HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


Cold soups? Gazpacho = yawn

Don't get me wrong, I love gazpacho, I make it very often and very well, and, yes, I've tried variations on it and like them, too. Ditto for almost-as-ubiquitous cucumber-yogurt-dill/mint. I also do a lot of veggie puree soups (squash, broccoli, pea, fennel, etc), and serve them hot or cold, and that's also fine, but I need something new that could be a real staple.

Anyone got something a little new and different -that's simple, easy, infinitely variable and crowd-pleasing?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
    1. re: linguafood

      I started playing around with vichyssoise this summer, adding celery root, or a fennel bulb. Fan-freaking-tastic! I'm sure it helped that I used homemade chicken broth from the freezer, but still, this had no dairy and it was delicious. I took my mom some, and since she eats dairy, she dolloped sour cream on it, and declared it good. As a Midwesterner, my mom rarely says any food I make is better than "not bad." So, trust me, "good" was high praise.

    2. Avocado soup!
      I can't find my recipe, but this one looks like it might be good -

      1 Reply
      1. re: ursy_ten

        Fruit soup, cantaloupe with mint, watermelon and basil, strawberry and star anise. Cool and yummy

      2. Peach and yogurt soup, especially if you can get some bacon or ham in whatever you're serving it with.

        1. I've been making a cold corn soup, also did artichoke recently.

          1. I posted this a while back so I'm not sure if you would consider it new. It is very good though...

            Chilled Avocado Soup

            2 Haas avocados

            1/2 cup half-and-half

            1 1/2 cups chicken broth

            1/2 tsp sea salt

            mashed roasted garlic to taste

            freshly ground black pepper to taste

            A few dashes of hot sauce

            Cilantro leaves

            Cut avocados in half lengthwise, remove the pits, and scoop out the flesh into a food processor. Add all remaining ingredients and blend until completely smooth. Pour into a large bowl and chill for several hours in the refrigerator. Garnish with cilantro leaves when served.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Sailing77

              This sounds amazing, I'm going to make that tomorrow with some fish tacos. So easy and summery.

              Thank you so much!

              1. re: Sailing77

                I'm going to try it with veg stock. Have you ever used milk or is the h/h necessary?

                1. re: invinotheresverde

                  I'm sure a flavorful veggie stock would be fine. I have not tried substituting milk for the H&H. That might cause the soup to lose some of its velvety texture. But heck, try it and see!

                1. re: magiesmom

                  WOW a wealth of summer goodnes! Thanks for the link.

                2. When you say gazpacho, do you mean the tomato, pepper, cucumber version? How about the almond and garlic one (white)?

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: paulj

                    I have heard of that "white" style is it Spanish?

                    1. re: Luna2372


                      It may not be obvious from some recipes, but bread is an essential part of Spanish gazpacho. There'a whole page in The New Spanish Table about gazpacho, its history (possibly going back to Roman times), and development.

                      1. re: paulj

                        jose andres makes gazpacho without bread. http://www.delish.com/recipes/cooking... you'd better tell him --probably on the ohone, 'cause he looks like a big guy.

                    2. re: paulj

                      I adore ajo blanco. It's very easy and quick to make. The key is to use enough salt. Pick a recipe and don't skimp on the salt.

                    3. Ajo blanco is divine if you leave it in the fridge overnight to "ripen" the garlic throughout. Also, there's a delicious cold melon soup in Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. Take her suggestion of a dead ripe melon to start with, and you can't go wrong. That recipe can be played with a good deal, too. If you have a source for good, sweet carrot juice, or a juicer at home, this one is easy and fortifying on a hot day, lots of sugar:

                      3 c. carrot ginger juice (or 3 c. carrot juice and a knob of ginger the size of your thumb nail, peeled and microplaned or shredded finely, maybe a tbsp.)
                      a medium avocado, halved and pitted and peeled (3-5 ounces meat)
                      2 tbsp. fresh lime juice
                      2 tbsp. or to taste coconut juice (the liquid from the center of a young coconut, also available canned or bottled, or you can sub chicken or vegetable broth)
                      dash cayenne pepper, or to taste
                      pinch sea salt
                      fresh ground black pepper to taste
                      honey, if your carrot juice isn't as sweet as you'd like, to taste

                      Puree all in a blender for a minute or two until smooth, adding more coconut water or broth to thin as you like. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serves 2-3 generously, more as a first course. Will keep a day or two in the fridge, but best within a few hours. Blend again before serving if the mixture separates while in the fridge.

