Loaded Baked Potato Soup with Publix

Ingredients:

3 large baking potatoes, about 3 lb

12 slices thick-cut apple wood smoked bacon

1/2 cup flour

2 cups whole milk

3–4 cups unsalted chicken stock

8 oz extra sharp cheddar cheese

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon chives 8 tablespoons sour cream

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Arrange potatoes on wire rack-lined baking sheet; bake 45 minutes until potatoes are cooked through. Remove from oven and set aside to cool slightly.

2. Chop bacon into 1/2-inch strips (wash hands). Add to large Dutch oven and cook 14–16 minutes, stirring occasionally, until crisp. Remove bacon from pot and set aside (leave bacon fat in pot). Stir flour into bacon fat, and continue cooking 1 minute, stirring continuously, until emulsified. Slowly whisk in milk and 3 cups chicken stock until incorporated. Cook 10–12 minutes, stirring occasionally, over medium, until bubbly and thickened.

3. Slice potatoes in half and scoop out potato flesh (discard skins). Stir potato flesh into milk mixture (mash lightly but not completely). Add remaining 1 cup chicken stock if soup becomes too thick. Grate cheese and slice chives. Add one-half crisp bacon, 1 cup cheese, salt, pepper, vinegar, hot sauce, and Worcestershire; stir until blended and cheese is melted.

4. To serve, ladle soup into serving bowls and top with sour cream, remaining one-half crisp bacon, remaining cheddar, and chives.