Looking for an amazing chunky potato bacon soup recipe that is thick, hearty, and tasty? This is the ultimate comfort food. Have it traditional, loaded, or put a unique spin on it with the addition of nontraditional toppings (see below for ideas).
I probably should have called this recipe Double Bacon Potato Soup as it has a bacon infused soup base AND a crunchy bacon bit topping.
So what makes this potato soup different from the others? The texture. Thick and creamy with hearty chunks of potatoes. Perfect!
There are many different ways to thicken potato soup, but I developed a unique method (at least I haven’t seen it before) using… mashed potatoes.
Traditionally, flour is added to the soup base for a thicker consistency. This recipe does use flour as a thickener but it also uses mashed potatoes to get a thicker, creamier soup. Once the potatoes are cooked, add half of the potatoes and half of the chicken broth to a large food processor and pulse until creamy mashed potatoes are formed. These mashed potatoes are then added to the rest of the soup creating the ultimate comfort food.
Tips for success
- Cook your potatoes separately in water before adding it to your soup base.
- Make mashed potatoes to add as a thickening agent.
- Salt, salt, and more salt.
- Puree those onions for loads of flavor, but still maintain a creamy texture.
- Don’t forget to make it creamy. Add milk or cashew milk for a creamy consistency
- . Oh, and don’t forget the bacon!
Dairy free version
This recipe can be dairy free by using cashew milk instead of regular milk. I have made it with both cow’s milk and with cashew milk. I was pleasantly surprised to find the two recipes were virtually identical with the same texture, thickness, and flavor. The picture below has two bowls of potato soup, one regular and one dairy free. Can you tell which one is the dairy free version?
The bowl in the top right is the dairy free version. I’m telling you, it’s AMAZING!
You can add whatever toppings you want to potato soup as it works very well as a base to many different flavor profiles. Here are the traditional toppings which is often referred to as Loaded Potato Soup.
- cheese (cheddar is my favorite)
- sour cream
- green onions
Potato soup is the perfect base for a variety of flavors. Want to take your soup to the next level? Try adding any of the following toppings for a unique twist:
BBQ Pulled Pork Potato Bacon Soup
Plan your weeknight dinners carefully and you can use that left over crock pot bbq pulled pork as a yummy topping.
Beef and Cheddar
Add in a few cups of shredded cheddar cheese to the soup base and then top with shredded beef brisket and additional cheddar cheese.
Take your favorite Philly cheesesteak recipe and dump that steak (or chicken), peppers, and onions right on top.
Broccoli and Cheddar
This is the perfect way to sneak a few extra veggies in. Add some precooked broccoli and 2 cups of cheese into the soup base about 5 minutes before serving.
What goes well with pot roast? Mashed potatoes! This thick potato soup base is perfect for your favorite beef and gravy recipe.
Prepare your potatoes
Peel and dice the potatoes then add to a large stockpot. Fill the pot with water until the potatoes are covered and bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes until they are tender and you can easily stick a fork into the potato. While the potatoes boil, you can save time and complete the following 4 steps.
Make the bacon
While the potatoes are boiling, chop the bacon into bite sized pieces and add to a frying pan. Fry the bacon until crispy, stirring occasionally. Save ¼ cup of the bacon grease (careful as it will be very HOT). Set the bacon aside to cool on a paper towel.
Prepare the onions
While the bacon cooks, dice one large onion and add to a fry pan with olive oil. Cook over medium heat until lightly browned and tender. Add the garlic and cook for about 2 minutes.
Puree the onions
Add the onion mixture above to a small food processor and puree until a smooth paste is formed (careful as the onions will be HOT). If you have difficulty with the onions sticking to the sides of the food processor, just add a little more olive oil.
Add the flour to thicken
Return the onion puree to the pan and add the flour. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the milk and cook until thick and bubbly, stirring slowly. Then slowly add in about ½ of the chicken broth and stir well. Bring to a simmer.
Make the mashed potatoes
While the soup base is simmering, drain the potatoes and add about ½ of the cooked potatoes to a large food processor or blender. Add the rest of the chicken broth and pulse until mashed potatoes are formed.
Add the mashed potatoes to the soup base and stir well.
Add the soup base to the remaining potatoes in the large stock pot and place over medium heat. Cook for an additional 5 minutes and then serve with your favorite toppings.
Looking for additional hearty and comforting food? Try this Crockpot Ranch White Chicken Chili.
Chunky Dairy Free Potato Bacon Soup
- large food processor or blender
- 3 lbs potatoes (I measured 3 lbs after peeling), diced
- 7 slices thick cut apple smoked bacon (¼ cup bacon grease reserved)
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 5 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 4 cups whole milk or cashew milk if dairy free
- 1 quart chicken bone broth
- 2 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- crumbled bacon
- shredded cheddar cheese dairy free if desired
- sour cream
- green onions
- Peel and dice the potatoes until you have 3 lbs and add to a large stock pot.
- Cover the potatoes with water and bring to a boil.
- Boil the potatoes until tender and easily pierced with a fork.
- While the potatoes are boiling, make the bacon.
- Heat a large fry pan over medium heat.
- Chopped the uncooked bacon into small pieces and add to pan.
- Fry the bacon, stirring occasionally until crisp.
- Reserve ¼ cup bacon grease and then set the bacon crumbled on a paper towel.
- Add the olive oil to the ¼ cup bacon grease.
- Add the diced onions and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until translucent and soft.
- Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly to avoid burning the garlic.
- Pour the onions, garlic, and liquid into a food processor or blender and puree (be careful as the onions will be very hot).
- Add the onion puree back to the pan and add 5 tablespoon flour. Stir until a paste is formed.
- Cook over medium heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Slowly add the milk (or cashew milk if dairy free), stirring constantly.
- Bring to a simmer until thickened, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add HALF of the chicken bone broth, salt, and pepper. Stir well.
- Drain the potatoes and then add HALF of the potatoes and the remaining chicken bone broth to a large food processor (if it doesn't all fit just add what you can and add the rest to the soup base).
- Puree the potatoes and chicken bone broth until mashed potatoes are formed.
- Add the mashed potatoes to the soup base and stir well.
- Pour the soup into the large stock pot with the remaining potatoes.
- Simmer for 5 minutes then serve with desired toppings.