Do you have leftover roast pumpkin or just want something that is deliciously different from the plain ole pumpkin or butternut squash soup? Our roasted pumpkin soup with browned butter is a recipe that promises to delight your taste buds and warm your heart. Internationally, pumpkin soup is hugely popular but I’ve come to know in North America, squash soup is more widely eaten. This recipe can use both.
What makes this soup exceptional is roasting the pumpkin (or squash!) with its skin on, we effortlessly enhance its natural sweetness, creating a rich, caramelised flavour. The addition of browned butter adds a nutty richness, elevating the soup while using a blend of spices adds a subtle kick that sets it apart from ordinary pumpkin soups.
What makes this Pumpkin soup different
- Roasting the Pumpkin (or Squash): Roasting brings out the pumpkin’s natural sweetness, adding depth to the flavour compared to regular boiled or steamed pumpkin soups.
- Brown Butter: The nutty and toasty flavour of browned butter elevates the soup to a more sophisticated and gourmet level.
- Spice Blend: The combination of garlic, cumin, paprika, and red chilli flakes provides a unique and exciting flavour profile, adding warmth and a gentle kick.
- Chicken Stock Powder: Using chicken stock powder enhances the soup’s savoury notes and adds depth and umami to the pumpkin puree.
- Creamy Texture: The addition of cream creates a luxurious and velvety texture, making the soup indulgent and comforting.
- Balance of Flavours: The recipe achieves a perfect balance of sweet, savoury, and spicy flavours, creating a harmonious and delightful taste experience.
What ingredients are needed
- Pumpkin (or Squash!): the star ingredient and the base of the soup. When roasted, it develops a sweet and slightly nutty flavour, adding depth to the soup. Varieties of pumpkins and squash vary in each country. Internationally, pumpkin soup is hugely popular but I’ve come to realise in North America, squash soup is more widely eaten. This recipe can be used for both. I’ve written the info below of the best pumpkin for soup below.
- Butter: is browned to create a rich, nutty flavour that complements the roasted pumpkin. It adds a touch of indulgence to the soup. Substitution: You can use ghee (clarified butter) or olive oil as a dairy-free alternative.
- Cumin: brings warm and earthy notes to the soup, enhancing the overall flavour profile. It pairs well with the sweetness of the roasted pumpkin. Substitution: Ground coriander or ground cinnamon can be used as alternatives to cumin for different flavour variations.
- Garlic Powder: adds a subtle garlicky flavour to the soup without the need for chopping fresh garlic. It complements the other spices and enhances the overall savoury taste. Substitution: If you prefer fresh garlic, you can use 2-3 cloves of minced garlic instead.
- Paprika: provides a mild and slightly sweet smokiness to the soup. It adds depth to the flavour and complements the roasted pumpkin. Substitution: Smoked paprika or a pinch of cayenne pepper can be used to adjust the level of smokiness and spiciness.
- Red Chilli Flakes: adds a subtle kick of heat to the soup, balancing the sweetness and enhancing the overall flavour profile. Substitution: Adjust the amount of chilli flakes according to your spice preference or use a pinch of cayenne pepper as a substitute.
- Chicken Stock Powder: enhances the soup’s savoury taste and provides depth and umami. Substitution: Vegetable stock powder can be used for a vegetarian version of the soup.
- Water: serves as the liquid base for the soup. It helps to thin the puree and adjust the consistency as needed.
- Cream: added to create a creamy and velvety texture, making the soup rich and luxurious. Substitution: For a dairy-free alternative, use coconut cream or almond milk, which will impart a slightly different flavour.
Best Pumpkin for Soups
The best pumpkin varieties for soup can vary depending on personal preference and availability in different regions. Each variety of pumpkin will change the flavour and texture slightly of the soup. Some pumpkin is sweeter and may mean you need to tweak the spices and salt to your preference.
Here are some popular types of pumpkin commonly used for making soup here in Australia and possibly internationally. While I haven’t made soup outside my home country, I have also researched varieties in USA/Canada and Europe. Let me know what you prefer for soup in the comments and I’ll possibly add.
- Butternut Squash: While not technically a pumpkin, butternut squash is a popular choice for making soups due to its sweet, nutty flavour and smooth texture. This is the variety I grew up eating in soup. I recommend it as I know that it’s widely available.
