Cat's Kitchen

by Catherine M. Haug,  December 21, 2010

Beer-Cheddar Soup

I had a great recipe for Beer-Cheddar Soup when I was still living in Portland, but now I cannot find it. However, I do have a good recipe for Cheese & Onion Soup (from Soup by Coralie Castle), to which beer could be added, and also the recipe for Beer Cheddar Soup from Jake's Restaurant in Portland. I have melded these into one (which is how I got my original recipe that is now lost).

My favorite cheese for soup is Tillamook® Extra Sharp Cheddar, but any sharp cheddar can be used. I also use Tillamook® butter when I can't find Organic butter, because Tillamook dairies mostly feed their cows in pasture, and they are not treated with hormones.

Gouda is another cheese that is good in this type of soup. Or you could try a mix of cheddar and gouda.

Worcestershire is a commonly used seasoning in many recipes; Jake's recipe does not use it, and I’m not fond of it so add it in drops, tasting after each, as a little goes a long way. Another seasoning often used in cheddar soup is dry mustard, which I use sometimes - its flavor is good with beer. If you want to use this, add 1/2 - 1 tsp to the flour/seasoning mix.

Jake's recipe calls for dark beer, but I prefer an amber ale - dark is just too rich and sweet for my taste..

Serves 6 (see below for half-recipe to serve 2 - 3)

Ingredients to serve 2 - 3:

  1. Flour & Seasoning Mix:

  2. 1 1/2 Tbsp unbleached white flour

  3. 1/4 tsp Celtic sea salt

  4. pinch tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)

  5. 1/8 tsp black pepper

  6. 1/4 tsp paprika

  7. 1/8 tsp crushed dried sage (optional)

  8. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp dry mustard (optional)

  9. Soup:

  10. 3/4 cups minced onion

  11. 1 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

  12. 2 cloves garlic, minced

  13. 2 1/2 Tbsp butter

  14. 1 1/2 cups milk (or 1 1/4 cup milk, 1/4 cup light cream)

  15. 1/3 cup beer or ale

  16. 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce (optional)

Ingredients & Equipment (serves 6):

  1. Flour & Seasoning Mix:

  2. 3 Tbsp unbleached white flour

  3. 1/2 tsp Celtic sea salt

  4. 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)

  5. 1/4 tsp black pepper

  6. 1/2 tsp paprika

  7. 1/4 tsp crushed dried sage (optional)

  8. 1/2 - 1 tsp dry mustard (optional)

  9. Soup:

  10. 1 1/2 cups minced onion

  11. 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

  12. 3 cloves garlic, minced

  13. 1/4 cup butter

  14. 3 cups milk (or 2 1/2 cups milk, 1/2 cup light cream)

  15. 3/4 cup beer or ale

  16. 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce (optional)

  17. 4 small bowls (for onion, cheese, garlic and flour/seasoning mix)

  18. 3 quart saucepan


  1. 1.Mince onion; shred cheese; mince garlic; mix flour & seasonings in a small bowl.

  2. 2.Melt butter in sauce pan, then saute onion until soft. Add flour & seasonings, and whisk to make a roux. Cook and stir 3 minutes.

  3. 3.* Gradually add milk/cream with minced garlic, stirring well to mix and avoid lumps.

  4. 4.Bring to scalding point (about 180° F, when steam begins to hover over pan, but do not let it bubble). Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring, until thickened. DO NOT BOIL.

  5. 5.Add cheese and beer; stir until melted. Season to taste with Worcestershire, and adjust salt and pepper to taste.

  6. * An alternate method is to make the onion roux and set aside. Then warm milk/cream with garlic, then add roux while whisking to avoid lumps.

Testing 1/1/11:

I made a half recipe (serves 2 - 3) as written, including all herbs/spices; except I didn't use the Worcestershire sauce.

I used whole milk (pasteurized, but not ultra-pasteurized). For the flour, I used 1 Tbsp unbleached white spelt and 1/2 Tbsp whole oat flour. The roux thickened well, and blended well with the added milk. I used between 1/3 and 1/2 cup ale.

Result: Excellent! Very tasty and satisfying.

