Cold-Weather Soups


Savor a bowl of gluten-free, dairy-free goodness

When temperatures begin to drop, there’s nothing better than a generous serving of steaming, nourishing soup. When it’s homemade, this special food contains a blend of pure and simple ingredients that are naturally wholesome, making it the ideal dish for gluten-free, allergy-friendly cooking. In addition, soup is flexible enough that it can be made to deliciously suit most special-dietary needs.

Sweet, buttery winter squash like acorn, butternut and pumpkin, spicy root vegetables like turnips and parsnips, and leafy greens like kale can all be added to the pot, creating a simmering stew that’s flavorful and nutrient-rich.

Warm up your table with these hearty soups. Easy to prepare in less than 30 minutes, these recipes are perfect for a special lunch, a satisfying supper or the first course of a last-minute dinner party.


Photo by Aran Goyoaga

Supper in a Bowl

Creamy Coconut and Root Vegetable Stew


This variation on classic salmon chowder can be made with salmon, if fish is tolerated, or with tofu. Turnips, rutabaga and sweet potato replace the traditional white potatoes, delivering higher nutritional value and flavor. Serve warm with a loaf of gluten-free bread.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium fennel bulb, halved, cored and diced
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 medium turnip, peeled and diced
1 medium rutabaga, peeled and diced
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
1½ cups gluten-free, dairy-free vegetable broth
1½ cups unsweetened coconut milk
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
12 ounces wild salmon or tofu, cut into ½-inch pieces
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
¼ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, fennel and ½ teaspoon salt. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the turnips, rutabaga, sweet potato, vegetable broth, coconut milk, red pepper flakes and ½ teaspoon salt. Bring liquid to a boil. Then reduce heat to medium low, cover the pot and cook for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

3. Add the salmon or tofu. Cover the pot and cook for 3 minutes. Add the parsley and lemon zest. Stir and adjust seasoning, if needed.

Each serving contains 342 calories, 25g total fat, 13g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 31mg cholesterol, 724mg sodium, 18g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 15g protein.


Hearty and Healthy

Roasted Garlic, Cauliflower and Celeriac Soup


Thanks to cooked cauliflower, this soup is rich and creamy without heavy cream. Roasting the garlic takes a bit of time, but it’s well worth it for the nutty flavor. Serve with seasoned gluten-free croutons for extra texture.

2 heads garlic
4 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
5 slices stale gluten-free bread, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2½ teaspoons thyme leaves, divided
1 medium onion, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 medium (24 ounces) cauliflower, cut into florets
1 medium (12 ounces) celeriac*, peeled and diced
1 medium (8 ounces) russet potato, peeled and diced
1 quart gluten-free, dairy-free chicken stock
2 cups water
1½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400° F.

2. Cut the tops off the garlic and peel the outer leaves. Place the garlic on a sheet of aluminum foil, drizzle 1 teaspoon olive oil on top and wrap the foil around it tightly. Bake the garlic for 45 minutes to 1 hour in preheated oven or until it is golden and soft. Let garlic cool and then squeeze out the flesh. Reserve.

3. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F.

4. To make seasoned croutons, toss together the bread, mustard, 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon thyme leaves in a bowl. Spread the bread on a baking sheet and bake in preheated oven for 10 to 15 minutes until golden. Reserve.

5. In a large pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and add the onion, celery and remaining thyme leaves. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, or until tender. Add the cauliflower, celeriac, potato, chicken stock, water, salt and pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil. Then reduce heat to medium low, cover the pot and cook for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Transfer the soup to a blender, add in the baked garlic cloves and puree it.

6. Top warm soup with seasoned croutons and drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over it.

Each serving contains 258 calories, 9g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 7mg cholesterol, 763mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 8g protein.

*TIP Celeriac, also known as celery root or knob celery, is a type of celery. It’s a root vegetable that’s knobby with a rough, brown exterior (it must be peeled) and white interior. Eaten raw or cooked, celeriac is high in fiber, potassium, magnesium and vitamin B6. It’s often thinly sliced in salads, added to soups and stews, mashed with potatoes and used in casseroles and gratins. It’s available during cold months.


Fragrant and Nutritious

Curried Red Lentil and Kale Soup


Red lentils are ideal for quick cooking as they do not require pre-soaking. This soup, full of protein, beta-carotene and calcium, is perfect served with gluten-free flatbread. Use the curry powder of your choice ranging from mild to spicy.

2 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
1 cup finely chopped green or red kale
1 quart water
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
⅛ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ cup coconut cream,* for garnish
2 teaspoons lemon juice, for garnish
¼ cup diced green onions, for garnish, optional

1. In a large pot, melt the ghee over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, carrot and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook for 5 minutes until tender.

2. Add the tomato paste and curry powder and cook for 30 seconds while stirring. Add the red lentils, kale, water, ¾ teaspoon salt, coriander and cumin. Bring the liquid to a boil. Then reduce heat to medium low, cover the pot and cook for 15 minutes or until lentils are tender.

3. In a small bowl, stir together coconut cream and lemon juice.

4. Serve the soup chunky or puree it in the blender for a smooth and creamy texture. Top with coconut cream mixture and diced onions, if desired.

Each serving contains 135 calories, 4g total fat, 3g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 1mg cholesterol, 326mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 7g protein.

*TIP Coconut cream is the thick milk that settles at the top in canned unsweetened coconut milk. It is sold in grocery stores and Asian markets. Do not shake the can before opening. Spoon out the thick cream from the top.


Photo by Aran Goyoaga

Creamy and Slightly Sweet

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup


Apple adds a bit of tartness to this otherwise sweet soup. Its luscious, smooth texture contrasts with the crunch of parsnip chips and fried sage leaves.

5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 medium leek, white and tender green parts, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (3-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded
    and diced
2 medium golden delicious apples, peeled, cored
    and diced
1 medium russet potato, peeled and diced
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 quart gluten-free, dairy-free chicken stock
¾ cup apple juice
1¼ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons sage leaves
2 large parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced
-Pumpkin oil, optional

1. In a large pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cook the leeks and garlic over medium heat until tender but do not let them brown, about 3 minutes.

2. Add the squash, apples, potato, thyme, chicken stock, apple juice, salt and black pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil. Then reduce heat to medium low, cover the pot and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes or until all vegetables are tender.

3. Puree the soup. Adjust seasonings, if needed.

4. In a separate sauté pan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the sage leaves and cook them until crispy and the oil is infused with their aroma. Remove the sage leaves. Add the sliced parsnips, in batches if necessary, and cook them until golden brown. Drain them on a paper towel.

5. Serve the soup warm, topped with fried sage leaves, the parsnip chips and a drizzle of pumpkin oil, if desired.

Each serving contains 283 calories, 11g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 4mg cholesterol, 550mg sodium, 45g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 6g protein.


Blogger Aran Goyoaga ( is a food stylist and photographer.