This cauliflower soup is boldly flavored with warming Mediterranean spices like cumin, turmeric, and paprika. Made with whole milk, it’s nice and creamy but not heavy. Make this light, fresh, and flavorful take on roasted cauliflower soup for a cozy night in. 

a close up of roasted cauliflower soup in a bowl with a spoon garnished with dill.
Photo Credits: Suzy Karadsheh

Cauliflower takes on flavor and texture like a champ, which makes it the ideal vegetable for pairing with big flavors. Why waste an opportunity to throw a flavor party?

For my vegetarian cauliflower soup recipe, I first roast the florets in the oven, which carmelizes the edges to bring out some of its natural sweetness. Next, I add cumin for warmth, paprika for a mild kick, sumac for citrusy balance, and turmeric for an earthy, peppery undertone. Typical cauliflower soup is often loaded with heavy cream, which I don’t think it needs. Whole milk adds enough creaminess without dulling the flavor.

While, roasted cauliflower soup is one of my favorite recipes to make when the weather turns, this sturdy vegetable is also incredible when roasted whole for a vegetarian centerpiece or cut into cauliflower steaks and topped with Chermoula.

Don’t forget the finishing touches! This might sound surprising, but a splash of lemon juice and a handful of fresh dill bring balance and brightness, which makes this soup that much more exciting.

Table of Contents
  1. Ingredients for this Roasted Cauliflower Soup Recipe
  2. How to Make Cauliflower Soup
  3. How to Store and Reheat Leftover Soup
  4. Can You Freeze Cauliflower Soup?
  5. What to Serve with Cauliflower Soup
  6. You'll Also Like: Creamy Vegetarian Soup Recipes
  7. Roasted Cauliflower Soup Recipe
    1. *This post was updated with new information for readers' benefit.
ingredients for cauliflower soup including cauliflower, broth, onion, garlic, cumin, sweet paprika, sumac, turmeric, milk, lemon, olive oil and dill.


Ingredients for this Roasted Cauliflower Soup Recipe

Cauliflower can take a lot of seasonings and spices to really shine. Warming spices and fresh aromatics give it a nice warming kick and super savory, comforting flavor. Here’s what you’ll need to make this cauliflower soup recipe: 

  • Cauliflower: Look for firm, tight cauliflower heads with no browning. 
  • Extra virgin olive oil: I like a medium-intensity oil here, like our Private Reserve Greek extra virgin olive oil. Drizzle some over top of each bowl for extra richness.
  • Aromatics: One yellow onion and five garlic cloves give this soup a sweet and savory depth of flavor. You can substitute the onion with white onion or 3 shallots if you’d like. 
  • Spices: Basic pantry spices of Spanish paprika, cumin, and turmeric bring a comforting savory flavor. Sumac gives some tartness for balance–you can learn all about this Mediterranean wonder spice in our guide, order online, or substitute with a grating of lemon zest just before serving.
  • Broth: A low-sodium vegetable broth brings a nice umami flavor, or you can substitute with store bought or homemade chicken stock
  • Whole milk: Milk is a lighter option than heavy cream, and it makes the soup perfectly creamy without overpowering the spices. You can also leave it out to make this soup vegan, or replace it with an unflavored, unsweetened plant-based milk.
  • Lemon juice: Lifts the hearty, creamy soup. 
  • Fresh dill: Gives the soup a fresh herbal element. You can substitute with any tender savory herb, like chive or parsley.
a close up of roasted cauliflower soup in a bowl garnished with dill.


How to Make Cauliflower Soup

This roasted cauliflower soup is a beloved family meal for a reason: It’s easy to make, feeds a crowd and is on the healthy side. Here are the steps:

  • Get ready. Preheat your oven to 425°F. Cut 2 cauliflower heads in half from top to bottom through the stem. Use the tip of your knife to slice off each individual floret, discarding the stem. Slice any larger florets into smaller pieces so all of them are about the same size. 
  • Season the cauliflower. Transfer the cauliflower to a large sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle generously with olive oil. Toss to coat, then spread evenly without overlapping–use two sheet pans if you need to. 
  • Roast the cauliflower. Roast, turning at about 25 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and deeply browned in some parts, about 45 minutes in total. Remove from the oven. pieces of roasted cauliflower spread out on a sheet pan.
  • Prepare the aromatics. While the cauliflower roasts, chop 1 onion and 5 garlic cloves. 
  • Sauté the onions. In a large heavy pot or Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium until shimmering but not smoking. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic, 2 teaspoons cumin, 2 ½ teaspoons sweet paprika, 1 teaspoon sumac, and ¼ teaspoon turmeric. Stir just until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Simmer. Add ¾ of the cauliflower (reserve the remaining for later). Stir to coat well with the spices, then add 4 cups of broth and 1 cup of water. Turn the heat to high to bring to a boil, then lower heat to medium and cover part-way. Simmer until thickened slightly, 5 to 7 minutes. While it boils, prepare 1 cup of chopped dill, discarding any tougher stems.onions and roasted cauliflower being sauteed in a pot.
  • Blend. Uncover and remove from heat momentarily. Use an immersion blender to blend until you achieve your desired smoothness–I keep mine a bit on the chunky side. You can also transfer to a blender or food processor, just be sure to leave plenty of room at the top and blend with the steam cap off. 
  • Finish and serve. Return to a medium heat and stir in 2 cups milk, the juice from ½ lemon, and reserved cauliflower. Cook briefly so that the soup is all warmed through. Test and adjust salt as needed. Finally, stir in the dill and serve hot. close up of a pot of roasted cauliflower soup.