Autumn Veggie Soup

This just sounds so good! I’ve adapted this recipe from, originally by Ellie Krieger. This recipe uses chicken stock, but if you want it to be all vegetarian, you could use a veggie stock. The original uses a few processed items including lower-salt chicken broth lower-salt canned chickpeas and no-salt-added diced tomatoes. But I don’t buy into this lo/no salt business. Instead, I use unrefined sea salt such as Celtic or Himalayan Sea Salt or Real Salt, and I make my own chicken stock, chickpeas (garbanzos) and diced tomatoes. This summer I bought some delicious local tomatoes and made up a large batch of diced tomatoes for freezing. And I sprout chickpeas over 2-3 days prior to making the soup; once they are sprouted, they don’t take so long to cook and their nutritional benefit is enhanced.

I love the combination of sweet winter squash and kale in this and other dishes.

Serves 6 - 8

Ingredients & Equipment:

  1. 1 cup sprouted chickpeas (garbanzos); about 1/3 cup dried

  2. 3 medium carrots

  3. 1 large yellow onion

  4. 2 medium cloves garlic

  5. 2-lb butternut squash (to make 2 cups of 1/2” cubed squash)

  6. 2 cups coarsely chopped kale (I like lacinato or black kale)

  7. 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes

  8. 2 Tbsp olive oil

  9. 1/4 tsp ground allspice

  10. pinch cayenne pepper or to taste

  11. unrefined sea salt to taste

  12. 4 cups homemade chicken stock

  13. 4 sprigs fresh thyme

  14. soup pot


Sprout and cook chickpeas

  1. 1.Sprout the chickpeas over 2 - 3 days; rinse and place in saucepan, cover with water,bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer.

  2. 2.Simmer for about 30 minutes, until tender, adding more water as necessary.  During the last 15 minutes, add unrefined sea salt and pepper.


  1. 3.Scrub carrots and cut into 1/2 inch dice; dice onion and add to carrots.

  2. 4.Mince garlic. Peel and seed squash and cut into 1/2” cubes. Wash kale, trim leaves from ribs, and chop leaves coarsely. If using fresh tomatoes, chop them, and scoop into a bowl with their juices.

  3. 5.Heat oil in soup pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots & onion and cook until they begin to soften, about 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  4. 6.Add garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add squash, spices and 1 tsp unrefined sea salt, stirring to combine.

  5. 7.Add chicken stock, diced tomatoes with their juice, and thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover & simmer for about 10 minutes. Add kale and cooked chickpeas, and cook uncovered until squash is tender and kale has wilted, about 10 minutes more. discard the thyme sprigs before serving. Adjust seasoning and serve.

French Onion Soup

This recipe is adapted from Fine, originally by Anne Willan. What makes this soup special is caramelized onions, homemade beef broth, and aged Gruyere cheese melted over croutons on top.l

The soup and croutons can be made up to 2 days ahead; store soup in fridge, and croutons in an airtight container at room temperature.

I use my own homemade beef stock, but the recipe for roasted broth at sounds delicious too

Serves 6 - 8

Ingredients & Equipment:

  1. 2 quarts (8 cups) roasted beef broth, or homemade beef stock

  2. 1 small baguette (8 oz), cut into 1/2 inch slices

  3. 2 lb yellow onions, sliced thinly (8 cups)

  4. 2 cups grated Gruyere

  5. 1/4 cup butter, plus more for baking sheet

  6. Celtic sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

  7. 1 tsp Rapadura sugar

  8. 1 bay leaf

  9. soup pot, with lid

  10. lid that fits inside pot OR baking parchment and aluminum foil

  11. rimmed baking sheets

  12. broiler-proof soup bowls or crocks


  1. 1.First, make the broth and the baguette if you don’t have some on hand.

  2. 2.Slice the onions and grate the cheese

  3. 3.Melt butter in soup pot over medium heat. Stir in onion slices; season with 1 tsp salt & a few grinds of pepper. Reduce heat to low and cover the pot (see Equipment, right, on how to cover). Cook, stirring occasionally (you’ll have to lift the inside cover), until onions are very soft but not falling apart, 40 - 50 minutes. Remove lid, raise heat to medium high and stir in the sugar. Cook, stirring, until very deeply browned, 10 - 15 minutes.

