Soup recipes to use with a stick blender
October 31, 2014 3:01 PM   Subscribe

I recently bought a stick blender and made an amazing butternut squash soup, so now I want to make more blended soups. But apparently I'm kind of picky and disagreeable and don't really know what I want, so googling for recipes has left me cold. It's made a bit worse in that I hate cooking (although I'm more than competent at it), so it takes something good to capture my motivation and get me in the kitchen. But I do love warm creamy soup and I have to eat something, so: what are your prize winning, most amazing, tasty pureed soup recipes to make this winter.

The absolute requirements are that I want soup that is warm and blended (creamed, pureed, whatever).

I tried to think about what I do and don't like but I think that if I knew that for sure I'd have found a recipe already. Any ingredients except seafood are fair game as long as it's a combination I find appealing (your guess is as good as mine that that's going to be!). I exclude seafood and fish just because I don't really like them. I live in Germany so want to use ingredients that are in season and available here. My local supermarkets are great and there's a farmers market type thing in my city with lovely veggies, so getting good ingredients is pretty easy. Oh and actually, I love beans (not green beans, but all the other kinds) so including beans of some sort is likely to be a win.

I need to eat a low sodium diet so I'm not going to add salt. I also like to avoid fat, particularly animal fat, because it makes me sick. So very little or no cream or whatever (cheese is all good - yes, I'm a hypocrite). But I do like spices and flavours of all kinds, including chilli or similar that's quite hot.

Lastly, I have an amazing pumpkin/squash soup recipe already so I'm not looking for one of those.
posted by shelleycat to Food & Drink (35 answers total) 101 users marked this as a favorite
I know this says it's a chili recipe, but you could so so easily convert it into the tastiest blended creamy soup, ever. Leave out the chicken, and in step 6, blend all the cooked beans instead of half.

Mmmm, I'm going to try this next time.
posted by muddgirl at 3:13 PM on October 31, 2014

I also love warm creamy soups.

I had to delete a couple of recipes after rereading your requirements, but this carrot and ginger soup is really good.
posted by Gygesringtone at 3:15 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

Just a couple tips for getting a better-bodied, creamier-feeling without creamier-being soup:

1) use a roux. The lighter the roux, the more thickening power it has, but the darker the roux the more complex (kind of toasty-bready) flavor you'll get. There are many instructions for roux online, I myself like to bake it (4oz each oil and flour, 350F, stir every 30 minutes. Cook 30m for light, 60m for medium, 90m for dark.).

2) even "cream of" soups don't need but a fraction of dairy (or coconut milk, which is my veganizer of choice) and you can also do them completely "milk" free with potato and/or cashews. Flesh out your liquid with purees and vegetable or chicken stock/broth (I don't know if you can get Better Than Bouillon in Germany, or a similar concentrated paste for making stock/broth, but it gives a richer mouthfeel).

Vegan Cream of Broccoli Soup
Split Pea, Bacon, and Potato Soup
Creamy French Onion Soup (no milk, just cheese. And beer. It's really good.)
posted by Lyn Never at 3:17 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

All your starchy vegetables make pureed soups with good body and a rich mouthfeel. Cream makes them nicer, of course, but you can omit it or just use a swirl on top. Another thing I often do is add a parm rind as the soup simmers and fish it out before pureeing; it can add that same big "round" feeling to the soup.

- Potato/leek, classic or otherwise—Sweat leeks and garlic; chicken broth, potatoes, boil till tender; puree. Serve with a little sour cream or bacon.
- Baked potato soup—bake jacket potatoes; puree in broth, skins and all, serve as a top-your-own with shredded cheese, sour cream, green onions, etc.
- Corn soup—cut kernels off cobs; boil the cobs in broth with some onion for ten minutes or so, take out and add kernels. Cook a few more minutes and then puree.
- Black bean soup—black beans, canned tomatoes, chicken broth, chili powder.
- White bean soup—white beans, rosemary, chicken broth, garlic, lots of parm.

