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Cream of Mushroom Soup

June 10, 2020 | Updated January 13, 2022 | Laura

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Julia Child's Cream of Mushroom Soup

✽ Recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. I | Julia Child ✽

Julia Child Recipe 35 | 493 recipes to go!

✽ Cream of Mushroom Soup [Potage Velouté Aux Champignons], p. 40


✽ Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. I was written by Julia Child who co-authored with Simone Beck & Louisette Bertholle and was published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1961.

✽ You can buy Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I which contains these recipes here. (affiliate link)

The purpose of this Julia Child section of my blog is to document my journey of learning how to cook. To show my successes, my failures, and what I learned along the way.

Since I didn't create these recipes (if only!), I do not post exact amounts of ingredients or word-for-word instructions. If any of these recipes spark your interest, I highly recommend you buy Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking (affiliate link). It's a great investment and learning tool and contains hundreds of classic recipes.

I hope that you enjoy reading my thoughts, learn something new, and leave inspired to try a new recipe. Bon appétit!


Butter Count & Cost: Cream of Mushroom Soup

✽ Butter Count: +8 TB

✽ Cost: $8.68 [~$1.24 per serving]

Check out the total Julia Child butter count & cost here!

→ Looking for a different Julia Child recipe? Here's a list of all of the completed and pending Mastering the Art of French Cooking recipes!

Earthy, fresh, and creamy.

Hello again! This is such a busy time for me so simple(ish) recipes are my go-to right now. I decided to make this mushroom soup which I was pretty excited to try. I love how mushrooms taste, and this soup looked so creamy.

Julia recommends having it for grand occasions or for the main course on a Sunday supper. But I had it between cleaning my house for showings for possible buyers on a Monday all by myself. None-the-less, it still tasted fabulous!

Creamy Mushroom Soup: Questions

✽ What is the best type of mushrooms to use for this cream of mushroom soup?

I am not 100% certain what type of mushroom Julia would have been using for this recipe as she just says 'thinly sliced caps from fresh mushrooms.' However, in the vegetable chapter she goes into a bit more detail about mushrooms. She talks only about 'cultivated mushrooms' which I assume she is talking about button mushrooms.

Since I was on quite a tight budget when I made this soup for the first time, I just grabbed the cheapest mushrooms I could find. This was the package of whole white mushrooms called button mushrooms. I found them to be really tasty in this soup.

You could also use the brown mushrooms called baby bellas or cremini mushrooms which are the same variety as the white button mushrooms. They are just the more mature version of the white mushrooms!

✽ How do you choose the freshest mushrooms?

The freshest mushrooms at the grocery store are going to be the ones that are closed underneath meaning you are not able to see the gills. The mushrooms should both look and smell fresh and earthy. Older mushrooms will have their gills showing, be a darker color, and look dried out.

✽ What are fluted mushrooms?

Fluted mushrooms are the caps of mushrooms that have been cut in a beautiful pattern. While they are really delicious, they are mostly used as a decoration for a dish.

This is definitely something you will probably need to practice multiple times before getting the hang of it. Be sure you are using a very sharp paring knife!

Check out pages 510-511 of Mastering the Art of French Cooking Vol 1 for detailed instructions and illustrations. Or learn from Jacques Pépin in this video. He makes it look so easy!

Looking for more Julia Child soup recipes to read about?

→ Check out all of the soup recipes that I've completed so far!

Fun White Button Mushroom Facts

Find these facts plus more on Wikipedia and Eater.

✽ What other names do white button mushrooms have?

Their scientific name is Agaricus bisporus. They also are called common mushroooms, white mushrooms, cultivated mushrooms, or table mushrooms.

✽ White Mushrooms vs. Brown Mushrooms

The white and brown mushrooms you see at the store are all the same mushroom- Agaricus bisporus. They are just different ages. The white button mushrooms are the youngest while the brown mushrooms (also called cremini mushrooms) are more mature. The brown mushrooms are also sometimes called 'baby bellas'. This is because they are quite literally the younger stage of a portobella!

✽ How many pounds of mushrooms do Americans eat?

The average American only consumes about 2.6 pounds of mushrooms each year.

