You know what?

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

I’m having a meltdown this week. I don’t know. Maybe it’s because the debate made sure that Private Practice couldn’t be on last night. Maybe it’s because I would like to unfriend everyone on Facebook, forever… or at least until mid-November. Maybe it’s because I’m inching closer to 30! eeek. Maybe it’s because I emotionally ate ice cream for dinner and then emotionally online shopped until midnight.


Let’s talk about soup instead. Especially since my husband is reading this.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

So the thing is, last year around this time I had some incredible cauliflower soup that seriously just melted in my mouth. No… I mean MELTED. I attempted to recreate it but it turned out like paste and consequently… ended up being showcased in my recipe disasters of 2011. But… I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. For a year. For 12 loooooong months. Do you have any idea how long that is in impatient, annoying girl-time?

Let me tell you: a long time. Totally worth it now though. Maybe sometimes patience pays off? I will probably never truly find out.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

Oh and here’s the other thing. I’ve never been able to get behind the whole mashed cauliflower craze. No people, they are not potatoes. It’s freaking Thanksgiving and I want to eat REAL MASHED POTATOES. It’s the biggest food holiday of the year and I had a great workout this morning and I plan on stuffing myself to the brim and then doing it again four hours later and no, I don’t want to touch your mashed cauliflower no matter how delish you say it is.

Alright, perhaps the reason I haven’t been a fan is because I’d just have to swirl so many butter rivers and cream streams and five thousand pounds of cheese with eight sprinkles of salt into the mix in order to make it palatable and do what it’s supposed to do… taste like potatoes. Whatevs.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

BUT. I might be changing my tune now. I’m not about to go swap one of my favorite side dishes for these goofy looking florets, but hear me out when I tell you that this soup tastes eerily similar to potatoes. To, say, potato soup. Except it’s lighter in texture and taste and is creamier, yet still does the whole mouth melting thing. It’s sort of… heavenly. And YOU KNOW how I feel about things that slightly resemble broccoli. Ugh.

What I’m trying to say is that if you don’t like cauliflower, you will probably still like this. I hope so.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

While the soup is incredible and made most of it’s journey straight from the pot into my mouth, the toppings are what initially sold me on this soup last year. The roasted cauliflower is something I can handle in a small amount while enveloped in a soup pillow, but the crispy fried capers and chive oil are the bees knees. I mean it. If you don’t like capers, try them fried. Little crunchy pops in your mouth? Um hello lover.

If you’re having a meltdown sort of week, you might wanna make this soup. If you’re having a great sort of week, you also might want to make this soup. If you have a ton of “fake”book friends that are spamming up your feed with political rants every 30 seconds, definitely do not make them soup. And then unsubscribe. And make yourself the darn soup.

Problems solved.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I


Creamy Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Capers and Chive Oil

Yield: serves about 4

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


1 sweet onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large head of cauliflower, chopped into small florets
3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1 cup water
1/2 cup half and half or whole milk
1/4 cups capers, patted completely dry
salt and pepper to taste
additional roasted cauliflower for topping

chive oil
1/4 cup chopped chives
3-4 tablespoons olive oil


Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter, then add onions with a pinch of salt. Stir to coat and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in chopped cauliflower and vegetable stock, then cover and cook for 20-25 minutes until softened. A few times during cooking, use your spoon to press down and break apart or mash the cauliflower.

While cauliflower is cooking, make the chive oil. Combine the chives and olive oil in a blender or food processer and blend until totally smooth. If needed, you can strain the oil thru a very fine mesh strainer. To fry the capers, heat a small skillet over medium-high heat and add 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil. Add dry capers and shake the pan or stir, tossing for 1-2 minutes until crispy and fried. Set aside to drain on a paper towel.

Once the cauliflower is soft, scoop it (and all the remaining broth) into a large bowl. Add half of the mixture to a blender with half cup of water and puree until smooth. Once smooth, add back to the pot and puree the remaining cauliflower mixture with the other half cup of water. Add to the rest.

Heat over low heat, stirring in milk or cream and remaining butter. Taste and season with salt and pepper, then garnish with additional roasted cauliflower (I roasted at 425 with olive oil, salt + pepper for 40 minutes, tossing), capers and chive oil.

[recipe inspired by habitat and adapted from bon appetit]

Creamy Cauliflower Soup I

I feel so much better already.

