Looking for the perfect way to cool off, detox, and reset your body? This tasty cold cucumber soup with fresh herbs and toasted walnuts will do the trick! Think of this as a cucumber gazpacho with a cool, creamy yogurt base. This is great to prepare in advance so it has time to chill in the fridge.
This “cucumber gazpacho” makes the perfect start to a summer meal, especially if grilled lamb chops or chicken kabobs are involved! Of course, you can just serve it as an appetizer in little cups or as a light lunch with some crusty bread.
There are a couple of local Persian restaurants we frequent as a family. Without fail, every time we go, we are greeted with the usual freshly baked bread and a platter of feta, walnuts, and fresh olives. And on occasion, during the hot summer months, they may also serve a cup or small bowl a delightful cold cucumber soup called Abdoogh Khiar.
This cucumber soup is so refreshing and has become one of my favorite things to now make at home. It is really simple to make and has some great detox benefits: cucumbers helps cleanse the liver, while, yogurt contributes good-for-your-gut probiotics. So if you’ve had a particularly indulgent weekend, for example, this cucumber soup can be just the way to reset your body and get back on track.
Let’s chat some more about what goes into this Persian-style cucumber soup…
- Cucumber Soup, Persian-Style
- A few Tips for this Cucumber Soup or Cucumber Gazpacho
- Serve this Cucumber Soup as Lunch or Starter
- More Recipes to Try
- Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup
- 5-Minute Cold Cucumber Soup
- Cold cucumber soup without the wait
- Cucumber soup with buttermilk
- Serve right away or save
- Cold Cucumber Dill Soup
Cucumber Soup, Persian-Style
In this cucumber soup recipe, yogurt and ice water make the soup base in which finely chopped English cucumber, fresh herbs, and toasted walnuts are stirred.
I talked about English cucumbers in my earlier cucumber salad post, but as a refresher here, English cucumbers are also known as hot house cucumbers. They are longer cucumbers that are seedless, slightly sweeter, and have a much thinner skin that other varieties. That is why the are perfect to use in this cucumber soup.
The flavor and texture of this cucumber soup is what makes it so unique. Our main flavor makers are fresh herbs–a handful of chopped fresh parsley, basil, dill and mint. You can use just a couple of fresh herbs or all four. Then we have toasted walnuts and golden raisins, these bot add substance and great contrast. The finishing touch here is a sprinkle of quality sumac, rounding up this chilled soup with just enough tang.
Some Persian cucumber soup recipes call for rose pedals, those add a beautiful touch, but since I don’t buy them often, I chose to go without.
A few Tips for this Cucumber Soup or Cucumber Gazpacho
1. Prefer a smooth, blended cucumber soup? Although I love the texture of this cucumber soup, and I love that one can discern its elements from the tiny chopped cucumbers to nutty walnuts and a little raisins, I know some prefer a perfectly smooth soup. For that, all you need to do is blend the yogurt with the cucumbers, and chopped herbs in a food processor. Use a little bit of ice water, not too much, and add as needed. Hold the walnuts and raisins to top the soup as garnish.
2. Allow time for the soup to chill. This soup is best prepared at least 1 hour in advance and chilled in the fridge. You can put it in a large glass bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap or an airtight container.
3. Which cucumbers to use? As mentioned earlier, the best option is English cucumbers which are seedless and have a thinner skin. If you end up using slicing cucumber (the ones with the dark and waxy thick skin), start by peeling them, then remove the seeds and chop from there.
4. Flavor variations. I use four different herbs in this cucumber soup–parsley, basil, dill, and mint. You can use only couple of these herbs, if you like. And you can also add some chopped chives.
5. How long will this keep? This cucumber soup will keep well for a couple of days refrigerated in an air-tight glass container
Serve this Cucumber Soup as Lunch or Starter
If you make this chilled soup for a light lunch, you should be able to easily serve four people. Just add some good crusty bread to go along!
Want to serve it to a larger crowd as a starter? A fun way to do this is to serve it in smaller glasses to kick-start a summer dinner! This goes with many Mediterranean entrees from kabobs or Souvlaki to lamb burgers, baked salmon, or even moussaka!
More Recipes to Try
Spanish Tomato Gazpacho Soup
Mediterranean Bean Soup with Tomato Pesto
Italian Baked Chicken
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Tasty cold cucumber soup with fresh herbs and toasted walnuts will do the trick! Think of this as a cucumber gazpacho with a cool, creamy yogurt base. This is great to prepare in advance so it has time to chill in the fridge. The perfect start to a summer meal like chicken kabobs or grilled lamb chops (more ideas up in the post.)
