While America is gripped by a fierce cold snap and most of the country feels like it’s trapped inside an aggressively shaken snow globe, we have little control over temperature these days. We do, however, have the ability to warm from the inside out with homemade soup. And dealing with the angry cold front has earned us a few big bowls of carbs and beer.
A malty brown ale is a great way to add some of that craft beer flavor to a big bowl of soup. Maybe we have no say over what’s going on outside the window, but we can always load up a pot full of potatoes, cheese, beer, and bacon and wait for summer to come.
Loaded Beer and Baked Potato Soup
- 4 slices thick-cut bacon
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 Tbsp flour
- 1 cup brown ale
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 3 large russet potatoes, peeled and chopped (about 4 cups)
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- pinch cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ cup green onions, chopped
- 1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
- ½ cup sour cream
In a large Dutch oven or stockpot, cook the bacon until crispy, remove from heat, chop and set aside.
Pour off most of the bacon grease, leaving about 1 Tbsp still in the pot.
Add the butter, cook until melted.
Sprinkle with flour, whisk until well combined and thick. Allow to cook until lightly golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Add the brown ale, scraping to deglaze the bottom of the pot.
Add the milk and chicken broth, bring to a simmer.
Add the potatoes, salt, pepper, smoked paprika, cayenne, and garlic powder. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are fork tender, about 15 minutes. Using an immersion blender, puree until smooth.
Ladle into bowls, top with green onions, cheese, sour cream, and bacon crumbles.