Beer Cheese Soup with Soft Pretzels

(from castro15’s recipe box)

Categories: Soup


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • half an onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3-4 stalks of celery, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, minced
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (adds a bacon-like flavor)
  • 1 bottle of beer (I used Blue Moon – just a basic wheat beer)
  • 2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup whole milk (high fat milk is better)
  • 8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 4 ounces smoked cheddar cheese, shredded
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Soft Pretzels:
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 1 package instant yeast
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • more flour for dusting
  • Extras:
  • 1/4 cup baking soda whisked into 3-4 cups warm water
  • 1 egg
  • coarse salt


  1. Make the Dough: In a mixing bowl, gently whisk the warm milk, yeast, brown sugar, butter, and salt. Stir in the flour until a dough forms. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead 10-15 times.
  2. Let the Dough Hang Out: Return to the bowl and drizzle with a little oil to prevent sticking. Cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and set aside for an hour to rise.
  3. Pretzel-ify: When the dough has risen, punch it back down and divide it into 6-8 sections. Roll each section into a loooong skinny rope. Fold it into a pretzel. Dip into the baking soda solution and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake: Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle with salt. Bake at 450 degrees for 10-12 minutes, until golden brown. YUUUUUM! Dip in cheese sauce, mustard, or my personal favorite – beer cheese soup.
  5. Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot (see notes) over medium high heat. Add the vegetables (onion, garlic, celery, jalapeno, red pepper, smoked paprika). Saute for a few minutes until soft.
  6. Add half of the beer and all of the broth. Bring to a low simmer.
  7. In a separate saucepan, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour. Cook for 5-ish minutes, stirring regularly.
  8. Add this butter-and-flour mixture to the simmering soup pot. Let the soup simmer for a few minutes. It should start to thicken. Slowly whisk in the milk and remaining beer. Simmer again for 5-10 minutes until creamy and slightly thickened.
  9. Remove from heat and wait for a few minutes for the soup to cool down slightly. Stir in the cheese until evently melted. Season with salt and pepper. Grab your spoonssss!

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