Easy Spring Nettle Soup – Pokrzywianka

Discover the wonders of easy spring stinging nettle soup – Pokrzywianka recipe. Learn how to harvest, prepare, and enjoy this nutritious dish with wild nettles that celebrate the arrival of spring. Nourish your body with fresh nettles’ health benefits while savoring this delicious soup’s comforting flavors. This is my favorite nettle soup recipe of all time and one of those nutritious soups you will crave!

Polish Spring Nettle Soup – Pokrzywianka

As the world awakens from its wintry slumber, there’s an undeniable buzz in the air—a vibrant energy that heralds the arrival of spring. With the emergence of delicate blossoms and the sweet symphony of birdsong, nature beckons us to embrace its renewal. And what better way to welcome this season of rejuvenation than with a bowl of nourishing spring stinging nettle soup?

Nettles (Urtica dioica), often regarded as pesky weeds due to their stinging leaves, hold a secret treasure trove of health benefits and culinary delights. Despite their prickly reputation, these resilient plants have been cherished for centuries for their medicinal properties and culinary versatility. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, nettles are a powerhouse of nutrition waiting to be explored. It is considered one of the most nutritious medicinal plants.

Sptining nettle is abundant in Europe and Poland, where I come from. It grows everywhere! I had forgotten about it, and my last trip to Poland and Germany reminded me of beautiful healing nettles. 

In medieval Europe, nettles were commonly consumed as nutritious green vegetables during times of food scarcity. Nettle soup became a staple dish among peasants and rural communities, providing a valuable source of vitamins and minerals, particularly during the spring when fresh produce was scarce.

I realize that you might be thinking ugh, nettle soup? Why would I be eating nettles? Or you don’t know how this soup would taste. 

The nettle’s flavor is earthy, herbaceous, and slightly nutty, with a subtle hint of bitterness. When cooked, it develops a rich, savory taste reminiscent of spinach or other leafy greens. The young, tender leaves have a milder flavor than mature ones, making them ideal for culinary use. I’m sure you will enjoy it, and it is always nice to try something new. This easy nettle soup, Pokrzywianka, will surprise you with its subtle flavor.

What is Nettle Soup?

Nettle soup, a very healthy soup is known as “zupa z pokrzyw” or “zupa z młodej pokrzywy,” or “pokrzywianka” is a traditional dish in Polish cuisine. Nettle soup has been enjoyed in Poland for centuries. It remains popular, especially in springtime, when young nettles are abundant.

In Poland, nettle soup is typically made with fresh stinging nettles harvested in the early spring, which I used to do with my grandmother every spring. After the harvest, we carefully cleaned them and blanched them to remove their stinging hairs before incorporating them into the soup. The soup is often flavored with onions, garlic, potatoes, carrots, and sometimes bacon or sausage for added richness and flavor. You can also add a sour cream to it. The soup will have a lighter color. You can blend it or just leave it as it is. I used to eat regular soup with diced veggies, but now I prefer blending. 

Nettle soup is valued not only for its delicious taste but also for its nutritional benefits. It is often regarded as a cleansing and revitalizing dish, perfect for rejuvenating the body after the long winter months. Nettles are known for their high vitamin and mineral content, making nettle soup a nutritious choice.

In addition to its culinary use, nettles have a long history of medicinal use in Polish folk medicine. They are good for boosting immunity, improving digestion, balancing hormones, remineralizing the body and alleviating seasonal allergies.

Best Time to Harvest Stinging Nettle

The best time to harvest stinging nettles is early spring, typically from March to May. However, this can vary depending on your location and climate. Nettles are among the first plants to emerge as the weather begins to warm up after winter, making them readily available in many regions.

When harvesting stinging nettles, looking for young, tender leaves is essential. These leaves are usually found at the top of the plant and have a bright green color. Avoid harvesting nettles once they flower, as the leaves can become tough and taste bitter.

Additionally, wear rubber gloves (don’t do it with bare hands!) and long sleeves when harvesting nettles to protect yourself from their stinging hairs, which can cause skin irritation. Use scissors or garden shears to carefully cut the tops of the plants, leaving some leaves behind to allow the plant to continue growing.

Once harvested, rinse the nettles thoroughly under cold water to remove any dirt or debris before using them in recipes like nettle soup or tea. If you cannot use the nettles right away, you can also dry them for later use by hanging them upside down in a well-ventilated area.

