Green Chili and Cheddar Souffle


One of the things I’ve learned over the years about food is that often, the recipes that have a reputation for being fussy are anything but.   Souffles are a great example of this.  Think of all the times you’ve seen a cook depicted making a souffle that failed to rise, or had fallen because of a loud sound.  Why would the average cook want to waste time and ingredients on something that temperamental?

Honestly, I’ve had more trouble with brownies and biscuits before, but I’ll chalk it up to approaching a common recipe with little or no thought and then blowing it when I least expected to.  The fussy reputation of a souffle keeps me in line, and so I pay attention when I’m making one.

If you’ve never tried one, you should.  They’re perfect for a light meal on a weeknight because you will nearly always have everything you need on hand:  eggs, milk, a bit of flour, and whatever you’d like to flavor it with.  If you’re like me, your cheese drawer is always in need of attention and the combinations are just about limitless.

Just remember — it’s all about the size of the dish.

Souffle Dish
Green Chili and Cheddar Souffle


3 T unsalted butter

3 T Parmesan, freshly grated

3 T flour

1 c. milk, hot

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper, freshly ground

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

pinch cayenne

4 egg yolks, jumbo sized, room temp

1 c. extra-sharp cheddar (3 oz.)

5 egg whites, jumbo sized, room temp

4 oz. canned green chilies, chopped, well-drained

1/8 tsp. cream of tartar


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Lightly spray the inside of an 8-cup souffle dish (3-1/2″ x 7″) with oil and dust with the grated Parmesan.  Set aside.
  3. In a small sauce pan, heat the milk over medium heat until steam begins to rise and a film collects on the surface.  Remove from heat.  In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter and stir in the flour, continuing for about 2 minutes.  Gradually pour the hot milk into the flour mixture, stirring until smooth.  Stir in the salt, pepper, cumin, and cayenne and continue to cook on low about 1 minute.  It should be quite thick.  Remove from the heat.
  4. Immediately stir in the egg yolks one by one, stirring well in between each addition.  Add the grated cheddar and green chilis and mix well.
  5. In the bowl of a standing mixer, add the egg whites and cream of tartar with a pinch of salt.  Whisk on high until stiff, glossy peaks form.  Lighten the cheese mixture with about one quarter of the egg whites, carefully folding them in.  Then add the cheese mixture to the rest of the egg whites, carefully folding them in until well blended.  Scrape into the prepared souffle dish.  Smooth the top to even it out, then using a wooden skewer or knive, make a circle in the top beginning about 1-inch from the sides of the pan.
  6. Set the souffle in the center of the oven and immediately turn the heat down to 375 degrees F.  Bake for 30 minutes until nice and puffy, and a rich golden brown.
  7. Enjoy immediately, as it will begin to deflate within minutes of removing it from the oven.

Souffle Ingredients

Flour & Butter


Cheese Sauce
Green Chili and Cheddar Souffle

Recipe Notes

  • Julia Child’s cheese souffle was the first I made about 15 years ago and it came out perfectly the very first time. Since that time, I’ve tried many other variations, each with good results.  This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten’s Blue Cheese Souffle.
  • If choosing the right sized dish is the most important thing to consider, then not opening the oven while the souffle is baking is the second.  Consistent heat = steam = lift!
  • If you’re measuring the cheese, don’t pack the measuring cup.
  • Make sure the green chilies are well-drained.  Pour them into a strainer and press them with the back of a spoon just to make sure.
  • Some advice from Julia:  Leave the souffle in the oven 4-5 minutes longer for a drier souffle.  A skewer inserted into the side removed clean lets you know it’s done.
  • Make a nice salad while it’s in the oven.  A tomato, cucumber, onion, cilantro salad tossed with some lime juice is perfect.
  • Not exactly Cinco de Mayo fare — better!

Green Chili and Cheddar Souffle

21 thoughts on “Green Chili and Cheddar Souffle

    1. You’ve got me thinking of a cheddar green chili panini now 🙂 Wait! Scrambled eggs should go in that, too. Maybe some avocado. YUM!

    1. Muchas gracias, Karen. Si, que bueno! (Now I need to figure out how to make all the necessary symbols to make those words work properly :))

    1. You’re one of the great experimenters, so I expect you could pull this off without a hitch. If not a souflee, then perhaps a puffy omelete with the same flavors? It would be a close second.

  1. You make this sounds so easy, Kelly. I’m all inspired to hit the kitchen store to shop for the right dish.

    I read a handy tip, somewhere, about buttering the dish then putting it in the refrigerator until it’s ready to be filled. It’s suppose to make a big difference in helping egg dishes slip right out of the bake ware. I tried it a few times for muffin baking and with a tender bundt cake and it worked out great.

    And I just have to share that we have the same white spice bowls. I dig their diagonal rim. 😀

    Have fun today!
    .-= Jill McKeever´s last blog ..How To Prepare Tomatoes For Cooking =-.

  2. Hey Jill — hear you’ve been on a culinary adventure recently! I need one desperately. Thanks for the tip on the dish — the souffle didn’t stick, but I’ve certainly had other things that do so I’ll have to give that a try. You’ll laugh about the spice bowls. I didn’t realize they were cut diagonally when I bought them, so couldn’t figure out what was going on with them once I got them home. Silly.

  3. The souffle is gorgeous! You make it look so easy. I will have to try and make this. Do I really need jumbo eggs? I know Ina always cooks with them.

    1. Thanks, Missy! No, you don’t need jumbo eggs but it it helps you, 4 jumbo eggs weigh 6-3/8 oz. If you have a kitchen scale, or can measure the eggs that will help. Let me know how it goes 🙂

  4. You had me at cheese. This is stunning. I love the photo of the giant, puffy souffle. How I would love to take a bite (or 2 or 3) of that right now. Well done!

    1. Thanks, El — it’s quite the satisfying combo of flavors. In fact, I could go for more heat in this. More than a pinch of the cayenne.

  5. I’ve never had a souffle before =[ Only the chilled (dessert) ones…..
    This looks delicious though! I’ll definitely try making one some day!
    .-= Von´s last blog ..Polvorones =-.

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