French Cabbage Soup ‘Potage au Chou’ – vegan


This rustic soup sounds a little fancier in French than in English but thankfully it tastes just as good in either. An exceedingly simple affair of finely sliced pale winter vegetables in a light vegetable broth, flavoured with herbs and garlic. A great way to use up white cabbage, which I think can often be a difficult vegetable to love but which finds a happy home here.

French Cabbage Soup


2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Onion, finely sliced

2 Stalks of Celery, finely sliced

2 to 3 Cloves of Garlic (or half a bulb, if like me you’re a serious garlic fan), crushed

A quarter of a head of White Cabbage, remove core and slice finely

2 Leeks, finely sliced

2 Pints / 1 Litre of Light Vegetable Stock (I use Marigold Bouillon Powder)

1 Bouquet Garni (eg: a Bay Leaf, a Spring of Rosemary and a Sprig of Thyme, tied together with string)

2 oz Macaroni, or other small pasta (I use wholewheat)


– Heat the oil in a large pan and add all the vegetables.ย Saute for a few minutes then add all the other ingredients.

– Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for around fifteen minutes.

– Remove the bouquet garni, season with salt and pepper and serve with brown bread.

Nice served with a little grated cheese sprinkled over.


15 thoughts on “French Cabbage Soup ‘Potage au Chou’ – vegan

  1. You’ve made cabbage soup look very tasty and inviting with this recipe! Being half Polish, I’m quite used to my Granny making various versions of cabbage soup but I rarely make it myself unless I end up blending it all. In fact, the blending has become a habit I should get out of, as seeing your yummy-looking soup here has reminded me that not all soups need be blended into oblivion! I have a savoy cabbage needing to be used right now, so may have a go with that ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi, thanks for such an interesting comment! I love the different rustic soups you can find throughout Europe and the rest of the world. I’ve not tried making a Polish cabbage soup before, are they always blended? I wonder what seasonings are traditional? I’ll try to find a recipe for one. Hope this alternative recipe works out for you ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I can just imagine how warming and filling this soup is, especially with the addition of macaroni. It could be the perfect dish to serve as supper on a weekday evening.
    I agree with you on the name. The French version sounds far more appealing ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Ha! Yeah, pretty much any rustic continental dish sounds more appealing in the original language ๐Ÿ˜€
      There’s some great European peasant style dishes out there to be plundered by veggies too, often very easily veggified by the leaving out of bacon or similar.
      Thanks for dropping by!

  3. This soup sounds nice and similar to what I cook. White cabbage in soup makes it taste really good. I didn’t understand the de-hearted bit though. I just take out some of the thicker stalks. I like fresh basil in soups and stews now too.

    Thanks for following my blog.

  4. living in central france, we always see handmade signs on the sign of the road right about this time of year inviting people round on sundays to town servings of soupe au chou…but as vegetarians, we can never indulge because of course it’s filled with lots of saucisse or lardon…so i’ve literally never had cabbage soup! (i’m from california…we don’t do cabbage soup there so much). made this last night and tripled the recipe (yes, it’s that time in rural france where we get inundated with the veg from everybody’s potage…i’m not complaining, but it’s great to find a use for 6 poireaux!)…i didn’t change a thing (except the portions) and it was absolutely delish. thank you so much! now i have 5 jars in the freezer next to my ratatouille for the cool autumn evenings to come!

    • I’m a believer in batch cooking too, my freezer currently has a store of bean patties, lentil ragu, hummus and chilli. I may make some stew and dumplings today too. We grow what I think of as ‘lazy veg’ in the garden and probably have a winter’s worth of marrow, pumpkin and vegetable spaghetti to work our way through. At least they store well! Getting quite cool here in the UK now, a bit of frost on the grass last night. Lovely crisp morning, the light at this time of year is super clear.

      • mmm…bean patties…a good use for that pumpkin (i’m sure you’ve tried something similar) is to sautรฉ it with lots of garlic and some rosemary and then add cooked pasta of your choice for the last few minutes of cooking…this is C’s specialty…so. good.

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