This homemade potato soup is a vegetarian soup recipe that everyone will love. It’s naturally gluten-free and dairy-free, and with an addition of cheddar cheese being completely optional (really, it’s delicious with and without), it’s easily made vegan, too.
And because there are no boring soups allowed around here, it’s guaranteed to be flavorful. While I was on the hunt for the perfect baked potato soup, one that was vegetarian, full of flavor, and not full of cream, the search felt near impossible. As any good food blogger would do, I got to work.
Thus, this vegetarian potato soup recipe came to be. It’s so easy to make, all in one-pot, no peeling potatoes required, and completely versatile, easily adjusted to your soup preferences. What could be better?! Well, enjoying it with a parmesan thyme biscuit would really up the experience.
Ingredients You’ll Need
This recipe has simple ingredients, ones that I am willing to bet you already have in your pantry or fridge. Here are the main ingredients you’ll need:
- Yukon Gold Potatoes: I find these little yellow potatoes the best for homemade potato soup because they don’t require any peeling. The skins are so thin, they cook down and you don’t even notice them! More on potato types in a minute.
- Yellow Onion: a wonderful base to a soup, adding flavor and depth.
- Celery and Carrot: there isn’t a lot of either in the soup, just enough to add to our mirepoix (a mix of aromatics) setting the base of flavor for the soup.
- Garlic: needs no explanation… too good to not have in a soup!
- Dried Parsley, Thyme, and Bay Leaf: these add a lot of warm flavors to the soup. I use dried in this recipe because it’s cheaper (hello, budget-friendly soup) however, there’s nothing like fresh herbs so go ahead and use fresh parsley and thyme if you already have them. Keep the bay leaf dry, though, and remember to remove it it before you blend the soup.
- Salt and Pepper: and ok, add some red pepper flakes for a little kick if you want, too! Keep in mind that the potatoes will absorb more salt, so you will need to add more than you probably expect.
- Vegetable Stock: the liquid of the soup, vegetable stock, adds more flavor, too! You can use vegetable broth, it just has added salt so keep that in mind as you salt the soup.
- Coconut Milk: this is where we get the creaminess in the soup… instead of using heavy cream or milk, we’re keeping it dairy-free with coconut milk. I promise you, you cannot taste the coconut in the soup, just the creaminess it adds.
- Optional – Cheddar Cheese: if you’re looking for a loaded baked potato type soup, stir in shredded sharp cheddar cheese at the end. I’ve used white cheddar and loved it, too. To keep it vegan, try vegan cheese. Otherwise, that’s the only cheese that I recommend here – this recipe is made without cream cheese.
What are the best potatoes for potato soup?
As I mentioned, I highly recommend using Yukon gold potatoes for this soup. They are buttery, and slightly waxy, with a thin skin that doesn’t require peeling.
Red potatoes are similar, however, I find their skin to be less flavorful and more earthy. They also tend to get a little gummier in my experience when blended.
Russet potatoes will work in this recipe, but they will require peeling. They are high in starch and fall apart more easily than yellow potatoes, which will contribute to a more grainy texture of the soup.
Tips for How to Make This Potato Soup Recipe
I’ve gotta say, you’re gonna love how easy this one-pot recipe is! Start with a Dutch oven or large stockpot. Be sure to check out the video, too!
Begin by sauteeing the aromatics: onion, carrot, and celery. Add in a pinch of salt, too, to begin layering in the flavor. As always, I recommend layering in the salt throughout this process.
Then, add the garlic and herbs, cooking the garlic for a minute or two to soften. Then add the diced potatoes, vegetable stock, and coconut milk, stir to completely combine.
Bring to a simmer for approximately 15 minutes until the potatoes are fork-tender. The cook time will vary slightly depending on the size of the diced potatoes.
Add salt throughout the cooking process. Once the soup is almost done cooking, be sure to taste test. You will need to add more salt than you think because the potatoes will absorb much of the salt in the cooking process.
Once the potatoes are cooked through, it’s time to blend as desired. Use an immersion blender and puree the soup to your desired consistency. I like to puree about half of the soup to leave some texture and potato chunks throughout the soup.
If adding cheese, stir in the shredded cheese in batches so that it fully melts throughout the soup.
How to Serve and Garnish
Let’s start with ways to garnish the soup – there are so many ways to turn this into a loaded baked potato soup!
- Croutons (my personal fav for texture and crunch!)
- Sour Cream or Yogurt
- Green Onions or Chives
- Vegan Bacon or Bacon for those who are not needing this soup to be vegetarian/vegan
- Cheese, if using – parmesan cheese is a yummy garnish too!
