Loaded Potato Soup

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When temperatures start to dip, you can bet we’re busting out our stockpots and getting ready to start cranking out enough soup to feed an army.

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We love all different types, but we’d be hard pressed to find one we come back to more often than this loaded baked potato soup.

Baked potatoes are the ultimate comfort food for us, so what better way to make a potato soup than to emulate our favorite, topping-laden dish? The key here is to bake your potatoes and then scoop out their soft insides, making the soup substantial, yet creamy…the addition of cheese, sour cream and bacon are really just the icing (and sprinkles and cherry) on top of the cake. We get it if you like your own version of potato soup, but this one really is the best, if we do say so ourselves!

Sometimes we want to cook something easy and quick and most of all delicious.

Yesterday I didn’t know what to cook for lunch and I came up with this Loaded Baked Potato Soup which turned out to be a success!

INGREDIENTS

1 package (12 oz) bacon 
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
6 cups chicken broth (from two 32-oz cartons)
2 lb baking potatoes, peeled, cubed
2/3 cup butter
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 container (8 oz) sour cream
2 1/2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (10 oz)
3/4 cup sliced green onions

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DIRECTIONS

1.In 12-inch skillet, cook bacon over medium heat 6 to 7 minutes or until crisp; drain on paper towels. Crumble bacon; set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet. Cook onion in bacon drippings over medium-high heat 6 minutes or until almost tender.

2.In 6-quart Dutch oven, mix onion, broth and potatoes. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cook 10 minutes or until potatoes are very tender.

3.Meanwhile, in same skillet, melt butter over low heat. Stir in flour with whisk until smooth. Cook and stir 1 minute. Gradually stir in 2 cups of the milk. Pour milk mixture into potato mixture. Add remaining 2 cups milk, the salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with whisk, until mixture is thickened and bubbly.

4.Stir in ham, half of the bacon, the sour cream, 2 cups of the cheese and 1/2 cup of the green onions. Cook until thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Evenly top individual servings with remaining bacon, 1/2 cup cheese and 1/4 cup green onions.

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