I made this creamy root vegetable soup to go with a batch of fresh, home baked croissants and it was the perfect pairing! The soup is both very creamy and a little chunky. It reminded me of a pot pie filling which paired so beautifully with the flaky layers of our croissants.
♥ Related: Cauliflower Chowder
This is a highly adaptable soup; use whatever starchy root vegetables you might have on hand like parsnips, turnips, celeriac, or rutabaga. And of course, potatoes work, too! For my version, I used half of a rutabaga I had in the fridge and some red potatoes. They key is cooking the vegetables until they are super tender and you can simply use a potato masher to make the soup as smooth or as chunky as you’d like. I wouldn’t go full immersion blender here—I think this soup should have some texture!
To make the soup a little extra special, I sweated the mirepoix in bacon fat. I also browned the butter for my roux to add a nutty flavor to the soup which I think plays off well with the root vegetables.
♥ Related: Cheater’s Italian Wedding Soup
If you aren’t willing to make a batch of homemade croissants (which, I get it, they are a project—though worth it!), you could bake up some strips of frozen puff pastry to dip into the soup. If nothing else, serve with some crusty bread on the side.
Speaking of home baked croissants, how beautiful are these babies?! Sean and I used the recipe from Claire Saffitz’s awesome book, Dessert Person, which I highly recommend. There’s not a recipe in this book I don’t want to make! And the instructions for croissants, which are notoriously temperamental, are fantastic.
Creamy Root Vegetable Soup
- 2 strips bacon raw, cut into a medium dice
- 1 medium carrot peeled & diced small, about ~1/4-inch
- 1 stalk celery diced small, about ~1/4-inch
- 1/2 small onion peeled & diced small, about ~1/4-inch
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 lbs mixed root vegetables peeled & roughly diced into ~½-inch pieces; see note below
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 4 tbsp butter
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup half & half
- 2 scallions sliced for garnish
- salt & pepper to taste
- Add diced bacon to a medium Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Cook, rendering the bacon fat until the bacon is crispy, about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon to a paper towel to drain. Remove all but about 1 tbsp of bacon fat from the pan.
- Add the carrot, celery, and onion to the pan with a large pinch of salt. Sweat over medium heat until the vegetables start to soften and the onion becomes translucent, about 5-7 minutes.Add the garlic and thyme. Cook for a minute longer. Then add your root vegetables and stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer for about 30-minutes until the vegetables are very soft.
- While your vegetables are simmering, make a roux. Add the butter to a small pot over medium heat. Let the butter melt and then brown it. To brown butter, just keep cooking after it's melted until the milk solids start to turn a golden brown color. The butter will foam a bit, so just swirl it around to see what color is beneath the foam. You're looking for a medium golden color for this recipe; it will look like the color of peanut butter.Once the butter has browned, whisk in the flour. Once the flour is well incorporated and the roux is smooth, let it cook for about another minute. Set aside.
- Once the vegetables are very soft, whisk the roux into the soup. Stir well to fully incorporate the roux. The soup should thicken quickly. Then use a potato masher to roughly mash the vegetables until the largest chunks are about pea-sized.
- Taste your soup and add salt and pepper as needed. Turn off the heat and add the half & half, stirring to fully incorporate. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with scallions and the bacon bits you made earlier.
- Use your favorite mix of starchy root vegetables like potatoes, parsnips, rutabaga, turnip, or celeriac for this recipe.
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