How to Make Roast Parsnip And Italian Cheese Soup

Warm Roast Parsnip and Italian Cheese soup with spoon on wooden table.
Copyright: rafaelbenari

A roast parsnip and Italian cheese soup is a great way to make use of winter vegetables especially that great bag of parsnips left over from Christmas or some other occasion.

Serves 6. Preparation time: 15 minutes and cooking time is 10 minutes.


  • 750g medium-large parsnips
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 50g parmesan or grana padano, grated
  • 50g butter
  • 200g onions or shallots, chopped but not too finely, could be wedges if you want to roast them with the parsnips because you have that option!
  • 1.5-2 tbsp plain flour
  • 1.5 – 2 litres hot chicken stock
  • 1-2 slices of pancetta bacon (chopped into slivers for  – garnishing – optional).
  • parsnip crisps for garnishing
  • 3 tbsp double cream, with some extra for garnishing with
  • 1 tbsp snipped fresh chives and a handful of chopped parsley. 


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/400°F/gas mark 6.
  2. Cut the parsnips in half lengthways. Drop into a pan of boiling salted water, bring back to the boil and cook for 3 minutes, then drain.
  3. Put the parsnips into a roasting tin and toss with the olive oil. Arrange flat-side up and sprinkle with a little of the cheese. You can add the onions at this point if they are chopped into segments.
  4. Roast for 30-35 minutes, until light golden. Remove and cut into chunky pieces.
  5. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the onions and shallots if this is your preferred approach. Fry gently for 10 minutes, until soft.
  6. Stir in the flour, then gradually add the stock and the roasted parsnips (and roast onions naturally). Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
  7. With a hand-held blender, whizz-up until smooth, or transfer to a food processor, in batches, and macerate until a smooth liquid puree is formed.
  8. Return the soup to the same pan and bring back to a gentle simmer for 5 minutes or until hot. Stir in the double cream, the remaining cheese and season to taste.
  9. Spoon the soup into warmed-up bowls. Add a  swirl of cream, snipped fresh chives and some parsley if available, some pancetta slices and a few parsnip crisps if still available from the party.
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