This Vegan Curried Cauliflower Soup is garnished with delicious Roast Chickpea Croutons and can be ready to serve in less than 40 minutes. A bowl of this curried cauliflower soup is so nourishing, warming, wholesomely hearty, oil-free, yet packed with tasty curry flavours. This easy curry soup recipe is ideal for busy people needing fast, nutritious, vegan, vegetarian, plant-based, meat-free meals, that are crammed with flavour. Also, this recipe can be easily prepared for gluten-free diets.
Our Curried Cauliflower Soup is a recipe that has been adapted from the brilliant 'How Not To Die Cookbook' (2018) by Michael Greger, MD. We have adapted Dr Greger's recipe to make it quicker and easier, and included a recipe for delicious roast chickpea croutons for extra flavour and texture .
Wholesome Curried Cauliflower Soup
This plant-based curried cauliflower soup is a must-try. It's simple, fast, affordable, and a tasty treat, especially in the cold months. That said, we love it in the summer too especially as we live in the Scottish Highlands and the summer months often bring gale-force winds, torrential rain, hail stones and foggy dark days! So a warm bowl of comforting cauliflower soup cooked with wholesome spices always goes down a treat.
Found a discounted cauliflower? This soup then becomes even more budget-friendly. Alternatively, you can opt for a bag of frozen cauliflower to save time. Don't forget, the cauliflower leaves can be chopped and included for an added burst of flavour and nutrition.
This soup is an excellent starting point for those new to plant-based and vegan lifestyles. It's also kid-friendly, and great for allowing youngsters to get hands-on with plant-based cooking under adult supervision.
Dr. Greger's cookbook
For Christmas in 2019, my daughter gifted me with Dr. Greger's cookbook, ''The How Not To Die Cookbook''  and it's been a favourite addition to our kitchen ever since. I found it heart warming to learn that all profits from his books are donated to charitable causes. His motivation? To spread awareness about the many benefits of a plant-rich diet. And I couldn't agree more. Regardless of one's diet, incorporating more veggies is always beneficial.
The more one delves into the world of vegetables and plant ingredients, the more they unveil their delicious and inventive potential. Plus, there's also great health benefits of eating more plant ingredients and as the consumption of veggies grows, the demand for animal products decreases - a win-win!
For those interested, Dr. Greger's website, NutritionFacts.org, is also worth a visit as his videos providing the latest scientific insights into the advantages of plant-based diets.
Curried Cauliflower Soup garnished with chickpea croutons, chopped coriander, lemon zest, and a sprinkle of red paprika flakes.
Our adapted vegan curried cauliflower soup
While Dr. Greger's original recipe called for whole blended lemons, we opted for a zesty lemon garnish instead. His recipe also features a unique spice blend comprising numerous spices and herbs. We simplified this by substituting it with garam masala, which pairs beautifully with the dish.
Another difference is the garlic content. While Dr. Greger's version requires just one clove, We've upped it to six because, let's be honest, we can't imagine cooking with just a single clove! In fact, on occasion, We've thrown in an entire bulb, especially when it's on the smaller side. So do feel free to add even more garlic!
We also replaced the fresh ginger with its dried counterpart - not only because we ran out of fresh ginger, but also because it speeds up the preparation process. We also added a teaspoon of turmeric, a spice we love adding to any suitable recipe.
The chickpea croutons were not included in the original recipe and they were just something that we chucked together to see what would happen! The croutons are prepared with canned chickpeas, garam masala powder, salt & pepper, and either a small amount of olive oil or for oil-free croutons use aqua Faber which is just the liquid from the canned chickpeas.
To deepen the soup's savoury flavours and increase the protein content, we added some peanut butter as it pairs so well with the flavours of curry powder. However, for a nut free cauliflower soup the nut butter can be omitted or replaced with sunflower seed butter or soybean butter.
Though we've tweaked the recipe significantly, credit is still due to Dr. Greger. His original creation was the foundation for this dish, and his contributions to the plant-based community are immense. Highlighting his work also introduces his work to You and my other lovely visitors, who might not be familiar with Dr Greger's work and if anyone gains any helpful insights into plant-based diets then its a win-win!
How to prepare vegan curried cauliflower soup
This deliciously wholesome vegan soup could be classed as a bowl of liquid sunshine! The colours are so vibrant you just know its going to be doing you a whole world of good!
As this soup is rich in turmeric don't forget to add a good dash of ground black pepper corns as black pepper helps activate the many health properties of curcumin - this is what gives turmeric is vivid yellow colour.
