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When you crave cozy comfort food, this cheeseburger soup recipe is the perfect choice! With a rich, cheesy broth and big burger flavor, this soup is far better than anything from the drive-through on a cold day. It’s a lot like my traditional hamburger soup, but with an added creamy, cheesy element, crispy bacon, and extra comfort food factor.
Why You’ll Love This Cheeseburger Soup Recipe
- Rich bacon, burger, and cheese flavor
- Creamy, cheesy texture
- Simple, common ingredients
- Only 20 minutes cook time
- No slow cooker needed
- Includes hidden veggies
- Satisfies cheeseburger cravings fast!
Ingredients & Substitutions
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for cheeseburger soup, what each one does in the recipe, and some substitution options (with more in the Variations section below). For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Ground Beef – Any ground meat will work here, but I typically use 85/15 ground beef, which has just the right amount of flavor without being too greasy.
- Bacon – I love a good bacon cheeseburger soup, but you could omit this to make one without bacon if you prefer. Using pre-cooked bacon bits saves a lot of time with this recipe, so that’s what I often do. If you do have extra time, you can prepare bacon in the oven or a skillet and crumble it yourself.
- Cauliflower – Many cheeseburger soup recipes use potatoes for the bulk of the soup, but this lightened up (but still hearty) version uses cauliflower instead. Chop it into bite-sized florets. If you prefer a more carb-y soup, you can substitute russet potatoes (or really any potato you like), but they will take longer to cook than cauliflower does.
- Chicken Broth – I used a reduced-sodium chicken broth because of the added salt from the bacon and cheese. You can also use reduced-sodium beef broth or make homemade bone broth instead.
- Milk – I used unsweetened almond milk, but if your lifestyle allows, you can also use conventional milk.
- Dried Parsley – You can also use a tablespoon of fresh parsley instead of a teaspoon of dried, or use other dried herbs, such as basil or Italian seasoning.
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese – Use pre-shredded or shred it yourself. Freshly shredded cheese melts more easily, but also clumps more easily. You can also toss the cheese with cornstarch (or a cornstarch substitute, like arrowroot powder) to help it thicken the broth.
- Heavy Cream – Helps to thicken the broth and provide richness, along with the cheese.
How To Make Cheeseburger Soup
This section shows how to make bacon cheeseburger soup, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Crisp up the bacon. In a large pot, large saucepan, or large Dutch oven, cook the bacon bits over medium heat, until crisp.
- Brown the beef. Raise stove to medium-high heat and add the ground beef. Cook, breaking apart with a spoon, until browned.
- Simmer the soup. Add in all remaining ingredients, except the cream and cheese. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer until the cauliflower is tender.
- Melt and thicken. Lower heat. Stir in heavy cream and cheese, until the cheeseburger soup is smooth and the cheese is melted.
Tips For The Best Cheeseburger Soup
- No need to drain the bacon grease. Pre-cooked bacon bits do not render a lot of fat, but the small amount of fat they leave behind adds so much flavor. Leave it all in the pot! If you cook raw bacon instead, though, you may want to drain.
- Add the cheese slowly and stir constantly. To avoid clumping, add a small amount of cheese at a time and don’t stop stirring until fully melted before adding more.
- Or melt the cheese separately instead. Alternatively, ladle 2 cups of broth from the soup into a separate bowl and fully whisk in the cheese before returning to the pot.
- Swap the meats – Use ground turkey, ground chicken, or even ground pork instead of beef.
- Change cheeses – Try other hard melting cheeses such as Swiss for a whole new taste, or swap in pepper jack for a slightly spicy cheeseburger soup.
- Add more toppings – Garnish with chopped dill pickles, caramelized onions, sour cream, jalapeno slices, or even croutons if you miss the bun.
- Add other vegetables – As with any soup, almost any veggie you like can be added, but carrots are a particularly good pairing with the other flavors here. You can also saute onion and garlic in the bacon grease after cooking the bacon, or if you skip the bacon, saute them in butter or olive oil instead.
- Use potatoes – If this works for your needs and you want a more filling soup, swap the cauliflower for diced potatoes. The soup will take a little longer, so just simmer until the potatoes are soft.
- Make thicker, more creamy cheeseburger soup – Remove some of the liquid together with the cauliflower, puree in a blender, and return to the soup. You can also thicken it by adding cream cheese and letting it melt. (That’s one of the tricks I use in my easy broccoli cheddar soup without requiring a thickener.)
- Store: Keep leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- Meal prep: Brown the bacon and beef, then cool and store until ready to cook. You can also chop the cauliflower ahead of time and store separately.
- Reheat: Warm on the stove, stirring frequently to avoid separation.
- Freeze: After cooling completely, you can freeze cheeseburger soup in a zip lock bag or container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
What To Serve With Cheeseburger Soup
This is easily my favorite cheeseburger soup recipe because it satisfies all on its own, but you can include these sides to make it a big meal:
- Salads – Spinach bacon salad, cucumber tomato avocado salad, or 7 layer salad would all pair nicely with this recipe for cheeseburger soup.
- Chips Or Crackers – Add crunch with 3-ingredient almond flour crackers, light and crispy zucchini chips in the air fryer, or homemade flax seed crackers. Of course, feel free to use any store-bought crackers or chips you like, too.
- Fries – For a burger and fries experience with a healthy spin, serve this soup with rutabaga fries, jicama fries, or baked zucchini fries. It also goes well with regular potato garlic parmesan fries.
More Creamy Soup Recipes
If you liked this dish, try these delicious soup recipes next — full of rich, creamy taste and hearty meats:
Bacon Cheeseburger Soup Recipe
Cheeseburger Soup Recipe (20 Minutes!)
This easy cheeseburger soup recipe is comfort in a bowl. It's cheesy, filling, surprisingly healthy, and ready in just 20 minutes!
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
In a large pot, cook bacon bits for a couple of minutes over medium heat, until crispy.
Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the ground beef. Cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking apart with a spoon or spatula, until browned.
Add the cauliflower, chicken broth, almond milk, dried parsley, sea salt, and black pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10-15 minutes, until cauliflower is tender.
Remove pot from heat. Stir in the cheddar cheese and heavy cream, until the soup is smooth and the cheese is melted.
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Serving size: 1 cup
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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