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Nauvoo Soup

In the spirit of honesty, you should know—“Nauvoo Soup” is cauliflower chowder. But never fear! Milk and cheese transform the sulfurous vegetable into a warm, yummy bowl of comfort food. It’s a regular dinner item at our house.

Lest your kids balk at the cauliflower, adopt our name for it: “Nauvoo Soup.”* With this simple equivocation and emphasis on the cheese, they won’t know that they’re eating the nasty white stuff from vegetable trays.

Nauvoo Soup

Creamy, cheesy cauliflower soup. Featuring cauliflower in its coziest form.
Course: Main Course, Soup


  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3 stalks celery washed and diced
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 4-6 C chicken broth
  • 2 C milk
  • 6 Tbsp butter divided
  • ¼ C flour
  • 4 oz cheddar cheese grated
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Remove leaves from the outside of the cauliflower. Cut in half and cut out the tough heart. Dice the remainder.
  • In a large sauce pan, saute onions and celery in 2 Tbsp butter. Cook until vegetables are softened and slightly translucent; add cauliflower.
  • Add enough broth to almost cover the vegetables. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer until cauliflower is tender.
  • Meanwhile, use a small saucepan to prepare the white sauce. Melt remaining ¼ cup butter. Whisk in flour to form a thick paste. Gradually whisk in milk over a medium heat; it will thicken as it heats.
  • Combine the white sauce to the vegetables. Stir in cheese last. Season to taste.

*My parents obtained this recipe from the gracious owners of a bed and breakfast in Nauvoo, Illinois (hence the name). Nauvoo was home to thousands of Mormons during the early 1840s, and today it is a favorite travel destination for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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Jenny Harris
Jenny is a star-gazing, book-clubbing mother of two. She has a Master’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies, which is mildly comical (but also a boon in parenting and relationships). Her kids will attest that she’s crazy about reading aloud, time out of doors, and creative play. Her family’s goal is the “abundant life,” as prescribed by Jesus. You can read more posts by Jenny here.

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  1. We celebrated our 10th anniversary by visiting historic sites of the Midwest in 1994. The gracious owners of this cozy cafe were an elderly couple in their eighties. She did the cooking; he spent his days visiting with the guests. When we inquired about a recipe, he went back to the kitchen and brought out his apron-clad wife. There was no recipe, only a description of the delicious process. This written recipe is due to the diligence of Jenny, hovering over my soup pot in Utah and measuring things for her personal recipe collection as a teenager. It is still a family favorite!

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