Can you see it? The light is starting to change outside and Fall is upon us! Que the happy dance. It never fails. Every year I'm excited for the Fall season. Mostly because that means that the hottest of the weather is on the downhill turn, Halloween is around the corner, and pumpkin spice everything starts showing up.
To celebrate this season, I decided that even though it was still 85 degrees out, I was going to make some baked potato soup. Not just your average baked potato soup either. But the loaded kind. The kind that warms not only your stomach, but your heart too!
I've had a BUNCH of leftover potatoes from my local boxes over the past few weeks, and what better way to use those up than in a potato soup? I had all kinds of them too. Red. russet, sweet, etc. Of course, I didn't use the sweet potatoes here, but you get what I'm saying.
For this soup, it really doesn't matter what kind of potato you use. I kept the peels on about half of them and removed them from the other half. That's because I like the peels, but too much is too much. I lightened this soup up simply, by using reduced fat evaporated milk and cheese.
Usually, I would have subbed in some cauliflower, but I wanted the texture of this soup to be creamy and potato dense. The center cut reduced sodium bacon is another favorite trick of mine. It tastes like traditional bacon as compared to it's turkey brethren. Don't get me wrong. Turkey bacon has it's place in this world too! But, not here. And not today.
Yum. Yum. Yummity-yum! This soup is so SO good and so SO easy to make. Just a few hours in the crock pot, a good stir or two and ta-da!
Slow Cooker Lightened Up Baked Potato Soup
Servings: 8 • Size: About 1 1/2 Cup • Calories: 367 • Fat: 21 g • Saturated Fat: 10 g • Carb: 31 g • Fiber: 3 g • Protein: 14 g • Sugar: 6 g • Sodium: 316 mg
6 Slices Center Cut Reduced Sodium Cooked Bacon, Diced
3-4 C. Unsalted Chicken or Vegetable Stock
2 Lbs. Potatoes, Peeled (if desired) & Diced
1 Medium White or Yellow Onion, Diced
4 Tbsp. Light Butter
1/3 C. All-Purpose Flour
1 (12 Oz.) Can 2% Evaporated Milk
1 C. Shredded Reduced Fat Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Salt & Pepper to Taste
Optional Toppings: Green Onions or Chives, Shredded Cheese, Bacon, Plain Fat Free Greek Yogurt, Etc.
Place the 6 Slices Center Cut Reduced Sodium Cooked Bacon, 3-4 C. Unsalted Chicken or Vegetable Stock, 2 Lbs. Potatoes, Peeled (if desired) & Diced and 1 Medium White Onion into the base of the crock pot.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours - or until the potatoes are tender and cooked through.
Once the potatoes are done, place the 4 Tbsp. Light Butter into a small sauce pan over medium-high heat to melt. Whisk in the 1/3 C. All-Purpose Flour to create your roux; cook for 1 minute stirring constantly.
Slowly add in the evaporated milk while still whisking until the mixture is completely smooth. Allow the mixture to continue cooking until it begins to simmer and thickens.
Transfer the mixture into the slow cooker with the potatoes and stir to combine.
Add in the 1 C. Shredded Reduced Fat Sharp Cheddar Cheese, 1/2 C. Plain Fat Free Greek Yogurt, and season with Salt & Pepper to Taste.
Using a potato masher or large spoon, mash about half of the potatoes within the soup to thicken it further. Stir to combine everything fully.
Serve right away with any desired toppings!
Nutritional Claims: Egg Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Fish Free, Shellfish Free, Crustacean Free, Celery Free, Mustard Free, Sesame Free, Lupine Free, Mollusk Free, Alcohol Free, No Sugar Added