Healthy RecipesRecipes

Foolproof dinner made easy: traditional Finnish salmon soup

By Sari Huhtala

I don’t recall a summer passing by where we didn’t enjoy a good hearty classic Finnish salmon soup made with garden fresh potatoes and carrots, even after giving up dairy many years ago. Like most Europeans, I enjoyed my milk, particularly when it came to summer soup or fish soup, but truth be told, I much prefer coconut milk as an alternative, and it is so much more healthier for you.

I’ve swayed from the traditional way of making this soup, in my quest to make healthy food fare fast and, well, healthier. This soup is about as easy as it gets – pretty much foolproof –  and it doesn’t take much time to prepare, not to mention its versatility for just about any occasion.


Serves 4

  • Approximately 3 cups of potatoes, cut into small chunks (leave skin on potatoes if organic as the skin is a nutritional powerhouse)
  • 2 large carrots, cut into chunks
  • 1 large onion, chopped (you can also add some leeks if desired)
  • 1 can of red sockeye salmon, or 1 cup of fresh or thawed frozen salmon, chopped*
  • Enough water to cover the potatoes, carrots, onions and salmon
  • 1-2 cups of coconut milk**
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 organic vegetable bouillon cube (optional, but great to add)
  • Dill (optional, but adds nice flavour)
  • A pat of butter, if desired

Toss potatoes, carrots, onions and salmon in a large pot. Fill with enough water just to cover the salmon and veggies. Ensure there is enough water to cook the potatoes. Bring to a boil. Toss in a vegetable bouillon cube to dissolve (organic is best if healthy eating is a goal). Add salt and pepper to taste – approximately 1 tsp of salt to start, then add more as desired. Add chopped dill if desired.

Boil until potatoes are soft. Reduce heat and stir in coconut milk. Heat to just to warm up, as it no longer needs further cooking. Add more dill if desired. Add a pat of butter if desired. Stir and serve. Reheats well for a meal of leftovers.

* I use chunks of fresh or frozen salmon whenever possible, but many times I simply add a can of red sockeye salmon. Feel free to add an extra can for a heartier meal.

** You can use canned coconut milk, which is creamier, if you like, or a carton of unsweetened coconut milk. The traditional recipe is made with real milk; add 1-2 cups, depending on how much broth and creaminess you prefer.  

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