This simple butternut squash soup recipe is dairy-free and vegan (with meat lover options) but just as creamy as any cream-based soup. It comes together quickly for a weeknight lunch or dinner.
There are some people who are quite literally soup-er heroes. Get it? They make soups so often that they don’t need recipes, and honestly, they could probably make the soups blindfolded, too. Let me tell you, I am not that person. (But if you give me random ingredients, I can whip a delicious salad right up!)
But when I make soup, I have to follow a recipe. And this particular recipe has been my go-to this winter. Since becoming a mom, I have been trying to make a big batch of soup at the beginning of the week to simplify lunchtime. I find that really helps me to not get overwhelmed as I try to juggle #allthethings. Mamas, you feel me?
This butternut squash soup has been a staple in our house over the years, but especially this winter. It’s perfect when we need a quick meal that warms us up AND tastes absolutely delicious.
Unfortunately, I think many butternut squash recipes scare people away. Does anyone else feel like they’re going to lose a finger whenever they try to peel and/or dice a butternut squash? Yeah, me too.
Sure, I could microwave it for a few minutes to soften it and make cutting less dangerous, but I still prefer the method I use in this super easy and great recipe. All you need to do is simply scoop it out of the peel after it’s soft from baking. And while there is some cutting, it’s just one big cut and a big butcher knife helps with that. (You can still use the microwave method if that helps it cut more easily. Just be sure to poke a few holes in it first so it doesn’t explode.)
Simple Butternut Squash Soup Recipe
Butternut squash, cut in half and seeds removed (don’t peel it!)
Small yellow onion
Vegetable broth or stock (or chicken broth or stock)
Salt and pepper
Preheat your oven to 400*.
Using a very sharp butcher’s knife, cut the squash in half, longways.
Place the cut squash on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
Bake for 20-30 minutes until the squash can be pierced fairly easily with a fork.
When you have about 10 minutes left of your squash baking, heat 1-2 teaspoons olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat.
Add the onions and cook until they start to turn translucent. And enjoy the smell!
Add garlic to the pan with the onions and sprinkle in some thyme (go easy if it’s dried), salt, pepper, and sauté everything for 1-2 more minutes until fragrant.
Place the onions and garlic aside in a blender or food processor.
Check on your butternut squash and remove if finished baking.
Using the same pan you cooked your onions in (reducing dishes here folks!), heat your chorizo or sausage for 5-8 minutes over medium heat until cooked through.
Scoop the squash out of the skin and place it into the blender with your already-blended onions. (You can wait until the squash is cool enough to handle, or you can get impatient like me and burn off your fingerprints. Your choice.)
Add 1/2 cup of stock to your blender with the onions and squash and…wait for it…blend. You could also use an immersion blender here if you have one.
Gradually add more stock or chicken broth until the soup is thick (or thin) enough for your liking. Told you this was easy.
Serve in big shallow dishes. Because everything tastes better in big shallow dishes.
Season with freshly ground pepper, toss that chorizo on top (or don’t) and serve.
Honestly, the topping options are endless here, because that butternut squash taste just goes with everything! But I’ll list off a few of my favorites.
One link sliced and warmed in a pan. (any other type of sausage works here, too) –– Using Chorizo is totally optional and totally delicious. But obviously adding it would make this recipe neither vegan nor vegetarian.
This is a dairy-free recipe. However, if dairy doesn’t bother you, heavy cream tends to be a staple ingredient for most butternut squash recipes. There is just something about cream combined with butternut that makes it taste sensational!
If you prefer your cream a little more fermented, sour cream is another yummy option
Full fat coconut milk (canned)
If you need a dairy-free alternative , try using coconut milk for your drizzle! Honestly, coconut and butternut squash are equally (if not more, in my honest opinion) delicious than using heavy cream. Try it if you don’t believe me.
If you want to sweeten this bad boy up – sprinkle a little brown sugar on top before serving! Kids usually like this option best – let’s be honest, adults do, too.