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143 Responses to “Creamy Cauliflower Soup. (OMG it’s so good I swear.)”

  1. #
    Claire @ Live and Love to Eat — October 17, 2012 @ 7:02 am

    Everything I’ve ever eaten from Habitat has been amazing – but I know I’d never come close to recreating the dishes myself. This soup looks beautiful, and Fairmont worthy! :)


  2. #
    Joelle (on a pink typewriter) — October 17, 2012 @ 7:06 am

    I love cauliflower .. That last bowl looks like something out of Gourmet mag.


  3. #
    the 3volution of j3nn — October 17, 2012 @ 7:08 am

    Capers and roasted cauli on top sound amazing!! I have two heads of cauliflower and I was thinking about making them into soup. Now I know that I am.


  4. #
    Kim in MD — October 17, 2012 @ 7:13 am

    I love cauliflower! I recently made “mock” mashed potatoes using cauliflower, and it tasted just like mashed potatoes, so I can imagine how good this soup is! Your photos are stunning, Jessica!


  5. #
    The Spatularettes — October 17, 2012 @ 7:15 am

    Cauliflower Soup > Politics

    Unfortunately I also think I prefer lima beans to politics.
    …And that gross bright yellow mustard.
    …And slimy processed lunch meat.

    I definitely prefer wine to politics.
    …And chocolate.
    …And craft beers.
    …And sushi.

    Anywhooooo. I’m sick of politics as well, but this recipe looks fab. The end.


    • Megan — October 17th, 2012 @ 8:59 am



    • Kat — October 17th, 2012 @ 4:43 pm

      You said it, girl!


  6. #
    Rachel Cooks — October 17, 2012 @ 7:21 am

    I had the best cauliflower soup two weekends ago at Taste of MI and have been thinking about it ever since. This look amazing! I love your additions of chive oil and extra roasted cauliflower on top. I must try this!


  7. #
    Rebecca — October 17, 2012 @ 7:22 am

    Thank heavens that someone else loves this soup! My mother made cauliflower soup for us once (only once!) about ten years ago and ever since then I’ve been swearing up and down to people “I promise you it was great!”

    Since she couldn’t remember making it, I now have recipe to make this myself! And by the way, I love the creamy white, lush green, and steely grey color scheme – very wintry! and cozy!


  8. #
    Mackenzie {susiefreakinghomemaker} — October 17, 2012 @ 7:37 am

    Swoon! I have never seen such a beautiful cauliflower soup! I will for sure be trying this.


  9. #
    DessertForTwo — October 17, 2012 @ 7:40 am

    OMG so gorgeous! I know this is weird, BUT, cauliflower is my favorite vegetable. I just call it ‘cauli.’ As in, havin’ cauli tonight. Cool, right?!

    These photos are gorgeous! I love that dark grey backdrop–wow!


  10. #
    Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat — October 17, 2012 @ 7:46 am

    Pretty sure I’d love this! I’ve never been able to really love the whole mashed cauliflower thing either, but if you mash it with butternut squash, sweet potato, and turnips… well now that is another story!!


  11. #
    Amanda — October 17, 2012 @ 8:02 am

    Cauliflower mashed faux tatoes are easy to screw up and a lot of the recipes out there are just plain bad. Therefore, a lot of people think they are bad or that they don’t like them when, in fact, they’d really like them if they had a solid recipe to follow.

    I have no problem with eating a potato on occasion – whatever form it may be in – but I feel way better generally if the majority of my meals are accompanied by things like cauliflower. And I was once a vegetable-hater too.

    Bonus: stock made from chicken feet (I know, it sounds weird but trust me) makes for the most velvet-y soups. Voodoo stock revolutionized by winter squash soups.


  12. #
    Pretend Chef — October 17, 2012 @ 8:07 am

    Oh my! Cauliflower isn’t my favorite but just the sights of this, okay, the fried capers are what sold me. Crave worthy! The photos look amazing as always.


  13. #
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — October 17, 2012 @ 8:26 am

    Your soup looks amazing!! I never made cauliflower soup, but now I must!! I love the chive ol in it!! So pretty!


  14. #
    Meg @ Peaches and Cake — October 17, 2012 @ 8:37 am

    Mm I love cauliflower soup, especially when it’s spiced with curry powder! You could also do mostly cauliflower and 1 potato to thicken it up, or even cooked white rice. glad you finally made this one a success!


