Loaded with nutritious vegetables, this vegan Vegetable Dumpling Soup is winter hearty and extra comforting, thanks to the fluffy – and so easy-to-make – homemade herbed dumplings.
Vegetable soup is the ultimate comfort food in my soup-lovin’ book because, first, it’s so easy to learn how to make homemade vegetable soup, even if you’re fairly new to this whole home cooking thang.
And second, vegetable soup is loaded with healthy ingredients, and yet still completely lovable and crave-able, even to people who are otherwise skeptical about seeing that many veggies staring back at them all at once.
But, this vegetable soup is extra appealing because of the plump little dumplings that sit pretty as a picture right on top.
And these dumplings? They’re dairy-free. So, if you avoid milk products or have vegans in the family, this soup will make everyone happy!
Another beautiful thing about Vegetable Dumpling Soup is that you can use just about any combination of veggies you have on hand. As you can see from the photo above, I went all out with this batch, and stuffed veggies into my shopping cart like there was no tomorrow.
But if your fam just isn’t feelin’ the fennel, that’s okay: leave it out. Love Yukon potatoes? Bring ’em right in there.
Homemade vegetable soup is also a great way to use up those veggies in the fridge that are juuuust about to go sideways.
How to make vegan dumplings from scratch
Now, about these dumplings! Dumplings in soup sound like something that might’ve come from your Grandma’s secret file of family heirloom recipes, right?
But they’re so easy, that once you make them, you won’t even need a recipe, and you’ll want to start adding vegan dumplings to all of your winter soups.
You only need some flour, some creamy fat (such as my homemade vegan cashew buttermilk), baking powder, olive oil, salt, and fresh chopped herbs.
Mix the dough together with a spoon (no machinery required), and spoon them into the soup. Let simmer until fluffy and set, and you’re good.
Even your kids could help with this one!
While the veggies simmer in their seasoned broth, the dumplings fluff up and fill the pot.
Also, your kitchen will fill up with aromas that will drive everyone crazy and make the tummies rumble.
Unlike the chicken and dumplings you might have had in your youth, which are light colored, the dumplings in this soup will absorb the beautiful vegetable broth and turn the most delectable rustic color.
Reasons to love vegetable-loaded Vegetable Dumpling Soup
- The vegetables in the soup cook down to a tender consistency, so that peeps who don’t like the crunchiness of raw vegetables won’t have issues with texture.
- The tomato paste, smoked paprika, chili powder, and turmeric not only create a gorgeously colored soup, but the flavors are rich and smoky.
- Who can resist fluffy soup dumplings dotted with fresh herbs!
If you’re pressed for time, you can even make the soup ahead: let cool and stash it in the fridge. Then reheat the soup and make the dumplings fresh on the day you serve.
This is winter comfort soup at it’s best! I hope you enjoy. 🙂
Vegetable Dumpling Soup
For the soup*:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 1 leek, sliced into half moons, then chopped (white and light green parts only)
- 1 parsnip, peeled and diced
- 1 carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 small red bell pepper, diced
- 1 small poblano pepper, diced
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 4 ounces cremini or button mushrooms, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped broccoli stems**
- 1 small sweet potato, diced***
- 1 small fennel, anise bulb, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 4 cups vegetable broth
For the dumplings:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup cashew buttermilk (recipe)
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter or olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh tarragon leaves (or 1 tsp dried)
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley (or 1 tsp dried)
- 2 teaspoons minced chives
Make the soup
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a 4-5 quart Dutch oven or soup pot over medium until shimming. (Tip: A nice wide pot, rather than tall, will give room for lots of dumplings.) Add all of the soup vegetables (through the garlic) to the pot. Saute until the veggies are tender, about 12-15 minutes.
- Scootch the veggies to one side of the pot, and the remaining tablespoon of olive oil the cleared space. Spoon the tomato paste, spices, and salt, over the broth and stir in place to create a fragrant paste. Then mix into the vegetables.
- Add the broth, and increase heat to medium-high. Bring the soup to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to medium-low to maintain an active simmer.
Make the dumplings
- While the soup simmers, add the flour, baking powder and salt to a medium mixing bowl. Stir well to combine.
- Pour the cashew buttermilk into a small microwaveable bowl, along with the butter or oil. Heat for 30 seconds.
- Add the buttermilk to the flour, along with the herbs, and stir until the dough is shaggy. Don't over-mix.
- Spoon about a tablespoon of dough into the soup. The dough ball might look small, but remember they'll expand (and you want them to fit on a dinner spoon anyway). Continue adding dough balls, leaving a little space in between, until the surface of the soup is covered. (You might not use all of the dough.)
- Let the dumplings cook for 15 minutes in the simmering soup, and then use a spoon to flip each of them over. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes more.
- Garnish the soup with additional fresh herbs, if desired, and serve.