- 1/2 cup walnut hearts, toasted and finely chopped
- 2 cups plain yogurt (not Greek yogurt)
- 1 1/2 cup ice water
- 1/2 to 3/4 of a seedless English cucumber, finely chopped (about 1 to 1 1/2 cups chopped), plus a few cucumber slices for serving
- 1 cup chopped fresh herbs (parsley, basil, dill, mint)
- 1/2 cup gold raisins
- 3/4 tsp sumac, more for later
- In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt and iced water. Stir in finely chopped cucumbers, herbs, raisins, and toasted walnuts. Season with salt and sumac. Cover and chill for about one hour.
- When ready, divide chilled cucumber soup into four serving bowls. Sprinkle more sumac on top and add a few cucumber slices to each bowl. Enjoy with your favorite toasted bread or pita.
- Cook’s Tip: Allow about 1 hour of inactive time for chilling.
- Cook’s Tip: If you need to toast the walnut hearts, heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread walnuts on a baking sheet, toast in oven for 10 minutes or so, until fragrant. Remove from heat and let cool, then chop finely to use for this recipe.
- Leftovers? Keep leftovers refrigerated in an airtight container for a couple of days or so.
- Recommended for this recipe: All-natural ground sumac.
- SAVE! Create your own 3-pack or 6-pack of our premium all-natural and organic spices.
- Visit our shop to browse our spices, olive oils and bundles!
- Category: Soup
- Method: Chilled
- Cuisine: Persian
Keywords: Cucumber Soup, Chilled Cucumber Soup, Persian Yogurt Cucumber Soup
*This post originally appeared on The Mediterranean Dish in 2017 and has been recently updated with new media and information for readers’ benefit.
This Lebanese chilled cucumber soup is made with tangy yogurt seasoned with fresh lemon juice, mint and garlic then finished with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
As you’ve probably noticed, we eat a lot of yogurt in our house every week. My kids love it, I love it and my husband loves it so I was beyond excited when my dear friends at the American Dairy Association asked me to participate in their Dairy Fuel for Back-to-School Recipe Exchange.
With two growing boys, children’s nutrition is very much on of mind these days so I thought I would share a few fun facts:
- Milk is the No. 1 food source of calcium, vitamin D and potassium in children’s diets.
- Dairy foods are a tasty, convenient and cost-effective way to power up with protein throughout the day. On average, one serving of milk, cheese or yogurt provides eight grams of high quality protein.
- Kids who drink milk when they are young are more likely to drink milk as adults. Lifelong milk drinking is linked to stronger bones, a healthier heart and less chance of developing diabetes.
- By enjoying 3 servings of low fat or fat-free milk, yogurt or cheese every day as part of an overall healthy diet, families, especially children and teens in their peak bone-building years, can help reduce the risk of osteoporosis later in life.
This Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup was inspired by my toddler’s favorite Lebanese dish of all time: Cucumber Laban. A recipe from my childhood, I still remember my Aunt Paula bringing it over to my mom’s house and the intoxicating aromas of fresh garlic and tons of mint. I craved it during both pregnancies and I am convinced that is why my boys love it to this day.
Ready in just 5 minutes, this soup is the ideal busy weeknight side dish. We love serving it with Slow Cooked Lebanese Green Beans and Beef or Beef Kafta Patties. You can eat it room temperature right when you make it or prepare it earlier in the day and chill until dinnertime. Not only is it protein-packed but this savory recipe is a great way to sneak in that third serving of dairy at the end of the day.
Your spoon is waiting.
Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup
This Lebanese chilled cucumber soup is made with tangy yogurt seasoned with fresh lemon juice, mint and garlic then finished with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. 4 from 5 votes Course: Soup Cuisine: Lebanese Keyword: yogurt soup Prep Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 10 minutes Servings: 6 Calories: 108kcal Author: Liz Della Croce
- 32 ounces plain low fat yogurt
- 1 medium cucumber peeled and grated reserving a bit for garnish
- 1 juice of lemon
- 3 tablespoons dried mint
- 2 cloves garlic grated
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil garnish
- In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt with grated cucumber, lemon juice, dried mint, grated garlic and salt.
- Serve immediately or chill soup for 2 hours or up to overnight.
- Divide between six bowls and top with reserved cucumber and drizzle each bowl with a teaspoon of olive oil.
Calories: 108kcal | Carbohydrates: 9.2g | Protein: 4.9g | Fat: 5.6g | Saturated Fat: 1.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4.3g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 462mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 8.1g
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5-Minute Cold Cucumber Soup
This cold cucumber soup is one of my FAVORITE speedy lunches or appetizers on sweltering days! With cucumbers, buttermilk, jalapeño, herbs and lemon juice, it’s a vivacious, healthy meal that will chill things down during the dog days of summer.
