Vegan Vegetable Soup. Because everyone needs a great tasting, basic, budget-friendly, quick, clean-out-the-fridge-type soup recipe to turn to from time to time.
This is Vegan Vegetable Soup made for real life. Nothing fancy. Just a super cozy, nutritious, easy-to-prepare vegan soup recipe for when you don't have much in the fridge and need a good meal, or for when you have an excess of veggies that need using up.
It's perfect just as it is but also very easily customizable. Read on for lots of ideas on how to make it your own, and be sure to make some vegan croutons to serve with it!
In this post:
With just one pot and a few simple vegetables and seasonings, you can make this easy vegan vegetable soup. Here's what you need:
Success tip - Although optional, a big squeeze of lemon juice right before serving really enhances the flavours and brightens the soup. If you don't have a lemon, a tiny splash of apple cider vinegar will work too.
Vegetable Soup Without Tomatoes
If you've been looking for a vegetable soup without tomatoes then this is the recipe for you. Most vegetable soups contain them, but there is plenty enough flavour in this recipe without them. It is a very customizable recipe though, so if you want to add some feel free.
How To Make Vegan Vegetable Soup
This delicious and vegan vegetable soup requires a bit of upfront chopping, but once that's out of the way this quick vegetable soup recipe is really easy to make. Here's how it's done:
- Saute the onions, carrot and celery, then add the garlic in the last minute.
- Add everything else (except the lemon).
- Bring to a simmer and cook until the potatoes and carrots are tender.
- Blitz with an immersion blender a few times to thicken the soup a little.
- Squeeze in some lemon juice right before serving.
Success tip - Blending a few times with an immersion blender breaks down the starchy vegetables and thickens the soup a bit while still leaving it nice and chunky too. It makes the soup heartier and is a step I recommend. If you don't have an immersion blender you can scoop out a cup or two and blend it up in a blender then add it back into the pot, or you can mash with a potato masher right in the pan a few times then stir well.
How To Make In An Instant Pot
To make vegan vegetable soup in an Instant Pot:
Saute the onions, carrots, and celery using the saute function on your Instant Pot. Turn the pot off and add the garlic and potatoes. Allow them to cook for a minute or two in the residual heat then add everything else. Put the lid on, seal the vent, and cook on manual for 7 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then manually release the rest. Blitz a few times with an immersion blender to thicken as desired and add a squeeze of lemon before serving.
If adding extra delicate seasonal vegetables (like asparagus, peas, greens) or any frozen or canned vegetables, cook the soup in the Instant Pot without them, then once you remove the lid, add them in. If they are really delicate like greens, asparagus, or canned veggies, the residual heat will be sufficient to cook them. If they are frozen or need a little more cooking, turn the Instant Pot to saute and allow the soup to simmer for a few minutes, stirring frequently, until they are cooked.
How To Make In A Slow Cooker
To make vegan vegetable soup in a slow cooker:
If using a slow cooker I highly recommend you first saute the onions, celery and carrot in a pan first as per the recipe. Then add the garlic to the pan and let it cook for an additional minute, before transferring everything to the slow cooker. Cook on high for about 3 hours or low heat for 6 – 7 hours. If adding extra delicate seasonal vegetables (like asparagus, peas, greens) or any frozen or canned vegetables add them in the last 15 minutes of cooking. Blitz a few times with an immersion blender to thicken as desired and add a squeeze of lemon before serving.
This vegan vegetable soup is perfect as it is but if you want to switch things up a bit and add even more flavour here are some ideas:
- Extra veggies that work well - Use whatever veggies are in season or whatever you have in the fridge that needs using up. Zucchini, peas, bell peppers, corn, sweet potatoes, squash, asparagus, greens like kale, chard, cabbage, tomatoes (fresh or canned) or spinach are all great in it. Just about anything goes really. Add quick-cooking vegetables at the end and denser, harder ones at the beginning. Canned vegetables and frozen vegetables can also be added but do it right at the end of the cooking time so they don't get overcooked.
- Extra protein - Of course veggies have their own protein, but you can also give it a boost with canned beans, chickpeas, lentils (if using up to about ¾ cup they can go in dry but you might need to add a little more stock), vegan chick'n or vegan "beef".
