When it came to cheese week, believe it or not, I actually wasn’t going to include this recipe. Let’s be honest, it seems like an overly obvious choice, and it seems like everybody already has the recipe. But the more I thought about it, the more I really felt like I had to include it. It is, after all, Disney’s most requested recipe.  It’s also the dish that introduced the idea of signature dishes and recipes at Disney… 

It’s so overwhelmingly popular that it’s survived numerous menu changes, and while the recipe has changed over the years, at its core, it remains the same. Besides which, this soup is mind-blowingly awesome, as to be expected in any recipe where the primary ingredients are cheese, beer, and bacon. Just one taste and I’m back at EPCOT.

The tricky thing about this recipe is that, while it’s easy to make, it’s hard to find all of the exact ingredients used at Le Cellier. Moosehead Beer and Nueske’s center cut bacon are both Canadian and, even though I live about one tank of gas away from Canada, finding these brands is tricky, at best. Substituting the bacon is easy enough… Stick with center cut bacon, preferably just straight bacon, not low sodium, maple cured, thick cut, etc etc. 

The beer, however, is a trickier prospect as it has the potential to change the taste of the whole dish. I’ve used beers like Guniness or local favorites, pale ales, all with a lot of success. This last time, however, I used the only thing I could find (and just happened to be Canadian) that was sold outside of a six pack… Labatt Blue. 

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I have to say, I was disappointed as I wanted something a little more fun, authentic, closer to Moosehead, and less “commercial,” but honestly, using this gave me the best batch of soup I’ve ever made. I really recommend it. As for the cheese, until recently Le Cellier has been using Canadian Black Diamond white cheddar.  If that can’t be found, any medium/mild white cheddar cheese will work just as well.

Now, about the recipe itself… When the soup was first introduced to the menu, it included very simple, core ingredients.  Cheese, beer, bacon, flour, and milk, along with seasonings. As time has marched on, the recipe has changed to include more traditional soup base ingredients such as celery, onions, and carrots. 

I honestly prefer the original recipe, which is essentially the same, just leaving out the extra veges, extra butter, and reducing the flour to about 1/3 cup. Don’t be afraid to make a double batch…  It reheats beautifully, only gets more delicious as it “ages,” and with a splash of milk and/or beer, it comes back to life. And if you’re a bacon lover like I am, there’s certainly no law against using the whole pound of bacon instead of the half pound…  

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Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup
As is served at Le Cellier Restaurant, Canada Pavilion, EPCOT

  • 1/2 pound center cut bacon, cut into 1/2 inch strips
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 3 celery ribs, diced°o°  4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 cups milk
  • 3/4 pound grated white cheddar cheese, medium or mild (Canadian Black Diamond)
  • 1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup warm beer
  • Chopped scallions or chives for garnish, optional

In a large pot or Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium heat until lightly browned. Remove a spoonful to use as garnish. Add the onion, celery, and butter, sauteing until the onion is softened. 

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Over medium heat, add the flour and stir, creating a thick paste-like roux. Slowly whisk in the broth and bring to a boil. Boil for about 1 minute, then reduce to a simmer, simmering for about 15 minutes, allowing the soup to thicken.  


After the soup has thickened, whisk in the milk and bring to a gentle simmer, not allowing the mixture to boil. Remove from heat and whisk in cheese until the soup is smooth.  Add Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and beer.


Serve warm, garnish with scallions/chives and bacon. To reheat leftovers, add milk and reheat until warm, not allowing the mixture to boil.

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