How To Make Any Soup Thicker

A creamier cup is just a few steps away.

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If your kitchen is filled with the delicious aroma of a homemade chicken stock, thin soup is a good thing. But if you're making a heartier soup, like our Roasted Tomato Soup with Cheddar Cheese, chances are you had something a little thicker and creamier in mind. Sometimes, getting your soup to be just the right consistency can be tricky. If you've just made a beautiful pot of soup and it isn't thick enough, help is here. Here are a few easy ways to thicken soup.

Cauliflower Soup
Southern Living

Cook It Longer

Sometimes soup just needs to simmer longer to reach the perfect consistency. Check to see if the vegetables are tender, and then taste the broth. If the soup tastes a bit watery, give it more time. If the broth tastes well-seasoned and flavorful, use one of the methods below. Cooking a soup for too long can make it too salty.

Add Flour Or Cornstarch

You can thicken soup by adding flour, cornstarch, or another starchy substitute. For the best results, never add flour or cornstarch directly to your soup. If you do, it will clump up on top. Instead, ladle a small amount of broth into a separate bowl and let it cool. Add a few tablespoons of flour or cornstarch to the bowl and whisk until it's blended smooth. Next, bring the soup to a simmer and add the mixture back to the pot.

Pro tip: Don't dump in the entire mixture at once. You may thicken your soup too much. Instead, add a small amount at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. This is a great method to thicken pureed recipes like our Acorn Squash Soup.

Blend Your Soup

If you need to know how to thicken chunky soup recipes, look no further than your food processor or blender. This works especially well with soups that contain starchy vegetables such as potatoes, corn, or even beans. Simply take a cup or two of the soup, chunks and all, and puree it until it's creamy and smooth. Return it to the pot and stir. This will thicken your soup and preserve the chunkiness at the same time. Although a blender or food processor works equally well in this circumstance, there are times when that isn't true. Here's when to use a blender vs. when to use a food processor.

Add Something Creamy

It probably won't surprise you to learn that if you add something thick and creamy directly to the soup, it will become thicker and creamier. There are almost unlimited options here, depending on your preferences and what you happen to have on hand. Possibilities include cream, coconut milk, yogurt, or even pureed avocado. If you choose coconut milk, be aware that it will impart a sweet, coconut flavor, which might not be right for every soup. Yogurt will add tanginess.

Add dairy ingredients when the soup is simmering on low to reduce the chance of curdling. You can also mix a small amount of soup into your dairy first to temper it, and then add it back to the pot.

Add A Starch

You can give your soup more heft as well as a thicker texture by adding one of these starchy ingredients:

  • Add a can of lentils or cannellini beans, mashing about half before you mix it in.
  • Add 1/2 cup rice or pasta per 4 cups of liquid, providing just enough time for it to cook before serving (typically about 20 minutes for rice or 10-12 minutes for pasta). Adding rice or pasta too early can cause it to over-expand and thicken your soup into a stew.
  • Tear up a crusty piece of bread and mix it into the broth. Allow the soup to simmer until it dissolves.

Are you wondering what to do with the leftovers now that your soup is thickened to perfection? Save some for later. Here's how to freeze and store your soup now that it's just right.

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