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Country Mushroom Soup

This soup is so hearty and yummy.  I was inspired to develop this after tasting Panera’s  Country Mushroom Soup.  This is a really nice change from the typical cream of mushroom soup that most of us are used to.  The tomato base with just the right amount of creaminess and a dash of truffle oil makes this soup unique.  I made this for the first time to take to a soup and salad party at a family gathering where majority of guests were carnivoresAll of  the other soups were made with meat and this was the first to fly out of the pot! The rich and colorful look made it irresistible.

Country Mushroom Soup

(Serves 4-6)  Prep Time: 15 min Cook Time: 30 min

8-oz crimini mushrooms sliced
8-oz white/button mushrooms sliced
8-oz shitake mushrooms sliced and stems removed
2 carrots sliced
6 cups vegetable broth

2 8-oz can of diced tomatoes

3 cloves garlic
3 shallots chopped

2 teaspoons salt (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon hot/spicy paprika

1 tsp truffle oil
¼ cup red wine (I prefer pinot so I can have a glass while I am cooking!)
To thicken/creaminess:  
You can either use almond milk, soy milk or cashew cream.  
I personally prefer cashew cream. I use ½ cup cashews and blend them with some of the broth from soup until creamy then add to soup. This method keeps the soup gluten free too!  
If you prefer to avoid nuts, use a milk substitute warmed in a pan and add flour until dissolved (do not boil).  Add when it’s time to thicken.
Place garlic, shallots, and carrots in large soup pan over med – high heat and cook until starting to become tender.  Add a small amount of broth to keep from burning.  After about 3 minutes add mushrooms and then cook for an additional 3 – 5 minutes.  Then add tomatoes and broth.
Let simmer with lid (you don’t want the broth to disappear) for 20 minutes until carrots are soft.
Add salt, paprika, and wine and simmer an additional 5 minutes.
Use your preferred thickening method.  I also take an immersion blender and blend for 30 seconds.  Making sure you leave several visible chunks of mushrooms.
I made this without the truffle oil and it is still quite tasty.  However, the truffle oil sends the flavor of this soup over the top. Everyone will be coming back for seconds and asking for your recipe.  I ordered my truffle oil from Amazon (because I am obsessed with Amazon Prime), but I am sure you can find at any high-end grocery store.
I hope you enjoy this as much as my family and friends have.

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