  15. #
    Rodzilla (@RodzillaReviews) — October 17, 2012 @ 8:45 am

    That looks great. When he opens back up in East Liberty, you have to try Notion, I had a Cauliflower soup there that was the best Cauliflower I’ve had.


  16. #
    Jill @ Sincerely Jill — October 17, 2012 @ 9:00 am

    Jessica! It has indeed been one of those weeks, and soup is one of my favorite comfort foods. Your food always looks so delicious but is typically enveloped with cheese which this poor stomach can’t handle. This recipe I might be able to tweak so I can eat it, too. Side note: the pictures look lovely! Thanks so much!


  17. #
    Abby@ Totes Delish — October 17, 2012 @ 9:06 am

    My mister swears he doesn’t like cauliflower, but I think I can trick him with this one! (is that bad I’m being tricky? Meh, whatever!)


  18. #
    Vicki @ WITK — October 17, 2012 @ 9:12 am

    So, you’re telling me I can feed this to the BF and he will think he’s eating potato soup? And I won’t have to think about all the miles I should be logging on the treadmill but totally won’t because House Hunters is on? Excellent. Recipe bookmarked.


  19. #
    Laurie {Simply Scratch} — October 17, 2012 @ 9:20 am

    I totally know whatcha mean! I’m sooo over the political rants on fb!

    THAT and Farmville requests!


  20. #
    Gina @ Running to the Kitchen — October 17, 2012 @ 9:23 am

    1. this looks amazing (and I don’t think I’ve ever said that about anything cauliflower related before)
    2. I’m in love with your pics in this post
    3. I want to un-friend 85% of my facebook and twitter friends too. I’ve learned to stay off social media on debate nights for fear of cyber-punching people.


  21. #
    Ashley — October 17, 2012 @ 9:35 am

    I love this. I love cauliflower. I love soup. I hate facebook right now. I hate cauliflower as mashed potatoes. I love potatoes. The end.


  22. #
    Sommer@ASpicyPerspective — October 17, 2012 @ 9:35 am

    Some weeks are just like that. I too, would like to skip FB for the next few weeks and pretend all my friends aren’t temporary lunatics! Sigh…. just had to get that off my chest.

    Awesome, CALMING soup. :)


  23. #
    Villy @ For the love of Feeding — October 17, 2012 @ 9:44 am

    Your night sounds like fun! Ice cream and shopping! Cream of cauliflower is one of my favorites and this one looks so white and perfect you can hardly tell where the soup ends and where the bowl begins! Slurp.


  24. #
    Cookbook Queen — October 17, 2012 @ 9:54 am


    Thank you.

    Mashed cauliflowers are NOT potatoes and NO, my child would never be fooled into thinking that they were, so people stop telling me to try it.


    This soup looks gorgeous. Like magic in a bowl.


  25. #
    Meagan @ A Zesty Bite — October 17, 2012 @ 9:59 am

    You want to defriend people on facebook and I wanted to do that to some twitter people last night! Glad you found comfort in the creamy cauliflower and that it worked out this time. Yummy!


  26. #
    Heather (Heather's Dish) — October 17, 2012 @ 10:01 am

    seriously, i cannot ever LOOK at facebook these days – most annoying thing ever. i think i’ll drown my social media sorrows in a vat of this soup :)


  27. #
    Erin — October 17, 2012 @ 10:05 am

    These are probably the most beautiful pictures of soup I have ever seen. Seriously. Good work!!


  28. #
    Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch — October 17, 2012 @ 10:10 am

    Gorgeous soup. And I totally understand the mood. I’m blaming the weather front for mine. That and the fact that I need to clean out closets AGAIN! How is it possible for closets to constantly be so much work to keep clean. I need a closet fairy. And this soup.


  29. #
    Alicia Greenrabbit — October 17, 2012 @ 10:44 am

    Jesse you inspire me .Two ways in this blog.
    1 .What to do with the lovely Cauliflower I just bought & 2. A color combination for one of my recycled cashmere scarves.I’m always looking for color ideas. And yummy food too!!!!!


  30. #
    Holiday Baker Man — October 17, 2012 @ 11:59 am

    Sounds perfectly yummy!


  31. #
    Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic — October 17, 2012 @ 12:11 pm

    Crispy capers is a great idea! I actually really love cauliflower (even mashed cauliflower, yes, but I agree that it will never ever ever replace mashed potatoes), so I will be licking this bowl clean.