How to Store and Reheat Leftover Soup

If you have leftovers, let the roasted cauliflower soup cool completely, then store covered in your fridge for 3 to 4 days. To reheat, warm in a saucepan set over medium heat, stirring often. Take care not to let it come to a boil, and add a splash more water or broth to thin as necessary.

a close up of roasted cauliflower soup in a bowl with a spoon garnished with dill.


Can You Freeze Cauliflower Soup?

Yes, with a caveat: Soups that contain milk or cream tend to develop an unappetizing grainy texture and separate when defrosted. If you plan to prepare this soup ahead of time and freeze:

  • Don’t add the milk. Allow to cool completely, then transfer to a freezer-safe container with some room at the top to allow for expansion. 
  • Label the soup. Write “Add Milk” along with the date on a piece of tape and stick it to the lid. Freeze for up to 2 months.
  • Defrost, finish, and enjoy. Defrost in your refrigerator overnight, then heat over medium, stirring often until the soup is hot. Add the milk and stir until warmed through, then enjoy hot. 


What to Serve with Cauliflower Soup

This cauliflower soup is hearty enough to stand on its own, you really need nothing more. If you’d like some sides, go with a classic soup and salad combination with bread for dipping.

For my family, nothing is better than some crisp-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside focaccia bread or a rustic crusty bread. I sometimes add a salad like my orange beet salad or lemony arugula salad.

You'll Also Like: Creamy Vegetarian Soup Recipes

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4.90 from 134 votes

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Suzy Karadsheh of The Mediterranean Dish. In the kitchenSuzy Karadsheh
a close up of roasted cauliflower soup in a bowl with a spoon garnished with dill.
This cauliflower soup is boldly flavored with Mediterranean spices that bring a nice warmth and vibrant depth of flavor. Made with whole milk, it’s nice and creamy but not overly heavy. Make this light, fresh, and flavorful take on cream of cauliflower soup for a cozy night in.
Prep – 15 minutes
Cook – 1 hour
Total – 1 hour 15 minutes
Cuisine:
Mediterranean
Serves – 6
Course:
Soup

Ingredients
  

  • 2 heads of cauliflower (about 4 pounds)
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 ½ teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground sumac
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 32 ounces (4 cups) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cups whole milk or unseasoned, unsweetened plant-based milk of choice
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 cup chopped fresh dill

Instructions
 

  • Get ready. Preheat your oven to 425°F. Cut the cauliflower in half from top to bottom through the stem, then use the tip of your knife to slice off each individual floret. Slice any larger florets into smaller pieces so all of them are about the same size.
  • Season the cauliflower. Transfer the cauliflower to a large sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle generously with olive oil. Toss to coat, then spread evenly without overlapping–use two sheet pans if you need to.
  • Roast the cauliflower. Roast, turning at about 25 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and deeply browned in some parts, about 45 minutes in total. Remove from the oven.
  • Sauté the onions. In a large heavy pot or Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium until shimmering but not smoking. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, paprika, sumac, and turmeric and and stir just until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Simmer. Add ¾ of the cauliflower (reserve the remaining for later). Stir to coat well with the spices, then add the broth and 1 cup of water. Turn the heat to high to bring to a boil, then lower heat to medium and cover part-way. Simmer until thickened slightly, 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Blend. Uncover and remove from heat momentarily. Use an immersion blender to blend until you achieve your desired smoothness–I keep mine a bit on the chunky side. You can also transfer to a blender or food processor, just be sure to leave plenty of room at the top and blend with the steam cap off.
  • Finish and serve. Return to a medium heat and stir in the milk, lemon juice, and reserved cauliflower. Cook briefly so that the soup is all warmed through. Test and adjust salt as needed. Finally, stir in the dill and serve hot.

Video

Notes

  • Store, covered in your refrigerator, for up to 4 days. Reheat over medium, stirring constantly and adding a splash more water or broth as necessary. Be careful not to let the soup come to a boil or the milk may separate. 
  • If you’d like to freeze this soup, do not add milk. Allow to cool completely before transferring it to freezer safe containers, leaving some room at the top. Cover and label with the date and an “Add Milk” note to self. Freeze for up to 2 months. Allow to defrost in your refrigerator overnight, then reheat over medium and stir in the milk once the soup is hot. 
  • Visit our shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including olive oils, honey, jams, and spices.

Nutrition

Calories: 126.6kcalCarbohydrates: 19.4gProtein: 7.9gFat: 3.5gSaturated Fat: 1.8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.8gCholesterol: 9.8mgSodium: 96.1mgPotassium: 826.6mgFiber: 5.4gSugar: 9.2gVitamin A: 1156.1IUVitamin C: 102.7mgCalcium: 175.7mgIron: 2.1mg
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*This post was updated with new information for readers' benefit.

