White Chocolate and Parsnip Soup with Dill, Lemon, Coco Dusted Crouton

Executive Chef Garrett Pittler, City Winery Nashville

One of Chef Pittler’s favorites, and a featured dish on City Winery’s winter menu, this soup is sure to impress. Consider serving it as a holiday dinner appetizer or make it the main course on a chilly night with friends.

White Chocolate and Parsnip Soup with Dill, Lemon, Cocoa Dusted Croutons

 Serve this soup as a holiday dinner appetizer or make it the main course on a chilly night with friends.
5 from 1 vote
Course Soup
Cuisine American



  • 2 pounds parsnips
  • 1 oz olive oil brush parsnips
  • 4 oz butter
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 whole vanilla bean
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • 1 loaf brioche bread
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/4 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 5 oz vanilla white chocolate
  • 8 oz heavy cream
  • 1 fresh lemon zested
  • .75 oz fresh dill picked


  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • Peel parsnips, and cut into 1-inch chunks, brush lightly with oil and place on a baking sheet lined with heavy duty aluminum foil (for easy cleanup). Roast until the parsnips begin to soften (as tested with a knife blade) and until the tips begin to turn golden brown. This takes about 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for a few minutes while you start the other ingredients in the stockpot. (Leave oven on for toasting of croutons.)
  • Melt the butter over medium-low heat in a large stockpot and gently saute the onion until translucent. (This takes about 10 minutes, but the more important thing is that they look translucent.)
  • Add the chicken stock, slice open the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the pot and add along with the vanilla pod itself.
  • Increase heat to medium, add the roasted parsnips, and bring to a boil.
  • Season with salt and pepper, cover and let cook until the parsnips are completely tender, about 20 minutes.
  • Once you have the soup underway, toast the croutons in the oven which is already preheated to 400º.
  • Cut the epee loaf into 3/4-inch thick slices.
  • Brush the bread with oil and place on a foil lined baking sheet (important for cleanup purposes).
  • Sift dark cocoa over the bread and toast briefly in the oven, just to make crispy.
  • Remove and set aside.
  • Stir the white chocolate chips into the soup and cook for a further 5 minutes, to allow them to melt and to integrate flavors.
  • Remove soup from heat, discard vanilla pod, and stir in heavy cream.
  • Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth. (Remember, when using an immersion blender, the blade end has to be immersed, or it will make a big mess.)
  • Squeeze fresh lemon into the pot and stir to combine.
  • Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with fresh dill.
  • Serve with lemon zest and dark chocolate dusted croutons.
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Serve this as something different this holiday seaons! Image: Chef Hunter Duncan

Find more holiday recipes from local chefs here!