Hearty Irish Colcannon Soup Recipe with Thyme Leaf Twist

Are you tired of the same old soup recipes? Are you looking for something new and exciting to enjoy during the cooler months? Look no further than this Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup recipe.

This delicious soup interprets a classic Irish dish, colcannon, which traditionally consists of mashed potatoes mixed with kale or cabbage. Our recipe takes it one step further by incorporating fresh thyme leaves and transforming it into a comforting soup.

The term “colcannon” comes from the Irish word “cal ceannann,” which means white-headed cabbage or kale. This recipe keeps with that tradition by combining cabbage and potatoes to create a rich and flavorful soup that’s perfect for St. Patrick’s Day or any day of the year.

As a chef specializing in British cuisine, I know that comfort food is essential during the colder months, and this soup is the perfect dish to warm your soul on a chilly evening. So grab your apron and let’s get cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup
Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup

Allow me to persuade you on why you should give Irish colcannon and thyme leaf soup a try. This delicious and comforting soup reinterprets the traditional Irish colcannon dish, which usually consists of mashed potatoes with kale or cabbage, into a rich and flavorful soup recipe. Not only is this soup perfect for St. Patrick’s Day, but it is also an excellent option for a cozy dinner any time of the year, as it is both hearty and nutritious.

If you love potato soup or vegetable soups with a twist, then this recipe will not disappoint. The combination of fluffy mashed potatoes, savory savoy cabbage, and fresh thyme leaves creates a divine creamy texture and an aroma that fills the kitchen. You will love the balance of flavors created by adding black pepper, salt, onion, butter, and even more thyme to the mix. I promise that once you take the first spoonful, you won’t be able to resist having more.

Additionally, this recipe offers some flexibility when it comes to substituting ingredients or variations. You can substitute savoy cabbage with any other type of cabbage or even kale. And if you’re vegan or vegetarian, you can swap butter for plant-based alternatives without compromising taste or quality.

Overall, trust me when I say that once you try this Irish colcannon and thyme leaf soup recipe, it will quickly become one of your favorite go-to soup recipes. It has everything; richness, flavor balance, health benefits from fresh vegetables and herbs – add all the benefits listed before – so why not give it a try?

Ingredient List

 A satisfying bowl of Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup is perfect for any chilly day!
A satisfying bowl of Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup is perfect for any chilly day!

Here are the ingredients you need for this Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup Recipe:

  • 4 medium baking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups of water
  • 2 cups savoy cabbage, diced
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

The Recipe How-To

 The mouth-watering aroma of this soup will make your taste buds tingle.
The mouth-watering aroma of this soup will make your taste buds tingle.

Preparing the Colcannon

  1. Peel and dice 2 large baking potatoes and place in a pot of cold, salted water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until tender, about 20 minutes.

  2. While the potatoes are cooking, melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 diced onion and cook until softened, about 5-7 minutes.

  3. Add 2 cups of diced savoy cabbage to the skillet and continue to cook until it is soft and wilted, stirring occasionally. This should take around 15-20 minutes.

  4. Once the potatoes are tender, drain them and mash with 2 tablespoons of butter and 1/4 cup of milk until they are smooth.

  5. Add the cooked cabbage mixture to the mashed potatoes along with 2 teaspoons of fresh thyme leaves and some freshly ground black pepper. Stir well to combine.

  6. Finally, add in roughly 1 cup of Irish Colcannon to the mashed potato mixture and stir well.

Making the Soup

  1. In a large pot, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.

  2. Add the remaining 1/2 diced onion, along with 2 cloves of minced garlic, and cook until both are tender, about 5-7 minutes.

  3. Pour in 6 cups of water and bring to a simmer.

  4. Add the mashed potato and colcannon mixture from earlier into the soup pot, along with an additional 2 cups diced savoy cabbage, season with salt, and pepper to taste.

  5. Let everything cook for about 10-15 minutes on medium heat before adding in some extra thyme leaves for garnish.

  6. Serve piping hot with crusty bread or crackers on top for an extra crunch! Enjoy your hearty and flavorful Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup!

Pro Tip: If you want a creamier soup, you can add some extra heavy cream or coconut milk to the soup just before serving. Be sure to adjust the seasoning accordingly!

