Baked Potato Soup

I don’t know about you, but I have the hardest time going through an entire bag of potatoes before they go bad. I hate wasting food, but with potatoes, I just can’t help it. It’s not a huge problem, I guess, because they’re really cheap, but I still feel bad. So that’s why I put this on the menu during the same week I had planned on having Zuppa Toscana. I bought an 8-pound bag of potatoes for $3, and between both dishes, it used up about half of the bag. Then, maybe some baked potatoes for lunch on the weekend and some oven fries next week, and that should just about do it!

I had made a baked potato soup one other time, but wanted to try something different. I had saved this recipe from A Year of Slow Cooking, and since I had all the ingredients on hand—well, I had found a winner!

This soup was very good. It was just the right amount of thickness—not too thick, not too thin. The cream cheese made it nice and creamy, and the seasonings were great. I used 1/2 tsp. of red pepper, which almost made it a little too spicy. I might cut it back next time, but if you like spiciness, go for the 1/2 tsp.

Baked Potato Soup
2.5 lb. potatoes, peeled and diced into 1- to 2-inch chunks
1/4 cup onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. red pepper
4 cups chicken broth
8 oz. cream cheese

Directions:
Place the potatoes into your crockpot. Add onion and garlic. Sprinkle in the seasonings, and pour in the broth. Cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4. At end of cook time, use a potato masher or an immersion blender to mash the potatoes in the soup.

After smashing the potatoes, crumble in the cream cheese and put the lid back on. Cook on high for about 30 minutes, or until the cream cheese is melted and completely incorporated. Stir a few times during the 30 minutes.

Top with crumbled bacon, green onions, and cheddar cheese. Enjoy!

This makes about 6 servings.

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