- To make it fancier - Try adding a cup of white wine in place of some of the stock (add it just after sautéing the onions, carrots and celery)and fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme or a bouquet garni while it's simmering.
- To make it creamier - Blend it up a bit more with an immersion blender, or transfer some to a blender, blend then add it back. Or switch up to half of the stock for unsweetened unflavored plant milk, such as cashew milk, soy milk or light canned coconut milk. Cashew cream adds a nice richness too.
- To make it heartier - Add a handful or 2 of some grains like sorghum, freekeh, barley, wild rice or farro. They will also give the soup great texture. You can also throw in some dried pasta or broken-up spaghetti about 10 minutes before you want to serve.
- To make it spicy - Add spices like red pepper flakes, curry paste, harissa, fresh chilli, paprika, cayenne pepper, curry powder, chilli powder or taco seasoning while sauteing the veggies.
- Make it Italian-style – Add a can of diced tomatoes (or some chopped fresh tomatoes) and some broken spaghetti or pasta 10 minutes before the cooking time is up. Once the pasta is tender stir through some fresh basil right before serving. Maybe a dollop of vegan ricotta too?
- Make it Mexican-Style – Add a can of diced tomatoes, some chopped fresh chilli or a can of green chilli, some taco seasoning, a can of black beans or pinto beans and maybe some canned, fresh or frozen sweetcorn? Then serve with tortilla chips.
How To Thicken Vegetable Soup
I find the easiest way to thicken vegetable soup is to partially blend it up, either with an immersion blender or by scooping some soup out into a blender, blending it up then adding it back to the pan. It does the job really well without having to add any other ingredients.
You could also add some tomato paste, a handful of dried lentils or rice (they absorb moisture while cooking), or mix up a little cornstarch or flour with water or liquid from the soup then add it to the pot while stirring constantly.
I love to serve my vegan vegetable soup with a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil, a sprinkle of vegan parmesan and some fresh parsley. Some other ideas:
This vegan vegetable soup actually gets better with time so the leftovers are great! Allow them to cool, then cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days. To reheat, warm in a pan over medium-low heat until piping hot, or microwave for a few minutes. To freeze, place in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge then reheat as above.
If you try this recipe, let me know how you like it by leaving a comment and rating below! And be sure to join my mailing list for more deliciousness!
Vegan Vegetable SoupAuthor:
- 1 tbsp olive oil , use a splash of water instead to make oil-free
- 2 medium onions , diced
- 3 medium carrots , diced
- 2 sticks celery , diced
- 5 cloves garlic , minced
- 4 - 5 medium potatoes , cubed
- 5 cups vegetable stock
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning , or Herbes de Provence ( or similar mixed herb blend)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1½ tsp salt , plus more to taste
- ¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper , plus more to taste
- 1 small lemon (just the juice) , or 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
- Up to 3 cups seasonal vegetables, chopped greens, canned or frozen vegetables
- (See recipes notes for Instant Pot & Slow Cooker directions)
- To a large soup pot add the oil. Heat over medium heat until hot, then add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook for about 10 minutes until it is smelling fragrant and the onion is translucent. If cooking oil-free use a few tablespoons of water to saute with instead of the oil.
- Add the garlic and let it cook for a minute or 2 stirring frequently.
- Then add everything else except the lemon juice. If using optional seasonal veggies, only add them now if they are sturdier vegetables that need a lot of cooking like squash and sweet potato. Leave more delicate vegetables like peas, greens, corn and asparagus until near the end.
- Give it a good stir and bring to a simmer. Keep it simmering gently for about 20 to 25 minutes or until the potato and carrots are tender. The time will vary slightly depending on how large/small the vegetable pieces are cut.If using the optional seasonal, frozen or canned vegetables add them in the last 10 minutes of cooking time.
- Turn off the heat and with an immersion blender straight in the pot, give it 3 or 4 short blasts to partially blend and thicken the soup. If you don't have an immersion blender, scoop out 2 or 3 cups and blend in a regular blender then add back to the pot. If you prefer a brothier soup skip this part.
- Squeeze in the lemon juice, give it a good stir and serve immediately.
Storage, reheating and freezing - Allow soup to cool, then cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days. To reheat, warm in a pan over medium-low heat until piping hot, or microwave for a few minutes. To freeze, place in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge then reheat as above.