Sweet Potato Soup

Sweet potato soup

Here’s a warming soup with an appealing golden color. The natural sweetness of the sweet potatoes gives this soup a surprising flavor twist. Serve as a first course for festive holiday meals, or as a comforting bowlful for everyday meals. 

Serves: 6

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 large celery stalk, diced
  • Handful of celery leaves
  • 6 cups peeled, diced (about 1/2 inch) sweet potatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon salt-free seasoning blend (such as Frontier or Mrs. Dash)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup rice milk or light coconut milk, or as needed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley for garnish

Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and sauté over low heat until the onions are golden.

Add the celery leaves and sweet potato dice. Add just enough water to cover all but about an inch of the vegetables. Bring to a simmer, then stir in the bay leaves and seasonings. Simmer gently, covered, until the sweet potatoes and vegetables are quite tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the bay leaves.

With a slotted spoon, remove about half of the solid ingredients and transfer to a food processor along with about 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid. Process until smoothly pureed, then stir back into the soup pot. Or, simply insert an immersion blender into the pot and process until smoothly pureed.

Add the rice milk or coconut as needed to give the soup a slightly thick consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer over very low heat for another 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve at once, or let stand off the heat for an hour or two before serving, then heat through as needed. Garnish individual servings with sprigs of fresh parsley, or chopped leaves.

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14 comments on “Sweet Potato Soup

  1. Nava Post author

    Renee, I won’t groan, but I will admit that I’m really not familiar with canned sweet potatoes. For this recipe, I think that would be equivalent to three 16-ounce cans.

    Another shortcut to peeling and dicing the sweet potatoes would be to bake or microwave them ahead of time; then they are easier to slip out of the skins and cut.

    I’m never averse to shortcuts if they use good-quality items. So if you do try this, let us know how it works out!

  2. Elois Morgret

    Thanks, and for any readers that are having trouble chopping onions without the crying, here’s an incredibly easy tip – put them in the fridge first, then chop them straight away after taking them out! No more tears! I found some more onion soup recipes here if anyone wants to try some more variations.

  3. Kathi Levine

    About the onions…my daddy taught me to not cut the stem end of the onion and never use a serrated (sp?) blade. So far, so good. Works for me. No tears. :)

  4. Becky M

    Could I use soy milk instead of rice? I always have that on hand. Also, I’m not a celery fan at all. Is this a strong flavor? Could I omit it? Thanks!

  5. Nava Post author

    Becky, you can use soy milk if that’s what you have. I find that soy milk has a more pronounced flavor; rice milk is more neutral. But the sweet potato should be able to stand up to it. And you may certainly omit the celery if you don’t care for it. Hope you enjoy the soup on this blustery day!

  6. Nava Post author

    Kate, that’s as great idea. Sweet potatoes and coconut milk are incredibly compatible. I will incorporate that option into the recipe. Thanks!

  7. Clara

    I don’t have access to a food processor or an immersion blender. Are there any other options to make it mushy?

  8. Nava Post author

    Clara, simply let the veggies get nice and soft and reach into the pot with a potato masher. Mash until you get the texture you’d like–this soup is good chunky as well.

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  10. Erin

    Very scrumptious, filling recipie! Mine had a flaw though; I put Silk vanilla soy milk in it instead of coconut milk which made it sickly sweet. Ah, but it’s such a good recipie that I want to try it again next year… maybe even for Thanks Giving.

  11. Martha

    I made this today, my adult son and I thought this was just “ok.” (Used the coconut milk – original, unsweetened version.)

    Will not make again.

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