Velvety Carrot Soup – When Veggie Puree is Actually Cool to Eat

Would you ever believe that crazy-crunchy carrots could make one of the creamiest, dreamiest soups?

Vertical top-down view of a white ceramic bowl filled with creamy carrot soup, topped with various garnishes including crema, cheese, almonds, and thyme, beside two carrots and scattered slivered almonds on a gray wood surface with a blue folded cloth napkin.

I was skeptical, too… until I made this recipe. And, oh my goodness, I became a true believer after the first slurp.

So? How can it get so smooth?

It’s pretty simple, actually! Using a blender, food processor, or immersion blender, you puree cooked and softened carrots in a liquid, like a broth or stock.

Top-down closeup vertical image of a white bowl of orange carrot soup, topped with a drizzle of creme fraiche, thin slices of cheese, and a sprinkling of toasted slivered almonds and thyme leaves, beside two whole carrots on a gray wooden background, on top of a folded blue cloth napkin.

And with the final steps of straining out any remaining lumps and clumps, and adding just a touch of cream, what’s left is velvety, silky-smooth liquid gold.

Well, orange gold…

Vertical image of bowls of carrot soup with assorted garnishes and a metal spoon, with thyme, carrots, and a blue towel on a gray wooden surface.

You’ll love the flavor of this soup! With just a few simple ingredients like vegetable stock, onions, thyme, and almonds, the taste of the carrots, subtly sweet and vegetal, takes center stage.

Serve this bold and bright dish as the first course of your Easter brunch (carrots and bunnies… get it?), or enjoy it for lunch along with a fresh salad.

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Vertical image of bowls of carrot soup with assorted garnishes and a metal spoon, with thyme, carrots, and a blue towel on a gray wooden surface.

Velvety Carrot Soup


  • Author: Nikki Cervone
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 6 sprigs thyme leaves, leaves removed and coarsely chopped
  • 2 pounds carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup slivered blanched almonds
  • 6 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or coconut cream (optional)
  • Amaretti cookies, crumbled (optional)
  • Shaved pecorino cheese (optional)
  • 1/2 cup slivered blanched almonds, toasted (optional)
  • Creme fraiche (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a large stockpot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add onion and thyme, and cook for 10 minutes, until onion is soft and translucent. Add carrots, almonds, and stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, or until carrots are very soft.
  2. Transfer mixture to a high-speed blender or food processor. An immersion blender could also be used. Blend in batches until very smooth.
  3. Strain the mixture in batches through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Discard any leftover clumps.
  4. Once the soup mixture is smooth, mix in cream until blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide soup among 4 bowls, and garnish with amaretti crumbles, pecorino cheese, toasted almonds, creme fraiche, and extra thyme leaves. Serve warm.

Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Gather and Prep

Horizontal image of onions, thyme, and carrots on a marble board, with bowls of other assorted ingredients on a gray wooden surface.

Set out a stockpot, sturdy cutting board, and good-quality knife.

Measure the butter, slivered almonds, vegetable stock, and cream.

Peel and chop the carrots. Chop the onions. Remove the thyme leaves from the stems and chop.

For the garnishes, if using, crumble the cookies, shave the pecorino cheese, set out the creme fraiche, and toast the blanched almonds.

Step 2 – Saute the Onions

Horizontal image of cooked onions in a metal skillet on a gray wooden surface.

In a large stockpot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the chopped onions and thyme, and cook for about 5 minutes, until the onion is soft, slightly browned, and translucent.

Step 3 – Cook the Carrots

Horizontal image of a wooden spoon in a liquid mixture with chunks of carrots in a metal bowl on a gray wooden surface.

Add carrots, almonds, and vegetable stock to the pot. Bring to a boil, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the carrots are very soft.

Step 4 – Puree

Horizontal image of an immersion blender in an orange mixture in a metal pot on a gray wooden surface.

Transfer the mixture to a high-speed blender or food processor. Blend in batches until completely pureed.

Alternatively, you can use an immersion blender, as demonstrated in the photo. This may take slightly longer than using the other equipment, but it still works just as well (and there’s no messy transfer from pot to blender required)!

Step 5 – Strain

Horizontal image of a wooden spoon pressing a thick orange mixture through a metal strainer into a bowl on a gray wooden surface.

