This flavorful white cheddar bisque will warm you right up on a chilly day. Serve with a few greens for an easy soup and salad lunch, or enjoy it my favorite way…with a piece of crusty bread.
After weeks of rain and a sky that hasn’t strayed much past an early-morning shade of gray, the sun showed off today. Beautiful and bright and an all-around hot shot.
It’s cold though. Not single-digit cold like it is where my family lives, but still, mid-30s in the Carolinas is pretty chilly.
Which means it’s perfect weather for a white cheddar bisque.
This recipe is from Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Table cookbook. Quite fitting, I think, since these pages have gathered dust while I’ve worked on Joanna-esque things off-screen.
Let me tell you, cooking is much more fun than tearing down layers of wallpaper. That had been painted over.
A project like that calls for a glass of bourbon, but I’ll settle for white cheddar bisque.
I could eat soup every day of the week – especially a creamy soup like this one – so I am biased when I say this is delicious. It’s huge on flavor without being too heavy and pairs especially well with a piece of crusty bread.
The predominant flavor is cheddar (stating the obvious here), but the slice of bacon and white wine lends a little depth while the onion and celery add body.
You can use yellow cheddar in place of white cheddar if you prefer, but pay attention to the sharpness. It’s the age of the cheese that will impact the flavor, not the color.
Did you know the only difference between yellow and white cheddar is a color additive? I had no idea. Bottom line, use a good quality cheese.
Another option to add flavor is to substitute a rich vegetable in place of chicken broth. Top each bowl off with a few crumbles of cooked bacon, finely chopped chives, and a spoonful of sour cream. Then enjoy!
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 slice bacon (thick-cut preferred)
- 1 medium white onion, diced
- 3 celery stalks, dice
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 pound sharp white Cheddar, grated (approximately 4 cups)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
- sour cream
- cooked bacon
- Heat the butter in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add the bacon slice, onion, and celery and cook until the onion is softened, about six minutes.
- Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for two minutes.
- Stir in the wine, if using, and the chicken broth.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a low simmer. Slowly stir in the cheese until melted.
- Next stir in the cream, stirring constantly.
- Add the salt and pepper, seasoning to taste.
- Remove and discard the bacon slice. Using an immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth.
- Ladle into bowls and garnish with sour cream, crumbled bacon, and chopped chives if desired before serving.
White pepper is called for in this recipe only so you don't have to see black pepper flakes in your white soup. If that doesn't bother you, by all means, feel free to use ground black pepper in place of white pepper.
You can also use a regular blender to smooth out the soup, but remember, hot liquids will expand when confined in this space. Be sure to allow the soup to cool so it's no longer piping hot, and fill the blender jar no more than half-way full.
Recipe adapted from Magnolia Table by Joanna Gaines