Select SAUTE function on pressure cooker to melt butter. Once butter is melted add onion and cook for 3 minutes, or until translucent. Add garlic and sauté 30 seconds more.
Stir in fresh or frozen broccoli, broth, salt, and pepper. Lock lid in place and select HIGH pressure for 2 minutes cook time for fresh broccoli or 1 minute cook time for frozen. When the timer ends, carefully quick release pressure, wait for valve to drop, and remove lid.
In a small bowl whisk together 1/4 cup cornstarch with 1/4 cup water until smooth. Select SAUTE function and add cornstarch / water slurry to pot, stirring constantly until soup comes to a boil and thickens. Hit CANCEL to turn off pressure cooker.
Add handfuls of cheddar at a time, stirring to melt between each addition. Once cheese is melted, stir in half and half. Serve hot with additional shredded cheddar on top, if desired.
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How to Make Broccoli Cheese Soup on the Stove
Complete step one in a large saucepan.
Add broth, salt, pepper, and broccoli. Bring to boil, then cover and simmer until broccoli is tender, about 10-15 minutes.
In a small bowl whisk together 1/4 cup cornstarch with 1/4 cup water until smooth. Add cornstarch slurry to pot and boil until thickened.
Return to pot and add handfuls of cheddar at a time, stirring to melt between each addition. Once cheese is melted, stir in half and half. Serve hot with additional shredded cheddar on top.
Substituting Milk, Cream, or Non-Dairy MilkRegular milk or non-dairy milk, such as almond milk may also be substituted. It would reduce the calories in the soup and make it even healthier. However, the soup will be thinner and not as rich tasting.Freezing Broccoli Cheese SoupBroccoli Cheese Soup can be frozen, BUT the soup may "break" or have a thinner consistency upon thawing.Defrost the soup in the refrigerator and reheat gently on the stove. If the soup is thinner than desired mix together 2-4 tablespoons of cornstarch with equal amount of water.Bring soup to a boil, add cornstarch slurry, and stir until thickened.Low Carb / Keto Broccoli Cheese SoupReplace the cornstarch with xanthan gum. Start with 2 teaspoons xanthan gum dissolved in 2 tablespoons water. Increase by the teaspoon (mixed with a little water) for thicker broccoli soup. How to Thicken or Thin Soup
To thin the soup, either use 1-2 tablespoons less cornstarch mixed with less water or add additional milk or cream at the end.
To thicken broccoli cheese soup add softened cream cheese, additional cheddar, or more cornstarch mixed with water.