Parsnip soup with pears, ginger and coconut

A slightly sweet, slightly spicy, & delightful parsnip soup.
A mug of soup with a slice of hot buttered toast is a joyously simple autumn lunch.

I really love pears, especially when they’re just at the point of ripeness – soft, fragrant and juicy. DH always claimed not to like pears, and I suspect this was largely because he insisted on eating them when they were unripe. Hard, crunchy and tasteless. No wonder he didn’t like them! I have given him ripe pears since, and he has grudgingly admitted that they’re “OK”. It’s the best I can hope for, I suppose.

Sudden ripeness

I recently bought a bag of 6 rock-hard pears and put them in the fruitbowl. And waited. And waited some more… Then suddenly, I had 6 ripe pears! Six! There’s only so many you can eat at one sitting, and before you know it, they’re TOO ripe. Grainy. Mushy and brown. Ugh.

Soup to the rescue 

I’d eaten three of the pears, and was trying to think of a way to quickly see off the others, when I had the idea for this parsnip soup. I don’t usually make soup, but my parents were visiting and they are keen soup eaters. I think my Dad has soup twice daily. A good excuse to make soup.

The ingredients list is pleasingly short, and the soup was very easy to make. It is slightly sweet, slightly spicy, and delightfully autumnal. A mug of parsnip soup with a slice of hot buttered toast is a fabulous lunch.

parsnip and pear soup.

Last minute coconut

I threw in the creamed coconut at the last minute, basically because it seemed like a good idea at the time. It was. It adds just a hint of coconut flavour, and a lovely velvety texture. I used one of those 50g sachets you can get in boxes of 4, which I always think are really handy. I usually have some in the pantry cupboard for just such eventualities as this.

All-in-all, a terrific way to use up ripe pears! This made enough for four generous portions of parsnip soup.

A slightly sweet, slightly spicy, & delightful parsnip soup. A mug of soup with a slice of hot buttered toast is a joyously simple autumn lunch.

A slightly sweet, slightly spicy, & delightfully seasonal parsnip soup. A mug of this with a slice of hot buttered toast is a joyously simple autumn lunch.

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Parsnip soup with pears, ginger and coconut

Course Soup, Starter
Cuisine Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword coconut, parsnip, pear
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 367kcal
Author Helen


  • 1 medium-large onion
  • 800 g parsnips (28 oz.)
  • 2 medium pears
  • 15 g fresh root ginger (3-3½ tbsp when chopped)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 400 ml vegetable stock (1¾ cups)
  • 50 g creamed coconut (scant ¼ cup)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Peel and dice the onion. Peel the parsnips and cut into chunky pieces. Peel & core the pears and cut into chunks. Peel the root ginger and chop coarsely.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the chopped onion for 2-3 minutes. Add the parsnips and ginger and cook for a further 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until just starting to colour.
  • Add the pears to the pan, together with the vegetable stock and 250ml boiling water. Stir well, bring to a gentle simmer, and cook on a low heat for around 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat, add the creamed coconut and blend the soup to a smooth consistency. You may need to add a little more water if the soup is very thick.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve.


Creamed coconut is NOT the same as coconut cream. It is a solid at room temperature and is usually sold in blocks or sachets. It will melt when added to the hot soup.
Approx. per serving: 367 calories, 14g fat, 4g protein, 61g carbs

For more delicious soup recipes check out comforting thick onion soup with barley and melty cheese, delicious vegan parsnip and pea soup with fennel seeds, and wonderfully filling tomato soup with gnocchi and aubergine croutons.

parsnip and pear soup.

I’m entering this into No Croutons Required, a vegetarian soup & salad challenge hosted by Jacqueline at Tinned Tomatoes and Lisa at Lisa’s Kitchen, and Simple and in Season, organised by Ren at


  1. Thanks Jac – it was lovely. Great roundup! Lots of fab ideas 🙂

  2. Nice combination of flavours and it looks so creamy. Thanks for linking up to No Croutons required. The roundup is now live.

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