer. I would like to add that, unlike you, I am not a huge vegetable person, so finding SO MANY veg-rich recipes that I like is awesome.
This was great! I changed it up a little: shook my bag of frozen cauliflower with turmeric, nigella seeds, cumin and coriander seed. Roasted at 375 in a parchment lined casserole for an hour (so no oil, yay!), then went ahead as directed. Delicious, thanks for the recipe!
I love everyone of these soups. I've lost weight and unlike the earlier versions of this diet, I have found there is absolutly no reason to feel hungry. These recipies are really great, and my family likes them too!! Thanks for sharring. Kip Franks

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna