Loaded Baked Potato Soup
Updated: Jun 27, 2022
A warm and comforting soup that is quickly made in less than 30 minutes!
4 potatoes, scrubbed
8 bacon slices
4 tbsp unsalted Challenge Butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup yellow onion
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups low fat milk
1 cup half and half
2 cups chicken stock
1 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/2 tsp garlic salt, plus more to taste
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 cup mild cheddar cheese
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
fresh chives, for garnish
Pierce the potatoes multiple times with a fork, then microwave them for 12 to 15 minutes, or until tender.* Carefully halve the potatoes and let cool. Once cool enough to handle, remove the skins, and cut into chunks.
Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool. Reserve up to 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat from the pan, discarding the rest. Once the bacon has cooled, crumble it into small pieces.
In a large pot, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the reserved bacon fat, garlic and onion and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the onion is tender. Slowly whisk the flour into the pan and stir for 1 to 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk and half-and-half. Keep whisking until smooth. Gradually add the chicken stock. Bring to a light simmer and whisk in the kosher salt, garlic salt and pepper. Keep at a light simmer until the mixture has thickened slightly, 5 to 7 minutes.
If you'd like to use cheeses and bacon as a garnish, reserve 1/4 cup of t each. Stir in the remaining cheeses, remaining bacon, and the sour cream. Remove the pot from the heat. Scoop potato chunks into the pan, breaking them into small pieces or leaving them chunky, depending on your preference. Serve hot, topped with your favorite garnishes, like cheese, bacon and chives.