Cheesy Potato Soup

A hint of Tabasco sauce adds a spicy kick to the cheese and potatoes.

Makes: 9 cups; Total time: 40 minutes

COOK:
1lb. thick-sliced bacon, diced1 lb.
ADD:
1 white onion, diced (2 cups)1
1cup minced celery1 cup
1Tbsp. minced garlic1 Tbsp.
2Tbsp. all-purpose flour2 Tbsp.
6cups peeled and diced russet potatoes (2 lb.)6 cups
1Tbsp. dry mustard1 Tbsp.
2tsp. paprika2 tsp.
STIR IN:
3cups low-sodium chicken broth3 cups
1Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce1 Tbsp.
1tsp. Tabasco sauce1 tsp.
4cups shredded sharp Cheddar4 cups
2cups half-and-half2 cups
Salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste
Minced scallions

Cook bacon in a large pot over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper-towel-lined plate; set aside. Pour off all but 2 Tbsp. drippings.

Add onion, celery, and garlic to drippings in pot and sweat over medium heat until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in flour and cook 1–2 minutes. Add potatoes, dry mustard, and paprika; cook, stirring to coat potatoes, 1 minute. Stir in broth, Worcestershire, and Tabasco. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, partially covered, until potatoes are soft, 10–15 minutes. Coarsely mash potatoes, then stir in Cheddar and half-and-half until Cheddar is melted, 2 minutes. Remove soup from heat; season with salt, black pepper, and cayenne.

Garnish servings with bacon and scallions.

Nutrition Information
Per cup: 620 cal; 45g total fat (22g sat); 99mg chol; 825mg sodium; 32g carb; 3g fiber; 22g protein