✽ How popular is Agaricus bisporus?

Very! They make up 90% of all mushroom production in America.

How to Make Cream of Mushroom Soup

✽ Step 1: Cook the Onions

The recipe starts by cooking onions slowly in butter until they are tender (but do not brown them!). I found this to be a difficult task. My onions did get slightly browned but I suppose next time, I’ll just cook on an even lower heat.

I can only imagine how silly this will sound by the time I'm done cooking all these recipes- a really humbling 'look how far I've come' moment I'm sure. I didn't even know how to cook onions properly- ha!

✽ Step 2: Add Flour

The addition of flour will help make the soup thick.

Mushrooms Julia Child

✽ Step 3: Add Broth & Mushroom Stems

Chicken stock, seasonings, and just the mushroom stems are added and simmered for a few minutes. The stems will be strained out the soup and pressed to ensure all their juices are out.

I love the fact that you use both elements of the mushroom. Really gives the soup that great earthy mushroom taste. I do wonder though why the stems are not left in the soup.. too woody perhaps?

Cream of Mushroom Soup Julia Child

✽ Step 4: Cook Mushroom Caps in Butter

The mushroom caps are then cooked with butter, salt, and lemon juice in a separate saucepan.

In the later vegetable chapter, Julia mentions how mushrooms should never be cooked for a long time because they will lose their flavor and texture. This is why they are cooked separately then simmered a moment with the other ingredients to blend their flavors.

Mushroom Soup Julia Child

✽ Step 5: Add Mushrooms

The buttered mushrooms are added into the soup base, and it all simmers for just a few minutes.

✽ Step 6: Beat in Egg Yolks & Cream

Now to the really good part! Bean an egg yolk and cream together and gradually beat the hot soup into the egg mixture.

The pot is returned to the stove to poach the egg yolks, but whatever you do- DON’T SCRAMBLE THE EGGS! Very important.

Potage Veloute aux Champignons Julia Child

✽ Step 7: Add Butter & Serve

After all that, you add some butter straight to the pot because why not? The more butter, the better I suppose. Fat is flavor! The butter will add in more flavor and give your soup a more luxurious feeling in your mouth.

I topped my bowl with fresh parsley which complimented the flavors nicely.

You can also decorate your bowl of soup with fluted mushrooms if you have the skills. I definitely need to practice making fluted mushrooms because it’s way harder than it looks. Maybe somebody out there has some tips? Here’s what mine looked like, and yes, I am ashamed. I'll keep practicing!

Fluted Mushroom Julia Child

I’ll be honest- I’ve never actually just eaten cream of mushroom soup. All I knew was Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup that would get added to casseroles and such when I was a child. This was really good. It’s pretty rich so I didn’t eat a lot of it but it has great flavor.

A must try for all mushroom lovers out there!

Cream of Mushroom Soup Julia Child

*This blog, Laura The Gastronaut, and this post were/are not endorsed or supported by Julia Child or The Julia Child Foundation.

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Category: Julia Child, Soup Cuisine: French
Keywords: cream soup recipe, cream of mushroom soup recipe, julia child soup recipes, mastering the art of french cooking soup, julia child mushroom soup recipe

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More Soup Recipes:

Onion Soup Gratineed with Cheese (very few things better than homemade French onion soup topped with cheese)
Watercress Soup (another simple but tasty soup)
Garlic Soup with Poached Eggs (garlic and runny eggs- count me in!)
→ Check out all of the completed Julia Child soup recipes!

✽ You can find this recipe and all the other Julia Child recipes I make in Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I (affiliate link).
→ Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. I was written by Julia Child who co-authored with Simone Beck & Louisette Bertholle and was published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1961.

✽ Check out my Julia Child Recipe Checklist to see a list of all my completed and pending recipes from Mastering the Art of French Cooking!

Bon appétit!

June 12, 2019 by Laura Ehlers

*This Cream of Mushroom Soup blog post may contain some Amazon affiliate links. These link to products that I personally use and recommend. If you purchase anything using my links, it will not cost you anything. It will though give some financial support which helps me keep this blog running. Thank you for reading my blogs and your continued support.