To freeze or not to freeze broccoli cheese soup really boils down to what your taste buds actually feel about it.
That’s whether or not you enjoy thawed broccoli soup as much as you do the fresh mixture brought down from heat, piping hot with tangy spices and herbs, or, dont really care about the texture and taste but rather the nutrition behind the gritty thaw.
As far as freezing broccoli cheese soup is concerned, it’s doable and here’s how.
Can you freeze broccoli cheese soup?
Whatever variation you’re making, it’s possible to freeze broccoli cheese soup. But bear in mind that the soup is apt to loose texture, thickness and sometimes flavor after freezing and then thawing, especially when dairy products are used as part of the base ingredients for creaming, thickening and adding decadence.
The culprit ingredients and methods
Simple broccoli soups made with very few ingredients for example this Gordon Ramsey style broccoli cheese soup, should freeze and thaw perfectly well without breaking and trading texture when the cheese additions are left out during freezing. Plus, a simple spark with herbs and seasoning can easily pull out a second life buried deep within the frozen soup!
But a cream of broccoli soup, or those that contain dairy products such as cream, milk, cheese or half and half as part of their primary ingredients might not prove fair game for the freezer.
The fats in them tend to break away from the mixture when frozen and this (along side the next factor outlined below) usually cause the entire soup to adopt a grainy texture upon thawing and rewarming, and that, to most people, is sink and drain material, although for me, some few extra minutes whisking and adding more cream usually does the trick of reviving the elements for a memorable plating. I’ll teach you the techniques below, for now, just keep reading to find out what the stakes are.
One additional thing that also cause separation and graining of frozen broccoli cheese soup when thawed is the pureeing process itself, which basically takes all of the uneven mixtures into a blending machine and turn them into an even consistency.
This enhances creaminess and flavor which is great for devouring then and there –especially with garlic bread or croutons, but pop the same mixture into the freezer, and boom, there’s likelihood of graining, breakage and disintegration during thawing as a result of the now delicate nature of the soup.
Non-diary milk like those derived from water-plant extract such as almond, rice or soy milk, often hold the texture of broccoli soup better in the freezer than their dairy-based counterparts, but even they usually end up imparting a noticeable loss in texture in the soup when defrosted.
What many people suggest doing to overcome the diary product limitation is to hold back on the diary components against the recipe instructions.
After freezing and during reheating, you can then incorporate them into the naked frozen soup to complete the preparation. This way, there will be no breakage, no funny texture, and best of all, the soup would bear it’s freshest state and be full of so much flavor.
If doing the above spells out additional work on a busy Monday for you, you can always prepare the broccoli soup as per your recipe’s instructions (preferable substituting evaporated milk with cream if present), and then come thawing, whisk diligently and add some more cream cheese to make the soup even and creamy again. This method works good and produces a manageable alternative.
The flavor problem
It’s no rocket science that cooking ingredients taste best when they’re freshest, and this is especially true for delicate herbs such as parsley, basil, or dill.
If you’re making broccoli soup with any of these, and are planning to freeze for long term, you’ll definitely lose out on some, if not most of the flavors and also on the sharpness, as you’re already loosing out on some of the flavors of the pre-added seasonings.
But this, for anyone, should be an easy fix, simply add less amount of fresh herbs when cooking or ditch them completely, and then incorporate them into the soup when reheating for a lively winter breakfast, except of course, you run out of fresh herbs!
The broccoli texture problem
Unless you’re making everything into a perfectly blended puree, chances are, you’ll have some leftover florets tossed onto the final soup for extra crunchiness and added nutrition. Or, maybe you’ll even be adding some crunchy broccoli leaves to up your sour game.
You certainly don’t want any of these frozen alongside the broccoli soup because, come reheating, they’ll turn into a mushy, grainy, and overcooked shadow of their old self.
When observing this method, the options are two. Either ditch freezing with the broccoli florets completely or take out the exact serving size early before they fully cook on the stovetop to freeze alongside the rest of the puree. They’ll warm nice and evenly, and also maintain their crunch and texture.
How to freeze broccoli cheese soup
Freezing broccoli cheese soup is a straight forward business. First, prepare the soup with the above point in mind, and then allow to cool completely. You can place the bottom of the pan inside ice cold water and stir consistently to release the heat and cool much faster.
Note: You want to make sure everything is propely cooled. A warm soup popped into the freezer, is not only degrading to itself (through condensation and therefore deterioration of quality), it also poses risks of contamination to other food items such as poultry or steak by causing a rise in internal temperature which can favor bacterial growth.
While the soup is cooling, you want to label a freezer safe bag like a zip top plastic bag with the name of the item, the date of freezing and the expected thaw date – see below for maximum freeze duration.
You can also use Tupperware to freeze soups, just make sure to portion the soups the way it’ll be easy for you to just grab and use without having to think about refreezing, because you can’t refreeze after thawing! To label a Tupperware container use a tape with a writeable surface.
Next, load the soup using a ladle into the containers. For bags, the easiest way to do this is to blow air into the bag and then place it into a cereal box while folding the edges over the top to secure it in place.
Then, use a ladle to pour soup and ensure you leave an inch headspace to allow for expansion, otherwise, you risk the bag tearing in the freezer and the contents getting freezer burned.
For Tupperware containers, the process is pretty straightforward, but make sure to also leave at least 1 inch head space for expansion. When you’re done filling the soup into the containers, cover tightly or press out air and seal tightly if using bags.
Place bags flat in the freezer to turn firm, then stack one over the other to save up space for other items in the freezer. Soups can stay in the freezer indefinitely provided they are held at temperatures at or below 0F. For optimal quality however, use frozen soups within the first three months of freezing.
How to reheat broccoli cheese soup
Defrost soups in the freezer overnight and cook on a stovetop until hot and bubbling. When adding diary ingredients such as milk, cream or cream cheese, make sure to whisk continuously and simmer until the mixture thickens. Make sure to season for taste. Lastly, add cheese and crisp broccoli toppings and serve as you like immediately.
Can you refrigerate broccoli cheese soup?
Yes, broccoli cheese soup can be refrigerated, and it usually preserves quality for up to 3 days under airtight storage conditions. It’s best to use Tupperware or other solid containers for refrigerating soups.
Other related questions
Can you refreeze broccoli cheese soup?
No you can’t. It’ll loose so much in taste that you’d wish you never had a spoonful. As soon as you bring out the frozen bag from the freezer into the refrigerator for thawing, it’s time to finish up what you started.
Can you freeze Kirkland broccoli cheddar soup?
Yes you can freeze Kirkland broccoli cheddar soup. Use the freezing guide provided in this article.
Can you freeze Costco broccoli cheddar soup?
Costco broccoli cheddar soup is perfectly safe to freeze. The instructions are the same for freezing home made broccoli soup.
Can you freeze Panera broccoli cheddar soup?
Yes you can put Panera broccoli cheddar soup. in the freezer.
Can you freeze Members mark broccoli cheddar soup?
Yes, it’s perfectly safe to freeze members mark broccoli cheddar soup.