Bacon Cheddar Chipotle Potato Soup
Creamy, cheesy potato soup with the spicy smoky zing of chipotle peppers and a bit of bacon to add to the smokiness. I made it gluten free by using tapioca flour for the thickener, but you can use regular flour if you don’t have a sensitivity to gluten.
I made this soup for a little soup/chili competition that we have each year on the second floor at the office. It’s a good time to be a second floor-idian because we have a lot of good cooks on the 2nd floor. I tend to migrate towards the spicy side for this competition because there are a lot of pepper-heads “living” (working) on the 2nd floor with me. And my soup had to be cheesy, because cheese is just wonderful. And then I had to add a little bacon … because, yeah, bacon.
So this is the soup I dreamed up. It started out as a simple cheese soup and evolved from there. It won the most appealing category, which made me smile and it was completely gone. It’s a good thing I saved a little bit of it at home for the photo shoot. I meant to save a little for the boyfriend, per his request, but it never made it to him and then the photo shoot of the last of the soup totally reminded me of how good it really is and I couldn’t help myself … I had to eat it. Well, we shall just have to make the soup again sometime, if he wants to taste it.
- 2 - 3 large potatoes (1 - 1.5 lb.), peeled and chopped + 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium onions, peeled & chopped
- 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour (or, for gluten free, use tapioca flour)
- 5 medium/large carrots, peeled & chopped
- 6 cups of chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup fat free half & half (or regular half & half)
- 2 cups milk
- 4 oz. Greek cream cheese (or Neufchatel)
- 1 Tablespoon chipotle
- 1 - 2 Tablespoons chopped grilled jalapeno pepper
- 1 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese
- 4 slices lean bacon, cooked and chopped
- In a medium microwave-safe bowl, toss the chopped potatoes with the olive oil. Cover with a plate and microwave on high for 5 - 8 minutes or until the potatoes are tender, stopping every 2 minutes or so to stir the potatoes so that they cook evenly.
- Meanwhile, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, stir and cook until the onions are soft and translucent, about 5 - 10 minutes. Add the flour and carrots and saute a little longer, stirring to coat all the veggies with flour.
- Stir in the broth, potatoes and bay leaf. Cover and bring to a boil, then uncover, reduce heat to a simmer and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes or until the potatoes are falling apart tender and the soup is starting to thicken.
- Scoop out about 2 - 3 cups of the mixture into a blender. Starting with the lower amount of peppers, add the half and half, milk, cream cheese, chipotle powder and jalapenos and blend until smooth. Taste and add more chipotle and/or peppers if desired and blend again. Stir the blended mixture back into the soup pot, bring to a simmer and simmer on medium low for another 10 - 20 minutes or so, stirring frequently.
- Stir in the bacon and cheddar cheese. Simmer for a little longer to melt the cheese.
- Serve hot in bowls with extra shredded cheddar, snipped green onion and bacon for garnish.
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
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