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Enjoy San Joaquin Valley Living

Lamb and Wild Rice Soup

Oct 24, 2019 11:00AM ● By Lana Granfors

What's Cookin'

November 2019
Story by Lana Granfors
Photos by Kara Stewart

This winter soup is aromatic, creamy and wonderfully comforting. Wild rice gives this soup an earthy flavor, a perfect addition to the lamb. This soup recipe is easily adjusted for a vegetarian version without the lamb. Or it can also be prepared vegan, using vegetable stock, omitting the lamb and using vegan butter and veggie stock to make the creamy sauce used to thicken the soup.    

Lamb and Wild Rice Soup

Serves 6-8

Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time:  1 hour - 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time:   1 hour 15 minutes  - 1 hour 25 minutes

2 T olive oil
2 small leeks, white and green portions, thinly sliced
2 ribs celery, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1⁄2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. chopped rosemary
1 lb. ground lamb
6 cups vegetable stock
1 cup uncooked wild rice 
8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
2 medium sweet potatoes (1 lb. total), 
peeled and diced
1 bay leaf
1 1⁄2 T Old Bay Seasoning
3 T butter
1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1⁄2 cups milk
2 large handfuls of kale, roughly chopped 
with thick stems removed

STEP 1: Using a medium-high heat, add olive oil to a large stockpot.  Once heated, add the leeks and celery.  Sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until vegetables are soft. Stir in the minced garlic and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fragrant.

STEP 2: Add the lamb and rosemary, salt and pepper and cook to brown the lamb, approximately 5-8 minutes, stirring to break up the lamb. 

STEP 3: Add in the vegetable stock, wild rice, mushrooms, sweet potato, bay leaf and Old Bay seasoning. Stir to combine and continue cooking until the soup starts to simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover 
and simmer for 45 minutes, or until the rice is tender, stirring occasionally. 

STEP 4: During the final 10 minutes, prepare the sauce in a saucepan. Heat the butter over medium-high heat until melted. Once melted, whisk in the flour and cook for about 1 minute. Gradually add in the milk and whisk until combined. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the mixture nearly comes to a simmer and has thickened. (It will be a thick sauce.)

STEP 5: Lastly, add the sauce and kale to the soup, and stir gently until combined. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

STEP 6: Serve warm with a crusty sourdough bread or a fresh rosemary focaccia.