Butternut squash season and apple season start around the same time, in early fall. The workhorse of the winter squashes, butternut squash is perfect for cooking up into a hearty soup, so welcome when the cold weather arrives. My favorite trick for a memorable butternut squash soup is to include a chopped tart green apple with the squash. The tartness of the apple enlivens the squash and balances its sweetness.
Butternut Squash Apple Soup Recipe
Note that the smaller you chop your vegetables, the faster they will cook. We like to finely dice the onion. celery and carrot, and cut the squash and apple into 1/2-inch chunks. For a variation add a couple dashes of smoked paprika and/or swirl in a little sour cream at the end (off the heat).
Butternut squashes come in various sizes. Your ratio of chopped butternut squash to chopped apple should be 3 to 1.
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 celery rib, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 1 carrot, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped, seeds discarded (see How to Peel and Cut a Butternut Squash)
- 1 tart green apple, peeled, cored, chopped (squash and apple ratio should be 3:1)
- 3 cups chicken stock or broth (use vegetable broth if cooking vegetarian)*
- 1 cup water
- Pinches of nutmeg, cinnamon, cayenne, salt and pepper
*If cooking gluten-free, use gluten-free broth.
1 Heat a large thick-bottomed pot on medium-high heat. Melt the butter in the pot and let it foam up and recede. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and sauté for 5 minutes. Turn the heat down if the vegetables begin to brown.
2 Add the butternut squash, apple, broth and water. Bring to boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes or so, until the squash and carrots have softened.
3 Use an immersion blender to purée the soup, or work in batches and purée the soup in a standing blender.
4 Add pinches of nutmeg, cinnamon, and cayenne. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley or chives.