Etc. etc.
posted by peachfuzz at 3:17 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

This recipe for broccoli soup is so simple, but it tastes great.
posted by Ms. Next at 3:19 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

If you don't mind coconut milk, Ottolenghi's Plenty More has a great Thai red lentil soup that is perfect fall fare: creamy, spicy, savory and sweet. Spiciness comes from the infused chile oil and the red Thai curry paste, with creamy and sweet notes from the lentils and blanched sweet peas. Page 89 in the cookbook, if you happen upon it in a bookstore.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:20 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

Curry parsnip soup is excellent. Fry onions in curry spices of your choice (I use chilli/cumin/coriander), add parsnips and water, boil and blend.

Broccoli and stilton soup is excellent although I don't have a recipe.

A longer recipe you may like:
Cook some red lentils, some Puy lentils and some potatoes. Puree some chilli, garlic and ginger with a bit of oil. Fry off some finely chopped onions, celery and carrots. Add the puree and cook it out. Add the lentils and potatoes and half a bottle of red wine. Boil it until it looks like soup, use the stick blender on it a bit if you like, add a tin of coconut milk. Heat but don't boil, eat. Complicated but definitely award winning.
posted by emilyw at 3:22 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

This Curried Cauliflower and Sweet Potato Soup is so lovely. I use a stick blender directly in the pot.
posted by sillymama at 3:23 PM on October 31, 2014 [3 favorites]

You don't need a recipe for broccoli and Stilton soup - boil a pan full of frozen broccoli (or fresh, frozen is cheaper and it all tastes the same in the soup) plus one potato. Once they're soft, blend. Add Stilton to taste, stir it through till it's melted.

You can also make a cauliflower/cheddar soup exactly the same way. That one is nice with a bit of mustard stirred in. Add pepper if you want - I don't use salt or stock, the cheese provides enough saltiness.
posted by tinkletown at 3:27 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

Here is where I rec a great cookbook: Twelve Months of Monastery Soups. Almost all of the recipes can be made in a blended version. They are simple and straightforward ideas with worldwide inspiration and appeal. So many soup recipes are geared just for fall and winter, but these showcase variety year-round. Because they're from a monastery, of course, they are a bit more frugal and thin than what you might want, but that means they're also good at taking additions and substitutions. I'll sometimes double or triple the non-liquid ingredients in ratio, or add a whole pile of spice and chilis. But they're also good and satisfying as-is.
posted by Mizu at 3:29 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

Julia Child's chicken and rice soup purees into a lovely, creamy soup - with no cream!
posted by Sweetie Darling at 3:31 PM on October 31, 2014

This corn and pepper soup is delicious.
posted by cecic at 3:31 PM on October 31, 2014

I've been making a lot of these kinds of soups lately, and my favorite recipes are all from Smitten Kitchen. Here's the red pepper soup, which is outstanding, a roasted eggplant soup, from which I omitted the dairy, but thought it needed more spices and a few squeezes of lemon juice to really come into its own, and this simple cauliflower soup which is perfect November food. They're all hot pureed soups, and basically the reason I own an immersion blender.
posted by willbaude at 3:31 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

Yes, seconding the carrot and ginger. The only fat necessary is when sauteeing the aromatics (onions, etc.) in the beginning. No cream necessary.

By the way, if you want to make soup making a hell of a lot easier, just use a pressure cooker. All you have to do is put all your soup ingredients in a bowl and put it in your pressure cooker for 30 minutes. Boom, everything is perfectly softened and caramelized and melded together and intensely flavored and ready for blending. If you want to include any roasted ingredients, just roast them in the oven before dropping them in the pressure cooker. It's literally a godsend instrument and cuts down effort/cooking time exponentially,
posted by krakus at 3:52 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've been really into this smoky black bean concoction, and am about to have it for dinner:
• 2 15-ounce cans or 4 cups cooked black beans, undrained
• 1 15-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes, undrained or 3 whole fresh tomatoes, chopped
• 1 diced onion
• 4 cloves or 4 tsp minced garlic
• 2 tsp cumin
• 2 tsp coriander
• 1 tsp chili powder
• 1/2 tsp oregano and/or epazote
• 1/2 or 1 diced chipotle in adobo or 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
Saute the onion in a glug of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and spices, saute for ~30 seconds or until the spices are lightly toasted. Add the tomatoes and black beans. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, cover, cook for at least 30 minutes, stirring in a few splashes of water if necessary. Stick blend, serve with cilantro, chopped fresh onion, hot sauce, tortilla chips.

