Butternut squash soup is a fickle, fickle thing. In recent years, it has become one of the poster children for “cozy season,” as one of those obligatory dishes to have when it’s winter (at least in the world of Instagram stories) much like pumpkin spice has dominated the autumnal scene. Yet here’s the thing, for as much Insta and Pinterest hype as it generates, it kinda looks and tastes like baby food 95% of the time. Now I am not going so far to assert that I have fully fixed this, but I have “amplified” its texture to help sever some of the baby food ties. How? By adding white beans (not only a delicious source of protein but a non-baby food texture) and arugula (definitely not a baby-friendly food and a third texture) into the mix. I hope you enjoy!
- 1 large butternut squash, peeled and halved lengthwise
- 1 tbs and 1 tsp olive oil, divided
- 1 large yellow onion or shallot, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, roughly chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 tsp group nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric (will help with color)
- 32 oz vegetable broth
- 1 can (14.5 oz) white beans
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- Optional – 1 tbs hot water and 1 tsp olive oil for perfecting soup texture at end, if needed
- Optional – heaping handful of arugula for serving
- Preheat oven to 375F. While preheating, do your prep! Peel your butternut squash, cut it in half lengthwise, place on a foil-lined baking sheet, and drizzle with 1 tsp olive oil. Separately, mince your garlic, shallot/onion, and rosemary. Set aside (they’re okay to mix).
- Roast squash for 45-50 min until you can easily pierce it with a fork (if you’re questioning if the fork is piercing easily enough – it’s not!). Cube, then set aside.
- Heat 1 tbs olive oil in a large soup pot over medium. Add garlic, onion/shallot, rosemary, and a bit of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until soft and fragrant (3-5 min).
- There are two routes here, depending on what you are using for a blender:
- IF using immersion blender (see notes) — Add in roasted squash, nutmeg, ginger, turmeric (if using), rosemary and veggie broth. Turn heat down to medium low, then cover. Cook for ~10 min to further soften squash. While squash is softening, go to the bean step. Then, once beans are finished, blend soup till smooth, adding water or olive oil as needed to perfect consistency.
- IF using a normal blender— Add squash, nutmeg, ginger, turmeric, and veggie broth to blender in batches, careful not to go past your blender’s fill line (I suggest working in thirds). Transfer blended mixture in to squash pot, turn down heat to medium low, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and stir. Add optional water or oil now if you want to adjust the consistency— then move on to bean step. This will allow your soup to simmer for ~10 min while you cook beans for all the flavors to come together.
- The aforementioned “bean step:” Rinse and drain beans. Cook over medium heat with garlic powder in a small frying pan for ~10 min until browning. It’s okay if they break apart a bit while cooking!
- Once soup is blended and beans are done, serve together with fresh arugula on top. Enjoy!
On sweetness: Now, I think butternut squash is plenty sweet on its own. But for an even sweeter soup, add 1 tsp maple syrup when you add the veggie broth.
On immersion blenders: I am obsessed with making soup and therefore obsessed with my immersion blender which allows me to blend my soup ingredients within the soup pot. It’s also very helpful for making dressings! Here is a helpful breakdown of different options. Mine is Cuisinart brand and from Costco (last year)— similar to this.
What am I listening to as I make this? “Kyoto (Copycat Killer Version)” by Phoebe Bridgers
What can I learn while I make this? A little more on why butternut squash is healthy. One cup (the serving size) of butternut squash has over 100% of our daily vitamin A intake. Just like carrots (and other orange fruits and veggies), butternut squash contains lots of beta-carotene and alpha-carotene, which our bodies convert to Vitamin A and help our immune systems to function!
What if I want a yummy soup but not this one? Don’t worry– I won’t be offended! Check out these other ideas below:
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