Creamy Celery Soup

Homemade cream of celery soup with celery, onion, leeks, garlic, stock and a little cream.

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Time to curl up under a cozy blanket and enjoy a warm bowl of soup. This week’s pick? A classic creamy celery soup.

Like cabbage, celery is an oft neglected vegetable, prized for its place in a mirepoix, but rarely the star of the show. Which is silly when you think about it, given how good celery is in soups. (Can you imagine chicken soup without it?)

Creamy Celery Soup

Celery soup, with a supporting cast of some onion, leeks, and a little cream, is utterly delicious, and the perfect way to warm up on a chilly day.

Recipe and photos updated, first published 2014

Creamy Celery Soup Recipe

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  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 5

Taste the raw celery you plan to use in this soup. The celery should be fresh and good on its own, not old or bitter. If you have a particularly tough or bitter bunch of celery, please don't use it in this soup, find another use for it.

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp butter, divided into 2 Tbsp and 1 Tbsp
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced leeks, white and light green parts only
  • 5 cups of chopped celery, and 1 1/2 cups of diced celery  (from one large bunch of celery or two small bunches)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon to 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, to taste
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup of cream
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Fresh chopped chives or parsley for garnish

Method

1 Sauté onions, leeks, 5 cups of chopped celery: Melt 2 Tbsp butter in a thick-bottomed 4 to 5 quart pot on medium heat. Add the diced onion, the leeks, and 5 cups of the chopped celery.

Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes until softened. Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute more.

2 Add stock, bay leaves, salt, then simmer: Add the chicken stock and bay leaves to the pot. Taste for salt and add salt. (If you are using unsalted butter and unsalted stock, you will need to add more salt than you expect, if not, maybe just a little salt will be needed.)

Increase heat to bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover to maintain a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes.

3 Braise remaining celery to soften: While the soup is simmering, prepare the extra celery that will be added later to the soup. In a separate small sauté pan, melt 1 Tbsp of butter on medium heat. Add 1 1/2 cups diced celery to the butter.

Ladle 1/2 cup of the simmering stock from the soup pot into the sauté pan. Simmer on low for 5 or 6 minutes to soften the celery. Set aside.

4 Purée soup: Remove the soup pot from heat, let cool slightly. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Working in batches, purée the soup in a blender, filling the blender no more than a third full at a time (keep your hand on the lid so the hot liquid doesn't explode). Return the puréed soup to the pot.

5 Stir in the cream and the braised diced celery.

Taste for salt and add more if needed. Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper and chopped chives or parsley to serve.

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Links:

Chunky Celery Soup from Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks

Creamy Celery Soup

Showing 4 of 37 Comments

  • Márcio

    Oh my god! Delicious! I want to eat it every day now!

  • Brittney

    I’m eating this soup as I type and it is delicious! I made a vegan version by substituting veggie broth for chicken, olive oil for butter, and silken tofu for the cream. I can’t wait to share this with friends!

  • jara

    I made this last night to rave reviews from the entire family. I made two changes- I omitted the cream and used about 2 cups of chickpeas instead of some of the celery. This made a filling and warming winter dinner.

  • Anne

    I forgot to say, i also lopped the leafy top off the bunch right down to the stalks….I find it gives a little more flavour….much better in the soup bowl than the compost bin.

  • Anne

    Cooked it in canned coconut cream…yummy.

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