Creamy potato soup is the ultimate comfort food! This Cheesy Pesto Potato Soup is a lighter twist on the classic with all the bowl-licking flavor of the original! Instant Pot + Slow Cooker
OMG WE HAD OUR FIRST COLD FRONT!
Laugh all you want, but this is the highlight of the year for us Floridians who run the risk of heat stroke through most of Fall.
We don’t wear flip flops in the Fall solely to make Northerners cringe, it’s out of sheer necessity people! Wearing them in Winter is an entirely different story… don’t judge my hoodie and flops!
Now that there’s officially a chill in the air, the soup kick that I’ve been on since August is exponentially more acceptable.
To celebrate the need to crank the heat and bring my basil indoors, I made soup. Potato soup! And since my fresh basil was snuggled up next to the stove, I decided to let it in on the fun.
Just looking at that bowl-o-deliciousness makes me want to grab a spoon and dive in!
Cheesy Pesto Potato Soup – Instant Pot + Slow Cooker
Let your slow cooker or Instant Pot do all the work! This super simple soup is a set it and forget it type of deal and can be whipped up with minimal effort. Some quick peeling and chopping and you’re on your way to a delicious bowl of soup with leftovers that taste even better the next day!
Cheesy Pesto Potato Soup - Instant Pot + Slow Cooker
- 3 lbs yukon gold potatoes
- 1 medium onion (yellow or white)
- 3 celery ribs/stalks
- 2-3 TBSP butter
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups vegetable or chicken broth plus 1 cup extra if desired
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese
- 2-3 TBSP pesto plus extra for topping
- 2-3 TBSP chopped green onion
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2-3 TBSP pesto plus extra for for topping (see post for recipe)
- grated cheddar cheese for topping
- 2 slices whole grain bread
- 2 tsp olive oil or butter
- 1/8-1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp paprika
- salt to taste
TASTY TOPPINGS :: Choose your favorites!
- red peper flakes
- chopped green onion
- cheddar, gouda, or parmesan cheese
- sour cream or greek yogurt
- crispy bacon
- veggie bacon bits
- garlicky croutons
- extra pesto
SLOW COOKER INSTRUCTIONS:
- Scrub and peel your potatoes and roughly chop.
- Chop your onion and celery and toss all your veggies in the pot!
- Next add veggie broth, garlic, butter, salt, and pepper.
- Set your slow cooker to HIGH and cook for 4-5 hours, or, if you're gone for the day, set it to LOW for 8 hours.
- For a silky smooth soup, an immersion blender to blend fully, or leave it a bit chunky by only blending about 2/3 of the soup.
- Ready to eat? Simply mix in your milk, cheese, and green onions.
- Taste and re-season as needed.
- Pile on your choice of toppings from the list above, including lots of tasty pesto, and dig in!
INSTANT POT INSTRUCTIONS:
- Scrub and peel your potatoes and roughly chop.
- Chop your onion and celery and toss all your veggies in the pot along with the veggie broth.
- Adjust valve to seal, lock lid, and set Instant Pot to 10 minutes.
- Once finished, quick release the pressure by carefully switching the valve to vent.
- For a silky smooth soup, an immersion blender to blend fully, or leave it a bit chunky by only blending about 2/3 of the soup. You can also use a potato masher for an extra thick and chunky soup - anything goes!
- Next add garlic, butter, salt, pepper, milk, cheese, and green onions.
- Season to taste (add any extras your heart desires)
- Swirl in 2-3 TBSP of pesto, to taste, and top soup with all your favorite toppings from the list above. Enjoy!
Need a pesto recipe? No problem!
Simple Basil Pesto
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves, stems removed
- 1/4 cup walnuts (or pine nuts!)
- 2 large cloves of garlic
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to taste
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- (optional) salt and pepper to taste
My go-to trick for pesto that stays vibrant green (even when frozen) is blanching before blending! Toss your basil leaves in boiling water to blanch briefly. Once they turn bright green, remove leaves with a slotted spoon and add to a bowl of ice water to halt the cooking process. Pat the leaves dry with a paper towel then follow the steps below. This is optional but my absolute favorite technique and well worth the effort for gorgeous green pesto!
- Combine basil, walnuts, and garlic in a small food processor.
- While it runs, slowly pour in your olive oil.
- Add your parm cheese and puree for about a minute or so more.
- Swirl into this soup or serve over pasta, pizza, or anything your heart desires!
You can also use an immersion blender to make the pesto, score!
This pesto tastes great with the cheesy pesto potato soup recipe above, and goes great with everything from pasta to pizza!
There are a million and one ways to make this gorgeous green sauce and even more uses for it! For this slow cooker potato soup with pesto, feel free to use your family’s favorite method, a sassy store-bought sauce, or try something new and adventurous with my Roasted Garlic Kale Pesto or Pistachio Arugula Pea Pesto!
Ugh, put more of this in my face, NOW! Delicious, quick and easy, and super fulfilling.
LOL Thank you Jeannie!
Thanks so much for the tip on making the pesto stay green. I never thought of blanching the leaves first, but it makes perfect sense! I often make a batch and freeze part of it in the fall when the garden is winding down and always disliked how brown looking it is when I pull it out of the freezer. Sure it tastes OK, but not as eye appealing as fresh. This technique is awesome – can’t wait to try it!
It was a total lightbulb moment for me too! Now my pesto is shockingly green – love it so! <3 Hope you get a chance to try it soon Char 🙂
Now that is one delicious bowl of comfort food and that pesto and garlicky croutons take this dish over the top. Totally know how you feel about the cold…I swear my blood has gone thin living in Hong Kong. Shring, of course!
Potato soup, you had me at potatoes. Love potatoes, and I’m sure I will love this soup. I always keep a jar of pesto in the fridge for making quick and easy meals and adding some to this soup sounds just right to me. Cold fronts are fun, we just had one come through Texas and I’m so happy. I’m ready to start wearing my winter clothing, it’s almost December.