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Gluten-Free Cream of Celery Soup Recipe: Make It How You Want It

Sneak Preview: This Gluten-Free Cream of Celery Soup recipe is easily customizable for your dietary needs. Easy directions for microwave or stove-top.

How long has it been since you made your favorite casserole because you need it to be salt or gluten-free? If that recipe calls for condensed cream of celery soup, try making it yourself with this recipe. Cornstarch is the thickening agent. Salt is easy to leave out or use a salt substitute.

cream of celery soup in a glass jar

Cooks who liked my homemade Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup and Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup have requested other varieties of condensed cream soups.

In time for Thanksgiving, I revisited the idea. Condensed cream of celery soup is the result. Customize this soup with herbs and other vegetables if you desire.

What variations can I use with this recipe?

Try different herbs such as thyme, oregano, or parsley. Add some chopped carrots, broccoli, red peppers, or shallots. Get creative.

Ingredients and substitutions:

  • CELERY: Fresh celery is best. I often freeze chopped celery if I have more than I can use. This recipe is perfect for that celery.
  • VEGETABLE OIL: My vegetable oil of choice is avocado oil. Any light vegetable oil can be substituted.
  • EVAPORATED MILK: The original goal with this recipe was to imitate Campbells. The cooked taste of evaporated milk comes closest. Also, evaporated milk is more stable with higher temperatures that may be present in casseroles.
  • CORNSTARCH: Using cornstarch to thicken this soup makes it gluten-free as opposed to using flour. Always check the label to be sure.
  • ONION POWDER: Onion powder is easy. Like evaporated milk, if you want a fresher taste, use fresh or frozen onions instead. You will only need about a tablespoon.
  • WHITE PEPPER: Substitute black pepper or freshly ground pepper.
  • CELERY SALT: Celery salt pumps up the flavor. Substitute the same amount of regular salt or leave it out completely for a sodium-free version of this recipe.

Can I substitute regular milk for evaporated milk?

Various kinds of fresh milk will work, from non-fat to half-and-half or heavy cream. However, they won’t stand up to the prolonged cooking many recipes require. If you accidentally let the soup or casserole boil, it may break and curdle.

frozen celery and vacuum-packed celery

Kitchen Tip: How to freeze celery

While we’re talking about celery, did you know you can freeze it? Freezing is an excellent solution for leftover celery. Otherwise, it often languishes in the produce drawer until it turns brown and slimy.

I wouldn’t use it in chicken salad, but frozen celery works well in a recipe when the celery cooks. Chop up the raw celery and throw it into a plastic bag. Use it like you would frozen chopped onions or peppers.

image of a leaf
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Try vacuum-sealing the stalks into a glass jar the same way I vacuum-pack cut lettuce. Store both in the refrigerator, of course. This technique will buy you several more days of freshness.

How to make gluten-free “cream of celery” soup in a microwave:

showing how to make celery soup in the microwave

How to make celery soup on the stove:

What about freezing?

Freezing soup made with fresh milk may result in some separation when it thaws. You may or may not care, depending on how you use it. Evaporated milk is more stable and results in a product closest to that found in the can, in my opinion.

More recipes for homemade condensed soup:

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Did you enjoy this recipe? If so, you can help others and me by leaving a 5-star 🤩 rating in the comment section below. No comment is required.

p.s. If you have any questions or suggestions, you can email me privately: Paula at

Hope to see you again soon!

Gluten-Free Cream of Celery Soup Recipe

Using only a whisk and a microwave, you can make your own condensed cream of celery soup. Customize to your own taste.
Paula Rhodes
4.73 from 11 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 7 mins
Total Time 12 mins
Course Soup
Servings 3 servings


  • ¾ cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or avocado oil
  • 1 cup 2% evaporated milk - 8-ounces
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder - or substitute 1 tablespoon chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • teaspoon white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon celery salt or table salt
  • Pinch of sugar


Microwave Method

  • Place chopped celery and oil into a 2 quart glass microwave-safe bowl. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 minutes. (If substituting onion for onion powder, add the onion to the celery to knock off the crunchiness.)
  • Add remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth.
  • Microwave for 2 minutes, stopping to whisk after 1 minute and again when finished.

Stove-Top Method

  • Saute celery (and onion if substituting for powder) in hot oil in skillet over medium heat.
  • When vegetables are softened, add milk, then whisk in remaining ingredients. Stir constantly and cook gently until thickened.


Serving: 1gCalories: 139kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 6gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 315mgPotassium: 72mgFiber: 1gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 119IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 36mgIron: 1mg
Keyword condensed soup, cream soups, gluten-free, gluten-free cream of celery soup, microwave, Soup Recipes
Cuisine American
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Recipe Rating

Sharon Williams

Tuesday 22nd of November 2016

Hi! I will be using this recipe to make green bean casserole for Thanksgiving. I need it to be gluten free and am wondering if I could use gluten free flour instead of corn starch and could I substitute butter for the oil? Thanks! I realize I am cutting this close to the holiday so if I don't hear back from you in time I will just experiment!


Wednesday 23rd of November 2016

Hi Sharon, I have not tried gluten-free flour myself. Would think that butter would work fine although I haven't tried that either. Hope it works for you. Happy Thanksgiving.


Tuesday 10th of November 2015

How long can you keep it in the refrigerator?


Tuesday 17th of June 2014

So I just prepared this using the microwave. I plan on using it in a tuna rice casserole that I have always used the canned soup in. I can't seem to figure out if this makes an amount equal to one can, and is it truly condensed? As in, am I supposed to add an equal amount of water if the recipe says to add one can of water? It looks really good, but mostly all I tasted was the cornstarch. Maybe I need more salt or to cook it longer? Thank you! I love how easy this was!


Tuesday 17th of June 2014

Hi Wendy, I use this soup exactly the way I would a can of soup from the store. It is truly condensed. I can't imagine eating it straight up without adding water or milk--way too thick and rich. I'm not sure about the cornstarch taste. I do not detect it myself. This soup has considerably less salt than what you get at the store. You might try adding more salt if that's what you are use to.

You should cook it until it is very thick--however long that takes. Of course, it will become a lot thicker as it cools.


Sunday 18th of May 2014

I made this for my Funeral Potatoes recipe and it worked great. Fantastic flavor and I know exactly what ingredients used were. Thank you!


Wednesday 19th of March 2014

Do you need to add the oil if you are using the microwave version?


Thursday 20th of March 2014

Amber, Oil adds flavor, improves the texture, and gives you a product closer to what most people are used to out of the can. But you can leave it out if you like.