Soup Recipes That Are Perfect for Summer

You may have reserved all of your best soup recipes for the winter, but it’s still summer — the sun is shining, the days are longer, and nothing’s better than a meal that’s cold and refreshing. If chicken noodle and tomato bisque are the first soups that come to mind, then it’s time to rethink all that soup can be. Using fresh ingredients, herbs, and plenty of veggies, you can make a delicious summer soup that’ll cool you off on the hottest of days — and they can get a lot more interesting than your basic gazpacho, too. Here are five great summer soup recipes for a delicious and satisfying meal.

1. Watermelon Gazpacho

A refreshing fruit summer soup

A refreshing fruit summer soup | iStock.com

This twist on a classic requires watermelon as a main ingredient for a fruity and delicious summer soup. Combined with the watermelon are tangy flavors like red wine vinegar and a sharp saltiness from the feta. Your taste buds won’t know where to turn next with Food Network’s watermelon gazpacho.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large puréed tomato
  • ½ serrano chile
  • 2 cups of cubed fresh watermelon
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced red onion
  • ½ seeded and diced cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh dill, more for garnish as needed
  • ¼ cup of feta cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: Purée the tomato, chile, and 1 cup of the watermelon in a blender to start. Then, pour in the red wine vinegar and olive oil and pulse the mixture until combined. Add the onion, cucumber, dill, and a dash of salt and pepper. Purée the entire mixture until nice and smooth. Serve chilled and serve with feta, dill, and the rest of the watermelon on top.

2. Cold Avocado Soup

A bright green herbed soup for summer

A bright green herbed soup for summer | iStock.com

Avocados are nutritional powerhouses, and they make the perfect velvety base for this chilled soup. Fresh herbs take the flavors to the next level, and the use of cucumber makes Country Living’s cold avocado soup extra refreshing.

Ingredients:

  • ½ seedless cucumber
  • 1 medium avocado
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint
  • 1 sprig fresh mint
  • 4 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 radish

Directions: The beauty of this recipe is that it only takes 10 minutes. First, place your cut up cucumber, avocado, shallot, yogurt, 2 tablespoons of mint, lime juice, salt, pepper, cumin, and 1 cup of cold water in a blender or food processor. Process this mixture until smooth. Chill for at least 1 hour until cold. You can serve the radish and mint sprig as a garnish over top.

3. Chilled Carrot Ginger Soup

Carrot soup ready to be served

Carrot soup ready to be served | iStock.com

You’ll be doing some cooking for this recipe to get the natural sweetness out of the veggies, then letting it chill out. While carrots are the bulk of the soup, ginger adds spice and depth of flavor, and there’s a bit of honey to bring the sweet and savory together. Food and Wine’s chilled carrot and ginger soup is unique and delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium chopped onion
  • 2 pounds sliced carrots
  • 4 quarter-sized slices of fresh ginger, lightly smashed
  • 2½ cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Hot sauce to taste (optional)
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper

Directions: To start, heat up your oil in a large saucepan — this recipe makes six servings of the soup, so you’ll need the room in your pan. Add the onion and stir over low heat until softened for about 5 minutes. Then, add the carrots and ginger and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 2 cups of your stock, season as needed with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. You’ll need the carrots to soften in this liquid, so bring the heat down to low, cover the soup, and let simmer for 25 minutes.

Once the carrots are tender, strain the cooking liquid into a heatproof bowl, getting rid of the ginger in the process. In your blender, puree the veggies with 1 cup of the cooking liquid until the mixture is smooth. Stir the puree into the cooking liquid in your heatproof bowl and add your lemon juice, honey, and remaining ½ cup of stock. Refrigerate your soup until it’s chilled, and garnish with cilantro leaves and hot sauce if desired.

4. Chilled Corn Soup with Basil

Corn chowder with herbs

Corn chowder with herbs | iStock.com

Chowder in the dead of winter isn’t the only way to get your corn fix as this chilled corn soup with basil from The New York Times proves. Using lime juice and buttermilk adds tart flavors to the sweetness of the corn, and the garlic and scallions add that hint of pungency to keep your flavors well-rounded.

Ingredients

  • 3 ears shucked corn
  • 1½ cups buttermilk
  • ½ cup basil leaves, extra for garnish
  • 3 roughly chopped scallions
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, more to taste
  • 1 large roughly chopped garlic clove
  • ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Radish slices for garnish
  • Extra virgin olive oil for garnish

Directions: Slice corn kernels off of the cob, which should leave you with 3 to 3½ cups of corn kernels. Place kernels in a blender and discard your cob. Then, add buttermilk, basil, scallions, lime juice, garlic, salt, and ⅓ cup ice cubes to the blender, and purée until the mixture is smooth. Strain your mixture through a sieve if you desire a smooth soup, pressing down on the solids. You can also serve this soup without straining it for texture. Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with slices of radish to finish.

5. Herbed Zucchini Soup

A healthy herbed soup served with croutons

A healthy herbed soup served with croutons | iStock.com

This 6-ingredient soup uses fresh ingredients and herbs for a light and refreshing meal that’s sure to cool you off in the summer heat. This Eating Well recipe is simple and easy to make, and it can be stored for up to 3 days in the fridge for your next picnic or barbecue. Keep this one in your back pocket for winter, too — you can serve this soup warm as well.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1½ pounds zucchini, or 3 medium-sized zucchini, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon or dill (substitute 1 teaspoon dried)
  • ¾ cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ freshly ground black pepper

Directions: Add broth, zucchini, and tarragon or dill in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and uncover, allowing the zucchini to cook about 7 to 10 minutes until it is tender. Purée in a blender until smooth — you may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender. Return the soup back to a pan over medium-high heat, stirring in the cheese slowly to the mixture. Remove the soup from the heat and season with salt and pepper. You can eat this soup warm or store in the refrigerator to serve chilled.

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