Creamy Vegan Potato Soup

This easy and delicious creamy vegan potato soup recipe uses simple ingredients and is ready in minutes! It’s full-bodied, creamy and filling and is gluten-free and dairy-free! Perfect for vegetarians and vegans!

At first glance, you may think, “how can a cream soup be vegan?” Read on to learn the secret…

This recipe came to me years ago during a snowstorm when the electricity was out, the milk in the refrigerator was bad and all we had in the house was a bag of potatoes and a gas stove.

There was no time to experiment with making a “no cream” version, so I had to wing it.

This recipe is the result of three days with no electricity, but I still make it–even when the lights are on! It’s a favorite soup any time of year!

Why this recipe works

This basic five ingredient vegetarian potato soup recipe is the epitome of healthy eating and the perfect recipe for both vegetarians and vegans: it doesn’t contain any chicken stock, vegetable stock, milk, cream cheese, flour or cornstarch but it still tastes delicious!

  • Versatile: you can season this healthy potato soup to suit your taste buds! Add in some fresh herbs like fresh parsley, ground thyme, green onions, leeks, shallots
  • Simple stove top method: requires no food processor or blender (you can make this in a slow cooker, but the total time of the recipe is less than 30 minutes, so the preferred method is stove top in a large soup pot or Dutch oven)
  • Flexible texture: you can make this chunky or creamy
  • Flexible seasonings: dress up this simple recipe to your liking by adding aromatics, spices, or herbs!

Here’s what you’ll need

The base of this vegetarian potato soup recipe is simple and perfect for a cold winter night or as a comfort food if you’re not feeling well. If you want a more flavorful soup, see “Variations” below and in the recipe card notes.

I’ve found the best potatoes for this recipe are russet potatoes (also known as Idaho potatoes.) Russets are not waxy like red potatoes and Yukon gold potatoes; russets tend to dissolve better, which helps create the creaminess in this homemade potato soup.

  • 3 lbs. large russet potatoes (this makes about 4 bowls of soup)
  • water
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • Seasonings of your choice: plain potato salad is great when you’re feeling puny, but if you want to add more seasonings and spices, see “Variations” below

That’s it! No coconut milk, flour, cornstarch, butter or dairy.

What makes the “cream” in this vegetarian soup recipe

The secret “ingredient” to this creamy vegetarian potato soup recipe is potato water. Yep! The starches in the potato water act as a thickening agent! Once you boil, drain and dice potatoes, reserve some of the cooking water. 

How to make this easy potato soup recipe

First thing is to rinse and peel away the thin skin, then slice or dice potatoes; place in a large pot, cover with water and bring to boil.

Once the potatoes are fork tender, drain them and reserve the potato water in another bowl

Return cooked potatoes to the large stockpot and mash all or part of the potatoes with a fork or potato masher – NOTE: this step determines the texture and thickness of your creamy base; if you want it chunky, do not mash all of the potatoes – leave some of the potato chunks for texture. If you want it super creamy, mash all the potatoes.

On medium low heat, add the reserved potato water in one cup increments until it reaches your desired consistency

Once you’ve gotten the consistency how you like it, season with a teaspoon salt, a teaspoon pepper and add any fresh herbs (or dried herbs) to the soup

Garnish this 5 ingredient vegetarian potato soup with vegan cheese or your favorite sharp cheddar cheese, a little vegan butter, green onions, vegan bacon bits, fresh parsley or cilantro

Tips

Soup too runny? Continue to cook it on low heat, stirring constantly, until some of the moisture is cooked out

Want it thicker? Add a cornstarch slurry (see recipe notes below) or throw in a dollop of vegan sour cream

Too thick? Add more potato water until you get the texture you desire; another option is to add in a little non-dairy milk

If you want it silky smooth, use a hand emulsifier or immersion blender. Start by adding only one cup of potato water then use the emulsifier to smooth the potatoes; repeat process until desired consistency is reached

Recipe FAQ

What are the best potatoes for potato soup?