- Jap Pumpkin: With its dark green skin and bright orange flesh, Jap pumpkin is a common choice for soups, curries, and roasting in Australia.
- Kent Pumpkin: Kent pumpkins have a sweet flavour and smooth texture, making them ideal for soups, purees, and baking.
- Queensland Blue or Jarrahdale Pumpkin: These varieties have vibrant blue skin and sweet flesh. It’s well-suited for soups, baking, and roasting.
- Sugar Pie Pumpkin: This variety is widely available and often used for making pumpkin puree. It has a smooth texture, sweet flavour and is perfect for soups and desserts.
- Kabocha Squash: Also known as Japanese pumpkin, Kabocha has a sweet and rich flavour, making it an excellent choice for soups and stews.
- Crown Prince Pumpkin: Known for its beautiful blue-grey skin, the Crown Prince pumpkin has sweet, orange flesh that works well in soups, stews, and roasting.
- Canned Pumpkin: While I haven’t tried it myself, there is no reason why pumpkin soup with canned pumpkin wouldn’t work. To improve the flavour of canned pumpkin puree, Simply on a lined baking tray and roast at 200°C / 400°F for 5-10 minutes to caramelise slightly. This adds a deeper, slightly toasted and nutty flavour.
Setting you up for success – Tips & Tricks
- Roasting the Pumpkin:
- Cut the pumpkin into evenly sized slices for even roasting.
- Don’t peel the pumpkin- it saves time and enhances the flavour. As the pumpkin cooks, the skin helps retain the moisture and flavours, resulting in a more intense and caramelized taste. Skin is easier to remove once roasted.
- Drizzle the pumpkin with olive oil and season with salt and pepper before roasting to enhance the flavour.
- Roast the pumpkin until it’s soft and nicely caramelized, leading to a better flavour in the soup.
- Browning the Butter:
- Use a light-coloured saucepan or spoon to better gauge the colour change of the butter during browning.
- Once the butter turns a rich golden brown and emits a nutty aroma, immediately remove it from the heat to prevent burning. It can quickly go from browned to burnt.
- Make extra if you want to drizzle atop the finished soup. It’s so yummy!
- Balancing Flavours:
- ABT (Always be tasting) Taste the soup as you go and adjust the seasonings as necessary. Add more salt, pepper, or spices if needed to achieve a well-balanced flavour.
- If the soup is too sweet, tweak the salt content or even a squeeze of lemon juice or a dash of vinegar can help balance the sweetness.
- Texture and Consistency:
- For a smoother texture, use an immersion blender or regular blender to puree the soup until smooth.
- If the soup is too thick, you can add more water, stock, or cream to reach your desired consistency.
- If the soup is too thin, simmer it a bit longer to reduce and thicken the liquid.
- Garnish and Presentation:
- Drizzle a swirl of cream or a dollop of yogurt on top of each serving for added creaminess and visual appeal.
- Sprinkle some croutons, roasted pumpkin seeds, chopped herbs (like parsley or cilantro), or a pinch of paprika for texture and colour contrast.
- Enhance the Flavour:
- You can add roasted garlic cloves, caramelized onions, or roasted carrots along with the pumpkin for additional depth of flavour.
- Experiment with different spices and herbs to customize the taste according to your preference.
- Make it Creamier:
- You can blend in a cooked potato or add more cream, sour cream or even mascarpone for an even creamier texture. If you’d like a lighter option, try evaporated milk.
- Storage and Reheating:
- Allow the soup to cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will stay fresh for up to 3-4 days.
- To reheat, gently warm the soup on the stovetop over low heat, stirring occasionally to avoid scorching.
- Roasted pumpkin soup freezes well. Store it in individual portions in freezer-safe containers for easy reheating later.
- Leave some space at the top of the containers to allow for expansion during freezing.
Frequently Asked Questions
When I made this dish on our live cooking show, some community members asked:
Yes, you can use other varieties of pumpkin or sweet squash. See my Best Pumpkin for Soups above! Butternut squash, Kabocha squash, or any sweet pumpkin variety will work well.
Yes, you can make the soup ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat it gently on the stovetop when ready to serve.
Yes, you can make this soup with 2-3 cans of pumpkin puree. Using canned pumpkins can be a convenient and time-saving option, especially when fresh pumpkins are not readily available or when you want to prepare the soup quickly. Be aware that canned pumpkin is often a sweeter variety you’ll need to tweak the sweetness to your preference.
