Carrot Soup for a February Night

February 21, 2012(updated on October 18, 2023)
on the way to carrot soup

I have not been doing a good job managing the contents of my refrigerator lately. Last week was Scott’s birthday, which meant that we both ate at home more lavishly than normal and also dined out several times. This break from the ordinary routine threw off the balance of edibles and resulted in aging leftovers and slimy produce.

This afternoon, I spent a little time throwing away anything that was too far gone to be salvaged and making a plan for whatever remained. After taking stock, there were six giant carrots, several onion halves and a baggie of rosemary. Soup seemed the obvious choice.

I chopped the carrots, onions and a sprig of rosemary and cooked them in a bit of butter until the onions started to brown. Then it was just a matter of covering the veg with stock (one quart ham and a pint of chicken, each made nearly a year ago and pressure canned) and simmering until tender.

After that, I used my immersion blender to smooth out the soup with a couple glugs of half and half. During the blending process, I scraped in a little fresh nutmeg and added several generous pinches of salt.

We ate it topped with some little cubes of ham that I found in the freezer and browned, and a few odd slices of toast.

One of the things I love about pureed soups is that they’re incredibly forgiving. They don’t demand perfection and are entirely willing to flex in order to absorb whatever needs to be used at the moment. In a lifetime where I constantly feel like I’m running to catch up, I appreciate a meal that adapts.

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14 thoughts on "Carrot Soup for a February Night"

  • Ann was so taken with the carrots from Winter Harvest that somehow we ended up buying a bag every week for four weeks, so we were ending up buying a lot more than we were eating. Out of desperation I put two pounds in the service of carrot soup. I’ve never considered myself a carrot fan, but I had no idea homemade carrot soup tasted that good. I used Mourad Lalou’s recipe in the New Moroccan cookbook, which has the soup poured over a citrus salad (basically just sectioned grapefruit, blood orange, orange, and lemon). He also uses carrot juice in place of stock. I’m still reeling. I think I’m going to go out and buy another four bags of carrots. And maybe part of Morocco.

  • Carrot soup is always an excellent choice! I have been making a version of one from Joy the Baker almost weekly: carrot paired with apple and ginger, with fresh nutmeg on top, like yours, and a dollop of yogurt. And then I eat it for lunch all week long. I hope you have leftovers, too! : )

  • Both the picture and the description sound absolutely delicious.

    I’m a little low on money this week, so random soup is definitely going to be appearing for dinner.

  • Just made carrot soup for dinner a couple nights ago. I guess everyone is taking inventory this time of year. I made mine a little spicier, with curry and paprika. Yum yum:

  • Making soup from your fridge and pantry inventory is the true epitome of frugality. I love it!!!! I’m usually a recipe girl, for the most part. But I’m trying to train myself to do what you suggest in this post – take what’s available and make something from it. For me, in particular, this recipe is fabulously gluten free – right up my alley. Thanks!

  • I have an abundance of carrots, and now I have carrot soup cooking in the crockpot! Thanks for such a simple, healthy recipe!

  • I just made zucchini and broccoli soup last night for dinner as we have lots of potatoes given to us from our neighbour who grows them himself. I added the potatoes to thicken the soup up.
    I’m inspired and will try carrot soup tonight.

  • I love pureed soups and I’m sure I eat them way more than I probably should. I rarely follow a recipe, usually I just roast whatever vegetable I have, caramelize some onions, and then let it all simmer away.

    Since I can’t eat it all, I always freeze a few portions. I’ve definitely overheard my roommates mumbling something about a freezer full of what looks like baby food…whatever, more soup goodness for me!

  • This is exactly the kind of soup I find most delicious at the end of winter–warming, filled with seasonal root veg, and yet tasting fresh & clean to help you believe spring is coming soon. 🙂 Yay!

  • I’ve been in eat-down-the-pantry mode lately too. There is something very satisfying about making do (better yet, making GOOD) with what you have.

  • We keep about 500 pints circulating, Chicken breast, stews, etc,

    Now looking for a good recipe for canning a lot of cream of chicken soup.

    WE do a few cases of apple sauce each season, Gala apples, rinsed, cored, simmered to just a bit soft, and pure them in a Vita Mix, steam can or boiling water can, pints, 30 minutes, no additives, just
    fruit fresh if needed. Peeling not necessary, the vita mix makes the peel completely disappear. And, good for the reduces sugar diet, none added.