Learn how to make this delicious Summer Lettuce Soup, an easy recipe for warm days. Made with sour cream and egg mixture, this soup is a great option for using leftover lettuce and incorporating more greens into your diet.
What in the world is that? I heard that question too many times to even bother explaining.
This soup might sound like a boring and bland dish. Who knew that you can actually even cook with lettuce or turn it into a soup? And, is it good? The answer? It is pretty amazing!
With the right spices and ingredients, you can make an awesome soup that will make you feel good about yourself, use leftover lettuce that you would throw away otherwise, and feed your family a meal that is healthy and delicious.
Growing up in Eastern Europe, this soup was very popular during the summer. Despite the mild taste of the lettuce, the soup has a lot of flavors.
There are other vegetables involved, like onions, celery, and sometimes potatoes. Garlic is a mandatory ingredient that brings the soup to the next level.
Lettuce soup is also versatile. You can make it vegan, just using vegetables, but you can also add smoked ham or bacon and make it a little bit more substantial.
The traditional way of finishing this soup is to add a mixture of tempered eggs and sour cream to the hot broth, in order to make it creamier and more fulfilling. Keep reading so you can learn how to do this.
Next time when you find a bunch of lettuce in the refrigerator that everyone pushes away, you know what to do with it! Lettuce soup is the best!
The most important ingredients, besides lettuce, that one shouldn't mess with are garlic, vinegar, and dill. They are the ones that make lettuce soup what it is.
This soup is also a great recipe for using up wilted lettuce. If it is a little bit sad, use it. If it is brown, throw it away.
You will also need the following:
For specific amounts, please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of the article.
- Onion- Any kind will be OK. In the summer, I like to use green onions, but yellow or white onions are good too.
- Green Celery
- Ham- chopped ham is used for this recipe, but you can use bacon instead. If you use bacon, cook it separately and add it to the soup when serving.
- Vegetable stock - chicken stock or just water will work as well.
- Sour cream
How to make this recipe
Step 1. Chop the veggies and the ham.
Step 2. Make the soup.
In a soup pot, heat the vegetable oil on medium heat. Saute ham, onions, celery, and garlic until the onion becomes translucent.
Add lettuce and vegetable stock and simmer until the vegetables are tender and the lettuce is soft, for about 30 minutes.
Step 3. Eggs and sour cream mixture:
The soup is finished with this mixture of eggs and sour cream, but before we pour it in the soup, we need to temper the eggs.
How to temper eggs:
In a large bowl, beat the eggs until smooth. Gradually whisk in the sour cream until you obtain a creamy paste.
Grab a ladle and slowly pour hot broth over the eggs. Whisk constantly, making sure the eggs stay smooth. This is called tempering the eggs.
It might sound like a fancy term for messing with eggs and hot liquids, but tempering eggs actually means that we slowly warm the eggs before introducing them to a recipe so they mix smoothly without curdling.
Step 4. Finish the soup.
Pour this liquid over the soup and bring it back to hot without boiling it. Taste for salt and pepper. Remove it from the heat. Add the chopped dill or the dried version.
Add vinegar and stir again.
Serve the soup warm or cold with bread croutons. It is a great recipe for hot days.
What kind of lettuce to use
Romaine, Boston, iceberg, or butter lettuce are all good options for this soup.
May I add other vegetables?
Yes, you can add other vegetables. I sometimes add one or two potatoes and a carrot. You can even throw a handful of rice in it and skip the cream and the eggs.
As I was telling you before, this soup is versatile and easy to make. This is a great opportunity to use vegetables that otherwise would end up in the garbage.
Enjoy, and let me know in the comments what you think about this soup! Happy cooking!
Other soups to love
Summer Lettuce Soup
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 onion chopped (or 3-4 green onions)
- 2 celery stalks chopped
- 5-6 garlic cloves minced
- 1 lettuce head chopped (Romaine, Iceberg, Butter or Boston lettuce)
- 4 ounces ham chopped small (or bacon)
- 8 cups of low sodium vegetable stock
- 1-2 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 1 bunch of fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dry dill chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3-4 Tablespoons vinegar or lemon juice added to the pot
- For Serving: Bread croutons saltines or slices of bread
- In a soup pot, heat the vegetable oil on medium heat.
- Add chopped ham, onions, celery, and garlic and saute them in the oil until they develop the flavor and the onion becomes translucent for about 15 minutes.
- Add chopped lettuce and stir it together with the other vegetables.
- Add the vegetable stock and simmer the soup until the vegetables are tender and the lettuce is soft, for about 30 minutes.
Tempering the eggs and sour cream:
- In a medium bowl, beat the eggs. Add the sour cream and whisk to obtain a smooth paste. Grab a ladle and pour slowly hot soup over the eggs and sour cream. Whisk constantly, making sure the eggs stay smooth.
- Pour this liquid over the soup and bring it back to hot without boiling it.
- Taste for salt and pepper. Remove it from the heat.
- Add the chopped fresh dill or the dried version.
- Add the vinegar and stir again to combine.
- Serve the soup warm or cold. Great for hot days.