Yes, you can but the flavour will be different. To make this recipe vegan or dairy-free substitute the butter with a plant-based alternative (e.g., vegan butter or olive oil) and use coconut cream or oat milk instead of regular cream.
Roasted pumpkin soup freezes well. Store it in individual portions in freezer-safe containers for easy reheating later.
Leave some space at the top of the containers to allow for expansion during freezing.
Absolutely! You can adjust the amount of garlic, cumin, paprika, and red chilli flakes according to your personal taste preferences. Start with the recommended measurements and add more if desired.
Looking For More Yumminess?
Whether you are after more simple soup recipes, easy dinner ideas or tasty snacks, we have you covered!
Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Browned Butter
- Baking Tray
- large saucepan
- 3 kg Pumpkin Butternut, Kent or whatever you prefer. See 'Best pumpkin for soup' section for suggestions. ~3 Cans of pumpkin puree may work too.
- 3 tsp Olive oil
- 4 tbsp Butter
- 2 tsp Cumin
- 2 tsp Garlic powder
- 2 tsp Paprika
- ½ tsp Red Chilli Flakes
- 1 ½ – 2 tbsp Chicken Stock Powder
- 2 cups Water
- ¼-½ cup Cream
Roasting the Pumpkin:
- Preheat your oven to 200°C / 400°F.
- Slice the pumpkin into roughly 4cm/ 1 1/2 inch slices, deseed if desired and place a tray lined with baking paper.
- Drizzle olive oil over the pumpkin and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
- Roast in the preheated oven for about 30-40 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft and slightly caramelized. Remove from the oven and set it aside.
Browning the Butter:
- In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once the butter is melted, continue to cook it, swirling the pan occasionally. The butter will foam and then subside.
- Watch the colour of the butter closely; it will start to turn golden brown and have a nutty aroma. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Be careful not to burn it.
Making the Soup:
- Once the butter reaches a light golden brown colour, add the cumin, garlic, paprika, and red chili flakes.
- Add the cumin, garlic powder, paprika, and red chilli flakes. Toast spices for 1 minute then add the stock powder, roasted pumpkin (seeds removed) and as much water as you think. You don't need to use all the water if you prefer a thicker soup, alternatively, you can add more water for a thinner consistency.
- Break up the pumpkin with a spatula or spoon and stir until it comes to create a smoother consistency.
- Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer and let it cook for about 6-8 minutes, allowing all the flavours to meld together. Be careful that the soup doesn't get too hot and begins bubbling up.
- Use an immersion blender or transfer the soup to a blender in batches and blend until smooth and creamy.
- Return the soup to the pot and stir in the cream. Adjust the amount of cream to your desired consistency and taste. See the Tips above if you want a thick or thinner consistency.
- Season the soup with salt and pepper to taste.
Bring It All Together:
- Ladle the hot roasted pumpkin soup into bowls. Garnish with a drizzle of cream, a sprinkle of cumin and paprika, and some roasted croutons or pumpkin seeds for added texture and flavour.
- Cut the pumpkin into even slices for consistent roasting. Keep the skin on for time-saving and enhanced flavour. The skin helps retain moisture, resulting in a more intense, caramelised taste. It’s easier to remove after roasting.
- Remove the butter from heat when it turns rich golden brown and emits a nutty aroma to avoid burning.
- Taste the soup as you go and adjust seasonings for a balanced flavour.
- If too sweet, add salt or a splash of lemon juice/vinegar to balance.
- Blend with an immersion or regular blender for a smoother texture.
- Adjust thickness by adding more water, stock, or cream if needed.
- Simmer longer to thicken if the soup is too thin.
- Drizzle cream and sprinkle croutons, roasted pumpkin seeds, chopped herbs, or paprika for texture and colour.
- Blend in cooked potato or add more cream, sour cream, or mascarpone for creaminess. Use evaporated milk for a lighter option.
- Cool completely and store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Reheat gently on the stovetop, stirring occasionally.
- Freeze in individual portions in freezer-safe containers, leaving space for expansion.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
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Former operating room Nurse and self-taught home cook + IT Engineer passionate about Approachable, No-Nonsense recipes to help you level up in the kitchen. We create simplified dishes for busy people with easy-to-find ingredients!
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