Slow Cooker Loaded Cauliflower Soup

December 10, 2018


I have no idea how it’s already two weeks until Christmas. I always think I’m going to be so organized, so prepared. I especially thought that I’d have my crapola together this year, since Thanksgiving came relatively early in November. An early Thanksgiving is a gift, am I right?

You don’t want to see the mammoth freakshow scramble that happens over here when Thanksgiving falls on, say, November 28.

It’s not a pretty sight, folks.

On years like that, I’m tucking the freshly carved turkey carcass under my arm, bolting through the dining room, hucking it into the garbage like Tom Brady and hollering, “Run down to the basement to get the tree skirt and the fig wreath, STAT.”

I don’t like myself much those years.

Despite the extra days of padding this year, I’m not faring much better.

Good News:

~most of the gifts are purchased, since I shop online for everything. I’d rather be slathered in hog fat and forced to wrestle Tonya Harding than face the Megamall during the holiday season.

~Miss D. is racking up the service hours for her leadership club by wrapping gifts this year. Mein Gott! Magnifique! Bien! Yee-Haw Dawgies! I’ll still have to wrap her gifts, but that is why God made gift bags.

~The house is decorated, which is so, so hard for me since Mama died. I dread it now and get all Scroogey and pinch-faced about it. Miss D., bless her soul, took pity on me this year and helped me finish the job in record time. I am not going to pretend that it’s anything fit for Southern Living Magazine (maybe White Trash Living Magazine?) but it’s done and it’s enough for us.

~Since the girls get out of school so late this year (December 20), we decided to streamline holiday baking. We’re only making two kinds of holiday cookies this year. And honestly, if you add some ice cream, do you really need much more?

~A perky, adorable little foster kitten. This tiny ginger fluff is giving us lots to laugh about right now. Is there anything cuter than the antics of a kitten?



Bad News:

~A perky, adorable little foster kitten. This tiny ginger fluff thinks all of the Christmas decorations are his personal playground. He’s broken three things and counting. Sometimes there are cuter things than the antics of a kitten.

~Panic attacks, insomnia, other physical stinkery. It’s boring so I’m done talking about it.


Good News:

~Christmas comes anyways, even if you are not quite yourself. And hopefully it makes all woes fade for just a bit.

~Wrangling with the energetic kitten, the physical/personal bullshit and the general insanity of the season has led me to the following decree: Until Christmas Eve, we are eating the simplest, most basic, plant-based, nourishing food possible.

It has been decided.

Well, 3 out of 4 members of our family will be doing so. Littlest Minx wants nothing to do with this plan and that’s okay. Enjoy that chicken nugget, child.

I’ll start us off with this slow cooker loaded cauliflower soup. It’s not utterly austere, given the lovely garnishes of cheese and bacon, but you can’t have a “loaded” anything without those two flavor bombs, and the rest of the dish is virtuous as heck, so allow yourself a little room for fun.

This thing is drop-dead easy and quite tasty, although I will say: it’s not going to fool you into thinking you’re eating that loaded baked potato calorie bomb soup that you get at a restaurant. You might as well eat a cheeseburger if you eat that stuff.

This will ease you into the Season of Excess quite nicely. It’s yummy enough to savor but you won’t hate yourself in the morning. Not a bad bargain.


Slow Cooker Loaded Cauliflower Soup

serves 6

slightly adapted from Cooking Light


6 bacon slices, chopped

1 cup chopped leek, white and light green parts only

1/2 cup chopped celery

4 minced garlic cloves

8 cups chopped cauliflower florets and stems (from a 2 1/2-pound head)

3 cups low sodium chicken broth

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

3/4 cup half and half

2 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese or white cheddar cheese, shredded

chopped chives


Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium, stirring often, until crisp, about 5-7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a paper towel to drain. Discard all but 1 tablespoon drippings.

Place 1 tablespoon drippings in a slow cooker with leek, celery, garlic, cauliflower, chicken stock, salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours or until tender.

Remove 1 cup vegetables from slow cooker and chop into chunks.

Pour remaining mixture into a blender and add half and half. Vent blender to allow steam to escape, cover with a towel and puree. Alternatively, you can use a stick blender to whirr everything together until smooth. Transfer mixture back to pot, add reserved vegetables and warm through.

Top each serving with bacon, cheese and chopped chives.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Annie December 10, 2018 at 8:47 am

I adore the ginger fluff ball! What a cutie. We have been having soup twice a week because it works with the after school activity insanity we have going on this year. Need to add this one to the line up!!


Dana Talusani December 10, 2018 at 9:35 am


His name is Barney but all he wants to do is be cuddled (unless he’s destroying ornaments) so we call him “Barney-cle.” He is a doll.


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