Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Bacon, Mustard-Potato Croutons + Lemon-Chive Oil

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cauliflower soup with crispy pancetta, mustard-potato croutons + chive oil | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife | dairy-free and vegetarian options

cauliflower soup with crispy bacon, roasted mustard-potato croutons + lemon-chive oil

Let’s get a couple of things out of the way real quick. First, there is a dairy free option to this cauliflower soup, see below. Second, there is a vegetarian option, also see below. Third, this cauliflower soup is EASY. It was born out of my current obsession with cauliflower puree. I want it beneath everything. I eat it cold. Hot. As a bed for salmon. You name it, I’m shoving it in some form in my mouth. But I wanted to make it a meal. And I recently saw this thing for mustard croutons with cauliflower soup and I was like WHAT? Must have. But, I’ve been trying to lighten up a touch and someone recently mentioned mustard roasted potatoes and I think you get where all of this is headed. Suddenly I’m thinking of nothing else but cauliflower soup with mustard-potato croutons.

I took the core of my dirty baked potato soup and morphed it into this cauliflowersoup. So if you liked that, I think you’ll be equally satisfied. Cauliflower is low glycemic (yay, more room for cookies). Milk, yogurt and cheese add a velvety texture + protein. Bacon + potato croutons lend us some crunch and jazz hands. Don’t forget the splash of lemon-chive oil. Yum. Could you scream over these photos? I’m dying.

Ok. Let’s do this.

Before We Get Started:

  • Dairy Free. You can COMPLETELY omit all of the dairy and you will still have a delicious cauliflower soup. I wanted some protein and more deliciousness, so dairy it is. But do what feels right.
  • Meat Free. I love a smokey start to a creamy soup. Hence the bacon. It adds flavor to the soup’s base and then we top it again with the crispy bacon chards for an added salted bite. Yes please. Omit the meat + use veggie broth and you’re in vegetarian business.
  • Meat Options. Both bacon and pancetta work great… Crispy prosciutto? I wouldn’t kick him out of bed.
  • Cheese Please. I like the bite that parmesan offers, but I’m equally thinking gruyere would be fun. What about a white Irish cheddar? I love when recipes are fully customizable. Consider this the Spice Girl (or Village People) of soups. There’s something for everyone. Don’t be afraid to experiment and make it yours. Really.
  • Wine. Yes, I think this begs for it. If I had my way in the world I would pick one from here. I’ll take a case with some straws on the side. Thanks.

cauliflower soup with crispy pancetta, mustard-potato croutons + chive oil | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife | dairy-free and vegetarian options

cauliflower soup with crispy pancetta, mustard-potato croutons + chive oil | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife | dairy-free and vegetarian options

cauliflower soup with crispy pancetta, mustard-potato croutons + chive oil | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife | dairy-free and vegetarian options

cauliflower soup with crispy bacon, roasted mustard-potato croutons + lemon-chive oil

Serves 6


Lemon + Chive Oil

  • ½ cup sunflower seed oil, or other neutral vegetable oil
  • 4 chives
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

Roasted Mustard-Potato Croutons

  • One cup potatoes (I recommend red or russet), unpeeled, small dice
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoon grain-y mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • Pepper to taste

