This satisfying, full-bodied easy butternut squash soup always gets rave reviews. It’s creamy, velvety smooth, full of flavor, healthy and super simple.
Make it on the stove top or instant pot. Either way, it’s a delicious vegetarian soup easily tweaked to fit the occasion and your diet preferences.
Why this easy butternut squash soup recipe is a winner
- Some butternut squash soups are thin and watery. This one uses a potato which acts as a natural thickening agent.
- We also add an apple or pear to enhance the natural sweetness of the squash.
- Don’t let the creamy, thick, luxurious texture of this soup fool you. It is very healthy. There’s only a dash of cream which you can omit if you like. According to Healthline, butternut squash is low in calories, high in fiber and loaded with healthy nutrients such as Vitamin A, C, potassium, iron, carotenoids and magnesium.
- This soup is vegan or dairy free (without the cream), vegetarian and gluten free.
- Best of all, most stores sell cubed and peeled butternut squash. It’s a bit more expensive, but this shortcut is well worth the time and effort saved. Squash is hard to cut!
Tailor To Your Taste
There are lots of variations or substitutes you can try with this soup. Keep it simple or jazz it up.
Flavor and Seasonings
- I like to use thyme and rosemary, but you can also consider curry powder, cinnamon, coriander, nutmeg or a splash of sherry vinegar.
- Instead of an apple, use a pear.
- For an extra boost of sweetness, nutrition and depth of color, use a small sweet potato instead of a white potato.
- Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. Even water is fine – just add more seasoning.
- For a dairy free or vegan version, leave out the cream. The soup will still be thick and full bodied.
- Homemade croutons (my fave)
- Fresh herbs – thyme, rosemary, chives, sage
- Crumbled goat cheese
- Cheese toasts
- Parmesan wafers
- Chopped cooked bacon
- Toasted nuts or candied pecans
Unique butternut squash soup recipes
For something a bit out-of-the-norm, try one of these interesting variations of this soup. Really good!
- Do yourself a favor and buy precut and peeled butternut squash if you can. If you can’t, buy a whole butternut squash, pierce it a few times with a knife, then microwave it for 4-5 minutes. This will make it much easier to peel and cut.
- Alternatively, use frozen cubed butternut squash, found in the freezer section with other frozen vegetables.
- Skip the first step of sauteeing the veggies and just dump everything into the pot together to simmer. The soup will then take less than 30 minutes to make.
- Use the instant pot to make the soup in about 25-30 minutes- instructions are in the recipe.
Creative ways to serve butternut squash and apple soup
Obviously it’s great just as a starter soup. But I also love to serve it in shot glasses or mini espresso cups as an appetizer during a dinner party. For weeknights, I often serve the soup in a cup sitting right on the dinner plate as a side dish.
The soup keeps well in the fridge for up to a week. Or you can freeze it in an airtight container or bag for 3 months. Make sure you don’t bring the soup to boil when reheating or the cream will curdle.
Other healthy butternut squash recipes you might like
- quinoa and butternut squash salad
- butternut squash salad cups
- squash curry (30 minutes)
- butternut squash salad with warm cinnamon dressing
- butternut squash noodles stir fry
How to make butternut squash soup
Easy Butternut Squash Soup
- immersion blender, blender or food processor (to puree soup)
Butternut Squash soup, Note 1
- 2 teaspoon olive or vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, roughly chopped (or 1 leeks, trimmed and sliced)
- 1 garlic clove, chopped (1 tsp)
- 5 cups -6 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed (1 1/2 lbs/700g), Note 2 (or 1 medium butternut squash)
- 1 apple, peeled, cored and cut into chunks (or pear)
- 1 potato, peeled and cut into chunks (white or sweet potato)
- 4 cups (950ml) chicken broth or vegetable broth – or more as needed use water instead if you like
- 1 teaspoon each chopped fresh thyme and rosemary or more (or 1/4 teaspoon each dried)
- salt and pepper to taste depends on saltiness of broth used
- 1/4 cup cream or milk, Note 3
- Pepitas, Homemade croutons (my fave), Fresh herbs – thyme, rosemary, chives, sage; Crumbled goat cheese; Cheese toasts; Parmesan wafers; Chopped cooked bacon; Toasted nuts or candied pecans
- SAUTE VEGGIES: Heat oil in medium pot to medium high. Add onions and saute for 3 minutes. Add butternut squash, potato, garlic and apple. Saute another 4 minutes. Shortcut: skip this first step, add all veggies to the pot and go to the next step.
- SIMMER SOUP: Add enough broth to cover the vegetables. Add seasonings. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until vegetables are very soft.
- PUREE SOUP AND FINISH: Puree soup – I do it right in the pot with an immersion blender, but you can also do it in a regular blender or food processor. The soup will be fairly thick as the potato acts as a thickening agent. Here’s where I add about 1/4-1/2 cup of half and half cream (or milk if you want to keep it lighter). Or, you can skip the dairy altogether and just add some water or broth to desired consistency if you find the soup too thick. Taste and adjust seasonings. I often add a pinch of fresh or dried thyme. Serve with garnishes you like.
- Measuring amounts: Use the recipe amounts as a guideline. If you have a bit more or less butternut squash or onions, it won’t matter. You also may need more or less broth depending on the size of your pot. Tip: The key is to use enough broth just to cover the vegetables. Once the soup is cooked and pureed, you can add a bit more if the soup is too thick to get the consistency you like.
- Preparing butternut squash: If you can, buy precut and peeled butternut squash. If you can’t, buy a whole butternut squash, pierce it a few times with a knife, then microwave it for 4-5 minutes. This will make it much easier to peel and cut.
- Cream or milk: Use whatever combination you like to get the creaminess you want. Heavy cream will be thick and rich (you may need to add more broth to thin out the soup). I use about 1/4 cup half and half cream. To reduce calories, use milk. For dairy free, leave out the cream altogether.
- How to make butternut squash soup in an instant pot. Press saute function and let heat up. Add oil and veggies. Saute for 5 minutes. Turn saute function off. Add broth and seasonings. Set to High Pressure for 10 minutes. Place lead and turn knob to Sealing. Once finished cooking, do a quick release, taking care not to burn yourself from the steam. When button drops, you can safely take off lid. Puree soup with immersion blender in the instant pot. Add cream and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Make ahead: The soup keeps well in the fridge for up to a week. Or you can freeze it in an airtight container or bag for 3 months. Make sure you don’t bring the soup to boil when reheating or the cream will curdle.