                        1. re: ipsedixit

                          LOL...yummy melted Dolce Leche ice cream....

                          @amyzan. I love this recipe too. I might try it with some other Thai inspired dishes.


                          1. re: Luna2372

                            You laugh at me, but you haven't lived until you've slurped up a bowl of melted chocolate chip cookie ice cream paired with some toasted Fig Newtons.

                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                I do laugh, but only in sheer joy! We make our own ice cream, and I do love a totally melted bowl of ginger ice cream over a good slice of lemon pound cake.

                                I find that fig newtons seem to leave a burning feeling in my mouth. But a freind of mine made fig jam, and I love it layer with cake.


                          2. I've had a fantastic cold soup in Korea. I don't know what it was called, but it had a cold, clear beef broth as the base, and contained noodles, daikon and half a boiled egg. I think they put ice cubes in before serving, so it was really cold.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                              Koreans also use an insulated stainless bowl to help keep cold. A common noodle for this use is a variant on the Japanese soba (buckwheat).

                              1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                                Here are a couple variations on naeng myeon, if this appeals. I've been craving them: http://www.maangchi.com/recipe/naengm...

                              2. The post just ran this lovely looking cold and spicy mango soup today: http://projects.washingtonpost.com/re...

                                1 Reply
                                1. Great topic - does anyone have any vegetarian (or with fish, but no meat) cold soups that include protein?
                                  I love gazpacho but it is not a complete meal - and I like to take a flask of soup to work for my lunch. I can get carbs from whatever crackers I have made that week, but protein is more problematical as I am liable to just eat vegetables in the summer.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Peg

                                    I make a simple cream of asparagus soup with vegetable stock, half and half, and white pepper, and usually plate it with a few cooked chilled shrimp on top, with cilantro and croutons. Not fancy, but attractive and fairly tasty.

                                    1. re: Peg

                                      I puree silken tofu into sweet potato, broccoli, or eggplant soups . It makes a nice creamy soup with some protein. I often eat a hard boiled egg or two alongside a simple veggie soup; gazpacho is really good with chopped egg on top, especaially if it is one with bread. Small maine shrimp, bay scallops, or crabmeat can also be a nice addition to may veggie based soups, especially if they contain coconut milk.
                                      I keep a carton of greek yogurt or cottage cheese at work to add protein to meals that are short.

                                    2. Hey, OP here, thanks for all the great ideas! Interested to hear more about making dairy-free vichysoisse featuring celery root or fennel instead of -- or is that in addition to? -- potatoes. I also aim for healthy, though not in a *totally* hard-core way, but it does mean going easy on the unadulterated starch (sorry, beets, corn and others) and the dairy, love them though I do. That other thread (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/789025) had some good ideas, several without recipes. Anyone got the deets on making roasted red pepper and tomato with pepitas, Sweet Mung Bean Soup or minted pea? Avocado soup sounds great, but a tad rich and decadent to make as a staple (and avocado prices have gone through the roof!). Fruit soups are great, but kind of like eating a smoothie in a bowl to my mind; even when they have some savory herbs mixed in, I just want to suck them up in a straw.

                                      Keep those ideas coming!!

                                      5 Replies
                                      1. re: fmogul

                                        In addition to potatoes and leeks, was what I meant. You can make celeriac or fennel soup without potatoes, but you might want to wait for later summer or early fall when both will be harvested more commonly, a little fatter and also cheaper, hopefully. Both have distinctive flavor, so I like them with potatoes and leeks, which balances out nicely.

