Vegan matzo ball soup is a must for the Passover Seder, but you don’t have to wait for a holiday to enjoy it! Truth be told, this simple vegetable soup functions primarily as a delivery system for the matzo balls. You’ll be directed to the recipe for vegan matzo balls shortly — an easy way to make them that ensures they won’t fall apart. There’s a gluten-free variation as well.
We get rid of the egg in the matzo balls. Egg, the traditional binding ingredient for matzo balls, is the challenging ingredient to replace. And ultimately, the binding ingredient is quinoa flakes, which you can read more about in the recipe for Vegan Matzo Balls. I recommend making them first. You can make them ahead of time, or start the soup while they’re in the oven.
The simple soup served at traditional Passover Seders is very much like this one (other than the fact that it’s usually made with chicken broth). Sometimes it has even fewer veggies in it than this version.
While this soup most traditional to Passover, there are few Jewish holidays at which it wouldn’t be welcome as a first course. Passover usually falls in April, so by the Jewish New Year, which usually comes in September, you might be craving it again.
Baked Vegan Matzo Balls: Unusual, but really good!
These are baked rather than cooked. Yes, my vegan matzo balls are baked rather than cooked, which eliminates the danger of them falling apart while simmering in water. Baked matzo balls might seem weird, but it works very well, and they’re so easy to make. The result: a bowl of pure comfort.
Quinoa for Passover
Quinoa, ancient grain that it is, has become the new kid on the block for use during Passover, a holiday week when many (if not most) grains and grain products aren’t used. In the Sephardic tradition, there’s more leeway. Why quinoa is acceptable and other grains aren’t has a complicated answer that I’m not equipped to give.
Suffice it to say that quinoa is now just as welcome at the Passover table as it is at any other meal of the year. Ancient Harvest® has a line of products that are Kosher; some are Kosher for Passover, but it’s not clear whether that utmost designation applies to their quinoa flakes. Pereg® also offers Kosher for Passover quinoa products, which includes their quinoa flakes.
This recipe is adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas. Photos by Susan Voisin, FatFreeVegan.com
- Vegan Matzo Balls (see link in instructions)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- One 32-ounce carton vegetable broth
- 6 medium potatoes, peeled and finely diced
- 6 to 8 medium carrots, sliced
- Handful of celery leaves
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose seasoning (like Frontier® or Mrs. Dash®)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, or to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- I like to start the vegan matzo balls before starting the soup, so head on over to that recipe first. You can also make them ahead of time.
- Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion and celery and sauté over medium heat until golden.
- Add the broth, potato, carrots, celery leaves, seasoning blend, and 2 cups of water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then cover and simmer gently for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the dill, then season with salt and pepper. If time allows, let the soup stand for several hours off the heat to develop flavor. This can also be made a day in advance.
- Just before serving, bring to a simmer. Adjust the consistency with more water if need be, and taste to adjust seasonings. Add warmed matzo balls to individual servings of soup.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 192Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 510mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 5gSugar: 5gProtein: 4g
Nutrition data is always an estimate depending on program used to calculate and exact products used.
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