This homemade cream of mushroom soup is a warming, gluten-free soup made with fresh mushrooms, leeks, herbs, milk, and cream.
I've been craving mushroom soup lately.
Mushroom soup is creamy, it's comforting, it's a perfect winter food.
A few weeks ago, I decided to remake one of my favorite recipes, homemade cream of mushroom soup.
I originally posted this recipe for cream of mushroom soup (with a dried mushroom base) back in January 2017. Back then, dried mushrooms were SO EASY to find.
Guys, I don't know what happened. In the past three years, dried mushrooms have (seemingly) vanished from grocery stores.
I checked Whole Foods, two Krogers, two Walmarts, my favorite health food store, and... nada. No dried mushrooms.
And the dried mushrooms I found online were pricey.
But it really annoyed me that I couldn't find dried mushrooms!
I decided it was time to revise this recipe using easy-to-find and affordable mushrooms.
I grabbed some baby portobello mushrooms and my favorite Julia Child cookbook (Julia's Kitchen Wisdom) and started testing.
This homemade cream of mushroom soup is a gluten-free twist on Julia Child's classic cream of mushroom soup.
What Kind of Mushrooms Should I Use?
I used baby portobello mushrooms, but you could use white button mushrooms, wild mushrooms, or a combination of whatever mushrooms you have on hand.
Because you can really taste the mushrooms in this soup, it's an excellent way to use wild mushrooms and showcase their flavors.
How Do I Clean Mushrooms?
Mushrooms absorb a lot of water.
If you rinse your mushrooms off, the extra water will make them more difficult to brown in the pot later.
You'll end up with mushy mushrooms.
Oh, the horror!
Instead of rinsing your mushrooms, simply use a crumpled towel or a dry pastry brush to brush off any dirt from the mushrooms.
If skipping the rinse worries you, know that store-bought mushrooms are generally grown in sterilized compost, so it's not dirt that should make you sick.
If you're using foraged wild mushrooms, brush a little more carefully to get rid of debris (like pine needles).
Can I Freeze This Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup for Later?
You can cook the recipe part-way (stopping just before you add the milk), freeze the partially prepared soup, and then thaw it when you're ready to use.
When you're ready, continue cooking where you left off!
Check the recipe card notes for freezing directions.
Can I Add Extra Veggies (Like Asparagus)?
My original version of this recipe included diced asparagus.
I've decided to skip it in this version, because I want this soup most often in the middle of winter, when asparagus is not in season.
However, asparagus (or peas, or fresh spinach) are delicious additions to this soup.
Add the veggies (either cooked or raw) as you're finishing up the soup, and continue cooking until they're warm.
Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup
Start by cooking sliced mushrooms in butter.
Cook them until they're fragrant and brown.
Scoop the mushrooms out of the pot, and save them for later.
Add a little more butter, some sliced leeks, herbs, and salt. Cook until the leeks are softened.
Pour in a little white wine, and bring it to a simmer.
Next, add the broth and the reserved mushrooms.
I like to use mushroom broth (preferably homemade), but homemade vegetable broth will work perfectly too.
In a small bowl (or a measuring cup), whisk together a little cornstarch and milk.
Pour it into the soup, and add more milk to the pot.
Next, scoop about half the soup into a blender along with some Parmesan cheese.
Blend until the soup is creamy, and pour it back in the pot. Finally, stir in the cream.
Serve this homemade cream of mushroom soup while it's still hot, and enjoy digging into this delicious, indulgent soup.
Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup
- 3 tablespoons butter, divided
- 8 ounces mushrooms (button or baby portobello), sliced Or sub your favorite mushroom
- 1 leek, sliced (both the white bulb and the leafy green parts)
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme, removed from stem Or substitute rosemary
- ½ cup white wine
- 2 cups mushroom broth Or substitute vegetable broth
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 cups whole milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 ounce Parmesan (wedge or rind), freshly grated
- Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a large soup pan over medium heat. When the butter melts, add the mushrooms and cook and until browned. Depending on the size of your pot, you may need to cook the mushrooms in batches, pushing cooked mushrooms up to the side of the pot as you add uncooked mushrooms.Remove the mushrooms from the pot and reserve.
- Heat remaining butter over medium heat in the pot. Add the leeks, salt, and thyme, and cook until softened (~4-5 minutes).
- Raise heat to medium-high, and add wine. Allow wine to cook down 1-2 minutes. Lower heat to medium.
- Add the mushroom broth, and bring soup to a simmer. Add the reserved mushrooms. Tip: If you want to freeze for later, stop at this step. Freeze this as a soup base, and then thaw when you're ready to serve and complete the recipe.
- While the broth heats, add the cornstarch to a small bowl. (Do not add the cornstarch directly to the soup pot, because it won't dissolve in hot liquid.)Mix in a little of the milk in with the cornstarch, and whisk until smooth. Slowly pour the cornstarch mixture and remaining milk mixture into the pot, stirring as you pour to help keep the milk from curdling.
- Ladle about half the soup into a blender along with the Parmesan cheese, and blend until creamy. Pour it back into the pot. Add the cream.
- Continue to heat over medium until the soup is warmed through, but do not bring to a boil. Serve immediately.
- Leftovers:Store leftover soup in the fridge and use within 3-4 days.