Nettle Soup | DonalSkehan.com, Great lunch option.
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Nettle Soup

July 29

This nettle soup is a great favourite in the spring when the nettles are young. Nettles are full of minerals and vitamins which purify the blood. In the country nettle tea was also drunk, made by pouring boiling water over chopped nettles, boiling for about 15 minutes, then straining and adding milk and sugar. This was often given to children who had measles. It is said to have been a favourite of St Columcille. Nettle soup is still served in some hotels in Ireland; this recipe is from Declan Ryan, who was chef-proprietor of the much- starred Arbutus Lodge, Cork, sadly no longer in existence. Recipe from The Pleasures of the Table: Rediscovering Theodora Fitzgibbon.


  • serves Serves 6
  • time 50 mins


  1. TOP TIP

    Use gloves and a scissors when cutting the nettles. Do not gather them from sprayed verges or after the end of May as they will be too tough.
  2. 2. Heat the butter until foaming. Add the chopped leek and the nettle tops and cook until they look glossy.
  3. 3. Stir in the potatoes, then add the stock.
  4. 4. Simmer gently for 30–35 minutes.
  5. 5. Sieve or liquidise the soup, return to the heat, season to taste and add the cream.
  6. 6. Garnish with chive flowers and serve hot.

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100g butter

1 large leek or 2 medium- sized leeks, chopped

4 cups nettle tops, chopped

450g potatoes, sliced

1 litre chicken stock

Salt and freshly ground pepper

150 ml cream

Chive flowers to garnish