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Parsnip & Parmesan Soup

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields 5-1/2 to 6 cups.

Servings: five to six.

Salty and savory Parmigiano Reggiano marries well with sweet parsnips, and fresh oregano pulls it all together.


  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1-1/2 lb. parsnips, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (to yield a scant 4 cups)
  • 6 oz. shallots, cut into 1/4-inch dice (to yield about 1-1/4 cups)
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped fresh oregano; plus tiny sprigs for garnish
  • 1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt; more to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper; more to taste
  • 4-1/2 cups homemade or low-salt chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1-1/2 oz. (1/2 cup) freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 2 tsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on six servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 230
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 100
  • Fat (g): 11
  • Saturated Fat (g): 6
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3
  • Cholesterol (mg): 25
  • Sodium (mg): 600
  • Carbohydrates (g): 26
  • Fiber (g): 5
  • Protein (g): 9


  • Melt the butter in a 5-quart or larger stockpot set over medium heat. While the butter is still foaming, add the parsnips and cook until lightly browned, 7 to 10 minutes (resist the urge to stir too often or they won’t brown). Stir in the shallots, garlic, chopped oregano, salt, and pepper and cook until the shallots are very limp and the entire mixture is beginning to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the broth, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits in the pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to maintain a low simmer, and cook until the parsnips are very soft, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool somewhat.
  • Purée the soup using a stand or immersion blender (you’ll need to work in batches if using a stand blender). Return the soup to the pot and stir in the Parmigiano, soy sauce, and lemon juice. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Reheat the soup and garnish each serving with an oregano sprig, if you like.


Rate or Review


  • gatsbysgirl | 12/31/2017

    I’ve made this several times and it’s always a hit. Real parmesean reggiano is key here to offset the sweetness of the parsnips. I crisp up prosciutto bits (finely minced prosciutto ends sautéed in olive oil) and sprinkle on top to serve. I use my vitamix blender to purée and it comes out so creamy no one can believe there’s no cream in it!

  • CA_HILLS | 01/02/2017

    Made this for first course for Christmas. A little on the sweeter side than I expected, but the flavors were great. I love it and in-laws liked it, but they unfortunately aren't used to the flavor of parsnip.

  • compactfish | 03/13/2010

    I've made this recipe several times, and it's one of my all-time favourite soups. Easy to make, and comes together rather quickly. Definitely do a double recipe, because this goes quickly.

  • kira | 04/06/2008

    We've been making this recipe since the issue first came out. Everyone loves it!! I always double it, and since I don't have an immersion blender I puree the vegetables with a small amount of broth and then return it all to the cooking pot.

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