Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Cream of Mushroom Soup (Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free)

Somehow soup and stew weather has crept into July, I mean the temperature isn't even 60 degrees right now! I crave warming, soothing cooked foods in cold weather. This rich mushroom soup is perfect!

If it is hot where you reside then save this recipe for Autumn and serve it with a loaf of crusty gluten-free french bread and a salad of greens, crispy apples, and pumpkin seeds with a good balsamic dressing.

I will admit here that my girls wouldn't try this soup (was it the color?), but my boys (18 month old twins) tried some and then ate two bowls each!

Cream of Mushroom Soup

I had thought to add coconut milk to this soup for the "cream" but thought the deep, earthy flavors of the mushrooms wouldn't mingle very well with the tropical coconut flavors. This is why I chose to use cashews. If you have a nut allergy and can tolerate dairy products then you could add heavy cream. You would have to experiment with amounts though. I used water here but I imagine that a rich chicken or vegetable stock would bring this soup to the next level. My girls picked fresh violets from the garden and put them into each soup bowl - it sure makes for a beautiful presentation!

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
3 large carrots, chopped
1 pound cremini mushrooms, chopped
5 cups water or stock
few sprigs fresh thyme (pull the leaves from the stems)
few sprigs fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 teaspoons Herbamare, or to taste
1/2 cup raw cashews
2 tablespoons sweet rice flour (optional)

In a large pot (6-quart works) sauté the onions in the olive oil until soft, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, carrots, and mushrooms; sauté for a few minutes more.

Add the water, herbs, pepper, and salt. Cover and simmer for about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and ladle some of the soup into a blender. Add the cashews and sweet rice flour. Blend on high until smooth and creamy; transfer to a clean pot. Puree the remaining soup in batches (you can blend it for just a short time for more texture or longer for a smoother consistency).

Stir the soup together to mix the cashew cream in with the rest of the blended batches. Taste and add more salt if necessary or more water for a thinner consistency. Simmer over low heat for a few minutes to meld the flavors.

Garnish each bowl with sliced and sautéed mushrooms, chopped fresh parsley, and edible flowers.

Other Soup Recipes:

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About the Author

Alissa Segersten holds a Bachelor's of Science in Nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the founder of Whole Life Nutrition, the mother of five children, a whole foods cooking instructor, professional recipe developer, and cookbook author. She is passionate about helping others find a diet that will truly nourish them, and offers elimination diet recipes, healthy gluten-free recipes, paleo and vegan recipes, as well as tips for feeding your family a nourishing, whole foods diet. Alissa is the author of two very popular gluten-free, whole foods cookbooks and guidebooks: The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and Nourishing Meals. She is also the co-author of The Elimination Diet book. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!


  1. Wow, that looks and sounds really tasty! Thank you for all of your creative recipes. I fix many of them for my boyfriend, and he loves the food, so I'll be sure to try this one out, too!

  2. You often speak of a gluten-free French bread--do you make it, or is it something that you buy?

  3. Hi, I'm visiting from MBC. Great blog.

  4. I love mushroom soup but have not made it in so long since the old recipe I had was made with dairy. I can't wait to try this!
    Thanks - plus I love the flowers to decorate it.

  5. T - Thanks, glad to hear you two are enjoying the recipes! :)

    Jennifer - I make the bread from scratch in a French Bread pan, it is a recipe I created last fall. My kids go nuts over it! :)

    Veronica Lee - Thanks for stopping by!

    Deb - Oh good, I bet you will enjoy this one - I don't even miss the dairy here the soup is so good. :)


  6. Thanks for all your work Kelly! Here's a recipe for GF Cream of Chicken soup from my book called COUNTRY BEANS that I'm sure you'll love:
    1 cup white bean flour (Navy Beans)
    2 Tbl. chicken soup base (I like Better Than Bouillon)
    6 cups water

    Grind white beans (Navy or small white, or Red Lentil) into flour with your wheat grinder (or buy from Bob's Red Mill).

    In a medium saucepan combine the all ingredients. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and cook 3 minutes. For a creamier soup (more like Campbell's) pour into blender and process for 1 minute on high. Serves 4-6.

    Optional --- add 1 c. cooked diced chicken. Can also add cooked celery, potatoes, carrots, and onions for a full meal soup.

  7. I added this to my folder of recipes to make - we love mushrooms. I am not a fan of heavy cream soups but this version isn't heavy at all. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Rita - Your soup recipe sounds great too, thanks for sharing. :)

    Amy - You're right, this version isn't "heavy" - it has just the right amount of creaminess with a bold mushroom flavor. I am sure you will enjoy it! :)


  9. I can't wait to make this for my Mom when she comes to visit. She is going to LOVE it! Thank you! Also, what about that french bread recipe? Do you have it posted? I have tried a few (I even bought the special french bread loaf pan) and they have all been horrible.

