My Son and I Made Epcot's Cheese Soup at Home — Here's How You Can Do It, Too!

Tarah Chieffi
Tarah Chieffi

Disney is a daily topic of discussion in our home. My sons are constantly watching videos of their favorite coasters and asking me a million questions about when new rides, like the Guardians of the Galaxy coaster, are going to open. We're even going to make matching Mickey tie-dye shirts to wear on our next trip! When we found out about Disney's latest plan to bring the magic home, we couldn't wait to try it out.

The first in a series of virtual events, #DisneyMagicMoments: In the Kitchen is a virtual cooking demo starring Disney Chef Kevin Downing. The demo included two popular recipes from Le Cellier Steakhouse in Epcot's Canada Pavilion — Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup and Filet of Beef With Roasted Mushrooms and Beurre Blanc.

Only my 7-year-old was interested in helping out (my 4-year-old said he would only help if we were making peanut butter soup), so we decided to tackle the Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup and see how it went before moving on to the slightly more advanced filet. The thick, creamy soup has been on the menu at Le Cellier for 38 years, and I've actually tasted it in the past during the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. I was a bit nervous about if we would be able to recreate this Disney classic at home.

The ingredients weren't too intimidating and everything was easy to find at our regular grocery store, so I felt like we were off to a good start. I handled the tougher, messier tasks like chopping the bacon and red onions, but my son was able to help with everything else. I showed him how to carefully hold the celery in place while he used the other hand to cut slices. It gave us a chance to discuss other food safety topics, too, like not touching the stove or the hot Dutch oven without a pot holder and pouring things carefully into the pot so they didn't splash out.

The demo included a lot of helpful cooking tips and substitutions for different dietary needs or any ingredients you may not have on hand. Chef Kevin made it really easy to work with whatever you have at home. Before we even got all of the ingredients in the pot, my son almost made me tear up when he said, "Disney really is magical. We just got the ingredients out and it already smells good in here."

At first, I didn't expect to get much more out of this activity than a little bit of one-on-one time with my son and a tasty dish to share with the rest of our family. As we were following along, though, he got so excited to read the directions to me and measure the ingredients himself because he was learning about measuring in school. He even learned a few new cooking terms like "mise en place" and "roux."

I'm happy to report that our hard work paid off. When the soup was done, it looked much like Chef Kevin's and tasted as good as I remembered (though I wish I had that pretzel roll they serve it with at the festival). My kids aren't the most adventurous eaters, but my son was so proud of his creation that he gave it a small taste and exclaimed, "I love it!" I've always thought that kids (or anyone really) has a better appreciation for food when they've had a hand in making it.

Our initial success in the kitchen has us both excited to make the filet, and this is just the first in a new series of virtual events bringing the best of Disney right into your home. If you've got a little Chef Remy on your hands too, you can follow along with the demo ahead, and keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for future classes.

click to play video

Watch the full video here to try it yourself!