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This rich and creamy Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup gets the seasonal treatment, and the homemade herbed croutons add a happy crunch to this satisfyingly easy meal!
So it begins. The apples have given way to pumpkins.
Holy hell, it’s October.
As ready as I’ve been for fall…I’m so not ready for it to already be October. Especially since the weather hasn’t exactly been October-caliber, even for Florida.
I tend my little herb garden in our backyard every morning when I let Vader out, and I think I remember one single day in the last two weeks where I actually wanted to sit outside and enjoy the cool-ish breeze. It has just been so unbearably humid and gross, even on the rare occasion that we’ve gotten a good rain.
The warmth, however, has had absolutely ZERO negative effect on my rampant desire for fall foods.
Hence this Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup with Herbed Croutons.
Planning, cooking, and shooting for Pumpkin Week got pushed back slightly thanks to Hurricane Irma. Inconvenient as that was, I was really hoping that this soup was gonna be a “cool evening” dinner for us.
Not so much.
Good thing Abe and I roll with the punches. We polished off the whole batch over two days, between two dinners and a lunch.
The outside temps never dropped below 90 degrees.
Our air conditioner never went above 72 (which is pretty typical all year round TBH.)
The funniest part about this recipe is that…well, I’m really not much of a soup person.
I mean, soup can be a great meal, but I have to be in a particular mood to enjoy it (same goes for salad – to a much larger degree.) The fact that I’d share a soup this early in the “cooler weather” season, and enjoy it as much as I did…it makes me wonder.
This beer cheese soup is incredibly customizable!
This is a mash-up of three of my favorite things – pumpkin, broccoli cheddar soup, and beer. Samuel Adams Octoberfest, to be precise, which is what I used in here. I’m sure any ale (not stout) would work well, so if you get the urge to make this soup during a random April cold snap in Somewhere Amazing, MN., feel free to use whatever you’ve got.
If you feel like it needs veggies, go ahead and toss those in here, too. Honestly, I just wanted something akin to a bowl of melted cheese. And the lazy floating croutons are just so perfect, but even dipping pretzels and tortilla chips in this soup would be pretty excellent.
Just make sure you serve it in the pumpkin shells for full effect. So fun! (The secret? Steam them in the Instant Pot, then cut ’em in half!)
Did I mention it’s, like, a 30-minute meal, too? Win-win for football season AND easy fall dinners!
Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup with Herbed Croutons
Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 shallots diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 12 oz. (1 bottle) beer (we used Sam Adams Octoberfest)
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups pumpkin puree canned or fresh
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme plus more for serving
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Kosher salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese plus more for serving
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic sliced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 loaf Italian bread cubed (about 6 cups)
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup
- Heat oil & butter in a heavy-bottomed 4-quart saucepan over medium heat. When melted and shimmering, cook shallots & garlic for 2-3 minutes, until browned. Reduce heat to low, sprinkle flour over and stir, cooking for 2 minutes.
- Whisk in milk, broth, and beer in a stream. Add bay leaf. Simmer for 5 minutes, whisking occasionally. Stir in pumpkin puree, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, nutmeg, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Simmer for 5 more minutes, then carefully remove and discard the bay leaf.
- For smoother soup: remove saucepan from heat. Using an immersion blender (or in batches in a regular blender,) puree contents of the pot until desired consistency is reached. Return to low heat.
- Add cheese about 1 cup at a time, stirring constantly, and cook until cheese is melted, 3-4 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Portion into bowls and top with a sprinkle of shredded cheddar. Serve with croutons and fresh thyme.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, simmer the oil, sliced garlic, herbs, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and pepper for 5 minutes. Discard the garlic.
- In a large bowl, toss the bread cubes with the oil mixture, coating as evenly as possible. Spread the cubes on the baking sheet and bake for about 8 minutes. Sprinkle the croutons with the grated Parmesan, then bake for 8-9 more minutes, until golden brown. Sprinkle the croutons with more salt if desired, then serve on top of the soup.
Pumpkin Drink Recipes:
Pumpkin Pie Moscow Mule from Love and Confections.
Savory Pumpkin Recipes:
Goat Cheese and Sage Pizza with Pumpkin Crust from The Spiffy Cookie
Pickled Pumpkin with Sage and Autumn Spices from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Pumpkin Beer Bread from Forking Up
Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup with Herbed Croutons from The Crumby Kitchen
Pumpkin Chili from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Pumpkin Corn Chowder with Shrimp from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Pumpkin Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce from Hardly A Goddess
Pumpkin Focaccia Bread from Cookaholic Wife
Pumpkin Ravioli with Parmesan Sage Cream Sauce from Rants From My Crazy Kitchen
Pumpkin Rosemary Hummus with Sizzled Garlic from Amy’s Cooking Adventures
Pumpkin Stew with Chicken and Black Beans from Palatable Pastime
Spicy Pumpkin Soup from The Chef Next Door
Sweet Pumpkin Recipes:
Brown Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies from The Redhead Baker
Cheesecake Stuffed Pumpkin Bundt Cake from Cooking with Carlee
Easy Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake from Daily Dish Recipes
Jumbo Pumpkin spice Muffins with Pecan Streusel Topping from Family Around The Table
Kaddo Bowrani (Afghan Pumpkin with Yoghurt Sauce) from Caroline’s Cooking
Pumpkin Blondies from It Bakes Me Happy
Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars from The Bitter Side of Sweet
Pumpkin Cranberry Oatmeal Bars from The Nifty Foodie
Pumpkin Madeleines from Mildly Meandering
Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites from Making Miracles
Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal from Seduction in the Kitchen
Pumpkin Pie Tassies from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
Pumpkin Scones from The Freshman Cook
Pumpkin Spice Donuts from A Day in the Life on the Farm
Pumpkin Spice Donuts from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
Pumpkin Zucchini Bread from Feeding Big
Pumpkin Zucchini Streusel Bread from An Affair from the Heart
Ridiculously Good Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Cake from Bacon Fatte
Craving more cold weather meals? How about another beer-based recipe?