  32. #
    Lauren Jamison @ The Barn — October 17, 2012 @ 12:18 pm

    I keep waiting on the hubs to shout, “NO more soups!” because in the past couple of weeks I think I’ve made at least 4 soups, t he majority of them involving roasting some sort of vegetable and pureeing it haha!

    However, he may have to suffer through juuusttt one more because this looks incredible!


  33. #
    Jackie @ The Beeroness — October 17, 2012 @ 12:43 pm

    “Does it taste like trees?” -Jessica

    But seriously, this looks awesome. ;)


  34. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — October 17, 2012 @ 1:03 pm

    Chive oil. And this cauli soup. Wow. The flavor combo sounds so stellar! I love roasted cauli, broccoli, etc and this looks like creamy perfection!


  35. #
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — October 17, 2012 @ 1:46 pm

    Holy, this looks lovely! That chive oil is such a nice touch :)


  36. #
    Ellen @ Wannabe Health Nut — October 17, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

    Thank looks so fancy, yum! And I totally feel ya on the ice cream emotional eating. Watching the presidential debate will do that to ya!


  37. #
    Eileen — October 17, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

    Real mashed potatoes are a necessity! I think this soup looks like a much better way to eat cauliflower. I don’t think I’ve ever combined cauliflower with capers–they sound like such a perfect acid contrast to smooth, sweet cauliflower!


  38. #
    Ala — October 17, 2012 @ 2:22 pm

    Thank you for writing this post solely for me–“meltdown” seems to be the word of the week here (it doesn’t help that one of my students experienced one in the smack middle of office hours), and I actually just had my first taste of creamy cauliflower soup last night. Needless to say, I will be making this myself as I continue melting…


  39. #
    Julie — October 17, 2012 @ 3:49 pm

    I really do want to move in to your house. Ill do the dishes I pinky promise


  40. #
    Katie @ Blonde Ambition — October 17, 2012 @ 3:49 pm

    I am pretty tolerant of the politics on FB (I often post news articles….but not my opinions :D), but my thing at this time of year is football. I can’t stand seeing every single one of my friends comment on every single play! Don’t get me wrong, I love watching the Super Bowl… but it’s a bit much.

    Speaking of bowls, I’d like this soup in one right now. Drool.


  41. #
    Sue Rainwater — October 17, 2012 @ 4:04 pm

    Made this – delicious!!


  42. #
    Kari@Loaves and Dishes — October 17, 2012 @ 5:44 pm

    I am a cauliflower lover, and I love cauliflower soup… but…your toppings are the bomb!


  43. #
    Krissy @ Make it Naked — October 17, 2012 @ 6:54 pm

    mashed cauliflower will never be mashed potatoes and nutritional yeast will never be cheese. also, your cutting board matches your blog. baller.


  44. #
    Lydia — October 17, 2012 @ 7:12 pm

    YUM! This is brilliant :) Thank you for sharing, will definitely be trying!


  45. #
    Joanne — October 17, 2012 @ 7:17 pm

    Could you tag this one Gluten Free please so I can find it later? Thank you!


    • Jessica — October 17th, 2012 @ 10:25 pm

      Done! :)


  46. #
    dervla @ The Curator — October 17, 2012 @ 9:32 pm

    Ugh, i feel the exact same way and recently defriended some of my husband’s family members because of political rants, FB is not the place for this, people! Cauliflower anything makes me feel better, and this soup looks gorgeous, love the addition of chive oil. Hope you’re back to your normal happy self in no time, and in any case you’ll be a well dressed angry person if you’re shopping online every night :)


  47. #
    Jess — October 17, 2012 @ 10:32 pm

    I’m going through Private Practice withdrawal over here – I’m so thoroughly hooked on this Charlotte triplets plot line that I can hardly stand it! I’ve never tried cauliflower soup, but I like the idea, and I REALLY like the crispy capers.


  48. #
    Laura — October 18, 2012 @ 12:01 am

    OMG fried capers! MUST try! SOup looks great too.


  49. #
    Jennifer B. — October 18, 2012 @ 1:05 am

    Okay, I hate cauliflower. I MIGHT try making this soup, on one condition. You have to make these cupcakes. I couldn’t help but think of you when I saw the recipe.


  50. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — October 18, 2012 @ 2:36 am

    Love the chive oil. Love it all



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