This vegan curried butternut squash soup with creamy coconut milk and Thai curry paste is the perfect weeknight dinner. Just 5 ingredients!
Truth be told, I’m not a big fan of soup – a fact made self-evident by the near-complete lack of soup recipes on this blog.
Growing up, I was forced to eat soup every night as the perfunctory first course of our dinner. And the type of soup we ate… well, it was lackluster at best (sorry, mom…). Our nightly broth consisted of carrots and potatoes; often something starchy, like rice, barley, or noodles; and sometimes beans or lentils – a combination I like to call “poverty soup.”
It’s wasn’t exactly anyone’s favorite part of dinner, but we continued the routine (and my parents still do to this day) based on the Soviet belief that dinner is not complete without soup.
So why this soup? Well, it was kind of a happy accident. I happened to have an overstock of butternut squash, and after letting it sit unceremoniously on the dining table for a week, I decided to just roast it all in hopes that we’d eat it. (Spoiler alert: we didn’t).
I returned to the roasted squash a couple of days later, and in a hungry frenzy, tossed it in a pot with a can of coconut milk, curry paste, and soy sauce, and simmered it together. Then I added some lime juice, dusted off my immersion blender, and whizzed the mixture into a creamy puree.
This simple curried butternut squash soup turned out to be one of the yummiest things I’ve made all season. It was rich and silky, but not heavy, and simultaneously sweet and tangy… definitely not poverty soup.
A Few Recipe Notes
The great thing about this recipe is that it’s really a template. If you don’t have butternut squash, you can use any sweet orange vegetable instead – like roasted sweet potatoes or carrots. Just make sure to peel them before roasting.
Another great thing is that you can divide this task into two days. On the weekend, for instance, you can roast your squash (or sweet potatoes/carrots), then make the soup during the week. After the vegetables are roasted, the soup takes only 10 minutes to make, so it’s perfect for weeknight dinners.
The lime juice is super important for balancing the sweetness of the squash and the richness of the coconut milk. Be sure to taste the soup before serving to ensure it’s acidic enough. For the curry element of this curried butternut squash soup, you can use Thai red curry paste or massaman curry paste.
This Thai-inspired curried butternut squash soup is rich and silky, but not heavy. Just 5 ingredients – perfect for weeknights!
- 1 medium butternut squash (about 3 pounds) (See Note)
- Fine sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- One 13-ounce can full-fat unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 cup filtered water
- 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
- 2–3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 1-2 limes)
- Chopped cilantro, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- Using a sharp knife, trim both ends of the squash. Cut squash in half widthwise, separating the thinner top part from the round bottom part. Halve each part lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds and strings; discard. Sprinkle the squash with salt and pepper and place skin-side up on a parchment-covered baking sheet. Roast until the squash gives easily when pressed, 50 to 60 minutes. (You can roast the squash up to 4 days in advance).
- Remove from the oven and let stand until the squash is cool enough to handle.
- Scoop out the squash flesh and discard the skins. (You should have about 4 cups of squash). Place in a medium pot and add the milk, water, curry paste, and soy sauce. Cover, bring to a simmer, and cook for 5 to 8 minutes. Turn heat off.
- Add the lime juice. Using an immersion blender (or regular blender, see Note), blend until smooth. Taste and season with more soy sauce or lime juice, if needed. Add more water to thin out, if needed. Serve with cilantro.
- You can use other sweet orange vegetables in place of squash – like roasted carrots or sweet potatoes. Make sure to peel them before roasting.
- Blender safety: since the soup is hot, it’s important that steam has a way to escape the blender while you puree, so remember to take out the removable center of the blender lid before blending. If the steam is trapped inside, the blender lid will blow off when you start to blend and you’ll have soup all over your kitchen.
- Serving Size: 1/6 of the recipe
- Calories: 205
- Carbohydrates: 28.6 g
- Fiber: 4.6 g
- Protein: 3.4 g
Keywords: soup, butternut squash, curry, coconut milk, Thai