Everything Soup with Spring Onion and Coriander Pesto

This soup is comforting and full of goodness – absolutely perfect as the temperature starts to drop. Feel free to use this recipe as a rough framework and substitute the vegetables listed below for whatever you have on hand or growing in the garden.

The spring onion pesto adds a lively brightness to the soup and can be enjoyed with many other dishes also.

Ingredients - Soup

  • 1 onion - finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves - finely diced
  • 2 medium carrots - finely diced
  • 2 stalks celery - finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon (could also use oregano, dried mint or rosemary)
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup red split lentils
  • 2 medium potatoes - cut into small cubes
  • 1 x large kumara (purple or golden) - peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 2 litres vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 3 x zucchini - cut into small pieces
  • 250g greens (I used chopped frozen kale)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • Olive oil for sautéing

Ingredients - Pesto

  • 2 spring onions – green part roughly chopped
  • ¾ cup coriander (you could also use parsley)
  • 1 garlic clove  - diced
  • ¼ cup pine nuts (could also use pistachios, almonds or cashews – increase to ½ cup)
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Sea salt and cracked black pepper

Coriander Pesto

Use a blender, hand blender or food processor to blitz the pesto until relatively even in texture. Season generously.

Heat a generous glug of oil over a medium heat in a large soup pot. Add the onion, garlic, carrot and celery. Cook gently, moving often, until tender. Add the tarragon, fennel seeds and cinnamon. Cook for a further minute.

Add the lentils, potatoes, kumara, stock, water and tinned tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes. Stir regularly.

Add the zucchini, greens, soy sauce, lemon juice and lemon zest. Simmer for a further 15 minutes. 

Season to taste.

Spring Onions

Growing spring onions from cuttings

Your spring onion scraps can be placed in water and regrown over and over again. It’s such a fabulous way to prevent unnecessary kitchen waste. As long as you have the root still intact, it’s an absolute piece of cake.

Once you have used the green part of the spring onion, simply place the leftover piece (the whole white part and the root) into a glass of water with the root only just submerged. Place in a sunny spot and change the water every two days. You’ll have new green shoots quite quickly and they’ll be ready to trim and eat in 3-7 days, depending on the season.


Kelly Gibney is an Auckland based food writer, photographer and mum of two. She creates flavour-first wholefood recipes that are simple but delicious. You can find more of her recipes on her Blog or on Instagram. Her debut cookbook is called ‘Wholehearted’.