Gluten and Dairy Free Cream of Mushroom


I'm reposting this piece from last year. The soup is amazing, and I think everyone should make this for Thanksgiving!

There was a long time (until about 10 years ago) that I didn't care for soup much. I've always loved split pea with ham and New England clam chowder, but other soups just seemed thin and boring to me. In the recent past, though, I realized that soups, curries and stews are all based on the same principles, making me try thicker soups with lots of layers of flavor. A whole new world opened to me. And, of course Asian noodle soups are a favorite of mine now, so I can say I'm a soup lover through and through.

I came across a gluten and dairy free cream of mushroom soup (via my friend Thanya whose sister-in-law is an expert of all things allergen-friendly). And, this year, I added bacon to it, so now, it's perfect.

There are a lot of steps, considering that a traditional cream of mushroom soup doesn't involve three steps to thicken it. And, of course, I love cooking my mushrooms in butter, but that doesn't really fit into my diet right now. By using bacon fat, I was able to bring back some of the depth that butter gives the mushrooms (and of course, anything with bacon is better).

So consider this a nudge to make a wonderful and satisfying cream of mushroom soup for your friends and family this holiday season!

Gluten and Dairy Free Cream of Mushroom Soup

adapted from original recipe: Cybele Pascal, Allergen-Free Cuisine, 10.8.2010

serves 4 to 6


  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 small shallots finely minced
  • 1 ½ lb. mushrooms, chopped (I use a mix of white mushrooms and Chantrelles)
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme or ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 Tablespoons tapioca starch/flour
  • 2 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon porcini salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • ½ cup rice milk
  • 1/2 pound black forest bacon, cooked and diced


  • Over high medium -heat, heat olive oil in a heavy bottomed pot, large enough to accommodate all ingredients.
  • At this point, I also add in a bit of the grease from the bacon (used for garnish at the end). It give the mushrooms a nice richness.
  • Add porcini salt, shallots and mushrooms, stir often, cook for 3 minutes.
  • Lower heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes until golden brown.
  • Stirring well to coat mushrooms, add in thyme and tapioca starch/flour.
  • Reduce heat to low. Scraping the bottom of the pan to get all the tapioca and mushrooms incorporated, cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Making sure that all clumps are broken up, add 2 cups of the chicken broth, salt and pepper.
  • Stir well, increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Boil remaining 1/2 cup chicken stock and add quick-cook tapioca to the stock. Mix gently.
  • Add chicken stock/quick-cook tapioca mixture to the pot.
  • Keep the heat on a low simmer, stirring often to help the quick-cook tapioca dissolve. It's ready when the tapioca is completely clear.
  • Add rice milk.
  • Pulse in food processor (or use a hand blender or a blender) until desired texture is reached. I keep mine kind of chunky, but you can blend it all the way to smooth.
  • Serve in bowls with diced bacon on top.