5 Ingredients or Fewer

Really Easy Roasted Pepper Soup

February  7, 2022
4.7
26 Ratings
Photo by Rocky Luten. Prop Stylist: Molly Fitzsimons. Food Stylist: Ericka Martins.
  • Prep time 25 minutes
  • Cook time 50 minutes
  • makes scant 2 quarts
Author Notes

Mostly peppers, this minimalist soup comes together with just a handful of ingredients. Besides the namesake ingredient, all you need are onions, nuts, feta, and paprika (plus staples like oil and salt). No tomatoes, no carrots, no herbs, no garlic, no broth. While most roasted pepper soups start with red peppers, I’ve found that orange ones taste just as wonderful—and, if you ask me, the pumpkin color is even prettier. Whichever you pick, there is no peeling needed. After chopping and roasting the peppers, the sorta-charred skins get puréed with everything else (and no, you don’t need a high-speed blender—I don’t have one either). Peppers and nuts are a magical combo, beloved in many dishes from Syrian muhammara to Spanish romesco, and this soup hinges on that sweet-earthy contrast. Depending on what’s around, use walnuts or cashews, which are both soft enough to be briefly soaked, then blended into a silky milk, no straining required. The feta is the wild card. A creamy slab gets roasted with the peppers and onions. Meanwhile, the brine bolsters the nut milk, adding savoriness and saltiness, much like a broth. (If you can’t find feta in brine, you can swap in lightly salted water.) Garnishes are optional, depending on your energy. Most days, I just dig in with a hunk of bread alongside. But if you’re feeling peppy, play around with the ingredients we already use: Try a drizzle of olive oil, plain or paprika-infused (more on that here); crumbled feta, plain or roasted; toasted nuts; or mix and match. —Emma Laperruque

Watch This Recipe
Really Easy Roasted Pepper Soup
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) chopped walnuts or cashews
  • 6 medium (2¾ pounds) red or orange bell peppers
  • 3 medium (1½ pounds) yellow onions
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 4 ounces feta, halved, ½ cup brine reserved
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Heat the oven to 425°F. While that’s heating up, add the walnuts to a blender and cover with 1 cup of hot water.
  2. Remove the stems and seeds from the bell peppers, then roughly chop. Divide between 2 rimmed sheet pans. Halve and peel the onions, then roughly chop. Divide between the sheet pans.
  3. On each sheet pan: Generously drizzle with olive oil, lightly season with salt, and sprinkle with the paprika. Use your hands to toss the ingredients on each pan until coated, then evenly spread out.
  4. Roast for 25 minutes. Remove both sheet pans from the oven and use a spatula to shuffle everything around. On one sheet pan, scooch the vegetables to one side, leaving just enough space to add the feta pieces. Drizzle a little olive oil on the feta, flip it over, and then drizzle a little more.
  5. Return the sheet pans to the oven and keep roasting for another 20 to 25 minutes, until the peppers are starting to char, the onions are soft, and the feta is tender. Remove from the oven.
  6. Add ½ cup of feta brine to the blender with the walnuts and blend until smooth as possible, like store-bought nut milk. Add all the peppers and onions, plus whatever spiced oil is left on the pans, and the feta. Blend until smooth. Add 1 cup of water and blend again. Taste. More water for a looser soup? More salt or paprika? Adjust as needed.
  7. Heat up however much you want to eat now in the microwave or on the stove. Then divide up the rest into airtight containers to refrigerate or freeze until later.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Terri
    Terri
  • Stacey E. Singleton
    Stacey E. Singleton
  • Alek Meyer
    Alek Meyer
  • Deborah Bingham
    Deborah Bingham
  • Christine Carlson Whittington
    Christine Carlson Whittington
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.

17 Reviews

ReneeAR January 30, 2023
This was amazing on a stormy Sunday evening. I weighed the produce because not everything is the same size. We made our own "feta brine" so it wasn't too salty (extra fine sea salt in hot water) and added chili oil for serving. The chili oil added an extra zip to it. Our blender wasn't big enough for the added cup of water so we put it in a pan on the stove and added it then. One of our favs now.
 
Suzanne S. January 18, 2023
I made this soup yesterday and both my husband and I are feeling ill this morning. I think the addition of the feta brine was the problem. Will try again but will skip the feta.
 
Beth L. November 19, 2022
I wanted to like this, but 3 onions is 2 too many. My peppers were on the small side, but still, this came out waaayyy too onion-y.
 
Terri July 20, 2022
Are there other cheeses that would work? Sharing with a friend who does not like Feta.
 
Christine C. July 20, 2022
I should think that a mild goat cheese would work if your friend is OK with that.
 
Terri July 15, 2022
I have made this soup so many times since I first discovered the recipe. It is most definitely a favorite! Recently, I was telling someone about the recipe. They asked if I thought they could use a different cheese since they didn’t care for feta? Any recommendations on a substitution that I could share so that they can enjoy this recipe, as well?
 
Linda D. May 19, 2022
A simple and delicious soup. Another winner, Emma, thank you!
 
sarah G. March 9, 2022
excellent soup! i used the 'snack paprika' available here in sweden and had to sautee instead of roast. so easy and everyone loved. good thing i wasn't wearing white pants like emma - things got wild using the immersion blender!
 
Stacey E. March 6, 2022
Equal parts easy and delicious. My favorite recipe combination.
 
Louisa B. March 6, 2022
Roasting the peppers now. A total of 45 minutes at 425 would burn them to a crisp! They are well charred after 25 minutes.
 
Alek M. February 22, 2022
I loved this! My partner is anti-soup as a general rule but gave this recipe a 9/10, admits that "it's really good soup." I don't have enough simple weeknight meals in my roster (everything that felt easy before starting to work in a hospital is pretty daunting now) but I feel like this will be in heavy rotation from now on!
 
Deborah B. February 21, 2022
Great recipe! Different than we expected, and what a nice surprise. Used the tricolor bell peppers from Trader Joe's (3 in a pack - red, yellow, orange), so I figure that's like using all orange peppers. Definitely added water at the end - maybe even more as it cools - and some black pepper and more salt.
 
Christine C. February 19, 2022
The flavor was delicious--lots of umami--but the combination of charred vegetables and walnuts made the color rather unappetizing.
 
Amy February 12, 2022
Tasty! Garnished with parsley for color :) I watched the video after making the soup. I would have cut my pepper pieces bigger and used more oil, since after 25 minutes, one pan was already charred around the edges -- so my feta may not have gotten as melty as it could have. I prefer texture, so next time I'll pulse instead of puree. Thanks for the recipe idea!
 
tanne February 12, 2022
I absolutely love this soup! We’re having it with a crusty Italian bread for dinner tonight, although I keep tasting it to tweak where needed with additional water or salt. I have already had quite a bit in the process - can’t stop myself, it’s so good. I originally planned to only make half the recipe to see how we liked it, but so glad I made the full amount! The only thing I did differently was to shorten the 2nd roasting time to 15 minutes because the vegetables seemed done. Thanks for the delicious recipe!
 
bobbi February 12, 2022
This soup was easy to make and delicious , I substituted Baharat spice for paprika. Gives a more Middleastern flavor.

 
Marcene A. February 10, 2022
We are becoming much less dependent on animal protein and this recipe fits the bill perfectly! I used all red peppers and walnuts. Rather than using two sheet pans, I used parchment paper on one large sheet pan. The pan was very easy to wash, and all ingredients fit very well. The color is sort of a burnt orange. Sprinkling a few green pumpkin seeds and a bit of parsley added needed color. Oh...the taste is beyond wonderful!