This homemade butternut squash soup is the best I’ve ever tasted! This recipe is super creamy (yet cream-less) and full of delicious butternut flavor. Leftover soup tastes even better the next day. Recipe yields about 4 bowls or 6 cups of soup.
Garnishes & Variations
- 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds), halved vertically and seeded
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- ½ cup chopped shallot (about 1 large shallot bulb)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Up to 4 cups (32 ounces) vegetable broth
- 1 to 2 tablespoons butter, to taste (substitute olive oil for dairy free/vegan soup)
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the butternut squash on the pan and drizzle each half with just enough olive oil to lightly coat the squash on the inside (about 1 teaspoon each). Rub the oil over the inside of the squash and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
- Turn the squash face down and roast until it is tender and completely cooked through, about 45 to 50 minutes. Set the squash aside until it’s cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Then use a large spoon to scoop the butternut squash flesh into a bowl and discard the tough skin.
- Meanwhile, in a medium skillet (or large soup pot, if you’ll be serving soup from that pot), warm 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the chopped shallot and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring often, until the shallot has softened and is starting to turn golden on the edges, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute, stirring frequently.
- Transfer the cooked shallot and garlic to your blender. Add the reserved butternut, maple syrup, nutmeg and a few twists of freshly ground black pepper. Pour in 3 cups vegetable broth, being careful not to fill the container past the maximum fill line (you can work in batches if necessary, and stir in any remaining broth later).
- If you would like to thin out your soup a bit more, stir in the remaining cup of broth (I used the full 4 cups, but if you used a small squash, you might want to leave it as is). Add 1 to 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil, to taste, and blend well. Taste and stir in more salt and pepper, if necessary.
- Serve immediately (I like to top each bowl with a little more black pepper). Let leftover soup cool completely before transferring it to a proper storage container and refrigerating it for up to 4 days (leftovers taste even better the next day!). Or, freeze this soup for up to 3 months.
Garnishes & Variations
Classic garnishes for Butternut Squash Soup include a dollop of sour cream, plain yogurt, or creme fraiche. A sprinkle of minced cilantro or thyme is also tasty.
- Creamy Add 1/3 to 1/2 cup heavy cream after blending and gently heat until warmed through.
- Spicy Add 1 chopped jalapeno chile and 1/4 tsp. cayenne with the garlic. Stir in up to 1/4 cup brown sugar at the end. If you like, cream is also a nice addition to this version.
- Roasted Roasting concentrates the flavor of the vegetables. You can use this method with any of the other flavor combinations you like. Put halved and seeded squash cut-side-down in a large pan. Arrange halved, peeled onions and garlic around squash. Pour in 1 cup broth and roast in a 375°F oven until very tender, about 30 minutes. Let cool slightly. Scoop out the squash flesh from the peel and put it in a blender, along with the onions and garlic and remaining broth.
- Gingery Add 1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger and 1 tsp. ground ginger along with the garlic. Make it even gingery-er by melting 4 Tbsp. butter in a small frying pan. Cook until it turns light brown and add 1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger. Swirl the ginger butter on top of each serving.
- Warm Spices Add a combination of 1/4 tsp. each ground cloves, cardamon, nutmeg, ground ginger, cinnamon, and/or black pepper along with the garlic.
- Many Squash! Switch out up to 2 lbs. of the butternut squash with sugar pumpkin or acorn squash.
- Protein Packed! Whirl up to 8 oz. of soft or silken tofu into the soup. Be sure to whirl it in a blender or food processor for a full minute or so to fully incorporate the tofu.