  4. 4.Meanwhile, make the croutons: position a rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 F. Butter a rimmed baking sheet and arrange baguette slices on the sheet in a single layer. Bake until bread is crisp and lightly browned, turning once. 15-20 minutes. Set aside.

  5. 5.Add broth and bay leaf to caramelized onions; bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and simmer 10 minutes to blend flavors. Discard bay leaf and adjust seasoning with salt & pepper.

To serve:

  1. Position a rack 6 inches from the broiler and heat the broiler to high.

  2. Put broiler-proof soup bowls or crocks on a baking sheet; put 2 - 3 croutons in each bowl, and ladle the hot soup on top. Sprinkle with the cheese and broil until the top is browned and bubbly, 2 - 5 minutes. Serve immediately

Carrot-Ginger Soup

This recipe is adapted from, with additional ideas from  cCarrot Ginger soup, Roasted Carrot Soup, and  Whipped (the blog). Serves 4. This recipe can be served hot or cold.

Ingredients & Equipment:

  1. 1/2 medium butternut squash

  2. 2 Tbsp olive oil

  3. 1 onion or 2 shallots, diced

  4. 1 pound carrots

  5. 1/2 rib celery

  6. 3 cloves garlic

  7. one 2” piece fresh ginger

  8. 4 cups filtered water, chicken stock or vegetable broth

  9. unrefined sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

  10. 1 pinch ground spice: cinnamon, coriander, curry powder and/or turmeric

Optional garnish:

  1. 1/4 cup heavy cream, sour cream or plain unsweetened yogurt

  2. snipped fresh chives or green onion


  1. baking sheet or shallow casserole dish

  2. large saucepan or soup pot, with lid

  3. blender or immersion blender


  1. 1.Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut squash in half. Scoop out seeds and place cut-sides down onto greased baking sheet or shallow casserole dish. Bake 30 - 40 minutes, or until soft. Cook, then scoop out flesh from one half and set aside. Reserve other half for another use.

  2. 2.Meanwhile, do prep: Dice onion or thinly slice shallots; scrub and dice the carrots; mince celery. Mince garlic, sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt and crush with side of knife blade. Peel ginger and slice thinly.

  3. 3.Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add onion/shallot and garlic; cook, stirring, until onion is translucent. Add water/stock/broth and cooked squash, with carrots and ginger. Bring to a boil, then simmer until carrots and ginger are tender, about 20 minutes.

  4. 4.Puree in blender in batches, or with an immersion blender, adding boiling water as needed to thin. however, this is meant to be thick and creamy.

  5. 5.Return soup to pan and reheat. Season to taste.

  6. 6.Optional: Serve with dollops of cream, sour cream, or yogurt.

Testing 3/15/13: I start the juice fast tomorrow, so I made this as my ‘liquitarian soup” at the end of the prefast. Normally, that is served cold and raw, but I wanted to try this recipe. Made half-recipe, with 1/2 small acorn squash, and half chicken broth/half water. Seasoned with cinnamon and turmeric. Otherwise, as written. Did not add garnish, and served warm (not hot). This is very easy to make and it is delicious! I made it thick - didn’t add water to thin the puree. Background of heat and foreground of sweet.


  1. Soup by Coralie Castle



return to Recipes Menu  or Health Essays Menu

  1. Beer-Cheddar Soup (Moved)

  2. Autumn Veggie Soup (squash, kale, tomatoes & chickpeas) (Moved)

  3. French Onion Soup (Moved)

  4. Squash, Carrot & Ginger Soup (Hot or cold) (Moved)

  5. See also (this site):

  6. Soup Menu (Moved)

  7. Borscht (Moved)

  8. Chicken Soups (Moved)

  9. Corn & Cheese Chowder (Moved)

  10. Chili (Moved)

  11. Cold Soups

  12. Kale, White Bean & Noodle Soup (Moved)

  13. Oyster Stew (Moved)

  14. Pasta e Fagioli (Moved)

  15. Soupe au Pistou (Moved)

  16. Squash soups (several)

  17. See also (other sites) (links moved to Soups Menu)

  18. Cabbage & Potato Soup

  19. Curried Pumpkin Soup

  20. Albondigas (Mexican Meatball Soup)

  21. White Bean Soup, with Zucchini & Olives

Romanian Potato Soup

photo from Wikipedia

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