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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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4.90 from 134 votes (63 ratings without comment)

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Comments

  1. Amber says:

    Hi could we put another vegetable like zucchini in here instead of another head of cauliflower?

    1. Suzy says:

      I haven't tried that, Amber. It could work. But this being a cream of cauliflower soup, for us we usually load up on the cauliflower here.

  2. Cat says:

    Recipe Ingredients say lemon, but recipe says lime. Which should it be?

    1. Suzy says:

      Either will work here, Cat

  3. Lisa says:

    That looks delicious!

  4. Arti says:

    Hi, I made this soup,but it’s lacking in something— may be lemon/ lime juice?
    Also,I did not add 1/2& 1/2,just regular milk.
    I made a big batch & froze 1/2..
    Wondering how I can make it as yummy as it looks or sounds.
    I would like to serve again Thursday.
    Any suggestions?
    Thanks

    1. Suzy says:

      Hi, Arti! We enjoy this recipe as it's written, so it's a bit hard to advise here. You could always up the seasonings here to suit your taste.

  5. Noelle Tom-Wigfield says:

    Hello! I am interested in making this recipe and have one very large cauliflower - it is 4 lbs. Would that be equivalent to the two heads you use for this recipe? I'm trying to figure out if I need to double anything or alter the recipe in any way.

    Thanks!!
    Noelle

    1. Suzy says:

      The average cauliflower weighs about 2 pounds, so I think what you have will likely work. Enjoy

  6. Molly says:

    5 stars
    Mashallah! I made this for iftar tonight and now my husband can't decide whether this soup or your salmon soup is his favorite!

    We try at least one of your recipes each new week and they never fail to impress! You are so articulate in your recipes and they are designed to follow with ease. The thorough explanations on why certain steps are crucial help boost cooking skills around the globe. Truly a culinary wonder! God Bless!

    1. Suzy says:

      You are so sweet, Molly! Thanks for your kind words!!

  7. B.Scott says:

    5 stars
    Wonderful .. I am at the splash of jalapeño lime balsamic vinegar and it really gave it a different taste. Being that I didn’t have the lemon or lime.

    1. Suzy says:

      That does sound good! Thanks for sharing!!

  8. B.Scitt says:

    In the ingredients you have lemon juice but when making the soup it says add the lime juice.. just saying.?

    1. Suzy says:

      Either will work!

  9. Jennifer says:

    What is “fat free half and half”. Wouldn’t that be skim milk?

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      There is a fat free half and half out there just next to "half and half." However, you can use cream or half and half for this recipe.

  10. Heidi says:

    5 stars
    This was wonderful! The flavor was delightful and with the dill, lime and lemon zest they added a fresh zing! My daughter even liked it and she does not eat cauliflower by itself. This was a success!! Thank you!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Thanks so much, Heidi! This is one of my personal favorites, so glad you enjoyed it.

  11. Karen says:

    5 stars
    This was lovely. I had to make modifications according to what I had on hand which was one cauliflower and a half of a sweet potato. Subbed the zest from the 1/2 lemon for the sumac. A definite keeper. Thank you.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Wonderful, Karen! Thanks so much for sharing.

    2. Karen says:

      5 stars
      I have to comment again that this is my all time favourite soup. Ive made it so many times and finally got some sumac from the bulk food store store. I also love to add any ripe veggies that have come to the end of their days to the roasting pan along with the cauliflower. I love to ad a Tbsp. of natural honey right at the end. SO GOOD and Thank You!!!

  12. Sherrie L Mitchell says:

    Delicious and warming on a cold rainy day

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Wonderful! Thanks for trying it

  13. Kerri says:

    This was a great recipe! I did make a few changes...used homemade chicken bone broth, added a head of roasted garlic in addition to the 5 cloves of minced garlic, used a shallot instead of onion, added about 1 cup of diced button mushrooms. We topped it with toasted wheat crostini and roasted pepitas. Definitely making this again! The roasting of the cauliflower until carmelized along with the spices was what made this soup!

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Thanks for sharing your tasty variation on this, Kerri!

  14. Caitlee says:

    5 stars
    I just made this (using lemon in place of lime juice, and lemon pepper in place of sumac) and OMG!! I want to put it in a thermos and drink it like tea every day. So delicious. I love cauliflower, and this was a great opportunity to use it. Thanks for the recipe!

  15. marti says:

    hi suzy
    i love your recipes, and your receptivity to my trying to stay vegan - thanks
    i'm confuzzled and have a question about your recipe for 'cream of cauliflower soup'
    in your ingredient list you indicate juice of 1/2 a LEMON
    in your instructions on step 7 you tell us to add the LIME juice
    so which would you suggest?
    again, thanks for all

  16. Michelle says:

    Can I make this with frozen cauliflower? If so should I boil it first or just let it thaw?
    Love your blog, have made many of your recipes and my husband and I love them every time.

    1. Suzy Karadsheh says:

      Hi Michelle, if at all possible, use fresh cauliflower for this recipe. Frozen cauliflower is typically blanched before it's frozen, so it tends to have a softer texture.