Butternut Squash Apple Soup

Adapted (barely) from Barefoot Contessa Parties!

I discovered this soup quite a few years ago and I’ve lost count of how many batches I’ve made over time. It’s soothing and warm and even though it’s very smooth and has the illusion of cream, it’s actually extremely healthy not to mention vegan (as I’ve made it here. Ina’s original version has butter, which I’ve omitted). This has become a Thanksgiving staple at my house and I’ve been asked for the recipe over and over again. So here it is, folks.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 large yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons mild curry powder
  • 2 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
  • 4 sweet apples, peeled and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups fresh apple cider (use the good stuff, okay?)
  • Heat the olive oil over low heat in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Add the chopped onions and the curry and allow to become fragrant and tender. Because the heat is so low, this will probably take about 20 minutes. Don’t be tempted to turn up the heat here to expedite the process. You really want the flavors to meld here and to let the onions soften slowly. Stir every now and then to make sure the onions are not sticking to the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the squash, apples, salt, pepper and water to the pot. Turn the heat up and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover the pot and cook for about 30 minutes. Squash and apples should be very tender and by now, your kitchen smells amazing.
  • Off the heat, puree the soup with an immersion blender. Add cider at this time, stir and check consistency. It should be thick, but you can thin it a bit with more water or cider if you prefer a thinner soup. Taste seasonings and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. Most of the time, I buy the butternut squash whole at the market and chop it myself. However, every now and then I can get packages of pre-chopped butternut squash at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. Using about 2 of these large containers, I can have dinner ready in about 1/2 hour! I thought I’d share this tip with you even though the purists are probably thumbing their noses at me right now. Makes a great weeknight dinner with a hunk of good bread and a crisp green salad. I’m just saying.
  • 2. I like to use Braeburn or Gala apples. The sweetness contrasts beautifully with the slight heat from the curry.
  • 3. You can use apple juice if that’s what you have on hand, but I highly recommend using a nice apple cider.
  • 4. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a food processor, blender or food mill but be careful. Hot foods are tricky to puree in a blender especially, so do it in small batches (never more than 1/2 full) and be sure to leave an opening for the heat to escape. I learned this lesson the messy way with a batch of tomato soup back in the day. It probably would have been easier to paint my white cabinets orange after that catastrophe.
  • 5. I like to garnish the soup with a sprig of fresh sage. I also like to serve it with gruyere croutons.

Preparation time: 30 minute(s)

Cooking time: 50 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 8

3 responses to “Butternut Squash Apple Soup”

  1. Alicia, this is a great recipe ! I would never have thought of butternut squash and sweet apples together in a soup. Must try this one. Thanks for the tips!

  2. Jean says:

    I made this tonight and have to say…not my favorite! The soup was much too sweet for my taste. I have a recipe for a roasted butternut squash soup that I like much more. I love how the roasting adds depth and sweetness to the soup without being overpowering. I won’t make this again but I’m glad we gave it a shot.

  3. Alicia says:

    Oh, no! Sorry to hear this didn’t work out for you. I’ve made countless batches of this soup and the best ones have been when I’ve used a hotter curry powder (to offset the sweet a bit). I’d love to see your recipe for a roasted squash soup…if you are so inclined to share, please send it along to me! Thanks for your comment.

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