Shorbat adas is another one of my favorites:
• 4 cups vegetable broth
• 2 cups red lentils
• 1 tsp cumin
• 1 tsp turmeric
• 2 diced carrots
• 1 clove or 1 tsp minced garlic
• 1/2 diced onion
Saute the onion and carrot in a glug of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and spices, saute for ~30 seconds or until the spices are lightly toasted. Add the lentils and broth. Cook for 20 minutes, blend, serve with cracked black pepper, fresh parsley, sumac, lemon juice, pita bread.
posted by divined by radio at 4:20 PM on October 31, 2014 [7 favorites]

Not a recipe but a stick blender tip: Whatever soup I'm making, I take out about a cup of the soup, blend it, then pour it back to give the soup a little more thickness.

Fast black bean soup:

1 container of Trader Joe's Roasted Corn Salsa (It's with the other fresh salsas, hummus, etc. section near the vegetables.)

1 can of black beans

Heat up and blend with the stick blender. You can add some chicken, beef, or veggie broth to extend it.
posted by Elsie at 4:29 PM on October 31, 2014

I am also a big fan of carrot soup. I love it with ginger but the most recent version was with roasted carrots and yams with smoked paprika, cayenne pepper and basil.

Beets are another good base for stick-blended soup. I make something like this Roasted Beet Soup with Goat Cheese.
posted by mountmccabe at 4:41 PM on October 31, 2014 [2 favorites]

This somehow-dairy-free cauliflower soup from America's Test Kitchen is super. Video.
posted by General Malaise at 4:45 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

Lily to my Bittman template.
posted by atomicstone at 5:08 PM on October 31, 2014 [1 favorite]

This roasted tomato and black bean soup is just about the best soup that ever was.
posted by Dolley at 5:25 PM on October 31, 2014

I think the Carrot-Coriander(cilantro) soup popular all over England beats Carrot-Ginger by a million. It's the best combination of flavors.

Here are a couple of example recipes, though I can't recommend either yet since I just bought a stick blender myself.
posted by Blitz at 5:30 PM on October 31, 2014

Emeril Lagasse's Curried Zucchini Soup is a winner in my opinion. Easy to make and tastes great as a cold soup!
posted by belau at 5:51 PM on October 31, 2014

I make Martha Stewart's Cream of Broccoli soup at least twice a month all fall and winter long, and my family never gets sick of it. It's made with a base of chicken stock and with only a quarter cup of cream for 4 to 6 servings. So quick and delish!
posted by primate moon at 5:51 PM on October 31, 2014

my husband doesn't like ginger much, and carrot-ginger soup is generally a bit too sweet for our tastes anyhow. We usually opt for this savory carrot-fennel soup instead, forego the sugar and add a bit more garlic and some sprigs of thyme. It's terrific.
posted by lonefrontranger at 6:03 PM on October 31, 2014

Potato broccoli cheddar soup has been a big hit at our house.
posted by Ms Vegetable at 6:55 PM on October 31, 2014

Ooh, I just posted an amazing coconut curry butternut squash soup on my blog (I won't self link, but me-mail me if you want the recipe, or google for some recipes). You can totally make it without any cream, and you can skip the salt and still have lots of flavor since there is delicious spicy curry in there.
posted by at 8:22 PM on October 31, 2014

East African Sweet Pea Soup from one of the Moosewood cookbooks.
posted by LarryC at 8:34 PM on October 31, 2014

Roasted cauliflower and parsnip soup adds an extra step of pre-roasting the veggies before turning them into soup but I think it's worth it for the deeper caramelized flavours, you can leave out the dairy.
posted by tangaroo at 8:47 PM on October 31, 2014

So many recipes I want to cook! I knew you guys would be better than google. I'm having trouble knowing where to start, so much better than being all meh like I was before. So these are totally the kinds of things I'm looking for (and, of course, more is always welcome).

As an aside: I'm not going to buy any cookbooks, I just don't like cooking enough to make it worth it. But at the same time I prefer distinct recipes rather than general ideas, again I don't like cooking enough to mess around trying things out. I am actually a quite advanced cook technique wise, but have had too many years of my (currently-long-distance) husband taking care of it for me.

