Broccoli, Lemon, and Parmesan Soup

By • November 7, 2012 • 107 Comments

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Serves 4 to 6

  • 2 pounds broccoli, trimmed and cut into florets
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 fat cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 cups homemade or low sodium chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 lemon
  • Crusty bread for serving
  1. Bring a large, heavy pot of water to a boil. Add the broccoli and boil for five minutes. Drain the broccoli well and set aside.
  2. Add the olive oil and garlic to the pot over medium heat. After a minute or two, when the garlic starts to soften and turn golden, add the broccoli, season with salt and pepper, and stir well.
  3. Cover the pot, turn the heat down as low as it will go, and cook for about an hour, stirring occasionally, until the broccoli is soft enough that it yields when you press it with the back of a wooden spoon (it may brown a little during this process -- this is a good thing).
  4. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Simmer the soup for 5 minutes.
  5. Carefully puree half the soup in a blender or food processor, using a kitchen towel to hold the lid on tight. Stir the puree back into the pot. Stir in the Parmesan and lemon juice to taste. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve hot with plenty of crusty bread.
Jump to Comments (107)

Comments (107) Questions (3)

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Stringio

3 days ago mainesoul

24 + inches of snow in Boston. I gave some of this soup to a neighbor who loves broccoli soup and has a snow blower. He thought the soup was very special.

Merrill

3 days ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

What a nice story! Hope you're able to dig your way out before too long...

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8 days ago kkathrine

out of curiosity - how much lemon juice are people using?

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8 days ago Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I use the juice of one lemon. If it's an extra juicy one, I start with one half. It's interesting, but the flavors REALLY come together like Ellen said below.

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7 days ago Skinny bitches

I used less than what they call for. I based it on my personal taste and the kind of lemon you use. I tried following the recipe, but in the end it turned out too tart for me.

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7 days ago Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Now that I think of it, I only used 1/2 a lemon. I was at my Mom's house in San Diego, so it was a small Meyer's lemon from her tree.

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10 days ago Ellen

Didn't like this so much yesterday but the flavors are more intense/interesting the second day. Really good; highly recommend!

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18 days ago biennourri

I am a little disappointed in my children's opinion of this soup. They love broccoli and parmesan, but did not love this soup. I, on the other hand, did love it. Therefore, I will make the soup again, but just for myself!

Julistache

about 1 month ago juliunruly

This soup was wonderful. You really need to like broccoli. I was tasting as I went along, and was a little bit concerned until the lemon juice went in (I used a Meyer lemon) and it all came together. I used an immersion blender right in the pot; next time I'll try as the directions suggest for more texture. I topped it with a little creme fraiche and skipped the bread.

Stringio

about 1 month ago mainesoul

This is a wonderful soup. No need for changes, except to chop up the stems and use them to.

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about 1 month ago jelena mustapic

i just made this on a rainy day, it really is delicious and so simple to make! love it! and as a student on a budget this was affordable too!

Stringio

2 months ago Selena Benedict

This recipe is fabulous. I ate the whole pot in a day and a half served with crusty sourdough. Delicious.

Merrill

2 months ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

So glad you liked it!

Stringio

3 months ago Sally Abromaitis Ashak

Is there anything wrong with using a pressure cooker for the broccoli? This is the way I have always cooked it. Keeps its flavor and color.

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3 months ago Frances Peets

I have never cooked veggies for a soup this way - on their own, covered for an hour - can someone fill me in on this method. I usually just cook, simmering after boil and then puree. Thank you.

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3 months ago Margaux

Just try it this way, Frances Peets. It is worth it!

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3 months ago Frances Peets

Thanks Margaux I did and it was lovely but I was just curious about method.

Stringio

3 months ago Stephanie Kirkland-Kuisma

This looks wonderful and I am going to make this for dinner tomorrow night. I know this may sound odd, but I have some squash kicking around my fridge that I need to use. Has anyone made this and added squash? I have about half a small blue hubbard already diced. I am considering adding this in with the broccoli.....

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4 months ago Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

This soup is so delicious. Much better than the sum of it's parts. I think that slow pan roast is key. I have been off broccoli for a while, but this has brought it back in my good graces. My farmer's market broccoli has long stalks so I added them. I used my immersion blender and it was the perfect consistency. Love.

Pastrychefsherry

4 months ago Shef Sherry

Love the combination of lemon and parmesan. Looking forward to making this soup tonight with cauliflower to combat my cold!

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4 months ago catalinalacruz

Very, very, very good! And a good way to eat half a pound of broccoli at one sitting. :)
Next time, I'll try it using cauliflower instead of broccoli.

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4 months ago catalinalacruz

P.S. I steamed the broccoli, rather than boiling it. Can't stand to pour nutrients down the drain.

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4 months ago flourgirl

I was having a vegan guest for dinner and took a chance and used 1/2 cup nutritional yeast instead of the parm....different but still wonderful. I have also made half broccoli/half caulifower...also very good!

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4 months ago Amy Palmer Henry

This is a favorite of ours. I peel and chop the broccoli stems and cook those along with the florets. Then I save the cooking liquid when draining the broccoli and use that as stock or to mix with Better Than Boullion instead of water.

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5 months ago Alisha Spann

Made this tonight for dinner tomorrow and i had to sneak a taste...bad move had a big bowl of it after the salad i already had for dinner *blushes*. I was wondering if anyone has tried this with just cauliflower yet because i went out and bought cauliflower when i bought broccoli when i saw this recipe because it sounded so good. Never will i make broccoli cheese soup again! Maybe just a dash of Tabasco on top for those nights you need something warm with a bit of warmth

Ashley

6 months ago Ashley Marie

Loved this so much - it was delicious, and light enough for summer comfort soup! I was just a 1/4 cup short on my homemade chicken stock (the cardamom one from @midnitechef on here) so once everything was boiling, I subbed 1/4 cup extra dry vermouth. I think it's really important to use quality cheese in this!

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7 months ago Sasutan

That is an exceptional soup!

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8 months ago matt

It's a nice soup, but I added some extras.
I cooked some diced bacon until the fat melted, then added some olive oil and cooked leek until soft, then added all of this with the puree. I also added dried chilli flakes, a bit more parmesan and replaced about a quarter of the broccoli with some cauliflower. Really tasty.
It really improves the next day.