Strain the mixture in batches through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing down and scraping with a spoon. The leftover liquid should be very smooth. Discard any leftover clumps.

Quick note: Be sure to wait to season with salt and pepper until after you strain the mixture – you don’t want to lose those granules of flavor!

Step 6 – Add Cream

Horizontal image of a spatula stirring cream into an orange mixture in a metal bowl on a gray wooden surface.

Once the soup mixture is smooth, mix in the heavy cream or coconut cream until blended.

Step 7 – Serve

Horizontal closeup image of bowls of carrot soup with assorted garnishes with carrots and a blue towel on a gray wooden surface.

Divide the finished soup among 4 bowls, and garnish with amaretti cookie crumbles, pecorino cheese, toasted almonds, and extra thyme leaves. Serve warm.

Enjoy the Silkiest, Smoothest Slurps

With just a few quick steps, I was blown away by this soup’s amazing texture. So silky, so velvety!

Horizontal image of carrot soup with assorted garnishes and a blue towel.

And it’s a healthy recipe. With no heavy starches, little dairy (if any at all!), and a hefty two pounds of vitamin-A-filled carrots, you’ll be happy and nourished after enjoying a bowl of this.

Vegetable puree never seemed so cool!

Play around with the garnishes. You can make a lot of fun designs using the creme fraiche. With a sprinkle of toasted slivered almonds, a few pieces of freshly shaved pecorino cheese, and a touch of thyme, each bowl will look beautiful.

For more recipes, take a look at our soup and stew collection – you’ll have tasty dishes to slurp up for days.

Do you have any other favorite vegetable soups? How would you garnish this dish? Please rate this recipe and share in the comments below!


Don’t forget to Pin It!

A collage of photos showing different views of a velvety carrot soup recipe.

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published by Shanna Mallon on February 17th, 2014. Last updated: July 11, 2018 at 16:29 pm.

*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Nikki Cervone

Nikki Cervone is a hungry foodie living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she is not tearing through her city's best grub, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

20 thoughts on “Velvety Carrot Soup – When Veggie Puree is Actually Cool to Eat

  1. That photo of black-clad arms around orange soup is absolutely stunning. What a beautiful looking soup. I love the idea of thyme against silky carrot puree against crispy sweet amaretti and salty pecorino. Yowza. I feel the same way about the light. I don’t mind the cold so much, but those dark days in December are always rough ones.

  2. ‘Formula rather than regulations’ – yes! Thanks for the tip. I love when cooking and baking becomes about the methodology and the texture of the food versus digits and measurements. This looks delightful; something to look forward to while we wait 🙂

  3. I love the idea of a velvety smooth soup; sometimes you want a bit of texture in there but sometimes you just want that silkiness and this sounds just perfect for that.

  4. Oh my… These pictures are just perfect. I think I lost my heart to the last one. So, so gorgeous. And then the Eliot quote and this recipe. Yes, this post is a stunner.

  5. Hi Tim and Shanna – I love the new layout of your site and these pictures, wow, they are so moody and stunning! I mean “moody” in a good, dark, and mysterious way! I am making this carrot soup today…

  6. Everything about this is stunning. Light and darkness all together. It’s hard to strike the balance where the coexist in a pleasing sort of a way. But I guess that’s sort of the point – the darkness is never meant to satisfy but just remind us that the light is coming.

  7. Shanna, this post is just short, sweet & beautiful. I’ve missed reading your writing in the past 2 weeks – I was on a short holiday with Juan in Brazil, and now that I’m back to daily life & resuming normal habits, I’ve realized that reading your voice is one of those things that brings a smile to my day! Lovely, lovely post!

    sending love and hope the warm weather stays!

    F.

    • That encourages me, F. I know sometimes reading a blog that brings a smile to my face is a major bright spot in my day! It’s so nice to think we can do that for other people here.

  8. Shanna, another amazing dish. My husband and I devoured this soup last night. It reminded us both of our all-time favorite Curry Carrot soup that we had at a French restaurant (I know…curry carrot at a French restaurant). I was tempted to add curry to it but left it as is and was so happy I did. Velvet, YES! Thank you.

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