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A Wintery Mix: Buffalo Chicken Soup AND Beer Bread!

January 13, 2012

While I was working the night shift Wednesday night, this happened.

Despite the horrendous traffic problems that ensued as a result of this winter wonderland, I was elated. I had the day off and have been itching to whip up some soul-warming soups. In my quest for inspiration, I found a stand out pin on my Pinterest recipe board. Leave it to BHG to satisfy my needs.


Upon further investigation, I realized that this recipe is chock full of cup upon cup of ooey gooey cheese. Sounds spectacular, right? Right. But still, I would hate to sabotage our healthy eating habits if I can prevent it. I’d seriously lose sleep over it. Eater’s remorse. You all know what I’m talking about.

So. I got resourceful. I kept the bones of the recipe, but toned it up where I could. Let me tell ya, you’d never know that this was lightened up. I think it’s partially because you’re distracted by the perfecly executed spice and creaminess of the beloved buffalo chicken dip, but with a nice crunch of good-for-you-veggies. It’s rich and filling like a typical cream-based soup, but you’ll have no eater’s remorse knowing that it’s lightened up. Plus, spicy foods speed your metabolism, so it has that going for it too. The hubs and I had this for dinner, and we each were fully satisfied with 1 bowl and a generous slice of beer bread (more on that later).

What else can I say? It hit the spot on a frigid, slushy, wintery night. A tall order that this soup met, and with flying colors at that.

Buffalo Chicken Soup

(please don’t be intimidated by the list of ingredients… it’s super easy, and these were all ingredients I had on hand – you probably do too!)

adapted from Better Homes and Gardens


3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

olive oil

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. chili powder

1/8 tsp. smokey paprika

salt and pepper

1 c. celery, chopped (I used 3 stalks)

1 c. carrots, diced (I used 3 carrots)

1/2 medium white onion, diced

1/2 green bell pepper, diced

2- 14 oz. cans low sodium stock (I used chicken, but take your pick OR use homemade)

1.5 c. skim milk

3+ tsp. hot sauce (I used WAY more than that!)

1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese

1 c. shredded low-fat colby jack cheese (or cheddar, mozzerella, bleu cheese, or a combination of them!)

3-4 tbsp. Neufchatel cheese (it’s low-fat, skim-based cream cheese)

2 tbsp. butter

1/3 c. all purpose flour

1. Preheat oven to 400° F. In a small bowl, combine 1.5 tsp. olive oil with garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper to make a rub. Distribute rub evenly among raw chicken breasts and coat each. Place seasoned chicken breasts in a small pan and roast in oven for 35 minutes or until cooked through and tender. Allow to cool, and shred into small pieces.

2. While chicken roasts, in a large stock pot, drizzle 2-3 tbsp. olive oil and add the carrots, celery, onion, and green pepper. Cook on medium heat until the onions soften and start to become translucent.

3. Add broth, milk, and hot sauce to stock pot, and stir. Mix in cheeses and stir until melted. Add shredded chicken, and stir.

4. In a separate saucepan, melt 2 tbsp. butter with 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup flour and stir constantly, making a roux-like paste. Stir until lightly browned and thickened. Spoon some of the liquid from the large stock pot into the roux to temper it, then add the roux to the stock pot, tablespoon by tablespoon. Stir briskly to prevent lumps – this should thicken the soup considerably.

This is tricky for some people, so here are some pictures to help:

     Pre-roux (watery)               Roux ingredients                   Roux’s ready!                  Much thicker!

5. Taste and add more hot sauce as needed. Apparently I needed a lot.

**Garnish with: a dab of ranch dressing, a drizzle of more hot sauce, and a sprinkle of colby jack cheese!

Of  course, this soup would not be compete without something with which you could absorb the very last bit of cheesy, spicy goodness. The second I decided to make this soup, I knew I HAD to make beer bread. It seemed like a perfect fit. I found this happy little recipe that you should check out at Tasty Kitchen (a spectacular site for recipe hunting).

                                                                (why is that image so grainy?)

I basically followed the recipe as written, but I added some parsley and chives to the batter and used a Sam Adam’s Old Fezziwig Ale because I wanted a deeper beer flavor that I couldn’t get from a lite beer. I also really liked that particular beer’s name.


Enjoy this delightful wintery mix of cozy comfort foods, and fair warning, you will probably want to double, triple, or quadruple the recipe. It’s that good.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mamma K permalink
    January 13, 2012 10:08 pm

    You sold me! I am definitely making this! I’m even a little excited, but then, buffalo chicken, come on….. Looks great Deanne, and such enjoyable reading!

  2. Mark Stehlin permalink
    January 13, 2012 10:24 pm

    I’m still thinking you need a cooking show on the food channel.

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Baked Bree

Baked Bree - Eat Well. Laugh Often.

Annie's Eats

A blog about cooking, baking, and other culinary adventures.

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