I love pureeing a vegetable soup to make it creamy … no actual cream required! This is one of my go-to recipes for that. It gets extra velvetiness from white beans. Beyond the creaminess, you’ll adore the scrumptious balance of sweet and savory here. The roasting of the peppers gives it depth of flavor. And you’ll love that this soup can do double-duty; use it as a colorful (and nutrient-rich) gravy. The vivid deep-orange color is lovely!
Note: The theme for this month’s Recipe Redux is “Souper Soups on the Move.”
roasted orange bell pepper soup
Yield: 6 servings
Serving size: 1 cup
- 3 large orange or red bell peppers, cut into 4 or 5 pieces each, stems and seeds removed
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large Vidalia or other sweet onion, sliced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons white balsamic or champagne vinegar
- 1 large clove garlic, chopped
- 1 (32–fluid ounce) carton low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added cannellini or other white beans, drained
- 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme or oregano leaves, divided
- Preheat the broiler. Arrange the bell pepper pieces in a single layer, skin side up, on a baking sheet. Broil until the pepper skins are well charred, about 8 minutes. Transfer bell pepper pieces to a bowl, cover, and let stand until cool enough to handle. Rub off the charred skin.
- Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and vinegar, cover, and cook, stirring twice, until the onion is softened, about 8 minutes. Increase heat to medium high and sauté the onions uncovered until caramelized, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the bell pepper pieces, broth, beans, salt, black pepper, and 1 teaspoon of the thyme and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium low, and simmer until the bell peppers are very tender, stirring twice, about 25 minutes.
- Carefully purée the soup in batches in a blender (using the “hot fill” line as a guide) until smooth. Alternatively, blend in the saucepan using an immersion blender.
- Ladle the soup into bowls, sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon thyme, and serve.
Per serving: 190 calories, 4.5g total fat, 0.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 590mg sodium, 30g total carbohydrate, 10g dietary fiber, 7g total sugars with 0g added sugars, 8g, protein
The “Before” Version
Compare to Cream of Red Pepper Soup
- Boost natural sweetness by using sweet onions—and caramelizing them
- Add a splash of vinegar to balance flavors and add brightness
- Incorporate white beans to provide creaminess without cream