Add all the ingredients to a soup-pot - cauliflower, red onion, garlic, peanut butter [can omit or replace with sunflower seed butter or soybean butter which are nut butter alternatives], curry powder, turmeric, ginger powder, and maple syrup [or your usual sweetener or sugar].
Pour in the vegetable stock, give everything a good mix, and gently boil for 20 minutes.
Remove half of the soup and give the remaining soup a quick blend using an immersion stick blender.
Alternatively use a potato masher and mash some of the soup up.
Pour the unblended soup back into the soup pot and stir it through the blended portion.
Whole pieces of cauliflower will be present in the soup which will provide some nice texture, but of course if you prefer a completely blended soup then do blend all of it.
Season the soup with enough salt and black pepper to taste.
Serving suggestion: enjoy with a scatter of chickpea croutons, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, fresh coriander [cilantro], and wedges of crusty bread.
Prepare the chickpea croutons
While the soup is cooking the chickpea croutons can be prepared.
Toss the chickpeas with garam masala powder, salt & black pepper, and either a tablespoon of oil, or 2-3 tablespoons of aqua Faber [liquid from canned chickpeas], or just dry roast the chickpeas.
Place the seasoned chickpeas onto a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes, shaking the chickpeas half way through. The chickpeas may take a little longer to bake.
Check out the recipe notes and FAQ section below for an air-fryer method for preparing chickpea croutons and for guidance on how to store leftover croutons.
Recipe notes and FAQ's
Leftovers can be kept fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days. Or freeze for 2-3 months.
To reheat place the soup into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes until piping hot throughout, stirring frequently.
Yes, it is easy to prepare this cauliflower soup as gluten-free. Simply ensure that your vegetable stock or broth is gluten-free and check that your curry powder and spices are also free from gluten ingredients and sometimes flour may be added.
If your only needing a light lunch or snack this soup can be enjoyed on its own, or for a more substantial meal here are a few tasty suggestions:
* Irish Soda Bread
* Australian Damper Bread
* Quick Dinner Rolls (these can be flavoured to go with this soup such as adding some cumin seeds or nigella seeds to the mixture)
* Home-made garlic bread
* Naan bread, roti bread, chapati bread, or poppadum's
* Home-made Flatbreads
* No-oil Scottish Oatcakes
* a big crisp green salad
* vegetable pakoras, samosas, or spring rolls
* add a cooked grain to the bottom of each soup bowl such as - any variety of rice, couscous, millet, quinoa, Bulgar wheat, etc
For soup & sandwich options:
* Tofu 'egg' and Cress Sandwich
* vegan cheese toastie or grilled cheese sandwich
* Old-Fashioned Walnut & Celery Sandwich
* Ploughman's Baguette
Yes, either omit the peanut butter or replace with sunflower seed butter, soybean butter or a different nut free butter alternative. Although do ensure that any seed butter you source is certified nut free and safe for nut allergies.
Yes simply add half a can of coconut milk to the finished soup and mix through, and bring the soup back to the boil just to heat the milk through. Alternatively, stir through some plant-based milk or perhaps some home-made cashew cream. Another idea is to add spoonful of plant-based yogurt, sour cream, or creme fraiche to each bowl of soup. Or drizzle a swirl of plant cream such as soya, oat or Elmlea single plant cream to each serving.
Or perhaps add a quarter of a creamed coconut block to the soup at the beginning of cooking and this will add a nice creaminess, but it will also thicken the soup as well, so keep an eye on the liquid levels and add more if required.
This soup is nicely spiced and warming, rather than being overpowering and too hot, as we usually use a mild Madras curry powder. However, for a spicer soup you can use a hot Madras curry powder and perhaps also add some chilli powder, or garnish with fresh chilli slices. A few drops of hot sauce and chilli flakes could also be added for those who enjoy extra spiciness.
Yes, frozen cauliflower is a great idea as it can save preparation time, and also if slicing vegetables is physically difficult [I have an autoimmune arthritis which affects my fingers and wrists so I know all about how difficult it can be to slice veggies!] then frozen cauliflower can be vital. Also, I often use frozen diced onion as well, as well as replacing fresh onion and garlic for their dried counterparts.
Although cauliflower is the main ingredient for this curried soup, the cauliflower can be easily replaced with a tasty alternative such as - broccoli, potatoes, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, celeriac, courgette [zucchini], vegetable marrow, or pumpkin.
Yes, although chickpeas are perfect for home-made vegetable croutons they can be switched out for cooked - black beans, whole brown or green lentils, edamame beans, or fresh green peas. Just prepare these alternatives as per the chickpeas in the soup recipe.
Alternatively, our Crispy Tofu Bites are a nice alternative although perhaps slice the tofu into smaller cubes than is recommended in the recipe. And if you prefer a crisp bread crouton then try our home-made rustic croutons, the recipe is over on our Old-Fashioned Cream of Swede Soup recipe.