Cold cucumber soup without the wait
Unlike most chilled soups, which require hours of refrigeration before eating, this cucumber soup can be served straight out of the blender. That means you’re just minutes away from one of the most refreshing soups on the planet! The recipe comes from my first Bluprint class, Make the Most of Your Blender. The trick is to use cold ingredients straight from the fridge. All you do is throw everything in the Vitamix or blender, and let it do its thing. Once it’s creamy and smooth, pour the soup into bowls and top it with drizzle of good quality olive oil and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt (the salt is optional, but it provides a lovely crunch and pop of flavor).
Cucumber soup with buttermilk
This soup gets creaminess and body from buttermilk. Buttermilk is a low-fat cultured milk that I love to use in biscuits and dressings (like the creamy Greek dressing in this recipe). If you don’t have it, you can use a mix of half plain yogurt and half milk, or you can use kefir.
Serve right away or save
While this chilled cucumber soup is delicious straight from the blender, you can also store it for up to 1 day. Pack it up for a healthy lunch on the go, or serve it as an elegant first course at dinner! Just be sure to blend it briefly before serving, as the soup will separate in the fridge.
For another summertime Vitamix favorite, don’t miss these easy homemade Blizzards!
Put your blender to work this summer for things other than smoothies! My Bluprint class features a ton of other blender and Vitamix recipes, from pancakes and crepes, to a frozen watermelon drink/dessert that will blow you away, to homemade blueberry jam and even ice cream.
You’re just minutes away from one of the most refreshing soups on the planet! Unlike most chilled soups, which require hours of refrigeration before eating, this 5-minute cucumber soup can be served straight out of the blender. All you do is throw everything into the blender or Vitamix, and let it do its thing. The key is to make sure that your cucumbers and buttermilk are cold (coming straight out of the refrigerator) before beginning. Prep Time5 mins Total Time5 mins Course: Soup Cuisine: American Servings: 4 Author: Nicki Sizemore | From Scratch Fast
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- ½ jalapeño pepper, seeds and ribs removed, coarsely chopped
- 2 small green onions, coarsely chopped
- 2 pounds seedless (English) cucumbers (about 2 large cucumbers), coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped dill, plus additional for garnish
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Champagne vinegar
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus additional for serving
- Flaky sea salt for serving, optional
- Place the buttermilk, garlic cloves, jalapeño, green onions, cucumbers, dill, lemon juice, Champagne vinegar and sugar in a blender. Season with salt and pepper. Blend on high until smooth.
- Add the olive oil and blend until combined. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
- Serve immediately or chill for up to 1 day. Drizzle each bowl with a bit of extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with flaky sea salt before serving.
Make it Ahead: The soup can be refrigerated for up to 1 day. Blend it briefly to reincorporate before serving. Tips:
- If you’re serving this soup right away, make sure that all of your fresh ingredients are cold, straight from the refrigerator.
- If you don’t have buttermilk you can use 1/2 cup plain yogurt and 1/2 cup milk instead, or you can use kefir.
- Feel free to swap out the dill for other tender herbs, such as basil and/or chervil.
- Drizzle the soup with the best quality olive oil you have. A sprinkle of flaky sea salt adds a burst of flavor and crunch, but it’s optional.
- While this chilled cucumber soup is delicious straight from the blender, you can also store it for up to 1 day. Pack it up for a healthy lunch on the go, or serve it as an elegant first course at dinner! Just be sure to blend it briefly before serving, as the soup will separate in the fridge.
I’d love to hear what you’re cooking, and I’m happy to answer any questions! #FromScratchFast
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Cold Cucumber Dill Soup
- In a large blender, combine the cucumbers, parsley, dill, and mint. Add the lemon juice, almond milk, and coconut milk. Puree until smooth.
- Garnish with seedless cucumber slices and fresh dill. Serve chilled.
Chef’ Katie Simmons’ Tips
- Quicker chilling: Add a handful of ice cubes while pureeing the soup for quicker chilling.
- Peeling and seeding cucumbers: Use a good vegetable peeler to peel the waxy skin off the cucumbers. Removing the skin makes for a smoother, creamier soup. Halve the cucumbers. Use a large spoon to scoop out the seeds. These can be a bit rough on the tummy, so it’s best to remove. (No, you don’t need a fancy kitchen gadget to do this.)
- Coconut milk alternatives: You can substitute 2 medium avocadoes or 1 cup cashews, soaked overnight.
- Elegant presentation: For a fancy presentation, serve in a chilled wine glass. You can serve as an appetizer at a dinner party by pouring the soup into small, chilled shot glasses.
Classically-trained Chef Katie Simmons is a personal chef in Chicago. Her journey to cooking has been a winding path from Kentucky to backpacking in New Zealand through culinary school at Kendall College and working for Whole Foods Market. Her own frustrations of being an overweight fitness professional finally led her to embrace a plant-based, vegan diet.