Where to Find Fresh Nettle

​You can find fresh stinging nettles at farmers’ markets, specialty grocery stores, health food stores, or even forage for them in the wild, provided you’re knowledgeable about identifying and safely harvesting them. Some farmers’ markets or organic grocery stores may carry seasonal produce, including fresh nettles, during the springtime when they are in abundance. Additionally, consider reaching out to local farmers or herbalists who may be able to provide you with fresh nettles or direct you to sources where you can purchase them.

Is Nettle Soup Good For You – Nutritional Profile

Nutritious nettles provide many health benefits:

  1. Nutrient-Rich: Stinging nettles contain vitamins (such as A, C, and K), minerals (including iron, calcium, and magnesium), and antioxidants. 
  2. Immune Support: The vitamins and minerals found in stinging nettles are crucial in supporting a healthy immune system. Vitamin C, in particular, helps bolster immune function and may reduce the risk of infections.
  3. Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Stinging nettles contain compounds with anti-inflammatory properties, such as flavonoids and carotenoids. Consuming nettle soup may help reduce inflammation, potentially alleviating symptoms of conditions like arthritis and allergies.
  4. Supports Menstrual Health: Some herbalists and natural health practitioners recommend stinging nettles as a supportive herb for menstrual health. Nettle tea or soup is believed to help regulate menstrual cycles, reduce heavy bleeding, and alleviate cramps associated with menstruation.
  5. Digestive Health: The fiber-rich vegetables and soothing properties of stinging nettles can promote digestive health. Nettle soup may help alleviate digestive discomfort, such as bloating and constipation, and support a healthy gut microbiome.
  6. Detoxification: Nettles have diuretic properties, meaning they promote urine production and may aid in flushing out toxins from the body. Including nettle soup in your diet can support the body’s natural detoxification processes, helping to eliminate waste and purify the system.
  7. Bone Health: Stinging nettles are a good source of calcium and vitamin K, which are essential for maintaining strong and healthy bones. Incorporating nettle soup into your diet can contribute to bone density and may help prevent conditions like osteoporosis.
  8. Energy Boost: Stinging nettles’ nutrient-dense nature provides a natural energy boost, helping to combat fatigue and increase vitality.
  9. Skin Health: The vitamins and antioxidants in stinging nettles have been linked to promoting healthy skin. Consuming nettle soup may help improve skin complexion and reduce inflammation associated with skin conditions like eczema.
  10. Iron Content: Stinging nettles are a good source of iron, an essential mineral for women, especially during menstruation and pregnancy. Iron deficiency can lead to hormonal imbalances and fatigue, so consuming iron-rich foods like stinging nettle soup can help support overall hormonal health.

Ingredients For Nettle Soup

  1. Fresh, stinging nettle leaves (only young leaves). Make sure that you have enough nettle. You can also use frozen nettle if you saved it from the last season, but it also has to be young.
  2. Olive oil
  3. Onion, chopped
  4. Garlic, minced
  5. Potatoes (other veggies can be used as well such as broccoli or asparagus)
  6. Carrot, diced
  7. Vegetable stock or chicken stock
  8. Salt and pepper to taste
  9. Juice of lemon
  10. Coconut milk or Greek yogurt (optional for creaminess)
  11. Fresh  tarragon, parsley, chives, or dill for garnish

How To Make It

Gather a handful of fresh nettles, ensuring you select only the young, tender leaves. Rinse them thoroughly under cold water, removing any dirt or debris. Then, with caution, blanch the nettles in boiling water for a few seconds to neutralize their sting. This simple yet crucial step renders the nettles safe to handle and infuses them with a vibrant green hue.

Next, it’s time to elevate the flavor profile of your soup with an array of aromatic ingredients. Sauté shallot or onions and garlic in a splash of olive oil until golden and fragrant on medium-low heat in a medium pot. Then, add diced potatoes, carrots, and celery, allowing them to soften and release their natural sweetness. As the vegetables mingle and meld their flavors, introduce the star of the show—freshly chopped nettles, their verdant leaves infusing the broth with earthy undertones.

Pour in vegetable or chicken broth, allowing the soup to simmer gently until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have harmonized. Season with salt, pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice to brighten the palate and awaken the senses.

You can eat the soup as it is, coll it down and run it through a food processor (picture below), or blend it (pictures at the top)

Swirl in a dollop of creamy coconut milk, cashew gremolata, or Greek yogurt for a luxurious finish, imparting richness and depth to the soup.

