Beer and Cheddar Cheese Soup Recipe with Bacon


This easy Beer and Cheese Soup recipe combines the robust flavors of beer with cheddar cheese, oven-roasted vegetables, and bacon to make a rich and creamy winter soup that’s perfect as a quick weeknight dinner, for Game Day, or Super Bowl. 

side view of a bowl of cheddar beer soup topped with bacon bits and thyme leaves

If you’re searching for an easy weeknight meal that’ll warm everyone down to their toes, look no further than this beer and cheese soup recipe! When the weather turns chilly, I find that nothing hits the spot like a hearty homemade soup.

You’re going to fall in love with this beer and cheese soup recipe. It is delightfully silky and creamy and so simple to make but the flavor is so out-of-this-world delicious and complex that your family will beg you to make it again and again.

I love that it is made with ingredients that I usually already have lying around. The most important part? The leeks – they add a really wonderful flavor to this hearty soup. It’s thick, filling and satisfying – perfect for a cold day. I added some roasted vegetables which add a wonderful sweetness to balance out the tang of beer and cheese! 

I like to serve this creamy cheesy soup with a hunk of freshly baked German bread, and it’s always a big hit, especially on a cold winter night!

Where did beer and cheese soup come from?

I developed this recipe when I was writing my Canadian cookbook. This cheese soup is considered a classic Canadian comfort food that I found wonderfully familiar as we have a similar soup back home in Germany.

This dish is also considered a classic Midwestern recipe and is very popular in Wisconsin, where it is served topped with popcorn. Wisconsin was settled by German immigrants who brought with them their tradition of beer cheese soup.

 There are many other European countries that have one or another version of beer soup – some cooked with egg yolk, some made with cider, others served in a bread bowl. In Canada, the traditional beer soup was livened up with more spices, onions, and sharp cheddar cheese evolving into a more hearty meal.

 

overhead shot of a bowl of cheddar beer soup

Ingredients for making beer cheese soup:

The essential ingredients you need to make a good beer cheese soup are:

  • good butter,
  • flour,
  • chicken or vegetable stock,
  • leeks, onions, garlic, and carrots
  • lager beer,
  • and sharp cheddar cheese.  

The butter and flour are cooked together to form the roux base, which serves as a thickener for this soup.

Which beer is best for making beer and cheese soup recipe?

As for the beer, depending on your preferences, you can go with a full-bodied ale, or go for something a little more subtle, like a wheat beer or pilsner.

Can beer cheese soup be frozen?

I recommend against it. Soups with a lot of cream or dairy or potatoes will change in texture and possibly separate when thawed.

a bowl of the best Canadian beer and cheddar cheese soup topped with cheese, bacon and thyme

Why is my cheese soup grainy?

Curdling can happen if the temperature of your beer and cheddar cheese soup gets too high. Basically the proteins in the cheese tighten up and squeeze out the fat. You end up with a grainy, curdled consistency.

Unfortunately, once that has happened, there is not much you can do to fix it. So be careful to keep this soup on a very low flame once the grated cheese has gone in. Keep the cheese soup hot and steamy, but without boiling. That way, it will stay beautifully silky and creamy.

a bowl of beer and cheddar cheese soup topped with grated cheese and bacon

 

Can I reheat this soup? 

Yes, of course! Cheese and Beer Soup can be reheated in a pot on the stove, or in a bowl and even in the microwave. But  as mentioned above, go “low and slow.” To avoid curdling, you have to be really careful not to let this soup get too hot.

If you choose to reheat it on the stovetop, just keep that flame low and stir your soup often. For reheating in the microwave, warm it in about 2 short bursts (around 20 seconds each), and stir after each round, until the soup reaches the temperature you like.

Tips for making this beer cheese soup recipe:

  • To keep the color nice and light, only use the white part of the leek.
  • The addition of carrots makes for a nice orange hue, but you could also use parsnips.
  • For a meatless version, skip the bacon and fry the onion in ghee. 

Did you make and love this recipe for beer and cheddar soup with bacon? Give it your review below! And make sure to share your creations by tagging me on Instagram!

 

overhead shot of a bowl of beer and cheddar cheese soup with bacon bits
5 from 4 votes
Print

Beer and Cheddar Cheese Soup with Bacon

This easy Beer and Cheese Soup recipe combines the robust flavors of beer with cheddar cheese, oven-roasted vegetables, and bacon to make a rich and creamy winter soup that’s perfect as a quick weeknight dinner, for Game Day, or Super Bowl.  So much better than canned! 

Course Appetizer, main, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword beer cheese soup recipe, cheddar cheese soup, cheese soup recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 4 -6
Calories 450 kcal
Author Kiki Johnson

Ingredients

  • 1 leek only white part
  • 2 carrots
  • ½ celery root celeriac
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 strips bacon
  • 2 cups milk full-fat
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 laurel leaf
  • 1 twigs thyme
  • 40 g butter 3 tbsps
  • 1/3 cups flour 40 g
  • 2 cups broth
  • 1 1/2 cups beer 350 ml
  • 1 tbsp Worcester Sauce
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 3 1/2 cups cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 C - 392 F. Wash leek, carrots and celery and chop up coarsely. Toss with 3 tbsp olive oil and salt and pepper in a baking dish. Bake for 45 min.
  2. Place bacon into a pan and heat on medium heat. Fry for 5 minutes on one side and another 3 min or so on the other side, until crisp. Take out of the pan and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Save the fat.

  3. Heat the bacon fat in a big pot on medium heat. Add onion, garlic, laurel leaves, and thyme and sautee until the onions are translucent. Add onion mix to a bowl. Add butter to the pot and melt until bubbly. Toss in flour and stir well using a silicone whisk to make a smooth roux (flour-butter paste). Stir the roux until golden.

  4. Now add milk slowly and stir well. Let cook for a minute. It will thicken. Add broth, beer, Worcester and spices.

  5. Let cook for 5 minutes. Puree the oven-roasted veggies and add to the soup. Stir in the grated cheese and whisk well until smooth. DO NOT LET COME TO A BOIL once the cheese has gone in.

  6. Break the bacon into bits. This works by hand or using a food processor. Season the soup with salt, sugar, and pepper and serve sprinkled with bacon bits and fresh thyme leaves.

Recipe Notes

  • To keep the color nice and light, only use the white part of the leek.
  • The addition of carrots makes for a nice orange hue, but you could also use parsnips.
  • For a meatless version, skip the bacon and fry the onion in ghee. 


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