Fennel Soup with Lime and Cashew Cream Recipe

Would you believe this recipe for fennel soup with lime stems from my once entering a giveaway for a three-day juice fast, and actually winning?

(I know. Some of you can’t get their head around why I entered in the first place, but what can I say? I’m curious, and I like cold-pressed juices.)

Presented with the option to do an all-juice fast, which I’d done once before and didn’t love, or to opt for the slightly less challenging, juice-and-soup combo, the latter is the one I chose.

I ended up not doing the actual fast — I was really very hungry — but rather incorporated the juices and soups into my regular meals, sharing them with my family and enjoying the nutrition boost. (Also, the ah-ma-zing convenience of having three days’ worth of ready-to-consume fruits and vegetables delivered to my door.)


Having since acquired my very own juicer, I can now play around with whatever is in season, and have a lot of fun doing so. (Right now, I have in my fridge a batch made with red cabbage, beet, carrot, spinach, cucumber, parsley, ginger, and an apple. It is dark purple and very good.)

But one of the unexpected benefits of that juice-and-soup fast(ish) was that it introduced me to what has become one of my favorite things to make with fennel: a velvety fennel soup with lime, drizzled with cashew cream.

I thought the balance of flavors was perfect, and was thrilled to see how easily I was able to reproduce it in my kitchen. it is a soup both light and sustaining, and an ideal one for this time of year, when summer produce is still around but our mood shifts to autumnal dishes.

Join the conversation!

Have you ever done a juice fast yourself? What did you think? And have you cooked with fennel at all this summer? What did you make with it?

Fennel Soup with Lime and Cashew Cream

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Fennel Soup with Lime and Cashew Cream Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Serves 6.

Fennel Soup with Lime and Cashew Cream Recipe


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 medium bulbs fennel, about 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds), trimmed, quartered, and cored (save the cores and stalks for stock)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, about 170 grams (6 ounces), sliced
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 medium potato, about 200 grams (7 ounces), peeled and diced
  • The seeds from 2 pods green cardamom
  • 2 limes
  • 1 liter (4 cups) vegetable or chicken stock
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) all-natural cashew butter
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the fennel, onion, and salt, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until softened.
  2. Add the potato and cardamom. Grate the zest from 1 lime into the pot. Add in the stock and cover.
  3. Bring to a simmer and cook for 30 to 35 minutes, until the vegetables are completely soft. This can also be made in the pressure cooker; cook for 10 minutes from pressure.
  4. Using a stick blender or blender, process the soup until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  5. Put the cashew butter in a small bowl with a pinch of salt. Squeeze the juice of the lime you've zested, and stir 2 tablespoons into the cashew butter until smooth. Stir in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you get a pourable consistency; you will need 5 to 6 tablespoons.
  6. Ladle the hot soup into bowls, and drizzle with the cashew cream. Grate a little more lime zest on top of each bowl, sprinkle with pepper, and serve with lime wedges to squeeze on.

Fennel Soup with Lime and Cashew Cream

  • Sohail Iqbal

    Thanks for sharing this fantastic post, it will be very helpful to a lot of readers who are struggling and learning.
    You can find more helpful into on https://recipesbar.blogspot.com/

  • Mmmm, I love fennel and this soup looks just the sort of thing I’d enjoy. Thanks for the wonderful recipe! xxx

  • Marie Elefteriou

    Busy doing a 3 days juice fast as you sent this email. I do it every year in spring (which is now in South Africa where I live). It’s part of a 3 weeks detox and I love it. I always freak out the 1st day, then I realize I will eat again in a couple of days. I have so much energy during the juicing days…. Really worth it!!!

    • Thanks for sharing, Marie! I’ve tried intermittent fasting and liked it much better. But then I got pregnant with baby #2 and I still breastfeed him, so fasting is not a part of my current world. :)

  • Mary Cressler

    I’m with you! I’ve tried to do a juice fast (a couple times actually) and didn’t make it very long. I need something of substance. I love the idea of combining the soup and juice, so that you’re not forced to walk around starving. Still healthy and cleansing, but doesn’t make you a crazy grumpy person (like I was when I tried 100% juice fast!). Cheers!!