- Crispy Kale
- Matchstick apples for a bright, sweet addition
How to Thicken Gluten-Free Potato Soup
This soup naturally thickens itself with the soup once it’s blended together, thanks to the natural starchiness of potatoes. There isn’t any flour or cornstarch in this recipe, which is what some typically use to thicken soups. If the soup is too thick for you, add more vegetable stock to thin it out.
What to Eat with Potato Soup
There are so many things to enjoy with potato soup, and honestly, this is definitely not an exhaustive list!
- Serve the soup with homemade drop biscuits, garlic herb rolls, or a quick bread.
- Pair it with a green salad for a light lunch or dinner.
- Enjoy it alongside parmesan crusted fish or rosemary salmon.
- Grilled Cheese, Greens Sandwich, or an Apricot Brie Grilled Cheese
How to Store Vegetarian Potato Soup
In the Fridge
Store potato soup in the fridge in an airtight container. If stored properly, it should last for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop until completely heated through.
In the Freezer
Yes, you can freeze this potato soup, mostly because it doesn’t include dairy. If you are planning to freeze the soup and want to add the cheese, wait to do so until you reheat the soup. Foodsguy has a great article explaining ways to best freeze potato soup; while the article focuses on cream-based soup, there are still a lot of helpful tips in there!
I like to reheat frozen soups, especially this potato one, on the stovetop over low heat, stirring occasionally. It helps keep the texture intact. You can also reheat on the defrost setting in the microwave.
Get the Recipe Vegetarian Potato Soup (Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free)
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 medium carrot, finely diced
- 1 celery stalk, finely diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 bay leaf
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Pinch Red pepper flakes, optional
- 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, diced 1/2 inch
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 14 ounce canned coconut milk
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded, optional
- In a large Dutch oven or stockpot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and sautee for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, dried herbs, salt, and pepper; continue to cook for 2 more minutes. Stir in vegetable stock, potatoes, and coconut milk, bring to a boil reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are tender (this time will depend on potato size and pan size).
- Be sure to taste test throughout and add salt as needed; the potatoes will absorb a lot of the salt that is added, so you will likely add more than you think you'll need.
- Remove the bay leaf from the soup. Take the soup off of the heat and immersion blend until desired consistency is reached. I like to blend about half of the soup, leaving some potato pieces throughout.
- Optional: add 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese in batches, stirring between each addition until melted.
- Serve immediately and garnish with croutons, crackers, green onions, or chives as desired. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Blender: if you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a high-speed blender. Ladle half of the soup into the blender and carefully blend. Make sure you crack the top of the blender to allow steam to escape and be very careful of the hot contents! Add it back to the soup and enjoy.
Wow wow wow! This soup is amazing! I added a little bit of fresh rosemary and kept it vegan (I’m not vegan!) and it was incredible! This soup will be a staple in my soup routine!
Yay I’m so glad to hear you loved it! Thanks, Molly!
This was delicious. I didn’t use anything to emulsify the potatoes, I just smashed some of the potatoes against the pot side and it was the thickness we really liked. We are vegetarians and it was so delicious and will be on my list of go to soups in future. Next, I will be trying your potato egg casserole!
What a simple and easy way to create the perfect texture for you! I love it, thanks for sharing. I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it, too, looking forward to hearing what you think of the casserole! Thanks so much, Christy!
WOW!!! AMAZING SOUP!!! I knew it was going to be good so i made double! Im having it again tonight. I didnt have any cheese so i just used nutritional yeast. i bought cheese today 🙂 And everything is better the next day so even better. i also did it in my IP… 7 minutes and done deal! Looking forward to other recipes from this site!
Yay, I’m so glad to hear you loved it! Thanks for the note about swaping nutritional yeast AND the Instant Pot time – such good info! Thanks so much, Julie!
This is so good! I made it for my family, who are very picky eaters- and they all loved it!
Love it when a recipe wins over even the picky eaters! 🙂 Thanks so much for making and sharing, Deb!
I made this soup to prepare for my upcoming surgery. We enjoyed 2 bowls each and I froze the rest to have after the hospital stay. Creative idea to use the coconut milk, it gave it a beautiful color and silky texture. So comforting!!
I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it, and that you have some cozy soup waiting for you while you recover. Best of luck, Marcy, and thank you so much for making and leaving your review!
Really enjoyed this soup! Creamy and thought the coconut milk might overpower the taste but blended in well. Thoroughly enjoyed. Thank you
I’m so glad to hear! Thanks for giving it a try and leave a review, Susan!