Green Cauliflower Soup with Fried Shallots


It’s hard to resist rainbow colored cauliflower. If I have the choice between bland white and electric green, orange, or purple, I’m going for the colors every time. This green cauliflower tastes exactly the same as the original, but because of the color it does have the edge on nutrition. I think it makes a more interesting soup. You know what else makes this soup interesting? The crispy fried shallots. They’re like mini onion rings. Load them on, and you’ll be happy.


This recipe includes leeks for their oniony flavor and a potato for extra creamy texture. Fresh parsley and sage give it a gentle herby note. Make it vegetarian, vegan, or not. I will admit that I think it needs the extra flavor boost from the chicken stock, butter, and Parmesan. But you can definitely make this without. Like I said, the crispy shallots make a huge difference, even if you’re not exactly the healthy soup type.


2.75 from 8 votes

Green Cauliflower Soup with Fried Shallots

Author Sue Moran


  • 3 leeks cleaned and sliced
  • 2 large shallots peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp butter or substitute more olive oil
  • 1 medium green cauliflower core removed and florets roughly chopped (about 1 lb after trimming)
  • 1 medium russet potato peeled and chopped
  • 3 cups chicken stock or water
  • fresh sage about 6 large leaves (you can use 1 tsp dried)
  • handful of fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt
  • freshly ground white pepper

for the fried shallots

  • 2 -3 large shallots
  • sprinkle of flour leave out for gluten free
  • salt and pepper


  • Heat the butter and olive oil in a heavy soup pot. Saute the leek, shallot and garlic for about 5 minutes until softened.
  • Add the potato and cauliflower florets. Cover the pot and braise over low heat for 20-30 minutes until the vegetables are almost tender. Stir occasionally and be careful not to brown them. Add a splash of water if necessary.
  • Add the stock or water, sage leaves, 1 tsp of salt, and 1 tsp of white pepper and bring up to a simmer. Simmer until everything is completely soft, about 5 minutes or so.
  • Working in batches, transfer the soup to a food processor or blender and puree. You can also use an immersion blender. Add the fresh parsley at this point and puree with the soup.
  • Return to the stove and add the cheese. Reheat and taste. It will probably need more salt and pepper. If the soup is too thick, add a little water.
  • Serve hot topped with fried shallots.
  • To make the fried shallots, peel the shallots and slice them into thin rings. Gently separate the rings. Toss them in a little flour, salt and pepper. Shake off the excess.
  • Coat the bottom of a saute pan with a generous amount of olive oil and heat over medium high heat till hot. Working in batches, drop the shallots into the hot oil and let them sizzle and brown, stirring and turning often. Don't crowd the pan, or the shallots won't crisp. They are done when they are browned and crispy, about 2 minutes or so. Remove them to a paper towel. Adjust your heat so they brown but don't burn.

Cook's notes

Rainbow cauliflower is widely available in grocery stores, and of course farmer's markets. It comes in green, orange, and purple.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

Colored cauliflower doesn’t lose its color when cooked, and depending on your particular cauliflower, your soup will range from pale to brighter green. This is a healthy, mildly flavored, comforting soup. I think it goes well with biscuits, and we had ours with these.


Here’s a few other tempting cauliflower soups to try, from creamy to spiced up, from classic to creative,  and even a couple of slow cooker recipes…

Broccoli and Cauliflower Soup/ Mountain Mama Cooks

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheddar Soup/ two peas & their pod

Copy-Cat Zupas Wisconsin Cauliflower Soup /Chef in Training

Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Spicy Peanut Butter Crème / An Edible Mosaic

Creamy Cauliflower Soup with Leeks and Thyme / Barefeet in the Kitchen

Roasted Cauliflower Soup / The Roasted Root

Slow Cooker Cheesy Cauliflower Soup / 365 Days of Slow Cooking

Slow Cooker Cauliflower and Mushroom Soup / Eat Boutique

Cream of Cauliflower Soup / Cooking with Books

Creamy Cauliflower Soup with Asiago Croutons / I wash You Dry

Tomato and Basil Cauliflower Soup / I Heart Nap Time

Cauliflower Soup with Piri Piri Shrimp / Healthy. Delicious.

