This month, as part of the Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned to Katie’s Epicurean Mom site. She has a beautiful site! Amazing photography, great recipes, I spent a lot of time looking around and drooling. 😉  hehe

Her food photography puts mine to shame, and made me want to try all the recipes!! In the end, I decided to make the Loaded Baked Potato Soup. I thought my 3-yr old would like it, since it’s potatoes. Actually, who am I kidding, he takes after ME! I loooove potatoes in any shape and form. 🙂

I made the soup that very night, and oh my goodness! It was supposed to be our “appetizer”, followed by another new recipe of sloppy joes lentils. Needless to say, we barely ate the sloppy lentils, ’cause the soup was so good!

My husband said it was a soup like you’d buy in a very fancy restaurant. I must agree! It was delicious!

Are you ready to try it yet?? 🙂  Here is the exact recipe, and I’ll italicize the few things I changed. It doesn’t need to be changed at all, I just can’t quite follow any recipe exactly, and wanted to make a tad less rich. 🙂

Thanks Katie, for a fabulous recipe!

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

3-4 large russet potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup flour
2 1/2 cups broth
1/2 cup half & half (I used 2% milk instead of half and half)
2 1/2 cups 2% milk
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup (mild) cheddar cheese, grated, plus more for garnish
1 cup white (mild) cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 cup sour cream (I didn’t add it in, tasted great even without it!)
1 large onion, diced
5 pieces bacon, cooked and crumbled
4 tablespoons chives, chopped (I didn’t have any, would have been a nice addition!)
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.  Rub potatoes with olive oil and place on a baking sheet.  Bake for 45 min- 1 hour, or until soft and completely cooked. Cool potatoes completely and peel. Dice 2 potatoes (into bite sized pieces) and mash the other with 1/2 cup milk. Separately, set both aside.
Over medium heat melt butter (you can add more butter, I cut on it to save on calories) in a dutch oven (I used a regular large pot) and add flour, stirring vigorously, until thickened and smooth. Slowly add half and half and milk (stirring vigorously.)  Add onions and garlic and cook until soft and translucent (stirring continuously.) Add the mashed potato. Using an emulsion blender or blender, blend until smooth (if using a blender return to the dutch oven.) Add chicken broth, cheddar cheese and white cheddar cheese, salt and pepper.
Stir in the sour cream, until completely incorporated, and add diced potatoes.
Spoon into bowls and garnish with cheddar cheese, bacon and chives.