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Nothing says “hello fall” like the first bowl of homemade soup of the season. This recipe for Cream of Potato & Cheddar Cheese Soup using Sharp Cheddar Cheese is simple and tasty! It also helps you cozy up and get warm on a crisp evening. Before you dive into the recipe, here are a few tips:

This recipe involves a lot of “fine chopping”. If you have a food processor, or special chopping tool, get them out for this recipe! The time it will save you is well worth it. Note: I am also a very slow chopper!

If you don’t have all of the different, called for spices lying around the house, it’s okay to omit a few. Just add the ones that you have, or like! I used a mixture of “Herbs de Provence” that I had already stocked in the kitchen (instead of buying new ones), and they worked great!

Cream of Potato & Cheddar Cheese Soup

1 slice bacon, diced
1 tablespoon parsnip, finely chopped
1 tablespoon celery, finely chopped
½ tablespoon rutabaga, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 mushroom, finely chopped
1 shallot, roughly chopped
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
½ tablespoon fresh basil, finely cut
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, finely cut
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely cut
½ teaspoon fresh parsley, finely cut
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 large russet potato, peeled and cut into ¼”, pieces
1 small red potato, peeled and cut into ½”, pieces
¾ cup heavy cream
¾ cup Tillamook Medium or Sharp Cheddar Cheese, finely shredded

In a medium-sized soup pot, cook the bacon over medium heat until well browned and nearly crisp. Remove the bacon pieces from the pot; drain them on a paper towel and reserve.

Add the parsnip, celery, rutabaga, mushroom, and shallot to the pot and stir over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and stir for an additional minute.

Add the broth, basil, oregano, thyme, parsley, pepper, salt, and russet potato and bring the entire mixture to a slight simmer. Cover and cook for 20-25 minutes over medium heat.

With a potato masher, mash the softened vegetables until there are no more large pieces and the soup is fairly smooth. Add the red potato and cream. Cover the pot and simmer for another 15 minutes over medium heat*.

Remove the pot from the heat, add the reserved bacon pieces, and whisk in the cheese. Serve immediately in hot bowls.

* If the soup is too thin for your liking, continue to cook the soup to desired thickness before you add the bacon and cheese. If the soup is too thick, add milk after adding the cheese and bacon.

Yields 4-5 Servings



There is no way this serves 4-5.

1 tablespoon parsnip, finely chopped ????
1 tablespoon celery, finely chopped ???
½ tablespoon rutabaga, finely chopped ???

Who in their right mind would purchase these vegetables just to chop up 1 Tablespoon?

September 27th, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Tillamook Team

Hi, Eliza! Thanks for checking out today's recipe, and sending your thoughts! The great thing about this recipe is that you can probably leave out a couple minor ingredients and it will be just as good. In fact Laura, who wrote this blog, left out the rutabaga when she made it and it was still super yum! This recipe makes for a fairly rich soup so it should comfortably serve four to five people.

If you give it a try and have some tips to add, please feel free to let us know. Have a great day!

~ Jala of the Tillamook Team

September 27th, 2011 at 3:39 pm


Actually all the measurements seem really tiny. If I make this I will at least double it!

September 27th, 2011 at 8:45 pm


This looks super delicious. Has anyone tried it more more rutabaga and less potato? I love the taste of rutabaga.

September 27th, 2011 at 9:11 pm

Lori Barbour

This sounds so yummy! I am putting it in my rotation soon. We are still not at soup days here in southern california but hopefully very soon.

September 28th, 2011 at 8:39 am

Tillamook Team

Hi, Lori! Are you planning on using Tillamook Cheese? If you do, let us know and we'll help spread the word! I'm sure it will be delicious!

~ Jala of the Tillamook Team

September 28th, 2011 at 9:34 am

Tillamook Team

Sonja, if you end up experimenting with the ingredients let us know how it goes! It's always nice to know we've provided a recipe that can be switched up here and there. I think this one is a good example. Have fun!

~ Jala of the Tillamook Team

September 28th, 2011 at 9:35 am

Tillamook Team

You can never have too much soup, right Carrie?! Have fun with the recipe and, if you have any feedback about suggested adjustments, we're always open to hear them!

~ Jala of the Tillamook Team

September 28th, 2011 at 9:37 am


This soup is awesome!

I made it last fall when I could find rutabagas in the store. I was just looking for the recipe and paniced when I couldn't find it in my things! Glad to find it still up here!!!

**I agree that buying fresh herbs for such tiny amounts is crazy ... you can always use dried!

November 1st, 2011 at 8:12 am

Tillamook Team

Hi, Leah! So glad you enjoy this recipe! It's such a yummy option for the fall and winter.

Do you have stores near you that carry fresh herbs in bulk? I know of some in the Portland, Oregon area. We also have some stores that carry fresh herbs in packages and they let customers take small portions out of the bag. You may check around your area and see if you can find a store with this kind of policy. It's so helpful when you only need small amounts of fresh herbs!

~ Jala of the Tillamook Team

November 1st, 2011 at 9:36 am


I have been looking for a great cheese soup. I am going to add these ingredients to my friday shopping list. Thank you

November 8th, 2011 at 4:20 pm

Tillamook Team

Great, Diana! Let us know how it turns out. I'm sure it will be deeeelish!

Jala of the Tillamook Team

November 8th, 2011 at 4:25 pm


This soup recipe sounds good, and with the first real cold snap about to hit here in the upper midwest. I couldn't think of a better time to try this.

November 8th, 2011 at 8:44 pm


I made this last night I grow my own fresh herbs there is nothing like the taste of a fresh herbs good luck and dont go cheep on the soup after all we are cooking for
the most important people in our lives

November 9th, 2011 at 6:21 am

Tillamook Team

It's is sooo good Nancy! Let me know if you end up making it and if you enjoy it. And please, stay healthy this season!

Jala of the Tillamook Team

November 9th, 2011 at 10:58 am

Tillamook Team

I agree, Kimberly! And yes, fresh herbs are the way to go! Thanks for your nice note!

Jala of the Tillamook Team

November 9th, 2011 at 10:58 am


Does anyone know if this soup freezes well?

November 9th, 2011 at 11:52 am

Tillamook Team

Hi there, Kathi! I checked with Laura, who submitted the recipe, and she has never tried to freeze it. I did some checking around online and, mostly, have found that folks are suggesting not to freeze soups that are cream based. With that said, you could give it a try and let us know!

Jala of the Tillamook Team

November 9th, 2011 at 12:13 pm


Thank you! If I do decide to try it I will let you know!

November 9th, 2011 at 12:15 pm


I will add some green Hatch chilis for a little more flavoring. We've found the green chili flavor is awesome with Tillamok cheese, esp. vintage white, since our move from Oregon to New Mexico this summer. We're spreading the word about the wonders of Tillamook as much as we can....just say green chili cheese bison burger!

January 8th, 2013 at 10:13 pm

Tillamook Team

Hi Laurel!
That sounds like a great addition to this recipe! Thank you so much for sharing it with us here! Thank you for being such a great fan down in New Mexico! Come back to visit us soon!

All the best,
Amalya, of the Tillamook Team

January 9th, 2013 at 8:23 am
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