Another idea is to prepare home-made toasted sunflower seeds and you can find an easy method over on our Roast Pumpkin Soup recipe. And for a toasted cashew topping use our easy method over on our Bombay Curry Soup recipe.
Yes, preparing the chickpea croutons is a great idea and can save energy as the oven can stay switched off! Use the following as a guide:
Air-Fried Chickpea Croutons:
1. Begin by rinsing, draining, and thoroughly patting dry the chickpeas as its important that they are as dry as possible so that they will easily crisp up.
2. In a bowl, toss the chickpeas with garam masala powder, salt & pepper, and a small amount of oil [if using] or a few tablespoons of aqua Faber. Since air fryers circulate hot air very efficiently, you will need less oil than you would for oven-roasting. So a few sprays from an oil spray should be enough.
3. Preheat your air fryer, if your model recommends it. Otherwise, place the seasoned chickpeas in the air fryer basket in a single layer, ensuring they aren’t overcrowded, although as the chickpeas will be shaken a few times a few chickpeas on top of each other is not too much of an issue!
4. Set the air fryer to around 375°F (190°C). Cook the chickpeas for 10 minutes. Every 5 minutes or so, give the basket a shake or stir the chickpeas to ensure even cooking. Cook for another 10 minutes, shaking every 5 minutes and so on until the chickpeas are how you would like them. Air fryers can vary in their cooking times, etc., so if its your first time roasting chickpeas check them often just to see how they are going and you'll soon know how long it takes your air-fryer to roast the chickpeas.
5. Once the chickpeas are golden and crispy, remove them from the air fryer and let them cool slightly. They'll continue to crisp up a bit more as they cool. Serve them as a garnish on top of your soup or as a snack on the side.
Do keep in mind that each air fryer model might be a bit different, so the first time you make the chickpea croutons, keep a close eye on them to ensure you get the desired level of crispiness without burning them. Adjust times and temperatures as needed for your specific air fryer model.
If you have leftover chickpea croutons you can store them for a few days or perhaps you've baked a double batch so that you can enjoy some as snacks.
Here's an easy guide for storing chickpea croutons:
1. Before storing, ensure the chickpea croutons are completely cooled to room temperature. Storing them while still warm can lead to condensation, resulting in soggy chickpeas.
2. Store the chickpea croutons in an airtight container. This will prevent them from absorbing moisture from the air, which can make them lose their crispness. A mason jar is ideal or a very clean and dry jar from a shop-bought sauce.
3. Store the container at room temperature, in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight.
4. If you live in a particularly humid environment, consider adding a small packet of food-safe desiccant (like those found in some snack packages) to the container. Alternatively, you can add a small cloth pouch, or a piece of parchment paper folder over, and filled with rice to the container; rice acts as a natural desiccant and will help absorb any excess moisture.
5. Chickpea croutons are best enjoyed within 1-2 days. After that, they may begin to lose their crispiness.
6. However, if the chickpea croutons do lose some crispness over time, you can refresh them by placing them back in the oven or air fryer for a few minutes.
Remember to always ensure the lid or seal on the storage container is closed tightly to keep out as much air and moisture as possible.
Besides eating the chickpeas as a delicious wholesome snack, you can add the chickpeas to a variety of dishes such as salads, sandwiches, tortilla wraps, stews, soups and they make a really tasty addition to shop-bought or home-made pizzas. Depending on the flavour of your chickpea croutons you could always add them to a home-made Trail Mix. Think cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice mix, mixed spice, cloves, nutmeg flavoured chickpea croutons!
More Easy Vegan Curry and Spicy Soup Recipes
We love a good curry or spicy soup as with some curry powder or spices and a few other ingredients, a deliciously flavoured hearty soup can be whipped up in no time.
Any vegetable can be added to a curry or spicy soup but potatoes especially are amazing so we have this easy Bombay Potato Soup often, and when we fancy a fruity curried vegetable soup with rice we like our Easy Mulligatawny Soup, and one of our all-time favourite classics is this Spicy Chickpea Soup.
And for something a little different and even easier as its cooked in the slow cooker you just can't go wrong with this Spicy Peanut, Black Bean, and Potato Soup.
