Recipe: Butternut Squash Soup

This recipe has been a favorite of ours for over a decade. Both of our kids love it too, which is always a bonus, and fall is of course the perfect time of year to cook with winter squash since it’s currently so fresh and readily available (at least here in North Carolina). I am personally trying to get better at using foods when they are in season and preserving them for later in the year, and this soup freezes beautifully so it is worth it to double or triple the recipe.

This dish would also be a great starter for all those upcoming holiday dinners. One year my husband and I outdid ourselves by serving this soup in a scooped out acorn squash “bowl.” That was long before kids (and food blogs) when we had a little more time on our hands, but it sure was fun to “wow” our guests back in our adventurous days in the kitchen. No matter what you decide to do with this dish though I assure you that you can’t go wrong because it is delish!

4.8 from 10 reviews
Butternut Squash Soup
Serves: 5-6
Adapted from Joy of Cooking
  • 1 medium to large butternut or other winter squash (between 3 and 4 pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, unsalted
  • 2 large leeks, white part only cleaned thoroughly and chopped (you could substitute one onion for the leeks if you prefer)
  • 4 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 5 cups chicken stock or broth (homemade stock is easy and highly recommended - here's a recipe for making it in a pot and here's a recipe for making it in a slow cooker)
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (if using salted store-bought chicken broth then taste the soup before adding any salt)
  • Optional: Chopped pistachio nuts and/or fresh sage leaves for garnish
  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Slice the squash in half long ways and scoop out the seeds. Place the squash cut side down on a baking sheet. If you line the baking sheet with foil or parchment paper the clean up will be easier.
  3. Bake for 30 – 45 minutes or until the thick part of the squash can easily be pierced with a fork. Let cool then scoop out the pulp and discard the skin.
  4. Note: This step can be done in advance.
  5. In a large soup pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Add the chopped leeks and ginger. Cook for 5 – 8 minutes until tender, but not browned.
  6. Add the squash pulp to the pot along with the 5 cups of chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring and breaking up the squash with the back of your spoon, for 10 – 15 minutes.
  7. Puree the soup either with a hand immersion blender or in a counter top blender. I highly recommend a hand immersion blender if you like to make soups because you’ll end up with a lot fewer dirty dishes.
  8. After the soup has been pureed, stir in the cream and salt (to taste).
  9. Ladle into soup bowls and serve warm topped with chopped sage and pistachios.
    Refrigerate or freeze the leftovers.
* Omit optional pistachios to make nut-free.
We recommend organic ingredients when feasible.


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  • Comments

    1. Tiffany |

      Loved this! My whole family loved it, even the picky 5 year old. I will try it with coconut milk next time, just to mix it up a bit :-) I put a little fresh parsley in before serving. Again, this was really good. Thank you for the recipe.

    2. Lacy |

      Let me first say I loved the taste of this soup! It is so simple and such little ingredients its taste is surprising because you don’t realize how little you need to get so much. I actually didn’t have a butternut squash and changed it up quite a bit cuz I used spaghetti squash instead. I skipped the puréed step and left it with the spaghetti squash noodle like. It is still sooo good! I will be making it again… And probably again after that :-)

    3. Rebecca |

      I made this for the first time last night and the family loved it! Even my 3 year old ate a whole bowl then proceeded to say, “Let’s make it for Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday…” :-)

    4. Irlanda |

      I have to try this recipe. My Family is a soups lovers!

    5. Harbinder |

      I tried this yesterday and it came out pretty good except that my family found the soup to be a little too sweet. Any suggestions for how I can change the recipe so that its not so sweet?

    6. Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

      Hi there. Butternut squash is by nature sweet. You could try to add some heat or chipotle seasoning to add some complexity.

    7. Kimberly |

      I made this yesterday for the first time, and it is FANTASTIC! My husband liked it too. I’m always surprised at how easy “real food” can be if I just plan! Love this recipe!!

    8. Kerry |

      I found a whole raw squash very hard to cut open, but then I found a cookbook with the following: put a 1/4 cup of water in the bottom of the crockpot and add the whole squash. Cover tightly and cook on low for 7-9 hours, until a skewer goes in easily. Let it cool, cut it in half and do your scooping. Worked like a charm and I continued on with your recipe instead of theirs that wanted me to add brown sugar.

    9. Cherie |

      Just made this soup. I love it. Will definitely be a staple of ours. Thanks

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