This is THE BEST squash soup recipe and the only one you'll ever need! Super creamy, and also super healthy!
It's fall! What I consider to be the best time of year. I'm embarrassed to say I'm one of those people that gets excited about the seasonal changes way too early. As soon as the first colourful leaf falls, my excitement starts. I try and hide it or deny the end of summer for a bit, but I'm pretty sure Ryan is on to me when I start making pumpkin spice lattes and decorate my front door with our stuffed pumpkin at the beginning of September. The start of cozy sweaters, crisp autumn air, and the excitement of all sorts of good things coming up... apple picking, fall farm market dates, Christmas around the corner and winter sports, not to mention all the yummy fall flavours that come along with it.
On that note, I present you with the only Butternut Squash Soup recipe you will ever need! I absolutely love making soup. I usually crave it for lunch every day, with some salad or a sandwich on fresh bread, so once the cool weather starts I always have a pot of homemade soup in the fridge. I usually have a hunch what soup I'm craving next, so my next grocery shop I'll grab the ingredients, where they'll sit in the fridge until my next rest day. Rest days are soup making days! Suddenly, I have an extra two or three hours on my hands once a week, when I take a day off training, and what better way to spend it than drinking a cup of tea and making soup? Needless to say, I have compiled a lot of soup making experience over the years, and butternut squash is Ryan and I's all-time favourite.
Also, it's great fuel! There's really nothing in this soup except roasted squash, and chicken broth which adds delicious protein. Squash is a really healthy source of carbs, and is also full of vitamins and antioxidants. Chicken broth is rich in vitamins and minerals, which are good for our athlete joints and also help ward off flu. Oh, and garlic - also a great flu fighter! The key to the delicious flavour comes from roasting the squash. Don't let that deter you... it's quite easy to cut a squash in half, throw it in the oven for half an hour while you go do some work or laundry, and then easily scoop it in to a pot. Throw in some herbs, pour over the broth, blend it up and there you have it!
A hard-earned word of advice: less is more when it comes to butternut squash soup. I have defaced many a beautiful pot by adding too many spices and herbs. You might be temped to add a bunch of nutmeg, cinnamon, sage or any of those warming herbs and spices, but trust me when I say the flavour of the roasted squash is perfect the way it is! I add a pinch of nutmeg and a little sage, because sage and squash are a match made in heaven, but I keep it super minimal.
Here's how to make it
You can also use acorn squash, buttercup squash, or a pumpkin for this recipe. Get the squash in the oven to roast. Give it a nice long roast, until it's really soft, because that will make it much easier to scoop out of the skins in to the soup mixture after!
While your squash is baking, caramelize your onion, then add your garlic, herbs and spices at the end to toast for a few minutues. Pour in your chicken broth and let this simmer until your squash is out of the oven.
Once your squash is finished roasting, scoop it in to the pot. Blend this all up in your vitamix, food processor, nutribullet, or whatever you have in your kitchen until it's really nice and smooth and creamy. Finally, add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle your pumpkin seeds on top when serving!
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Crispy Pumpkin Seeds
Calories per serving: 128 kcal
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
1 large butternut squash (or buttercup, a pumpkin, or 2 acorn squash)
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 large onion
4 cloves garlic
5 cups chicken broth or water
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of cinnamon
1/2 sprig rosemary, or 1/2 tsp dried
2 sage leaves, or 1/2 tsp dried
1 tbsp maple syrup
salt and pepper
1 tsp butter
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
Start with the squash. You can also use acorn squash, buttercup squash, or a pumpkin for this recipe. If you use acorn squash, use two squash instead of one because they're a lot smaller. Cut them in half and scoop out the seeds with a spoon, then lay them on a baking pan. Use half the olive oil called for in the recipe to rub on the squash, along with some salt and pepper, then put them skin side down in the oven at 400°F for 30-40 minutes. You'll know they're done when you can easily inset a fork in to the baked squash. The longer these are baked for, the easier it will be to scoop out the squash, so bake them until they're nice and soft!
While your squash is baking, chop up one large onion. This will all get blended in the end, so it doesn't matter if it's perfect. Also chop your garlic, thyme, rosemary and sage.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a large pot, and once it's shimmering add your onion. Let it cook, stirring occasionally, until it's nice and caramelized. This should take about ten minutes, until your onions are past translucent and start to look slightly brown. This means all the sugars in the onion have cooked down, yum! Now you can add your garlic, spices and herbs. Cook this for another 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds or so, to toast up the garlic and spices. Pour in your chicken broth and let this simmer until your squash is out of the oven.
While you wait for the squash, you can toast up your pumpkin seeds. Add the butter to a pan on the stovetop and let it melt. Pour in your pumpkin seeds, and stir them around until they're coated in the butter. Let them roast, stirring every 30 seconds or so, until you can hear them pop and see them turning brown. Keep an eye on these, they can go from brown to burnt really quickly! Once they're done, transfer them to an airtight container and sprinkle them on top of your soup as you eat each yummy bowlful.
Once your squash is nice and soft, scoop out the flesh (can we just touch on how this word used for squash innards is so awful?!). You can turn your stove off at this point. Once all your squash has been added to the broth mix, it's blending time! Use a Vitamix, Nurtibullet, food processor, or whatever blending device you have on hand to make the mixture thoroughly smooth and creamy!
Last but not least, add salt and pepper to your personal taste. broth is salty, so how much salt you add will also depend what broth you're using. Chefs in restaurants use a lot more salt than you'd expect, because it really builds flavour. Also, your body needs sodium (especially if you exercise a lot!), so don't be afraid of it! Start with a little, give it a mix, and add more if need be. If you feel it's lacking flavour, it probably just needs a bit more salt. You'll know you have it right when you eat a spoonful and it makes you smile and say, "mmm!" (toasting pumpkin seeds at end).