For more easy soup recipes do check out our Vegan Soup Recipe collection
***please note: for US measurements click the 'US customary button' within the recipe and the measurements will switch to tablespoons, cups, and ounces.***
Vegan Curried Cauliflower Soup (With Chickpea Croutons)
- Large soup pot, Dutch oven pot, or similar
- Food processor, stand blender, or an immersion stick blender or potato masher optional, only required if blending part or all of the soup
- Baking tray optional, only required if preparing chickpea croutons
- lemon zester
- 500 grams cauliflower [chopped into small florets, can use frozen, just chuck it in frozen at the beginning of cooking. Sliced cauliflower leaves can also be used]
- 1 medium red onion [sliced, or replace with a white or brown onion]
- 6 cloves garlic [minced or fine diced, can use more if liked, or replace with 2-3 teaspoons garlic powder or paste]
- 2 teaspoon maple syrup [or your usual sweetener, syrup, sugar]
- 1 ½ tablespoon curry powder [we used a mild Madras curry powder, for a spicier soup use a medium or hot powder.]
- ½ teaspoon ginger powder [or replace with 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger minced or fine diced, or a paste]
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter [Or almond or cashew butter. Or sunflower seed butter or soybean butter] Or omit.
- 1.2 litres vegetable stock
Add at the end of cooking:
- 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
For the chickpea croutons:
- 1 can chickpeas [400g,14 oz can, drained, rinsed and patted dried, or replace with 240 grams cooked chickpeas]
- 2 teaspoon garam masala powder [or curry powder]
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, optional [or your usual oil, or replace the oil with 3-4 tablespoons of aqua Faber - canned chickpea liquid]
Optional to garnish:
- 20 grams coriander [cilantro, chopped]
- ½ lemon [fine grate or zest the peel]
- Add the cauliflower, onion, garlic, curry powder, turmeric powder, ginger powder, peanut butter, maple syrup or sugar, and the vegetable stock to a large soup pot. Give it all a good mix.500 grams cauliflower, 1 medium red onion, 6 cloves garlic, 2 teaspoon maple syrup, 1 ½ tablespoon curry powder, ½ teaspoon ginger powder, 1 teaspoon turmeric powder, 2 tablespoons peanut butter, 1.2 litres vegetable stock
- Over a high heat, bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Remove a few cups of the soup and using an immersion stick blender or a suitable food processor blend some of the soup, and then mix the blended soup with the chunky soup. Or if preferred blend all the soup until smooth.Alternatively, part of the soup can be mashed well with a potato masher and then the mashed soup stirred through the rest of the soup. Or simply omit the blending and enjoy a chunky soup.
- [please note: Many food processors and countertop blenders are not suitable for blending hot soups so do consult your appliance guide booklet for specific safety advice. If in doubt let the soup cool before blending]
- Once the soup is ready to serve, stir through the garam masala spice mix and season with salt and pepper to taste.1 teaspoon garam masala powder
- Optional serving suggestion: Enjoy with chopped coriander sprinkled over each bowl, some grated lemon zest, a sprinkle or red paprika, pepper or chilli flakes, and the chickpea croutons.20 grams coriander, ½ lemon
Chickpea Croutons: [prepare while the soup is cooking]
- Preheat the oven to 180 Fan, 200 Celsius, 392 Fahrenheit, Gas 6.
- Place the drained, rinsed, and dried chickpeas into a bowl and toss with garam masala powder, salt & pepper, and either the oil or aqua Faber, or just dry roast with no oil or aqua Faber.1 can chickpeas, 2 teaspoon garam masala powder, 1 tablespoon olive oil, optional
- Spread the seasoned chickpeas out onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 20 minutes before removing from the oven, give the chickpeas a good shake or stir around the baking tray.
- Raise the temperature to 200 Fan, 220 Celsius, 428 Fahrenheit, Gas 7. Roast for another 10 minutes until nicely browned and crisp, watch the chickpeas carefully to make sure they do not burn.
- Serve the chickpea croutons right away or leave for a short while on the baking tray while your soup is being prepared. Store leftover chickpeas in an airtight jar for up to 3 days. Although the chickpeas are best enjoyed soon after roasting, they can be refreshed by heating up in a hot oven or in an air-fryer.
- Nutritional information is provided for guidance only and is not a strict analysis as ingredients vary.
- Leftover soup can be stored in the refrigerator, in a covered container, for up to 3 days.
- Or freeze for 2-3 months.
- As this soup contains turmeric its best to store in a container that won't potentially be stained by the turmeric colour!
- Likewise use cooking utensils that won't be stained by the turmeric. We have lost count of the time turmeric has stained our cooking utensils!
- Reheat by placing the soup into a saucepan, and over a medium heat bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.
Prepared our tasty Vegan Curried Cauliflower Soup? Or our delicious Chickpea Croutons? We would love to know how you got on with the recipe so do pop back and leave us a comment below and click the star ratings. Its all very much appreciated, thanks so much! Love Jacq x