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Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe (with Cashew Cream)

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This delicious vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe with cashew cream is so comforting and filling, you will never miss the "real" thing. I always go back for seconds with this soup!

My love of broccoli cheese soup began when I was a young teenager hanging out at the mall in the 1990s. My local mall, The Steamtown Mall (made famous by The Office), had a standard American restaurant called "The Ground Round" (similar to "Applebee's"). My go-to order on shopping trips with my friends (we were total mall rats) was their broccoli cheese soup in a mini crockpot, with added broccoli bits, cheddar cheese shavings and puffy oyster crackers.

After taking on a mostly vegan diet, I knew I wanted to perfect my own vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe to give me all those nostalgic feelings. It took me several years and numerous trials to arrive at a vegan version as luxurious as the one I remembered from my youth, without being too decadent. Now, I love eating this for lunch because it's not overloaded with ingredients but keeps me full all day.

Note: this vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe was adapted from a cookbook of one of my favorite vegan chefs, Chloe's Kitchen: 125 Easy, Delicious Recipes for Making the Food You Love the Vegan Way. Chef Chloe Coscarelli is a nationally-renowned and award-winning vegan chef (she won Cupcake Wars!) with a beautiful spirit, and I couldn’t recommend Chloe's Kitchen more highly. My version of this recipe has cashew cream (in order to thicken the soup), less vegetable broth and less non-dairy milk, a bit more lemon juice, and onion powder instead of chopped onion.

I played around with different ratios of cashews to water in my vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe to attain a consistency that was thicker than liquid and somewhat decadent, but not too decadent. However, if you prefer a texture that is more or less decadent, you can play around with it as well.

About Nutritional Yeast

And for anyone new to vegan cooking, I wanted to quickly explain that nutritional yeast is how many vegan dishes get a non-dairy “cheesy” flavor. It has an odd name, but I assure you that it looks just like grated cheese and is packed with a good source of protein and B Vitamins. It’s also gluten-free. Even my non-vegan husband sprinkles it on his food all the time! 

My pick: This specific Bragg Nutritional Yeast is a popular and trustworthy brand that I most often use.

How to Make Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup

Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe (with Cashew Cream)

Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe (with Cashew Cream)

Yield: 2-4
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This delicious gluten-free and vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe with cashew cream is so comforting and filling, you will never miss the "real" thing. I always go back for seconds with this soup!


  • ¾ cup cashews
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon of onion powder (or 1 white or yellow onion, chopped)
  • 2-3 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
  • 1 ½ cups non-dairy milk (unflavored)
  • 1 bunch chopped broccoli florets (about 3 ½ - 4 cups)
  • ¾ cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • salt (or garlic salt) and black pepper, to taste
  • Optional: crackers


  1. Boil cashews for ten minutes in a saucepan to soften them, then blend them with the water until smooth. Place the creamy cashew mixture in a full-sized blender, if it isn't already in one.
  2. While the cashews are boiling in the saucepan, add vegetable broth, milk, garlic and onion powder (or onion) to a deep pot and heat over medium to high heat for one to two minutes.
  3. Add the broccoli florets and bring them to a simmer. Then cover, reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer until broccoli is tender. (Up to 20 minutes for fresh broccoli; less for frozen broccoli. Keep an eye on it.)
  4. Scoop out some broccoli florets and reserve. (I like to reserve about 40-50%.)
  5. Add the remainder of the contents of the pot of soup to the blender and blend until pureed.
  6. Return the pureed soup to the pot and add the reserved broccoli florets.
  7. Over low heat, stir in the nutritional yeast until it is fully incorporated.
  8. Add the lemon juice and season generously with salt and pepper.
  9. Top each bowl with extra broccoli florets and/or your favorite crackers.
  10. Enjoy the results of this vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe!


  • You can substitute 1 chopped onion for the onion powder -- I just prefer the powder in soups.
  • I recommend garlic salt and freshly ground black peppercorn, both of which I purchase in Trader Joe's.
  • I like to use my NutriBullet to make the cashew cream.
  • I usually use this specific Bragg Nutritional Yeast.
  • I love oyster crackers with this soup.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 299Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 486mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 8gSugar: 7gProtein: 19g

Shop the Recipe

As a reminder, you can quickly and easily shop for the ingredients for this recipe on Amazon / Whole Foods:

And if you enjoy vegan food, check out more of my simple vegan (and mostly gluten-free) soup recipes:

This vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe is my go-to soup recipe for a comforting soup. I hope you enjoy the added creaminess as much as I do!

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