Cinnamon with brown sugar is also super delicious, too.
I haven’t tried coconut sugar, but I can imagine that it would taste great with butternut squash, especially if you mix a little coconut milk and coconut sugar. YUM.
Just be sure to leave out the thyme if you go the sweeter route.
Add Faux Meat
This recipe is vegetarian — heck, vegan! — if you use vegetable broth and skip the chorizo at the end. Or, buy vegan chorizo. You really can’t go wrong with this soup no matter if you make it vegan, vegetarian, or a full-on meat lover’s soup.
I’ve never done this with pre-cut squash, so I don’t know the exact measurement. If you try it, let me know! I do know the butternut squash will cook faster if diced, maybe 20-30 minutes. I’d check for softness at 20 minutes.
Roasted Butternut Squash
Another, more laborious option is to cut the butternut squash up before baking it. Cut it into little squares and roast them for about 20 minutes until they start getting a little charred on the outside. When it comes time to blend the slightly charred butternut squash into a soup, you get some of that sweet flavor from the burned ends. This roasted butternut squash soup is absolutely delicious and adds that extra level of flavor!
If you don’t like chopping fresh garlic, buy this pre-chopped in a jar from Trader Joe’s to save time (and smelly fingertips!).
Use Those Seeds
I love saving the seeds, adding a little seasoning, and popping them into the oven for a nice healthy snack to have around the kitchen for the next day or two (they go FAST in my house!).
If you’ve poured too much broth, stock, or milk, don’t worry! Just add a little whisk together equal parts flour and an oil of your choice (olive oil or coconut oil are my go-to’s). Throw this mixture into the soup and cook until it thickens up.
Pop some carrots in the oven with your butternut squash and roast them before blending. Carrots can add a slightly sweet taste to your soup (without actually using sugar). Need I mentioned that the combo taste of butternut and carrot is absolutely incredible?
This simple butternut squash soup recipe is dairy-free, but just as creamy as any cream-based soup. It comes together quickly for a weeknight dinner.
1 large butternut squash, cut in half and seeds removed (don’t peel it!)
1 small yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 glove garlic, minced
1–2 cups vegetable stock (or chicken stock)
salt and pepper
Optional: 1 link Chorizo (or sausage), sliced. I used Lamb Chorizo with Sherry I had picked up at the farmer’s market. It was more than a little tasty.
1. Preheat your oven to 400*. Place the cut squash on a baking sheet (be smarter than I was and line it with foil for easier clean up, mmmmm k?). Bake for 20-30 minutes until the squash can be pierced fairly easily with a fork. Set aside to cool.
2. Meanwhile, while the squash is cooking, walk your dog or do a quick house chore. Then, when you have about 10 minutes left of your squash baking, heat 1-2 teaspoons olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they start to turn translucent.
3. Add the garlic to the pan with the onions and sprinkle in some thyme (go easy if it’s dried) and sauté everything for 1-2 more minutes until fragrant. Season with salt and pepper. Place the onions and garlic aside in a blender or food processor.
4. Using the same pan you cooked your onions in (reducing dishes here folks!), heat your chorizo or sausage for 5-8 minutes over medium heat until cooked through.
5. While the chorizo is cooking, scoop the squash out of the skin and place it into the blender with your onions. (You can wait until the squash is cool enough to handle, or you can get impatient like me and burn off your fingerprints. Your choice.)
6. Add 1/2 cup of stock to your blender with the onions and squash and…wait for it…blend. Gradually add more stock until the soup is thick (or thin) enough for your liking.
7. Serve in big shallow dishes because everything tastes better in big shallow dishes. Season with freshly ground pepper, toss that chorizo on top (or don’t) and serve.
This recipe was originally published in 2014. It’s been updated with more detailed instructions and better photos. Enjoy the throwback pictures!
Enjoy! Let me know if you try this out! And if you have soup recipes that are quick enough to make on a weeknight (i.e. 45 minutes or less!), share links in the comments!