Nothing warms the tummy and the soul better than a bowl of hearty and tasty soup! Finnish Salmon Soup (“Lohikeitto”) is one of the heartiest and tastiest soups out there! The regular version contains potatoes, but I made this simplified keto version with 5 low-carb ingredients — and increased the salmon to make an even meatier and heartier soup! This might be just the best ever soup you have tasted — so, go and give it a try!
What is Finnish Salmon Soup?
Fresh salmon, tasty fish broth, mellow yellow onion, hearty heavy cream — and mundane potatoes; those are the main ingredients of the traditional Finnish Salmon Soup that we serve at our homes to our families — and in restaurants to foreigners and Finnish guests alike. If you ever visit Finland, I urge you to try the salmon soup in a Finnish restaurant! (Just skip the potatoes if you follow the keto diet.)
Sometimes, Finnish Salmon Soup contains carrots as well. But basically, no other veggies are used in the traditional soup than potatoes and yellow onion.
The conventional salmon soup uses simple seasonings, usually just salt and whole black or white peppercorns. However, also allspice and bay leaf can be used. But, you cannot omit dill for serving even it’s never the actual ingredient in the soup.
Heavy cream is the crowning ingredient that really makes this soup stand out from the huge crowd of soup recipes. Moreover, the cream is added pretty much at the end, so you don’t cook it, just heat it until boiling. That’s another secret for a superb salmon soup!
Oh yes, I have seen some desperate wanna-be Finnish Salmon Soup recipes made by foreigners go wild on the web. Those peculiar creations have contained such unorthodox ingredients as coriander and leek! Real Finnish Salmon Soup never ever contains coriander!
How to make this keto version of the Hearty Finnish Salmon Soup
As I said, this soup is rather meaty — or fishy! I calculated the measures carefully to make a really satisfying soup with plenty of fish. In any case, this is salmon soup, not potato or cauliflower soup!
In addition to salmon, this keto soup has fish broth, heavy cream, cauliflower, and onion.
For the traditional soup, you remove the skin and bones from the salmon. For this keto soup, you remove the bones (if they are not already removed), but you’ll leave the skin on the fish for its amazing health benefits. For example, it’s rich in collagen. You’d better take your collagen from real food rather than a supplement jar!
I use frozen cauliflower florets for this soup as they are so handy. If your florets are gigantic, you might want to chop them a little to make bite-sized pieces that are obviously much easier to eat.
This soup uses a whole cup (240 ml) of heavenly heavy cream to amp up the richness.
And that’s not all: the onion is fried in butter to make it ooze out all its wonderful taste, making the soup even tastier!
But, as you most likely wait drooling how to make this magnificent soup, let’s take a look at the steps how to make this ketoized Lohikeitto:
Take two small or one medium yellow onion. I have two small ones here from my mother’s garden.
Chop them into wedges. Yep, real Finnish Salmon Soup has onion wedges, not minced or chopped onion.
In a large saucepan, cook the wedges in ample butter…
…until soft and translucent.
Pour in 3 cups (700 ml) of fish broth. This broth is homemade; I made it from the salmon bones, fin, and head.
Bring to a boil.
Add 1 lb (450 g) of frozen cauliflower florets.
Cook until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.
Add 1 1/2 lbs (680 g) of fresh salmon in largish cubes.
Cook until the salmon is just done, about 5 minutes.
Finally, add that whole cup (240 ml) of heavy cream and bring to a boil — but don’t cook!
Transfer to serving bowls or deep plates and serve with ample chopped dill.
How I came up with this easy keto soup recipe
Nothing expels the chilly feeling quicker than hot and hearty soup! And, as it’s about a year since I’ve posted a soup recipe, I thought now it was about time when wintery winds blow hard and loud outside.
I had written an idea for a keto version of the traditional Finnish Salmon Soup. This soup is very common in Finland, so I wonder why I haven’t made it before!
Moreover, my mom often makes fish soup for my son and me when we visit her. She uses two types of fish (salmon and cod), mixed frozen vegetables, cream, and water. My son really likes the soup, and I find it delicious as well.
However, I was thinking of making a take on the traditional salmon soup which uses salmon as the only fish variety plus potatoes and onion as veggies. Immediately, I knew that I wanted to replace the potatoes with cauliflower.
I was visiting my mother, and we had bought a huge rainbow trout for making gravlax, and I also used a big part of the fish for my Keto Salmon Soup. The fishmonger had cut the fish into fillets, and we also got the leftovers which I used for making fish broth.
I used onion, allspice, black peppercorns, salt, and a pinch of dried thyme as seasonings for my fish broth.
Here’s the ready broth — it’s so tasty; much tastier than boring and food additive-enriched fish stock cubes!
