When I’m cooking at home during the week most of my recipes are good old Southern comfort food recipes, but I give them a healthy new twist. It is always amazing to me how many calories you can take out while still maintaining the flavor or even improving it.
Last week I made a big pot of Healthy Baked Potato Soup. It was so delicious. It still had all the flavors of a baked potato; bacon, cheese, sour cream, and chives. The broth was still smooth and creamy. It just had a lot less calories.
Typical baked potato soup has lots of heavy cream, bacon grease, and butter. I was able to take this out and still keep the flavors I love.
To make my Healthy Baked Potato Soup I peeled and cut my potatoes. I put them in a large pot, covered them with water, and boiled them till soft. When they were done cooking I reserved a cup of the potato water and drained the rest. This water will be used to help thicken my soup.
I mashed most of my potatoes but left a good amount of larger, bite sized pieces. I like to have bite size pieces in my soup but you can mash your potatoes to your desired consistency.
In a large stock pot I cooked three slices of reduced sodium bacon. When the bacon was done I removed it to a paper towel to cool. I swirled the grease around to coat the bottom of my pan and poured the remaining grease into the trash.. I added one diced onion to my pot and browned the onions in the bacon grease. Right when they were finished I quickly added minced garlic to cook.
When the garlic became fragrant I added in the potato water and scraped all the brown bits off the bottom of my pan. I then added in my chicken broth. I brought this to a low boil and then added my potatoes.
I like my broth to be slightly thick so in a small bowl I mixed flour and a cup of the broth mixture until well combined. I slowly mixed this back into the stock pan. This will help to thicken the broth a little but it is not a necessary step. If you don’t want to use flour you can leave this out and your soup will taste the exact same.
You may be wondering why I am adding the flour now. Usually you would make rue with the grease at the beginning of this process, but I used so little grease there wouldn’t be enough to make rue.
The longer my soup simmers the thicker it gets. I let it simmer for about five minutes. I then added in half of my green onions. I then mixed in my fat free cheese and stirred until completely melted and incorporated. Just before serving I mixed in my fat free sour cream..
I garnished each bowl with the chopped bacon, a little cheese, and green onions. This soup tasted just like your typical potato soup. We liked it so much we each had two bowls for dinner.
The consistency was rich and creamy and the flavors were delicious. The next day for lunch we ate another bowl and it was even better! I know your family will enjoy this recipe, but they’ll never guess that you made a low calorie version!
Healthy Baked Potato Soup Recipe
2.5 Pounds potatoes, peeled and chopped
3 Slices reduced sodium bacon
1 Large yellow onion, chopped
2 Cloves garlic, minced
3 Cups reduced sodium chicken broth
2 Tablespoons flour
3 Green onions, chopped
1 Cup fat free cheese plus more for garnish
1 Cup fat free sour cream
1. Place peeled and chopped potatoes into large pan. Cover with water and boil till soft. Reserve one cup of water from the potatoes and drain the rest. Mash potatoes to desired consistency leaving some bite sized pieces.
2. In a large stock pot cook three slices of bacon until crisp.. When finished place bacon onto a paper towel and chop when cool. Swirl grease to coat bottom of pan and remove remaining grease. Add in chopped onion and cook until brown and translucent. Add in garlic and cook until fragrant.
3. Quickly add in potato water and scrape the brown pieces from the bottom of the pan. Add in chicken broth. Add in potatoes. In a small bowl whisk together two tablespoons of flour and one cup of soup. When well combined slowly add back into the pan.
4. Let soup simmer four about five minutes to thicken up. Add in half of the green onions. Add in cheese and mix until melted and well incorporated. Just before serving mix in sour cream. Serve in soup bowls and garnish with green onions, cheese, and chopped bacon. Dig in!