Cucumber, Yogurt, and Herb Soup

published Jun 18, 2022
summer
Cucumber Soup Recipe

A rich, creamy and refreshing cucumber, yougurt and herb soup

Serves4

Makes3 3/4 cup

Prep15 minutes

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cucumber soup in bowl with olive oil and herbs
Credit: Kelli Foster

One way I love to beat the summer heat is with cold, refreshing food. And cucumbers are the coolest of the cool. Their refreshing flavor profile is the reason that gazpacho feels so fresh. In this cold soup recipe, I let cucumbers be the star. With a handful of ingredients and a blender, you can whip up this soup in 15 minutes.

This soup doesn’t require any cooking. Instead, I gently bring in additional flavor with tender herbs like chives (it’s less harsh than raw onion!) and dill. I use English or Persian cucumbers because they are seedless and have tender exteriors. I double down on the soup’s coolness with the addition of Greek yogurt for some tang, and I balance all those flavors out with lemon juice, salt, and white pepper.

When developing this recipe, I could’ve stopped there, but I couldn’t help but feel like it needed more. Turns out rice vinegar adds the perfect amount of sweetness without overpowering the soup. For extra body, I took a cue from the chilled cucumber and tahini soup recipe from Sami Tamimi and Tara Wiley’s cookbook, Falastin. While tahini is a main flavor profile in their recipe, I use it to just bond all the flavors together. The result: a really well-balanced soup worthy of your summer repertoire.

Credit: Kelli Foster

Tips for Making Cucumber Soup

  • Scoop out the watery center of the cucumber. Yes, English and Persian cucumbers are seedless, but the center membranes are filled with water. Scoop it out and use just the cucumber flesh for maximum flavor.
  • Use your favorite tender herbs. I use dill and chives but you easily substitute herbs like tarragon, chervil, and parsley. Just be sure to use tender herbs over woody herbs (like thyme and rosemary).
  • Switch up the topping. In this recipe, I used chopped cucumber pieces and herbs to bring in additional flavor and texture. Feel free to add whatever you’d like. Toasted seeds or dukkah would be delicious.

Cucumber Soup Recipe

A rich, creamy and refreshing cucumber, yougurt and herb soup

Prep time 15 minutes

Makes 3 3/4 cup

Serves 4

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 1/2

    bunch fresh dill

  • 1

    large bunch fresh chives

  • 1/2

    bunch fresh parsley (about 15 sprigs)

  • 2

    medium English cucumbers (about 8 ounces each)

  • 1

    medium lemon

  • 1

    clove garlic

  • 1 1/4 cups

    low fat or full-fat plain Greek yogurt

  • 1/4 cup

    olive oil, plus more for serving

  • 2 tablespoons

    tahini

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    ground white pepper

  • 1 tablespoon

    rice vinegar

  • Flaky salt (optional)

Instructions

  1. Prepare the following, adding each to a blender as you complete it: Pick fresh dill fronds until you have 2 tablespoons. Coarsely chop fresh chives until you have 1/4 cup. Pick the leaves from about 10 fresh parsley sprigs and coarsely chop until you have 2 tablespoons.

  2. Trim the ends from 2 medium English cucumbers. Cut in half crosswise, then cut each piece in half lengthwise. Scoop out the watery centers with a small spoon and discard. Finely chop the cucumber until you have 1/2 cup and refrigerate for garnish. Coarsely chop the remaining cucumbers and add it to the blender.

  3. Juice 1 medium lemon until you have 2 tablespoons. Add the juice, 1 garlic clove, 1 1/4 cups plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons tahini, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon white pepper to the blender. Blend until the mixture is creamy and smooth, 45 seconds to 1 minute. Place the blender in the refrigerator (or you can transfer the soup to a bowl) and chill for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

  4. When ready to serve, pick and coarsely chop fresh dill fronds, parsley leaves, and chives until you have 1 tablespoon. Add 1 tablespoon rice vinegar to the soup and stir the soup to combine. Pour into serving bowls and garnish with a swirl of olive oil, the reserved cucumber, herbs, and a pinch of flaky salt.

Recipe Notes

Storage: The soup can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Stir before serving.