Five Ingredient Cream of Red Pepper Soup

Red Pepper Soup
The red peppers I received in my CSA share this week inspired me to make something special to highlight their beautiful red color and sweet pepper flavor. This easy Five Ingredient Cream of Red Pepper Soup recipe has rich flavor without a bunch of fancy ingredients or extra calories. I’ve replaced the heavy cream you would typically find in this type of soup with milk for two reasons. First, most people already buy milk at the store. It is one of my “keep it simple” cooking philosophies to not buy ingredients if I know there is no chance I will use all of it. Since it is unlikely I would be using heavy cream for anything else this week, I replaced it with milk. Secondly, milk has a lot less calories than heavy cream! I promise, you won’t mind the substitution at all. Also, heads up that this soup freezes really well! The recipes only yields two servings, but you can easily double it to make more. That way you can make extra to pull out of the freezer at a later date!
Let’s get started!

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 2 bowls

Cream of Red Pepper Soup Ingredients: 

1. 4 large ripe red bell peppers
2. 4 cloves of fresh garlic
3. 1 large sweet onion
4. 2 cups of low sodium chicken broth (or equivalent bouillon)
5. 1/2 cup of milk
2 tablespoons of olive oil (any type will do, doesn’t need to be extra virgin)
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper (I recommend using a pepper grinder.)

raw ingredients for red pepper soup
The raw ingredients for Cream of Red Pepper Soup.

Cream of Red Pepper Soup Instructions: 

STEP 1: Get out all of your tools and prepare all of your ingredients.

Like I’ve said in the last few recipes… cooking is easier when you are prepared in advance. First get out all of the tools you will need for the recipe: a large pot (I prefer to use a dutch oven), a large sharp knife, a surface for cutting (such as a cutting board), a large spoon (I prefer wooden, but any will do), a liquid measuring cup, the blender, a tablespoon, and a teaspoon.

Next, prepare all of the ingredients and have them ready on the counter in front of you.

reserve some red pepper soup
Cut the fourth pepper into 1/2 inch pieces and set it aside.

Important Note: With the exception of one of the red peppers (see below), we are going to throw everything  in the blender at the end anyway, so don’t stress too much about how you cut the pieces. Just cut them into small chunks and be done with it!

Red Peppers – After washing, cut the stems off of all of the peppers and do your best to pull out most of the seeds inside. Discard the stems. Without much concern about appearance, chop three of the four peppers into approximately one inch pieces.

Chop the fourth pepper into more carefully cut 1/2 inch pieces, as shown in the picture, keeping it separate from the other three (set the fourth pepper aside, you won’t use it until the end).

Garlic – Peel and mince all four cloves of garlic. Not confident in your garlic mincing abilities? Check out this video: How to Peel & Mince Garlic

Onion – Slice the onion in half from end to end, then peel and slice it. Need to brush up on cutting an onion? Check out this resource: How to Thinly Slice an Onion. 

Chicken Broth – Measure out two cups of chicken broth. (If using bouillon, mix it with water now to reconstitute it.)

Milk – Measure out 1/2 cup of milk. (You don’t need this until the last step, so you can wait to do this until later if you don’t want to let it sit on the counter while the soup is cooking.)

STEP 2: Cook down the produce. 

Soften the Vegetable for Red Pepper Soup
Soften the peppers, onions, and garlic.

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the large pot over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is heated, add the three chopped red peppers (reserving the fourth one until later), sliced onions, and minced garlic to the pan. Sprinkle the 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper and stir with the large spoon. Allow the produce to cook until softened. Approximately 10 minutes.


STEP 3: Add the chicken broth and simmer for 30 minutes. 

Simmer Red Pepper Soup
Simmer the soup for 30 minutes

Now that the produce has been softened, add in the two cups of chicken broth.

Turn the heat up to high and bring the pot to a full boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to simmer (usually medium-low will do it). Not sure what I mean by simmer? Check out this brief article: What’s the difference between boil and simmer?  Allow the soup to simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.

Carefully pour the contents of the soup pot into the blender. Use the spoon to scrape out any pieces that try to linger behind. Set the blender aside for now. We’ll get back to that in a few minutes.

STEP 4: Saute the fourth pepper that you set aside earlier.

saute pepper for red pepper soup
Saute the fourth pepper until softened.

(This step is optional, but highly recommend to add some chunkier texture to your otherwise pureed soup.)

Return the pot to the stove and turn the heat up to medium-high. Heat the second tablespoon of olive oil (it won’t take but a few seconds since the pan is already hot). Once the oil is hot, add the fourth pepper that we reserved earlier. Use the spoon to saute the pepper until just softened, about 3-5 minutes.

Once softened, leave the pepper in the pot but REMOVE THE POT FROM THE HEAT! This step is REALLY important because if you don’t remove it from the heat, you will make a huge splattery mess when you go to add the soup back in. (Note to self: I never did figure out if splattery is actually a word.)

STEP 5: Puree until smooth. Then stir in the milk.

after blender red pepper soup
Blend the soup until smooth.

Now let’s return to the blender.

Put the lid on the blender and use a folded up dish towel to hold the lid in place. (The towel isn’t optional! It will keep you from getting burned!)

Puree the soup for a few seconds (probably about 30 or so) until you are satisfied that you have a smooth soup consistency. Carefully remove the lid and pour the soup back into the pot (which has now been off of the heat for at least a minute). Stir it together with the fourth pepper that was still in the pot.

Stir in the 1/2 cup of milk, giving your soup that extra bit of creamy delicious texture.

add milk to red pepper soup
Stir in 1/2 cup of milk.

Lastly, taste the soup and add any additional salt and black pepper to your preference.

Nice job! You’re finished! The Five Ingredient Cream of Red Pepper Soup is now ready to eat! Top it with a few croutons or serve with grilled cheese!

I hope you enjoy this Five Ingredient Cream of Red Pepper Soup recipe!

Did you give this recipe a try? How did it turn out? Let me know in the comments below!

The Short Version

Five Ingredient Cream of Red Pepper Soup

Time: 55 minutes; Servings: 2

Cream of Red Pepper Soup


  • 4 large red bell peppers
  • 4 cloves of fresh garlic
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 2 cups of low sodium chicken broth (or equivalent bouillon)
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil (any type will do, doesn’t need to be extra virgin)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper (I recommend using a pepper grinder.)
  1. Wash the peppers and remove the stems and seeds. Chop three of the four peppers into 1 inch chunks. Then chop the fourth pepper into 1/2 pieces and keep separate (set aside). Peel and mince the garlic. Also peel the onion and slice it into thin slices. Measure 2 cups of chicken broth, 1/2 cup of milk, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon of black pepper.
  2. Heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add three of the four peppers (reserve the fourth pepper for later), the onion, and the garlic to the pot. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Saute until soft, about 10 minutes.
  3. Pour the 2 cups of chicken broth into the pot. Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Carefully pour the soup into the blender, scraping out any pieces left behind, and set it aside.
  4. Return the pot to medium-high heat and add another tablespoon of olive oil. Saute the fourth pepper until soft, about 3-5 minutes. Leave the pepper in the pot, but REMOVE THE POT FROM THE HEAT. <— IT IS REALLY IMPORTANT THAT YOU REMOVE THE POT FROM THE HEAT OR ELSE YOU WILL MAKE A MESS WHEN YOU ADD THE SOUP BACK TO THE POT.
  5. Returning to the blender, puree the soup until smooth, about 30 seconds. Carefully pour the soup back into the pot with the fourth pepper. Stir in the 1/2 cup of milk. Taste it and add salt and pepper to your preference. Enjoy!


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