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Best-Ever Beer Cheese Soup

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 55 min
  • Active: 55 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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8 tablespoons (1 stick) salted butter

1 to 1 1/2 large carrots, diced (about 3/4 cup) 

3/4 cup small-diced piquillo peppers, or 1/2 large red bell pepper, diced 

Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 

3/4 cup all-purpose flour 

4 cups chicken stock, low-sodium store-bought or homemade 

One 12-ounce bottle beer, preferably a mild-flavored blond or pale ale 

1 1/2 cups half-and-half 

12 ounces aged yellow cheddar (aged at least 2 years), grated 

1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 

Dash hot sauce 

1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg 

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Mustard oil or extra-virgin olive oil, for garnish 

Fresh goat cheese, for garnish 

Fresh thyme leaves, for garnish


  1. In a large stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the carrots, peppers and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring, until well incorporated, about 5 minutes more.
  2. Add the chicken stock, beer and half-and-half and cook, whisking often, at a very slow simmer over medium-low heat for 15 minutes.
  3. Add the cheddar to the soup by the handful, whisking each batch until smooth. Add the Worcestershire, hot sauce, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, the nutmeg, mustard and lemon juice, and stir to combine.
  4. Puree the soup in batches in a blender (holding a thick towel over the lid to prevent overflow) until very smooth.
  5. Just before serving, reheat the soup until steaming and taste for seasoning, adding salt as necessary. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish each bowl with a swirl of mustard oil, a dollop of goat cheese and a sprinkle of thyme.