The epitome of comfort food to me is a big bowl of potato soup with all the fixin's! It was one of our staple meals growing up and I still crave it all the time. I've tried a ton of recipes including crockpot versions, and over time I've combined my favorite parts of each with my mom's original recipe. I really don't like when potato soups are super thin and watery, and the reason I love this version so much is because it's extra thick, creamy, and has tons of flavor. It is so simple to make and requires hardly any prep work!
Here's what you need for your potato soup:
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups of chicken broth
1 package of frozen hashbrowns (about 30-32 ounces)
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 package cream cheese (8 ounces)
1 cup water
1 small or medium onion diced
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon pepper
1 tablespoon parsley
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon garlic pepper
chopped green onion or chives
shredded cheddar cheese
Combine your hashbrowns, cream of chicken soup, chicken broth, water, heavy whipping cream, onion, and cream cheese in a large pot on medium/high heat.
Stir continuously until well combined. The cream cheese will take a while to melt and will really help thicken up the soup.
Add your spices after your soup has cooked for about 5 minutes, and stir until they are mixed in well.
After your cream cheese has melted, you can turn your heat down to low/simmer for as long as an hour or two as long as you continue to stir it occasionally. The longer it simmers the thicker it will get and the flavors will continue to combine more and more.
While your soup is finishing up you can fry up some bacon to top it with. If you are cooking this for several people and need to make a lot of bacon at once, I recommend cooking it in the oven. Just cover a cookie sheet with aluminum foil, place your bacon slices on top, and cook at 400 for about 15 minutes, or until crispy. I think bacon cooked in the oven tastes even better than on the stove, and the foil makes cleanup SO easy!
I also like to top my soup with shredded cheese and chopped green onion. The shredded cheese just melts into the already thick and creamy soup, while the green onion adds just the right amount of freshness. I always love a bit of crunchy topping for my soups and the bacon is the perfect addition for that. The cream cheese and heavy whipping cream really make the soup so much thicker, and as a result, so much more flavorful (especially with all those wonderful spices, which are so important not to skimp on!)
This wonderful comfort food tastes just as good heated up the next day for lunch! It makes a great leftover and can keep in the fridge for up to a week. I usually just scoop a bowl out of the pot and microwave the individual serving instead of continuing to heat the entire batch up over and over. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!