Celery Root and Parsnip Soup


This Celery Root and Parsnip Soup makes a perfect starter for cold evenings and a complete lunch when paired with a grilled cheese or hearty sourdough baguette and salad.


Hello, my friends! Today I have a delicious vegetarian, easy to make vegan, soup for you! As the weather grows colder I find myself adding more soups to the menu. Some of our favorites include classic chicken noodle, butternut squash, and veggie chili.

Exposure, Exposure

As you know, it can be easy to fall into a comfort zone when you are a busy parent and have kids. While it’s fun to experiment with new recipes, including soups, it’s often more tempting just to make something you know they will like. After all, if you are going to put all the time into making a homemade soup, you want everyone to eat it.

But, of course, by doing this we limit our children’s exposure to new foods. So, therefore, I encourage you to sprinkle in new recipes without any expectations. Maybe your kids will try it and like it. Maybe they will do neither. But you don’t know until you try.


Believe it or not, this is something I have to remind myself of too sometimes. But I will say, my persistence with serving new foods is one factor that is slowly but surely contributing to my kids becoming more adventurous eaters. (Other factors include: They are becoming more mature, they are hungrier at dinner, they are being exposed to new foods at restaurants and friends houses, and I am more mellow and less sleep deprived!)

I admit I had low expectations about my kids enjoying this soup, after all, pureed root vegetables isn’t quite the same as chicken noodle. However, to my surprise, my older son who is 12, loved it. While this alone wasn’t enough to convince his younger brother to love it, it helped set the tone for a really pleasant dinner.

What is Celery Root?

So what is celery root anyway? Celery root, also known as celeriac or turnip-rooted celery, is a nutrient-rich root vegetable. While it has a bit of an ugly exterior, on the inside it’s smooth and creamy. Delicious pureed into a soup or roasted in chunks alongside potatoes, it’s definitely a vegetable worth becoming familiar with.

It's a knob, it's a dirty gourd, no it's celery root! And it's delicious pureed into a soup! Click To Tweet


For this recipe, I combined celery root with parsnips for a creamy, without the cream delicacy. I also sauteed leeks in a little butter and EVOO. My recipe was inspired by the ingredients in my CSA farm share the previous week. (Joining a CSA definitely helps boost your intake of new foods and overall cooking creativity!)

So give this soup a try and let me know what you think. I topped it with toasted pumpkin seeds, but roasted chickpeas or hazelnuts would also be delicious. Serve as an appetizer or make it a meal by adding whole wheat sourdough grilled cheeses and a green salad.

PS – If there is time, get your kids in the kitchen to help saute the leeks, peel the parsnips, or even just ponder that funny looking celery root! All exposure is helpful.

Celery Root and Parsnip Soup
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This Celery Root (also known as Celeriac) and Parsnip Soup is perfect for cooler days! Serve it alongside grilled cheese for a simple lunch or serve it as a little appetizer before the main dinner entree. Vegetarian and easy to make vegan by omitting the butter.
Recipe type: soup, appetizer, vegetarian
Serves: 6
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or use all oil if dairy-free or vegan)
  • 2 leeks, rinsed thoroughly, ends trimmed, and chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound celeriac, peeled and diced
  • 1 pound parsnips, peeled and diced
  • 2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade (or veggie stock if vegan)
  • 3 cups water
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • White pepper (or regular black pepper) to taste
  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add leeks and saute for about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium or medium-low and add the garlic. Saute for another minute, until fragrant.
  2. Add the celeriac, parsnips, chicken stock, and water. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Then, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for about 30 minutes, until veggies are soft. Remove from heat and puree with a handheld blender (or carefully transfer to a regular blender, working in batches and making sure not to burn yourself). Process until smooth. If it's too thick add more stock or water.
  3. Season to taste with salt and white pepper. Reheat and serve hot. Refrigerate leftovers once cooled and reheat and enjoy within 4 days.
Topping suggestions:
Roasted pumpkin seeds (heat skillet and toast until golden and fragrant or roast on a sheet pan in the oven for 8-10 minutes).
Roasted chickpeas
Roasted, chopped hazelnuts



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