The second it cools off here in New England, I start craving soup, especially when butternut squash is the star. This vegetarian, gluten-free recipe features autumn’s freshest butternut squash along with sweet, crisp apples and juicy pears. For an added pop of protein, you can incorporate cooked quinoa, toasted walnuts, and/or pumpkin seeds.
Last week, I joined Kids Cooking Green (a food literacy and hands-on cooking program based in Lexington, MA) to teach nutrition to an adorable and engaged group of elementary school kids in Boston. The theme of our class was SOUP, and thanks to the kids’ hard work, we created two soups including a warm brew made with butternut squash and pears.
These pint-sized chefs were seriously focused, and I’m happy to report that there was a lot of tasting and devouring going on after our soups were done. (Isn’t that what it’s all about?)
For the blog, I decided to tweak the soup a bit and ended up with this recipe for Autumn’s Best Butternut Squash, Apple, and Pear Soup.
This soup is vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and downright delicious. To make it heartier and more of a complete meal, you can add the following protein foods: 1/4 cup cooked quinoa (2 grams protein), 1/4 cup toasted walnuts (4.5 grams protein), and/or 2 tablespoons roasted pumpkin seeds (1.5 grams protein).
What sorts of soups are you craving these days? I hope you’ll give this vegetarian butternut squash soup recipe a try, and by all means, get your kids involved!
- Serves: 6
- Serving size: 1¼ cups
- Calories: 130
- Fat: 5g
- Saturated fat: 0.5g
- Carbohydrates: 22g
- Sodium: 430mg
- Fiber: 5g
- Protein: 2g
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, cut into ½-inch dice, (1 cup)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- One 20-ounce carton or package fresh diced (precut) butternut squash, (3 cups)
- 1 apple, unpeeled and cut into 1-inch dice
- 1 pear, unpeeled and cut into 1-inch dice
- ½ teaspoon curry powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- One 32-ounce carton all-natural vegetable broth, (4 cups)
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- Optional toppings: toasted, chopped walnuts, roasted pumpkin seeds, chopped chives, plain Greek yogurt
- Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 more minute.
- Add the squash, apple, pear, curry powder, cinnamon, and ginger and stir to combine.
- Stir in the broth, increase the heat to high, cover, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and maintain at a low boil, covered, until the squash is tender, about 30 minutes.
- Use an immersion blender to puree the soup. If you don't have an immersion blender, let cool for about 15 minutes, transfer to a blender, and puree in batches until very smooth. Transfer back to the pot, reheat, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with optional toppings.