As you ladle the steaming liquid into bowls, garnish hard-boiled egg and freshly chopped herbs—perhaps parsley, chives, or dill—to add freshness and visual appeal.


  1. Medium Soup Pot or Dutch Oven
  2. Cutting Board and Knife
  3. Gloves: Since stinging nettles can cause skin irritation, it’s important to wear gloves when handling them. Opt for disposable or kitchen gloves to protect your hands during harvesting and preparation.
  4. Colander or Strainer
  5. Immersion Blender or Regular Blender: To puree the soup to a smooth consistency, you can use either an immersion blender directly in the pot or transfer the soup in batches to a regular blender.
  6. Wooden Spoon or Ladle
  7. Measuring Cups and Spoons
  8. Optional: Soup Bowls and Garnishes

How To Store It

To store nettle soup, transfer it into airtight containers once it cools to room temperature. Label the containers with the date of preparation and place them in the refrigerator. Consume the soup within 3-4 days for optimal freshness. When ready to eat, reheat the soup gently on the stovetop or microwave until heated. Avoid freezing if possible, as the texture may change upon thawing.

​How to Serve It

To serve this easy nettle soup- Pokrzywianka, ladle it into bowls while it’s hot and garnish with freshly chopped herbs, such as parsley or chives, creative drizzles of creme fraiche, cashews gremolata, or a drizzle of truffle oil. Pair the soup with crusty bread and serve with a hard-boiled egg. Enjoy the nourishing embrace of this flavorful dish as you savor the tastes of spring.

Nettle soup is a nutritious meal that will satisfy your taste buds. With each sip, you’re not only indulging in a gastronomic delight but also partaking in a ritual that connects you to the rhythms of nature. You’re honoring the cycle of growth and renewal, embracing the abundance that the season has to offer.

So, as you savor the warmth of your soup and feel its nourishing embrace, take a moment to pause and reflect on the wonders of spring. Allow yourself to be transported by its magic, to revel in the promise of new beginnings and the infinite possibilities that lie ahead. And remember, with every bowl of spring stinging nettle soup, you’re not just feeding your body—you’re feeding your soul.

​More Nettle Recipes You Might Like

Nettle Infused Honey

Did you make this recipe?

Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #thetastesoflifeholisticblog

Easy Spring Nettle Soup - Pokrzywianka

Easy Spring Nettle Soup – Pokrzywianka

Discover the wonders of easy spring stinging nettle soup – Pokrzywianka recipe. Learn how to harvest, prepare, and enjoy this nutritious dish with wild nettles that celebrate the arrival of spring.
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Course: lunch, Soup
Cuisine: European, Polish
Keyword: Nettle soup, Pokrzywianka, Srping nettle soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 3 cups Stinging nettles leaves fresh, young and tender
  • 1 Onion diced
  • 1 lbs Potatoes
  • 2 Carrots
  • 6 cups Veggie stock or chicken stock
  • 3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Onion granulated
  • 2 oz Basil fresh
  • 1/4 cup Coconut milk, Greek yogurt, cream Fraiche
  • 1 tbsp Lemon juice or Apple cider vinegar, add more if nedeed
  • salt to taste
  • black pepper to tatste
  • Cashew gremolata for garnish optional


  • Wear gloves to protect your hands and carefully pick 2 cups of fresh stinging nettle leaves, choosing the young and tender ones. Blanch them.
    In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped onion and minced garlic and granulated oinion, sautéing until golden and fragrant.
    Add diced potatoes, carrot to the pot, stirring to coat them in the oil and onion mixture. Allow the vegetables to soften slightly.
    With caution, add the fresh nettle leaves to the pot. Sauté for a few minutes until the nettles wilt and release their vibrant green color.
    Pour in the vegetable or chicken broth, bringing the mixture to a gentle simmer. Allow the soup to cook for about 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have melded together.
    Add basil and cook for another 5 minutes. Season the soup with salt, pepper, and the juice of half a lemon to taste. Stir in coconut milk or Greek yogurt for added creaminess, if desired.
    Once the soup is ready, remove it from the heat. Using an immersion blender or a regular blender, carefully purée the soup until smooth and creamy.
    Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with freshly chopped herbs, such as parsley, chives, or dill, for a burst of freshness and flavor.
    Serve hot and enjoy the nourishing embrace of spring stinging nettle soup!


Serving: 8g

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