Irish potato soup uses simple ingredients, which in years gone by were easily available in rural Irish kitchens. When I say this soup is easy to make, I really mean it. There are only seven ingredients – potato, onion, butter, stock, cream, and salt and pepper to taste.
My recipe today is for a very traditional Irish potato soup. You may be more familiar with an Irish potato and leek soup. But many Irish housewives skipped the leeks and made a simple potato soup whenever the cupboard was relatively bare.
Butter and cream were consistently available on dairy farms, and if potatoes were not homegrown, a “four stone bag of potatoes” was always on the shopping list.
And so here’s my recipe for a traditional Irish potato soup.
Ingredients for Traditional Irish Potato Soup:
Here’s a quick list of ingredients. Check out the printable recipe at the bottom of this post for exact quantities. There you can toggle between US and Metric measurements.
- chicken stock or vegetable stock
- salt and pepper to season
- parsley to garnish (optional)
Cooking Directions for Potato Soup:
The first step is to prepare the vegetables.
Peel and dice the onion into small pieces. Peel the potatoes and dice them into pieces about 1/4 inch cubed. You don’t have to be precise, since the soup is eventually puréed.
Melt the butter in a large soup pot and toss in the diced onions. Cook for about a minute.
Add the potatoes and mix well to coat with butter. Cover the pot and sweat the vegetables for 10 minutes over medium heat. Shake the pot every few minutes to ensure the vegetables don’t stick. Do not brown the onions.
You can learn more about sweating vegetables in my soup making tips post.
Add the chicken stock and bring to boiling point. Lower the heat and simmer the soup for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
If you wish you can use vegetable stock for this soup to create a vegetarian soup. It’s also gluten free, since no flour is used to thicken this soup.
Turn off the heat and allow the soup to cool, before using an immersion blender to purée it. If you don’t have an immersion blender you can whizz it in batches in a blender or liquidizer.
In years gone by, there were no hand gadgets to help make a smooth soup. Back then the soup would have been allowed to cool, then passed through a sieve and smushed to make it smooth. This process may have needed to be repeated a few times to make the soup as smooth as possible.
Stir in the cream and season with salt and pepper to taste. Reheat the soup to serve.
I like a good sprinkling of pepper on this soup, and a little bit of parsley is a lovely garnish.
I hope you enjoy this easy soup. It has a very creamy texture, and is not a gritty potato soup. Brown bread is the perfect accompaniment to a good bowl of Irish soup.
Printable Potato Soup Recipe:
Here’s the printable recipe using American cup and Metric measurements. Simple click the tab you prefer, just below the ingredient list. You can print either version.
Traditional Irish Potato Soup
- 1 large onion
- 3 medium potatoes
- 2 ounces butter
- 4 cups chicken stock use vegetable stock for a vegetarian soup
- 1/2 cup cream
- salt and pepper to season
- parsley to garnish
- Peel and dice the onion and potatoes.
- Melt the butter in a large saucepan.
- Add the onion and cook for one minute coating completely in butter.
- Add the potatoes and toss well with the onion and melted butter.
- Cover the saucepan and sweat the vegetables for 10 minutes, shaking the pot every few minutes to prevent sticking.
- Pour in the stock and simmer the soup for 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
- Turn off the heat and allow to cool, Purée the soup using a hand held blender or in batches in a blender.
- Add the cream and mix well together.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Reheat to serve, and garnish with a swirl of cream and parsley.
Happy soup making to all!
Slán agus beannacht!
(Goodbye and blessings)
Irish American Mom
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