Substitutions and Variations

 A spoonful of this soup will take you on a culinary journey to the lovely country of Ireland.
A spoonful of this soup will take you on a culinary journey to the lovely country of Ireland.

Like any good recipe, the Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup Recipe is customizable to suit your palate. Here are some ideas for substitutions and variations to help you create a soup that’s uniquely yours:

– Swap the fresh thyme leaves for dried thyme or other herbs like bay leaves, rosemary, or sage to give the soup different flavor notes.

– If savoy cabbage isn’t readily available, you can use regular green cabbage or kale instead. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of leafy greens until you find the one that tickles your taste buds.

– Trade in the onion for leeks, shallots or scallions to give the soup a milder sweetness. The irish cabbage soup made with leek has a more delicate flavor that complements the thyme really well.

– If you’re looking for a more traditional Irish dish with mashed potatoes, exclude the soup part and make classic colcannon dish mashed potatoes, adding kale or cabbage as a garnish for extra flavor and texture.

– For an extra-rich soup, try using chicken broth instead of water. This will add depth of flavor to your soup.

– Spice things up by topping your bowl of soup with chili flakes or paprika for an extra kick.

– Garnish with crispy bacon bits and grated cheddar cheese as a twist on the classic irish colcannon dish.

Whichever variation you choose, don’t be afraid to get creative and have fun! Remember, this is your chance to create a soup that’s tailored to your taste buds.

Serving and Pairing

 This classic soup recipe is a fantastic way to use up surplus potatoes.
This classic soup recipe is a fantastic way to use up surplus potatoes.

Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup are perfect for a cozy night in or for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day. This hearty soup can be served on its own or used as a side dish to complement a larger meal.

To make it an even more comforting meal, serve the soup with crusty bread or Irish soda bread for dipping. The combination of buttery bread and savory soup is unbeatable!

For an additional garnish, sprinkle some extra thyme leaves and fresh ground black pepper on the top. If you’re feeling fancy, you can also add a dollop of sour cream or crème fraiche to cut through the richness of the soup.

This traditional Irish dish pairs well with a pint of Guinness or an Irish whiskey like Jameson. Alternatively, you can pair the soup with a light-bodied red wine such as Pinot Noir or Beaujolais.

Regardless of how you choose to serve this delicious soup, it is sure to warm your soul and leave you feeling satisfied.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Thyme leaf enhances the flavours of the soup while adding its own incredibly unique taste.
Thyme leaf enhances the flavours of the soup while adding its own incredibly unique taste.

Once you’ve prepared a pot of this soul-warming Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup recipe, you will want to have some leftovers for the following day. This soup can be made ahead in a large batch and stored in the fridge or freezer for future consumption.

For make-ahead: After cooking, allow the soup to cool down completely before storing it in an airtight container. When stored properly, this soup will keep fresh for up to 3-4 days in the refrigerator.

For freezing: You can also freeze this soup in large batches or single servings that are perfect for those last-minute meals. To do so, first, cool the soup to room temperature, then ladle into portion-sized containers that are freezer-safe. Make sure the containers are securely covered and labeled, and they will be good to freeze for up to 2-3 months.

For reheating: To reheat frozen or refrigerated Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup, simply transfer the required amount from the container to a pot on medium heat on your stove. Add water or stock to thin down your soup if necessary (it usually thickens upon cooling). When warm enough, serve with a garnish of extra thyme leaves and freshly ground black pepper.


Tips for Perfect Results

 A serving of this soup is a terrific way to keep your taste buds happy without breaking the bank.
A serving of this soup is a terrific way to keep your taste buds happy without breaking the bank.

When it comes to making Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup, attention to detail can make all the difference. Here are some tips to ensure that your soup is a success:

1. Don’t overcook the cabbage: The savoy cabbage in this recipe should be cooked until it’s just tender – no longer. Overcooked cabbage can become mushy and unappetizing.

2. Use fresh thyme: Fresh thyme leaves give this soup a lovely, delicate flavor. Be sure to use them rather than dried thyme for best results.

3. Choose the right potatoes: Baking potatoes work best for mashed potatoes because they have a lower moisture content and hold their shape better when cooked.