  10. FoodAllergyMom - Thanks, I am sure you gals will enjoy this soup. I am saving the bread recipe for my next book. What a bummer that other recipes have not turned out.

    -Ali :)

  11. Will this yummy French Bread recipe appear in your next book maybe?

  12. I added sliced burdock root - which added a nutty, peppery taste- in with the mushrooms. I pureed only about 2/3 and left the rest to have something to crunch on. Very good.

  13. This is cooking right now and it smells great - I don't have any Herbamare (not even sure what it is...) but it's so grounding. I tied the rosemary & thyme in a boquet garni because I'm too tired to chop them up.

    I don't have any raw chestnuts but I have to run out later and will pick some up and finish the soup tonight. Really want to try the dairy-free version.

  14. Just an update - I finally got the cashews, not chestnuts (I've got brain-fog today!) and this is the best cream of mushroom soup I've ever had. I'm going to eat it for dinner (right now!) and even thought about hiding it from my husband, but instead I'm going to pack it in his lunch tomorrow. He'll be so happy he won't know what to do.

    Thanks, Ali.

  15. Do you have suggestions for substitute for the sweet rice flour? Would arrowroot starch work in equal amounts?

    Also, have you ever tried this soup with soaking the cashews for a few hours ahead of time?

  16. Hi Ali,

    This looks great! I love mushrooms, but hate the heaviness that dairy cream imparts. Have you ever tried this soup with soaking the cashews for a few hours ahead of time?

    Also, do you have suggestions for substitute for the sweet rice flour? Would arrowroot starch work in equal amounts? Thanks!

  17. Would potato starch work instead of sweet rice flour to make this recipe kosher for Passover? How much would you use? Thanks!

  18. Oh my gosh - this is so good! My dad is dairy/beef/rice allergic, so I subbed quinoa flour for the rice flour. Also, our local co-op was out of these mushrooms, so I used portabellas instead.

    Holy smokes. This was delish! It also got the stamp of approval from my generally-non-food-adventurous mother. Thank you!!!

  19. I am very thankful for your blog and dairy free - gluten free recipes as I am on an elimination diet and it is hard to find appealing recipes.
    This one looks yummy.

    I got brown rice flour instead of sweet rice. Is it going to work the same?

  20. I made the cream of mushroom soup today and it turned out amazing! I made a couple of changes that I thought you might like. I didn't have cashews for the "cream". Instead, after I sauteed the mushroom mixture I added about 3 TB of garbanzo bean flour and made a roux. Then I added the broth and let it simmer. This made the soup thick and gave a nice creaminess. I finished it with a some Bragg's Liquid Amino's to taste. Wow! It was good! Thanks!

  21. Finally made this amazing recipe to reintroduce mushrooms after years avoiding them. SO YUMMY. The cashews make it perfectly creamy, I love it! I hope I get to make it many many more times! Thank you Ali.

  22. Would this work as a substitute for canned cream of mushroom soup in a casserole? I have dairy and soy allergies, and I miss my casseroles! Thanks!

    1. Angie- it might work, though I've never tried it. Let me know how it goes. :)

  23. Ali, you should try it with coconut milk. There's a Thai restaurant down the street from me that makes a coconut soup with mushrooms in it, and it is awesome. I, too, am looking for replacements for canned soups to use to make casseroles with (not supposed to have gluten or dairy here).

  24. You are my go to site when I need something tasty. Thank you so much for sharing your works of art!
    I made this soup today for use in a green bean casserole. My non allergic son tasted it and said, "now this tastes like Thanksgiving!" Hooray!
    I didn't have sweet rice flour or crimini mushrooms, so I subbed tapioca starch and portabella. I also made a roux to thicken it and simmered it to reduce it more so it would cling to the green beans. Topped it off with caramelized onions. Yummy. Thanks again!

  25. I made this with some chicken broth that I simmered for 6 hours yesterday. The soup was so thick, creamy and satisfying! I will definitely add this to my repertoire of week night meals. Thanx for another great recipe!

  26. Can I substitute the rice flour with almond flour? Or coconut flour? We are grain free... It sounds delicious :)

  27. Oh, I LOVE this recipe. I made it for our Thursday soup night and it was amazing. I am on a strict diet though, and so I couldn't use the olive oil to cook with. I subbed pasture-raised butter. And, I just left out the sweet rice flour as I can't have grains. This was the best mushroom soup I've ever had. And my girls, 1.5yr and 2.5yr ate it up! Thank you so much!!!

  28. Holy smokes, was this GOOD! The only things I changed: I used a mixture of mushrooms and used chick pea flour rather than rice flour. I threw baby kale in the blender with the soup. Truly fantastic.


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Thanks and Happy Cooking! ~Ali :)