I wanted to make the soup really satisfying, so I decided to add lots of fish, cauliflower, and cream.
After coming up with the measures, I was ready to conduct my first experiment — which turned out to be this exact recipe.
We enjoyed the soup to our heart’s content, and we totally loved it. It was so tasty and satisfying that I’m sure I will keep making it over and over again!
Here’s the recipe for you to enjoy:
Hearty Finnish Salmon Soup (Lohikeitto) Simplified and made Keto
Nothing warms the tummy and the soul better than a bowl of hearty and tasty soup! Finnish Salmon Soup ("Lohikeitto") is one of the heartiest and tastiest soups out there! The regular version contains potatoes, but I made this simplified keto version with 5 low-carb ingredients — and increased the salmon to make an even meatier and heartier soup! This might be just the best ever soup you have tasted — so, go and give it a try!
- 2 small or 1 medium yellow onion, cut into wedges
- 3 cups = 700 ml fish broth
- 1 lb = 450 g frozen cauliflower florets
- 1 1/2 lbs = 680 g fresh salmon, in largish cubes
- 1 cup = 240 ml heavy cream
- butter for frying
- fresh dill for serving
- Place the onion wedges into a large saucepan. Cook the onion in butter until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add the fish broth and bring to a boil.
- Add the frozen cauliflower florets and cook until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add the salmon and cook until just done, about 5 minutes.
- Finally, add the heavy cream and bring to a boil but don't cook!
- Serve immediately, decorated with ample dill.
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|Nutrition information||In total||Per serving if 4 servings in total|
|Protein||110.1 g||27.6 g|
|Fat||167.8 g||42.0 g|
|Net carbs||20.5 g||5.1 g|
|kcal||2039 kcal||510 kcal|
Tips for Variations
If you cannot find decent fresh salmon, also frozen salmon is allowed (and to be honest, almost nobody realizes the difference between fresh and frozen salmon in this soup!)
If you don’t use dairy, you can replace the heavy cream with coconut cream. Well, in that case, the soup is not Finnish anymore, as coconuts don’t grow in Finland! Personally, I would simply omit the cream for a dairy-free version because the soup is tasty and hearty, even without heavy cream (although I strongly recommend adding the cream as it really makes the soup over the top!).
In case you don’t use dairy, use extra-virgin olive oil for frying the onion. (No, olives don’t grow in Finland either — except I have a small olive tree indoors!)
For a thicker consistency and chowder-like approach, cook your cauliflower so long that it becomes a little mashed; it thickens the soup in the most delicious way! By the way, my Keto Clam Chowder recipe in my Low Sugar, So Simple book uses cauliflower to thicken the chowder.
If you would like to reduce carbs further, the best way to do it is to reduce the cauliflower. For a carnivore soup, you can certainly omit the cauliflower altogether. If you stand onion, I recommend using it for the taste.
If you don’t use cruciferous veggies, you can replace cauliflower with daikon cubes. Daikon needs a longer cooking time, though, about 20 minutes.
Yesterday was probably the hardest day of my life. We had a beautiful and memorable funeral for my dad. A handful of the closest relatives were present — just like my dad had wished. The church service was very touching. The priest gave a lovely speech about my dad. The priest visited us a few days ago and spent two and a half hours talking with us. She is a really wonderful and easily-approachable person!
We had the memorial service after the church service in the parish hall located next to the church. We ate, spoke, sang, and shared memories about my dad. I had baked a keto cake because my family eats gluten-free and sugar-free food. The cake was really simple, just whipped cream pipings, grated dark chocolate, and a white carnation as decoration. The flower arrangement on my dad’s coffin had white carnations, among others.
I also played piano in the memorial service. I played one of my dad’s favorite songs that he asked me to play often. He was always applauding after I had finished playng.
A few of my relatives visited us before the funeral. We talked about the arrangements, our feelings, my dad, and we also ate well. Earlier in the week, we prepared food with my mom, and we made two similar pies, one with a regular wheaty crust and one with a keto crust for my family. The filling was satisfying and scrumptious as it contained leek, ham, sour cream, heavy cream, eggs, and spices. I was pretty sure that I took a photo of it but I cannot find it anymore! Most likely, I used my son’s camera, so it’s there in the memory card.
It was a really memorable week, and I’m happy that everything went smoothly and that there are nice memories for the years to come.
What a great way to remember your dad and celebrate his life. My deepest sympathy for your lose.
Thank you so much, Nikki!
Beautiful and memorable indeed – both the soup recipe and the cake and your poignant narrative. The spiritual experience of being human is nourished by such things, thank you!
Thank you, Mary, for your kind words! Life is so fragile and we cherish every memory of my dad.