                                        1. re: fmogul

                                          Ok - there is a less decadent avocado soup which uses stock rather than dairy, keep that in mind if you come across some cheap avocados one day!

                                          I am currently really enjoying pureed cauliflower as an alternative to mashed potato, and so I thought I'd see if I could find a chilled caulilower soup.

                                          I came across this one, which sounds very different and I'm intrigued enough to want to try it - Chilled cauliflower soup with oyster garnish. It also features finely diced apple and marinated shallots.


                                          It's probably not as simple and easy as many other cold soups that you just throw in a blender, but it might be worth a try just for something different... and if you don't care for oysters, I think it would still be good without them.

                                          In any case, I have you to thank - if you hadn't posted this topic, I would never have stumbled upon this recipe. So, thank you - I'm rather pleased with this find!

                                          1. re: ursy_ten

                                            I hear you about the cheap avacados! I really wanted to make one of these soups today. But when I was at the only grocrey on my island that sells avacados, they were $2 a piece and not very nice.


                                            I will prolly have to wait another month or two before they are really good and affordable

                                            1. re: Luna2372

                                              Yes, the ones on offer here in Australia are a bit small and sad right now :(
                                              I was reading recently (to my surprise) that avocados are freezable:
                                              I haven't tried it yet, but will give it a go once avo season is in full swing! I imagine that the change in texture wouldn't matter so much for soup.

                                              1. re: ursy_ten

                                                Holy Moly..i didn't know that either. Avocados are always expensive here, never really less than $1 apiece. But they can be nice and big and tasy. And not $2 for small and sad.

                                                I will try the freezing thing tho if they ever get to a reasonable price.


                                        2. I have a lovely recipe for a chilled orange and beet soup with miso and dill.

                                          4 Replies
                                            1. re: fmogul


                                              Orange Beet Soup

                                              5 cups water (or vegetable stock)
                                              4 cups shredded beet (about 3 medium-size beets)
                                              2 cups shredded carrot (about 2 medium-size carrots)
                                              1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste (omit if using stock)
                                              2 teaspoons dried dill, or 2 tablespoons fresh
                                              1 tablespoon miso paste (I used red but white is fine)
                                              1/2–1 teaspoon orange zest (I used the zest from 1 orange)
                                              1-1/2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice (3-4 oranges)
                                              maple syrup, to taste (I used small, sweet carrots from the farmer’s market so I didn’t feel like this needed any extra sweetener)

                                              1. Start boiling the water and beets over medium heat in a large covered pot while you work on the other vegetables. Add the carrots, covering the pot in between. Add the salt, dill, and orange zest, cover the pot, and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

                                              2. Combine orange juice with miso and combine until smooth.

                                              3. Remove from the heat, add the orange juice and miso mixture,and blend until smooth (use an immersion blender or blend in batches in a blender – if you have one of those high powered blenders, this would work well!).

                                              4. Serve chilled or warmed up. Do not boil once the miso has been added.

                                              Serves 6.

                                              1. re: blinknoodle

                                                Wow, that sounds awesome, and i have all the ingredients sitting in my fridge right now.

                                            2. re: blinknoodle

                                              I recently made a beet soup with a few red beets, sauteed red onion and fennel, lime juice, chicken stock and half and half. I would have used yogurt instead of the half and half but didn't have any on hand.

                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                Didn't see it originally, but another poster linked to it. It has lots of gazpacho and yogurt soups, which, as I said, I like just fine, but wanted to branch out. There are several good ideas, but aren't recipes for them. When I have a sec, I'll go through and see if I can flush them out! Also, wanted to see what I could generate that also wasn't a) fruit-based, and b) too rich and decadent (not that there's anything wrong with that!)

                                                  1. re: fmogul

                                                    How about cream of summer green from Moosewood? It is lettuce,other greens, onions and buttermilk, I think. If you don't have Moosewood usually the recipes are online.

                                                1. I just picked up a watermelon. I have watermelon gazpacho on my mind