Russet, or Idaho potatoes work best. They are high in starch and non-waxy so they dissolve well in the water. This helps create a “creamy” base for the potato soup.

How to make potato soup thicker

Thicken the soup by adding a slurry – using either flour or cornstarch. A slurry is 1/2 cup liquid (usually water) with about 2 tablespoons of flour or starch. Mix these together in a measuring cup and add it to the potato soup.

Flour thickens at a lower heat than cornstarch, so if you use a flour slurry, add it on low heat; if you add a cornstarch slurry, turn the heat up when you add it.

Variations

I recommend adding seasonings and/or herbs in 1/2 teaspoon increments; you can always add more but you can’t take it out!

You can add any aromatics, seasonings or herbs to this recipe: seasoned salt, onion powder, garlic powder, thyme, oregano, bay leaf, red pepper flakes, green onions, leeks, shallots, or marjoram. The options are endless, so play with the recipe however you like! 

Storage and reheating

This is a great soup recipe anytime of the year! You can make it in advance up to 3 days. Refrigerate in an airtight container or freeze up to 6 months. To reheat, allow to come to room temperature, then reheat in a large stockpot on medium-high heat.

Soup may thicken upon storage, so you may have to add a little water upon reheating. Serve a warm bowl of soup with a side of crusty bread and a crisp salad!

Vegan potato leek soup in greeen bowl garnished with parsley.

I hope you find this simple, 5 ingredient vegetarian potato soup recipe enjoyable and versatile! It’s a great soup during the Fall months or any time of the year!

If you make this recipe, please scroll down and leave a rating and comment! I love to hear from you!

Soup in greeen bowl garnished with parsley.

Creamy vegetarian potato soup

All-natural, preservative-free, gluten-free, dairy-free creamy potato soup
5 from 7 votes
Print Rate
Course: Soup
Cuisine: International
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 cups
Author: Anecia Hero

Ingredients 

  • 3 lbs. potatoes russets; peeled and cubed
  • water (potato broth) See Recipe Notes Below (reserved potato water from the boiled potatoes)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Seasonings of your choice: ½ teaspoon – oregano, marjoram, thyme, parsley, seasoned salt

Instructions 

  • Peel and cube potatoes
    3 lbs. potatoes
  • Add chopped potatoes to large stockpot and add water to cover; bring to boil
  • Once potatoes are fork tender; drain and reserve the potato water in a large bowl; return drained potatoes back to the pot you boiled them in
  • With a fork or potato masher, mash all or some of the potatoes (see recipe notes)
    3 lbs. potatoes
  • Add 1 cup of reserved potato water and cook for 10 minutes; if it's too thick, add a little more potato broth; repeat until you get the desired consistency you want
    water (potato broth) See Recipe Notes Below
  • Season to taste with salt, pepper or seasonings of your choice
    salt and pepper to taste, Seasonings of your choice: ½ teaspoon – oregano, marjoram, thyme, parsley, seasoned salt

Notes

Potato broth:
Go ahead and reserve all the water from the boiled potatoes (potato broth.) You will add some of this back into the cooked potatoes, making the soup as thick or thin as you prefer.
Texture:
If you want a somewhat chunky potato soup, don’t mash all of the cooked potatoes – just mash half
If you want a smoother soup, mash all the potatoes
The texture of this soup is semi-smooth. If you want a silky smooth texture, use a hand emulsifier or immersion blender after you’ve added one cup of the potato water.
Once the potatoes are emulsified, if the soup is too thick, add more potato water.
If the soup is too thin, cook it on low, stirring frequently, to cook out some of the moisture
Feel free to add any seasonings you prefer: sage, rosemary, thyme

Nutrition Estimate

Serving: 1cupCalories: 320kcalCarbohydrates: 66gProtein: 8gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gSodium: 29mgPotassium: 1512mgFiber: 8gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 749IUVitamin C: 72mgCalcium: 67mgIron: 4mg
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