4. Mash carefully: When making the colcannon for this recipe, be sure not to over-mash the potatoes. Over-mashing can result in gluey, sticky potatoes that don’t taste or look appealing.

5. Use plenty of butter: Butter is an essential ingredient in both the colcannon and soup portions of this recipe. Don’t skimp on it – it adds richness and flavor.

6. Don’t forget extra garnishes: A sprinkle of fresh thyme leaves, a drizzle of butter, and a grind of black pepper can take this soup from ordinary to extraordinary. Don’t be afraid to experiment with other garnishes as well – chopped kale or crispy bacon bits would both be delicious additions.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating a hearty and delicious meal that’s perfect for St. Patrick’s Day or any day of the year!


Before wrapping things up, let us address some frequently asked questions that might come to your mind regarding this Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup recipe. I understand that everyone has different levels of expertise, and it is essential to clear any doubts or concerns you may have at hand. Please read on to get the answers to your queries and cook up a flavorsome pot of soup.

What is Irish Colcannon made of?

In this recipe article, I’ll be showing you how to create a classic and hearty Irish Colcannon side dish that combines silky mashed potatoes with fried cabbage, onions, and crispy bacon. This flavorful side dish is the ultimate comfort food addition to any meal. So, let’s get started!

Why is it called colcannon?

Colcannon, a popular Irish dish, gets its name from the Gaelic words “cal ceannann” which refers to cabbage with a white head. It commonly consists of mashed potatoes and greens, with cabbage being the most popular choice of vegetable. This dish is typically served with Irish meats, and alternative leafy greens such as kale can also be used.

When should I eat colcannon?

One of our favorite Irish customs is the celebration of Halloween with its delectable cuisine. Colcannon, a nutritious meal that has been enjoyed through generations, is a staple dish for the occasion. This hearty fare traditionally features a hidden ring, with the lucky one to find it believed to be destined for marriage in the year to come!

What does colcannon taste like?

The origins of the name “colcannon” can be traced back to the Gaelic term “cal ceannann,” which describes a type of cabbage with a white head. This dish boasts a creamy, indulgent taste, with the addition of greens providing a pleasant contrast in texture. Despite being nutrient-dense, colcannon is an affordable option that will leave you feeling satisfied.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup recipe is a must-try for anyone looking to enjoy a traditional Irish dish with a modern twist. The combination of mashed potatoes, kale, and cabbage in this soup reinterprets the classic colcannon dish, while the fresh thyme leaf, black pepper, and butter add depth and flavor to every spoonful.

This soup is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, or any time you want to indulge in something hearty and delicious. With easy substitutions and variations, you can make this recipe your own and experiment with different ingredients. And with make-ahead and storing tips included in the instructions, you can enjoy this soup anytime you want.

So if you’re looking for a soup recipe that’s both filling and tasty, give this Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup recipe a try. I guarantee that it will become a new favorite in your household that you’ll come back to again and again.

Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup

Irish Colcannon and Thyme Leaf Soup Recipe

From Cooking Light, March 2007
Cuisine Irish
Keyword < 60 Mins, Egg-free, European, Free Of..., Onions, Potato, Small Appliance, Spring, St. Patrick's Day, Stove Top, Vegetable, Winter
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Calories 127.7kcal


  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 1/2 cups diced peeled baking potatoes
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, divided
  • 3 cups reduced-sodium fat-free chicken broth
  • 2 cups water, plus
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 8 cups thinly sliced savoy cabbage (about 1 pound)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leave


  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add potato, onion, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • Cover and cook 6 minutes.
  • Add broth and 2 cups water; bring to a boil.
  • Cook 10 minutes or until potato is tender.
  • Combine 3 tablespoons water and remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a large Dutch oven; bring to a simmer.
  • Add cabbage and thyme.
  • Cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove from heat; stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • Place half of potato mixture in blender. Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl.
  • Repeat procedure with remaining potato mixture.
  • Add potato mixture to cabbage mixture; cook over medium-low heat until thoroughly heated.


Serving: 277g | Calories: 127.7kcal | Carbohydrates: 21.7g | Protein: 3.4g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2.5g | Cholesterol: 10.2mg | Sodium: 252.4mg | Fiber: 4.5g | Sugar: 3.8g

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