Velvety smooth Zucchini Basil Soup is a healthy and delicious vegan & gluten free soup that’s simple to make, flavorful, and uses lots of fresh summer zucchini. It’s the perfect light summer meal.
I first posted this recipe back in 2010 when I talked all about where my inspiration for recipes comes from. I’ve always thought this was a great way to use some fresh local produce, especially when your garden overflows with zucchini.
Remaking this soup was great, and even my non-zucchini-loving husband thought this soup was delicious! And I love how creamy it is without any cream.
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Please let me know if you have any questions about this recipe. I read all the comments myself and I try to help as soon as I can. I have readers from all levels of comfort and experience in the kitchen on my site, and I’ve tried to answer some of your questions already in the post. But if I’ve missed anything, please feel free to leave a comment and ask.
Do you have lots of zucchini in your garden this year? If the answer’s yes, then you’re probably looking for great ways to use it up.
Well, this lusciously creamy summer zucchini soup is a great way to use up summer’s squash bounty.
Most cooks treat zucchini like a vegetable, and cook it before eating it, but technically zucchini is a fruit and can be eaten raw.
Can it be made ahead?
Absolutely, it can be made ahead. Just keep it in a tightly covered container in the fridge.
In fact, I love to serve it cold from the fridge, or let it come up to room temperature and serve it. It’s the perfect cold soup on a hot summer’s day, and perfect if you’re looking for summer soup ideas.
If you want to heat it back up, pop it in the microwave or back onto the stove top until it’s the desired temperature.
Also, one of my favorite tips for using up leftover soup like this is to use it as a pasta sauce. Simply pour it over cooked ravioli, tortellini, or plain cooked pasta. Maybe toss in some steamed or roasted veggies like asparagus, broccoli, or snap peas, and you have a great dinner!
Can I freeze it?
Yes, this soup freezes very well. Make sure to cool it completely, then package it in containers with tight fitting lids. When you’re ready to eat it, pop it in the fridge overnight so it can defrost. Then enjoy as you’d like, hot or cold.
Can I change up this recipe?
This is a nice simple recipe with little need for embellishment. But, yes, you change it up.
Add in some fresh spicy peppers from the garden for a little kick. Try half a fresh jalapeno or serrano chile pepper sauteed with the onion for a nice spicy addition.
Keep it vegan, or dollop on some sour cream or plain Greek yogurt. Or, top it with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Add some crunch with croutons or cheese crisps.
Squeeze a bit of lemon or lime in at the end for a nice tangy zing.
No basil in your garden? Try using dill or mint for a little twist.
When I originally posted this recipe, which was adapted from Gourmet, it was because someone asked me where I come up with some of my ideas; where the creativity comes from. This got me to thinking that maybe I should post my response. And, although most of the time I usually focus on the recipe now, and less on me, I still thought it might be cool to share some highlights of my response.
I have to say that a lot of what I cook has to do with conservation – I don’t want to waste food or money. And, this gives me a chance to exercise my creativity.
I buy seasonal locally grown foods. I grow some of my own fruits and veggies, and my neighbors & friends have been sharing produce. (And, I have to say that a home-grown tomato is so much better than a waxy tasteless store bought one).
I like to make good use of the foods, preserving where needed. Sometimes a little creativity is all that’s needed to come up with something new.
Food blogs are also a great resource. The Joy of Cooking is my favorite cookbook. I ask myself how I can use that ingredient in a tasty healthy way that’s a little different.
I’ve had lots of zucchini lately – both from my garden and from the neighbor’s garden. We’ve had our share of zucchini sautéed as a side dish or thrown into a pasta dish. But I could hollow out the zucchini, stuff it with bread crumbs, onions, some veggies, and herbs, and bake it in the oven.
I’ve been reading about how much food we waste, and here are some facts of waste. It’s a sobering thought. According to an article on Change.org, “reports have estimated food waste in the U.S. to be anywhere from 25 to 50 percent of all the food produced for domestic use and consumption. The average family tosses out 14 percent of food purchased, or an estimated $600 per year.”
In addition, when we throw food in the trashcan, the food goes into landfills, and it rots, emitting tons of methane, a greenhouse gas about 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide. The resources that went into producing, shipping, and storing that food are also wasted, including water and fossil fuels. Here’s a link 10 Ways to Reduce Waste.
But, I digress, and back to the basil zucchini soup recipe!
With just 5 ingredients, plus salt and water, this soup comes together in a snap! It’s fresh and delicious. Scroll down for the recipe card with detailed instructions and amounts.
Cook the chopped onions in the oil, then add in the salt and garlic. Cook another 5 minutes, then add in the zucchini.
You’ll probably need to blend the soup in two batches. And, be careful when blending hot liquids, as they can spill out and burn you.
I also recommend blending the soup until smooth, then tossing in the basil so that it doesn’t get too hot from the heat of the blender. Basil can bruise easily and lose both its color and fresh flavor if bruised.
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Zucchini Basil Soup Recipe
Summer Zucchini Garden Soup
- High powered blender
- Heat oil in 3 to 4-quart heavy saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and browned, about 5 minutes. Add salt and garlic and cook an additional 5 minutes.
- Add chopped zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Add water and simmer, partially covered, until tender, about 15 minutes. Purée soup in 2 batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids). Add the basil into the blender with the last batch of soup, and quickly blend the basil.
- Season soup with additional salt and pepper. Garnish with basil leaves or basil flowers.
- Soup can be served hot or cold.