Sage and Gorgonzola Cauliflower Soup / Cookin’ Canuck

Cauliflower Soup with Dried Mint and Pine Nuts / The Lemon Bowl

Roasted Cauliflower and Cheddar Cheese Soup / Naturally Ella

Cauliflower Soup / Saving Room for Dessert

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  • Reply
    November 12, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    I haven’t seen colored cauliflower for some time. I adore cauliflower soup, and I like that this has leeks in it. I love fried shallots. This looks like a bowl of perfection.

  • Reply
    Magnolia Verandah
    November 12, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Yes they look very attractive I wonder how they grow them – do they add chemicals to the soil?

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 5:54 pm

      They’ve been developed using traditional selective breeding, and the pigments are natural, like the orange is beta carotene, etc.

  • Reply
    Kitchen Belleicious
    November 12, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    what a great idea to use green cauliflower! Boy oh boy it looks amazing and love the addition of the fried shallots. Im always up for extra crispiness!

  • Reply
    November 12, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Your soup looks sensational! I rarely see green, or colorful, cauliflower and did wonder if they taste the same. I love the color of your soup and I bet it tastes even better. I love fried shallots on my noodle soups – what a great idea and delicious touch you added.

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      Thanks Monica. I do think the colored veggies are getting more common, as farmers are starting to grow them more. Pretty soon they’ll be available everywhere. It’s nice to know that the colors aren’t just decorative, but actually have some little bit of extra nutrients, too.

  • Reply
    November 12, 2013 at 11:07 am

    The purple is the one that seems to hold true color that I’ve tried. It’s so much fun to use!

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      That’s interesting, because purple potatoes so often fade out when they’re cooked.

  • Reply
    November 12, 2013 at 10:31 am

    Your photos are always gorgeous. I love your bowls, too. You have the mosy interesting assortment of dishes, utensils, platters.. glasses.. cups.. etc.
    You have a great eye to complement whatever you are dishing up with a feast for the eyes first.
    Always a lovely view.
    I’d love a bowl of that soup… and maybe that bowl more! 😉

  • Reply
    The Café Sucre Farine
    November 12, 2013 at 9:55 am

    I just roasted a green cauliflower. It is much more fun in color! Love your soup, it looks wonderful and those crispy shallots look like the perfect finishing touch! Wish I had a bowl for lunch…….. sad. Love your pretty bowl too!

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 10:00 am

      Those crispy shallots will definitely be making repeat appearances around here…

  • Reply
    Tricia @ Saving room for dessert
    November 12, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I think you’re right Sue – it is more interesting and absolutely beautiful. Your photos are stunning – and the crispy shallots – yum, yum, yum. Beautiful soup!

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 10:01 am

      Thanks Tricia, the soup came out a little paler than I was hoping, because the green doesn’t penetrate completely through the cauliflower, or at least not in mine. I think they’re all a little different.

  • Reply
    [email protected] is How I Cook
    November 12, 2013 at 9:36 am

    I’m with you. I love buying the widely colored veggies-they are so much more fun!

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 10:03 am

      The only ones I’ve been a little disappointed in are the rainbow carrots, they don’t seem to have as good flavor as regular carrots.

  • Reply
    November 12, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Absolutely lovely! I always flirt with the different colors of cauliflowers, but never brought one home to play… 🙂

    (btw just wrote a post about a recipe from your site, the pomegranate lime chicken thighs – will be published on Saturday, with full credit to you…)

    • Reply
      November 12, 2013 at 10:04 am

      Thanks Sally—wasn’t that chicken incredible? I can’t wait to see your post.

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