This hearty & warming vegan baked potato soup is piled high with seitan bacon, non-dairy cheese, and green onions. When the weather outside is frightful, this cozy soup will keep the chills away.
There’s something intrinsically fun about foods masquerading as other foods. If you already love the flavors of something in one incarnation, chances are you’re going to also be a fan when it changes form.
It’s like the culinary version of the Wonder Twins.
“Wonder twin powers, activate!”
Vegan baked potato soup
Today I’m at it again with this fully loaded vegan baked potato soup.
Jacket potatoes are a mainstay for easy weeknight meals. With the aid of a soup pot and an immersion blender, those flavors become a warming and cozy bowl of goodness to enjoy by the spoonful.
The usual baked potato soup tends to be a heavy affair – loaded with cream, cheese, and animal products aplenty. But this loaded vegan baked potato soup nixes those ingredients, while still giving the experience of a hearty, filling soup that will dampen the howling winds outside.
This full-bodied vegan baked potato soup gets its roundness by way of raw cashews, which are blended with water to make a thick cashew cream. It’s packed in the soup with onions, garlic, rosemary, and thyme. (“Remember me to one who lives there…”)
But what really makes this vegan baked potato soup occasion-worthy is the toppings.
It’s topped with any of your favorite jacket potato toppings:
- Shredded non-dairy cheese
- Green onions
- Vegan cream cheese
- Browned seitan bacon
My favorite seitan bacon is from Herbivorous Butcher. And it’s now available in Iowa. (Woot, woot!)
Instead of just chopping the bacon, I tear it into pieces for a rustic look with varying textures. Then I give it a brief fry in a skillet.
It’s up to you whether you make the soup with potatoes that are peeled or unpeeled. If you like a hint of texture, unpeeled is the way to go. And if little specks of peel put you off, peel them.
Remember to save those peelings. Pop them in the air fryer for a tasty snack. Or you could even use the air fried potato peels as an additional soup topping – like potato peel croutons.
I’ve enjoyed several bowls of this soup while developing the recipe, photographing it, and shooting the video below. It’s one of those soups that takes you by surprise in its deliciousness.
It’s definitely worthy of adding to your menu for holiday get-togethers. Everyone can pile their bowls high with the toppings of their choosing.
Loaded vegan baked potato soup
- 4 1/2 cups water divided
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons raw cashews*
- 1 teaspoon organic canola oil or other neutral-flavored oil
- 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 vegetable bouillon cube
- 2 pounds Russet potatoes cut in 1-inch pieces (About 4 medium-sized potatoes. Peeled or unpeeled - your choice)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt divided**
- Black pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup each of any or all of the following toppings: cooked & chopped seitan bacon, green onions, shredded non-dairy cheese, and/or non-dairy cream cheese
- In a high speed blender, blend 1/2 cup water and raw cashews. (Don't have a high speed blender? See the notes below.) Set the liquid aside for later use.
- Bring a soup pot to a medium heat with oil. Saute onions and garlic until they become translucent and fragrant.
- Add remaining 4 cups of water to the pot, along with vegetable bouillon cube, potatoes, thyme, rosemary, one teaspoon of salt, and a few shakes or grinds of black pepper.
- Bring the water to a simmer. Once it is simmering, lower the heat, and cook for about 10 minutes, until the potatoes can easily be pierced with a fork.
- Once the potatoes are soft, use an immersion blender to blend the soup. It should be mostly smooth, but an occasional chunk of potato is just fine. (Don't have an immersion blender? Carefully move the soup to a regular blender, in batches if necessary, to blend until smooth. Then transfer it back to the soup pot.)
- Add the cashew cream from the blender to the pot. Stir to combine.
- If the soup is at your desired creaminess, it's ready to serve. If it's too thin, allow it to cook a little longer. If it's too thick, add a splash of water. Taste for salt and add remaining half teaspoon, if needed.
- Ladle the soup into four bowls and top each one with your preferred toppings.