Classic Pumpkin Soup Recipe
There's a small handful of classic soup recipes that we return to over and over throughout the years. Minestrone, potato leek, and potage aux legumes spring to mind right away, along with this wonderful classic pumpkin soup recipe. With hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, and maple, and a barely perceptible touch of heat, it's absolutely perfect.
Sugar pumpkins are distinct from the big, woody creatures we turn into jack-o'-lanterns, so be sure to seek one out for this recipe.
Pumpkin soup tips
Classic pumpkin soup is simple and easy and doesn't require any special skills. That said, here's how to make it the best it can be:
CHOOSE A SUGAR PUMPKIN
This pumpkin variety is made for eating and has a sweeter, much less fibrous flesh than many other pumpkin varieties.
ROAST PUMPKIN UNTIL PERFECTLY TENDER
This step serves two purposes: it makes the flesh easier to work with, and it adds depth of flavor to the soup.
USE HIGH-QUALITY INGREDIENTS
With only a few ingredients, you'll want to seek out the best ones you can find. Use a high-quality stock. If you're not looking for a vegetarian soup, you can use homemade chicken stock, otherwise use your favorite purchased chicken or vegetable broth (or ours.)
FIND YOUR FAVORITE CONSISTENCY
This recipe makes a quite thick soup. You can always thin it with additional stock after blending if you like. Just be sure to taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
- 1 medium sugar pumpkin (about 3 pounds)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 6 cups low sodium vegetable stock (see notes)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400°F with a rack in the center.
- Split pumpkin in half and remove seeds with a large spoon. Rub pumpkin on all surfaces with oil and place on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet, cut-side up.
- Roast until completely tender and a knife or cake tester inserted near the stem meets little to no resistance, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- When cool enough to handle, scoop out flesh into a medium bowl and discard skin. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, melt butter in a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned, about 4 minutes. Add pumpkin flesh, stock, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cayenne. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove pot oven from heat. Puree soup with immersion blender or carefully, in batches, in regular blender. For a smoother soup, strain through a fine-mesh strainer. Whisk in maple syrup and add cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Reheat gently and serve immediately.
This is our favorite store-bought vegetable stock by a country mile.
If you prefer a thinner soup, add up to 8 cups stock (or feel free to adjust after blending).
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