I will be cooking at least one, possibly more, pots of soup today so I'll let you all know how it goes.
posted by shelleycat at 12:26 AM on November 1, 2014 [1 favorite]

Here's a favorite of mine using a stick blender as needed:

1 onion - chopped
2 Tbls. butter OR margarine
4 med. potatoes - peeled, diced
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp. ground thyme

1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp. celery seed
salt and pepper - to taste
1 1/2 cups milk mixed with 2 Tbls. all-purpose flour
Gruyere/Romano cheese

-In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, cook onions in butter until soft.
-Add potatoes, chicken broth, parsley, thyme, celery seed, salt, and pepper to saucepan; simmer for 15 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.
-Stir milk/flour mixture into the saucepan.
-Puree half of soup in a blender; return puree to the saucepan.
-Simmer soup, stirring often, until thickened.

Serves : 6
Prep. Time : 30 minutes
posted by lungtaworld at 9:50 AM on November 1, 2014

Chestnut soup. Warm, creamy, and seasonal.
posted by expialidocious at 10:18 AM on November 1, 2014

One of my faves: Broccoli Leek
posted by thankyouforyourconsideration at 1:27 PM on November 1, 2014

Carrot tomato soup. Seriously one of the best soups I have ever had, and I eat a lot of soup. Just sayin'.
posted by palomar at 6:11 AM on November 2, 2014

I just made this yesterday and it was a big hit. It is earthy with a subtle spice. It doesn't have the overwhelming sweetness of most squash soups. Kabocha is a great squash for soup - it's usually not too huge, isn't too sweet, and not too fibrous.

Indian-inspired Kabocha Squash Soup:
1 medium kabocha squash (about 2-3 lbs)
1-2 carrots
2-3 stalks of celery
1 small yellow onion
1 thumb of ginger (skin on is fine)
2-3 cloves of garlic
1 heaping tablespoon ground coriander
1 heaping tablespoon ground cumin
1 heaping tablespoon turmeric
1-2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon curry powder (or a 1/4 t ground mustard seed powder)
olive oil
Vegetable broth (or water and Better than Bullion - such a great thing to have on hand, much better than bullion cubes)

1. Cut open the Kabocha squash and deseed. Cut into rough quarters or large slices. Rub olive oil on the flesh and skin.

2. Roast squash at 350F for about 30-35 minutes, until lightly browned all over. You might want to flip it half-way through.

3. Meanwhile, saute a mirepoix (carrots, onion and celery), and if you have extra leeks around, use those too. Stir and sautee for about 10-15 minutes until everything is soft and translucent but not browned. Then add garlic.

4. Grate ginger into the mirepoix. I keep ginger in the freezer. You can grate the whole thing, skin and all, with a microplane if you have one.

5. Add spices and stir.

6. Add vegetable broth - about 5 or 6 cups maybe? Or mix Better than Bullion and add water.

7. Take out the roasted squash, and scoop out the flesh away from the skin. It should scoop out really easily. Add to the soup.

7. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.

8. Blend. If possible, let it sit a few hours or overnight but you'll want to eat a bowl right away. Eat and say DELICIOUS!!!!! Enjoy leftovers as they get even better the next day!

Another soup tip:
If you have a food processor, one day you should buy a giant bag of carrots, celery and onion. Spend 30 minutes washing and prepping them (take off the skin, trim the ends, etc.) Then start dicing them in the food processor. You can assemble however you like. Either (1) Put an equal mixture of the trio in the processor, dice, then put into bags, or (2) Dice each ingredient separately, then combine when you're ready. Make little ziploc bags filled with ~2 cups of the mirepoix mix. Put those little ziploc bags into one large gallon ziploc freezer bag. Voila -- now you can start making a soup with whatever other ingredients you have on hand! Makes it super easy.
posted by barnone at 2:33 PM on November 2, 2014 [1 favorite]

So far I've had cauliflower soup as posted by General Malaise and the smitten kitchen roasted eggplant soup as posted by willbaude. This weekend I'm going to make one of the corn soup recipes I think because, even though corn isn't in season right now, there is a really great brand of tinned corn that is super tasty in my local Kaufland so I think it will be good.

Then I'm going to spend the winter working my way through the thread. I often have trouble cooking decent food for myself because I hate cooking, but I've been enjoying making the soup and it's healthy and working out well. So thanks!
posted by shelleycat at 11:44 AM on November 21, 2014

« Older Best practices for freezing food?   |   RCA to HDMI Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.