For the Cauliflower Soup

  • 3 pieces of pancetta or bacon, cut into thin 1-inch long strips
  • 1 medium yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 stalks, celery, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 48 ounces (6 cups) chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 medium heads of cauliflower, stems removed and each chopped into 6-8 chunks
  • 1/2 cup nonfat milk
  • ½ cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
  • 4 ounces gruyere/parmesan, shredded and separated into 3 and 1 ounce piles
  • Salt and pepper (at least a teaspoon of each)
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 bunch of chives for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Make sure a rack is in the top third of the oven. Grab a rimmed baking sheet, cover in aluminum foil and spray with nonstick (this last part is optional…but I hate it when food sticks).
  2. Put the chives, oil and the 1/4 teaspoon of salt in a blender and pureé the crap out of it. You really want things well blended. Strain the mixture into a jar and add the lemon zest. Shake it a bit and then set aside for later.
  3. Put the cut potatoes on the covered baking sheet. Drizzle and toss with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Put in the oven for 30 minutes. Occasionally stir, when you feel like it. After 30 minutes drizzle with 1 more tablespoon of oil and toss with the 2 tablespoons of mustard. Throw back in the oven for 5-10 minutes. When done, sprinkle with the salt and they’re done. Set aside. This can (and should) happen concurrently to making the soup. Time is money…and I’m ready to put my feet up. How about you?
  4. Cut the bacon into thin strips (I like to use scissors and cut directly into the pan), and then place in a large dutch oven and sauté over medium heat until nice and crispy.
  5. Once the bacon is crispy and done, set on paper towels to drain. Set aside.
  6. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of bacon grease from the pot.
  7. Add the onions and sauté over medium heat until softened. Stir periodically to make sure they don’t burn and scrape the bottom of the pot to release any yummy flavor bits leftover by the bacon. This should take about 5ish minutes.
  8. Add the celery to the pot and sauté for 3 more minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
  9. Add the stock to the pot, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any brown bits. Then add the cauliflower.
  10. Cover the pot, bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a medium simmer for about 5-10 minutes or until the cauliflower is easily pierced with a fork.
  11. Once you can pierce it easily with a fork, turn the heat off and it’s time to blend the cauliflower soup together.  I use my hand-held immersion blender and blend until everything is pretty smooth; you could also put it in the blender in batches.
  12. With the cauliflower soup over low heat, add the ½ cup each of milk and Greek yogurt, stirring to blend.
  13. Grate 3 ounces of the cheese into the cauliflower soup and stir to melt.
  14. Add the 1 teaspoon of paprika and taste. Where is it at flavor-wise? Now it’s time to add our salt and pepper. True life confession…I add a generous 1 teaspoon of sea salt to this. I’m equally generous with the cracked pepper. Taste again. How are we doing?
  15. You’re ready to eat. Your bowl will need about 1 ½ cups of cauliflower soup, a sprinkling of shredded cheese, 2 teaspoons-ish of chives, a healthy dusting of bacon, those potato croutons and a drizzle of the lemon-chive oil. Soft clothes here we come.

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| cauliflower soup with crispy pancetta, mustard-potato croutons + chive oil | Recipe via DisplacedHousewife | #healthy with zero cream!


Leave a Comment


  • Noemi February 6, 2020 at 9:12 AM

    Oh, Rebecca, I love this soup, I love everything about it! Thank you so much!

  • Asha May 14, 2016 at 4:16 AM

    Oh I love this soup Rebecca. I absolutely love that you have so many flavors going on and it’s so healthy and delicious. I’m loving the chive oil, so delicious and pretty pictures.

  • Laura | Tutti Dolci May 12, 2016 at 8:32 PM

    This soup looks so, so good and I love that finish of chive oil. Just stunning!

    • DisplacedHousewife May 12, 2016 at 9:25 PM

      Thank you Laura!! I’m thinking there are so many fun things we could do with the chive oil…just getting started!! xo

  • Cathy | May 12, 2016 at 12:29 PM

    i know i should sometimes take the lighter version and skip the dairy and bacon. but then, why? and certainly not with this soup. love the smokiness from the bacon and the smoked paprika and those nutty cheeses, um yeah. this is perfection in a bowl.

    • DisplacedHousewife May 12, 2016 at 4:02 PM

      Thanks Cathy!! Plus…I feel like they’re in such small doses?!?! Right? xoxo

  • Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen May 11, 2016 at 12:09 PM

    Wow Rebecca, I LOVE everything about this soup! Those mustard-potato croutons…hello! Scrumptious! And that lemon chive oil sounds just perfect too. I’m a huge cauliflower fan, but unfortunately I’m the only one in my house who will eat it. I’m thinking I may need to fib a little when I make this one and say it’s cheese soup and see if the boys (husband included) catch on. You gotta do what you gotta do sometimes! If they catch on, more soup for me!

    • DisplacedHousewife May 11, 2016 at 12:57 PM

      Thank you Mary Ann!! I wanted to pack as much flavor into the soup while keeping it pretty health. Those potatoes. Yum!! I hope you love this!!! xox

  • heather (delicious not gorgeous) May 11, 2016 at 5:29 AM

    roasted mustard potato croutons?!?! i think those should go on everything, especially salads.

    • DisplacedHousewife May 11, 2016 at 5:38 AM

      I know, right?!?! I’m thinking with roasted salmon? As a side to roast chicken? Roast anything?! I loved them…just enough heat from the grains. Yum!! I wanted to give gluten a break in this meal…enter potatoes…my favorite starch friend. xoxo

  • Cathy Burgess May 11, 2016 at 4:21 AM

    Looks good enough to eat Do you ever sleep? Wish I had your stamina-keep up the great work!

    • DisplacedHousewife May 11, 2016 at 4:24 AM

      You’re too nice… Lots of coffee…that’s what helps!! xoxo