    • I’ve been very interested to explore juice fasts and intermittent fasting as a way to get to know oneself better, and one’s relationship to hunger and to food. You learn a lot, I think, and I find it freeing in some ways. But it doesn’t necessarily work in every chapter of one’s life, and currently I don’t feel like it’s something I want to do.

  • Slim And Healthy

    I really like this recipe :) I’m going to try it.

  • I blame Paris

    This does look super nice. Unfortunately, fennel is not a favorite of mine. In many recipes I substitute with leek instead. Do you think that can work here as well? Or maybe swede?

    • First, if I may, I do want to encourage you to try it with fennel anyway. If it’s the aniseedy note of fennel that you dislike, it’s really subtle here with the lime and cashew cream.

      But if you really don’t want to try, yes, you can definitely make this with leeks instead. I think carrots would be wonderful too, as would beets. Not sure about swedes as I don’t cook with them much, but why not?

      • I blame Paris

        Thanks, Clotilde. Maybe I do need to expand my palette a bit. Have a great weekend!

  • J’ai ri au ‘give me five’ (or seven) BIEN ÉVIDEMMENT ! ;) Et ça a l’air vraiment délicieux : pile mon genre !

  • wow looks very yummy!

  • marysueh

    This is so delicious! I stirred in some finely chopped fennel frond tips into the finished soup – they were delicately flavored and added a bit of color. That cashew cream is wonderful. My lime was particularly juicy, so my lime/water liquid ratio might have been a bit more tart than yours. Still, the creamy nature of the cashew butter buffered it nicely. I agree with your earlier comment that the fennel flavor is subtle.I also added a bit of ground white pepper into the cashew cream. Love this soup!

    • Thanks Mary Sue, I should give a more precise measurement for the lime juice.

      • marysueh

        Clotilde, I didn’t mean to suggest that you change the recipe, just wanted to report my experience. The soup is delicious, and the recipe a definite keeper. But since my lime was juicy, I added the remaining lime juice in place of some of the water. Bonus: no waste plus it added extra lime flavor. The creamy cashew butter balanced the tartness quite well. I ended up with some extra cashew cream, and will try it drizzled over veggies.

        • Have you had a chance to try the cashew cream over vegetables? I’m sure it would be delicious, kind of like tahini sauce.

          • marysueh

            Indeed I did! Quite yummy, too. In another usage, I stirred a little cashew cream into a bit of mild vinegar to make a salad dressing for tossed greens. So versatile!

          • Love it! Will try!

  • Rick Blair

    Wow, this sounds so good. I hope we’ll try this soon. (hey Clotilde!)

    • Well hi there, Rick! I hope you’re doing well. So good to see you here. xo

      • Rick Blair

        I love your site.

        Yes, still doing very well, thanks. Seems like everything is going great for you too. I’m glad!

        • Thank you Rick, it’s such a treat to know you’re out there reading. Do you sometimes try the recipes?

          • Rick Blair

            Not for a while, but we’re soon going to try the soup from this page and the peanut butter stew (from another site) you tweeted about recently. Hopefully next week.

          • Wonderful. Let me know how they turn out!

  • Vicki Lim

    Made this soup last night and it was wonderful!! Great combination of tastes. Your recipes are the closest I have found that are Western and yet utilize Ayurvedic principles.

    • Oh, thank you, Vicki, that’s great to hear. I don’t know very much about Ayurvedic cuisine, but would love to learn more. Is there a book or resource you would recommend?

      • Vicki Lim

        Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-Healing by Usha & Dr. Vasant Lad.

  • Diana Allingham Rubanenko

    Made this two days ago, and it was a total hit!! People were stunned (positively) by the cashew cream – many thanks for yet another inspiring recipe :)

  • great,,, delicious and looks yummy… will try it…

  • this one hits all my favorite flavors, and the cashew cream just adds the icing on the cake! Making it for sure very soon!

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