Ok, so beer cheese soup is in no way a LIGHT dish. It’s a majorly creamy comfort food. The bf was feeling under the weather and I wanted to make him something to feel better but chicken soup was too boring so I figured why not put together two of his favorite things (beer and cheese) and attempt to make a healthier version. It turned out AMAZING. I had actually never had beer cheese soup before (it’s popular up north in Wisconsin, Illinois, etc.) so I did some research and combined a few recipes to come up with this one. I cut down the amount of cheese and cream– which is crazy because it still turned out SO thick– almost like fondue. I can’t imagine what double the cheese would have been like. I added some veggies and omitted the smoked sausage that some recipes called for.
Like I said, this isn’t necessarily a low cal dish but a lightened-up version of an deliciously creamy comfort food that will hit the spot. It’s super filling, so you don’t need a big portion. I served it up with a freshly baked whole grain baguette for dipping.
Lightened Up Beer Cheese Soup
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes
Serves 8- 10
- 1/2 cup butter- don’t freak out! Recent studies show the saturated fats in dairy products do not contribute to heart disease– swear. Check out the links at the bottom of the page if you want more info.
- 1 chopped medium yellow onion
- 1/3 cup celery, chopped small
- 1/3 cup carrot, chopped small
- 3/4 cup whole grain flour
- 2 cups water
- 2 teaspoons vegetable base or bouillon
- 1 12 oz bottle of Shiner Bock
- 4 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 6 ounces of smoked gruyere cheese, shredded (can substitute smoked gouda)
- 1 and a half cups half and half
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1. Melt butter in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add onion, carrot and celery and saute until softened. Add flour and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water, vegetable base and beer. Heat to a boil, while slowly adding cheese and stirring until smooth.
2. Add half and half, salt, dry mustard and worcestershire. Reduce heat to low and cook until thickened- about 10 minutes.
If you’re still afraid of butter, check out some of these links:
- The Big FAT Lie
- Milk Fat Does a Body Good
- The Real Association Between Butter and Heart Disease in Sweden
- Why Butter is Better
- Fat from butter and cheese not a problem, says heart specialist
I personally would much rather use a pat of unsalted real butter from grass-fed cattle with one ingredient (cream) than a margarine with a hundred ingredients I can’t pronounce. I once heard or read someone say they trust the cows more than chemists, and that’s the way that I feel too when it comes to my food.
What are your thoughts on butter vs. margarine and the recent admittance that maybe we’ve had it all wrong placing the blame on fat the past few decades?