Easy to make and a hit with the whole family, this cream of potato soup is decadent, delicious, and is so much better than the canned stuff! Perfect for a quick comfort on a cold winter’s night, this is one of those soups that everyone should know how to make.
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Cream of Potato Soup
Potato soup is one of those winter mainstay soups that everyone needs to have handy in their repertoire on a cold day.
Incredibly simple and made of basically nothing but potatoes, cream, and stock, a good cream of potato soup should feel like it was made by your loving grandmother, even if it seems really simple and easy to make.
This recipe should definitely be considered a great base for adding your own flavorings and seasonings, or you can just make it as is and enjoy its rich, nourishing, and comforting flavors.
Does It Matter What Potatoes You Use For This Recipe?
Potato soup is, as the name would imply, all about the potato, so it stands to reason that what kind of potato you choose to use will significantly impact the flavor and texture of your soup.
While most people might just buy any old potato and consider it good enough, there is actually a significant difference between different types of potatoes.
The best option for this recipe would definitely be a Russet potato, which is considered a starchy potato.
Starchy potatoes have plenty of free starch inside of their flesh, which not only allows them to break up easily into the soup but also helps to thicken the entire soup and give it a luxuriant texture.
Other types of potato might be considered to be waxy, and these varieties don’t really have a lot of starch, and they can actually turn really gluey when overcooked.
So, while you could certainly sub the Russets out for another type of potato if you really needed to, it would be best to stick to the standard Russets, as they are considered the industry standard for a reason!
How Could You Season Your Soup To Your Own Tastes?
The great thing about any soup recipe is that, ultimately, the flavors and seasonings given are always going to be to taste and easily changeable.
This recipe calls for the use of dried tarragon and a little bit of dried basil, which is a combination that works really well with rich, hearty dishes like this potato soup.
However, not everyone is a huge fan of tarragon, so you could easily sub in something else instead.
A great alternative might be to use a bit of smoked paprika and even a little mustard powder instead.
This would give everything a really smoky flavor, as well as darkening its color a bit.
Or you could try flavoring it with some herbs instead, like rosemary and thyme, so as to make an entirely different set of flavors!
What Could You Use Instead Of Heavy Cream?
Heavy cream is the standard enriching dairy ingredient in most soups, and for good reason.
Not only is it a great way to add a good amount of fat to your soup, but it is also thick enough to thicken the whole soup on its own.
If you were looking to cut calories, you could try subbing in some single cream, sometimes called “low-fat cream,” instead, but you would definitely be affecting the flavor of the soup pretty significantly.
You could also use something like whole-fat milk, which, despite its name, is a lot lower in fat than regular heavy cream.
However, if you are looking for your soup to taste as delicious as possible, the right move is to make sure to use the fattiest and tastiest ingredients possible, so don’t skimp on the heavy cream.
For non-dairy alternatives, you could certainly use things like almond or soy milk, so long as you don’t use so much that it changes the base flavor of the soup.
To help make up for the missing fat, you could add in a bit of your favorite fat of choice, whether that be butter, vegetable oil, or even a little bit of vegetable shortening to help thicken the whole soup and give it that fatty, rich base that it really needs.
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Cream of Potato Soup
- Prep Time
- 15 minutes
- Cook Time
- 45 minutes
- Karlynn Johnston
- 1 pound bacon (diced small)
- 1½ cups diced celery
- 1 medium white onion (chopped)
- 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
- 8 medium Russet potatoes (peeled and cubed)
- 5-6 cups chicken stock
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Place the sliced bacon in a Dutch oven and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, 5 to 10 minutes. Drain bacon pieces on paper towels. Drain off all but 1/4 cup of the bacon grease.
- Saute the celery and onions in the reserved bacon drippings until the onion is soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic, and continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes until the garlic has browned and is fragrant.
- Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables, stirring and sauteeing until the flour has browned and smells nutty.
- Return the cooked bacon to the pot and add in the potatoes. Pour in enough chicken stock to cover the potatoes. Stir in the tarragon and the basil.
- Cover and simmer on low heat until the potatoes are tender and falling apart, around 40-45 minutes.
- Whisk in the heavy cream. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup for a few seconds, until thicker. If desired, puree the entire soup, or just enough to thicken the soup. You can also remove 2 cups of the soup and puree it in a blender, then return to the soup.
All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.