When most of us think of a bowl of soup, we picture it steaming hot. It's the type of meal that exudes a certain coziness, where blankets and a fire seem like the natural next steps. But no one wants blankets and a fire during the summer, even if we still crave a hearty helping of soup. So turn down the temperature with the likes of chilled soup instead.
With the help of a high-powered blender and the height of tomato season, this dish can still be a staple of your diet during warm weather, and we found 12 cold soup recipes that will do the trick. From a spicy watermelon gazpacho, to a spin on a traditional Korean cold noodle soup recipe, a chilled potato bisque, and a cooling Mexican gazpacho with avocado and grilled shrimp; find your favorite chilled soup recipe below.
Here are the best cold soup recipes to try this week.
Chilled Potato Bisque
The Recipe: Chilled Potato Bisque
Why We Love It: Sweet Potato Soul's chilled potato bisque recipe uses butter beans (though you can use any creamy, white bean) in place of dairy, making this a good vegan-friendly option. Other ingredients to gather include potatoes, garlic, onion, bay leaf, dried thyme, and vegetable bouillon cubes.
Pro Tip: Suggestions for other white beans include cannellini, navy, or great northern beans, writes Jenné Claiborne of Sweet Potato Soul.
Green Garbanzo and Leek Soup
The Recipe: Green Garbanzo and Leek Soup
Why We Love It: This chilled soup from Love & Lemons may have a beautiful shade of green, but its ingredients are what really caught our eye. Leeks, shallots, and garlic cloves mix with splashes of honey and Champagne vinegar to make for a dish that tastes as decadent as it looks.
Pro Tip: "It's important to add the herbs when cooled, you don't want to cook them in this soup," Jeanine Donofrio of Love & Lemons, says. "They'll be more vibrant here if they're pureed in their raw form."
Cold Shirataki Noodle Soup
The Recipe: Cold Shirataki Noodle Soup
Why We Love It: When it's too hot for a steamy bowl of noodles, we can still get our fix with Pickled Plum's cold noodle soup recipe. This version of a traditional Korean cold noodle soup, called naengmyeon, is made with yam flour-based shirataki noodles (instead of sweet potato noodles), and cold vegetable broth (versus cold beef broth and beef briskets). Toppings include Asian pear and cucumber slices, and a drizzle of white wine vinegar.
Pro Tip: Pickled Plum also adds chopped kimchi as a topping, and further suggests sesame seeds and scallions to finish, as an option.
The Recipe: No-Cook Gazpacho
Why We Love It: In the summer, standing in front of a hot stove making soup is the last thing we want to do for dinner. That's why this no-cook gazpacho from Foodie Crush is such a good idea. Mix tomato juice with garlic, celery, cucumbers, and a bunch of other fresh veggies, and that's it—dinner is served.
Pro Tip: "Classic gazpacho can run the gamut from smooth-as-silk-where's-the-straw to bring-on-the-chips-and-pass-the-tequila-let's-eat-chunky-salsa," Heidi from Foodie Crush, says. "I prefer mine well blended but with a bite, with just enough chunk to make me feel like I'm eating something instead of sipping."
Chilled Corn and Crab Soup
The Recipe: Chilled Corn and Crab Soup
Why We Love It: We're returning to Foodie Crush to showcase this recipe, which cooks corn in almond milk before adding it to fresh snow crab and avocado slices. Heidi tops it all with cilantro, but she also recommends dill, parsley, and basil. Whip this recipe up in 30 minutes.
Pro Tip: "I like to add my crab to the top of the soup rather than mixing it in for presentation, and so it doesn't get too muddled within the soup," she says.
Spicy Watermelon Gazpacho
The Recipe: Spicy Watermelon Gazpacho
Why We Love It: Serrano chiles raise our internal temperature and help us tolerate the heat when it's sweltering out. To make The Blender Girl's gazpacho recipe, reprinted in Salt & Wind, blend watermelon, then add chiles, lime, basil, mint, ginger, cucumber.
Pro Tip: Cover and chill in the fridge for 12–24 hours before serving so all of the flavors infuse.
Mexican Gazpacho With Avocado and Grilled Shrimp
The Recipe: Mexican Gazpacho With Avocado and Grilled Shrimp
Why We Love It: We love soup, though it's usually not very filling as a main dish. Thankfully, Hola Jalapeño's recipe calls for grilled shrimp, which is a great source of lean protein. Tomato, cilantro, poblano pepper, and cucumber make up the soup's base.
Pro Tip: Make sure to have sumac on hand to help season the shrimp. And keep an eye on the grill; shrimp cooks up quickly, so you won't need more than 2 minutes per side.
Cucumber Gazpacho With Avocado and Greek Yogurt
The Recipe: Cucumber Gazpacho With Avocado and Greek Yogurt
Why We Love It: Greek yogurt helps make Le Petit Eats's gazpacho recipe thick and creamy, along with avocado. Cucumber keeps things refreshing, and Champagne vinegar and lime add tang and zest.
Pro Tip: For super smooth texture, Le Petit Eats likes to remove seeds from the cucumbers before blending.
Golden Beet Gazpacho
The Recipe: Golden Beet Gazpacho
We We Love It: Aside from its vibrant hue, Le Petit Eats's gazpacho recipe takes only 10 minutes of hands on time. Golden beets replace tomatoes, and are combined with garlic, shallot, vinegar, citrus, and cucumber.
Pro Tip: Top with suggestions from avocado to hemp seeds, shaved Chioggia beets, microgreens, and a drizzle of olive oil.
Strawberry and Tomato Gazpacho
The Recipe: Strawberry and Tomato Gazpacho
Why We Love It: Spoon Fork Bacon's gazpacho recipe is a go-to when you're hankering for something light and savory to cool off. You'll need strawberries, tomatoes, cucumber, mint, lime, and honey. Blend well.
Pro Tip: To garnish, goat cheese crumbles add a pop of tang, as does lime zest. Add a whirl of cracked black pepper to finish.
Chilled Cucumber Avocado Raita Soup
The Recipe: Chilled Cucumber Avocado Raita Soup
Why We Love It: The sensations when enjoying Salt & Wind's raita recipe ("spicy, cool, sweet"), inspired by a trip to India, are enough to make this chilled soup ASAP. Avocado adds a California twist to an ingredient list that includes cucumber, plain yogurt, coriander, garlic, mint, and more.
Pro Tip: This recipe will hold if pre-made up to 2 days ahead.
Chilled Cucumber Melon Soup
The Recipe: Chilled Cucumber Melon Soup
Why We Love It: Feasting at Home's simple chilled soup is subtly sweet and wholly refreshing. To make it, just blend chopped cucumber and cantaloupe with yogurt (for richness), mint, cilantro, jalapeño, and ginger. Salt and pepper to taste.
Pro Tip: "I like to serve it in small cups perfect for sipping no spoons required," writes Feasting at Home. As an appetizer, pair this soup "with grilled shrimp, also as a side to fish tacos, and just on its own as a light snack especially on those days when it is too hot to even think about cooking."