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Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Butternut Squash Bisque with Thyme and Parmesan

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A naturally creamy butternut squash bisque made with autumn spices. It can easily be made vegan, is gluten-free, and healthy for you too. It’s the perfect soup to share at your Thanksgiving meal, or enjoy all winter long!

butternut squash bisque topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl, top view

Butternut squash is one of my favorite vegetables: it’s slightly sweet, has a great texture and can be cooked in just about any possible way. I’ve roasted it, sautéed it, added it to curries and stir-frys – but butternut squash bisque might be my favorite preparation. And this Easy Butternut Squash Bisque recipe is absolutely sublime! It’s hearty, healthy and perfect for fall or winter — basically until the weather starts to warm up again!

butternut squash bisque topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl

Kitchen Tools and Equipment You’ll Need to Make This Butternut Squash Bisque

ingredients for butternut squash bisque: spices, onion, garlic, butternut squash

How To Cook This Butternut Squash Bisque With Thyme And Parmesan – Step by Step

Step 1: Cook the onion, garlic and thyme in the olive oil until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes. Add the squash and saute for another minute or so.

onions and garlic, sauteeing in a large stock pot

Step 2: Add the vegetable stock, bring to a simmer and cook until the squash is tender – about 30 minutes.

butternut squash and stock added to garlic/onion mixture

Step 3: Season with cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon, black pepper and salt, and stir to combine. Let simmer a few minutes more and then remove from heat.

spices added to butternut squash mixture

Step 4: Using a hand blender, puree the soup into a creamy, smooth consistency.

immersion blender inserted into stock pot to blend soup

Step 5: Increase heat to medium low, and let the soup warm through – about 3-5 minutes. Serve in bowls and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional). For a vegan option, omit the cheese.

vegan butternut squash bisque topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl with a spoon

What makes this Butternut Squash Bisque healthy?

Most butternut squash soup recipes are loaded with cream, butter, or sometimes even added sugar. Here are the healthy swaps I made to make this version of butternut squash bisque healthy, but just as tasty as the traditional version:

  • No cream, no butter! This butternut squash bisque (that can be made vegan) has all the creamy goodness without any of the cream. Thanks to a high quality Hand Blender, you can achieve that creamy consistency just by blending the soup!
  • Vitamins and Nutrients: Butternut squash is naturally high in fiber, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, and helps aid digestion and lower blood pressure.

Will kids enjoy this Butternut Squash Bisque?

If your kids enjoy soup they will love this butternut squash soup recipe. It is creamy, hearty, and naturally sweet. It has a smooth texture, and the spices are not overpowering (but you can always ease up on the spices if your kids are spice-sensitive). It’s rich in vitamins and fiber making it a great dish to serve to kids.

How do you cut a butternut squash?

Cutting a butternut squash is tricky if you don’t have a good method. They are dense, round, and thick. But if you have a good strategy going into it, you’ll have yourself a perfectly cut butternut squash without pulling your hair out.

  • Step 1: With a sharp knife cut off both the top and bottom of the butternut squash. 
  • Step 2: Using a vegetable peeler secure your butternut squash in one hand, starting from the top peel down to the bottom all the way around. 
  • Step 3: Cut the squash in half lengthwise by standing it upright on your cutting board. It should be secure since the squash should have a flat bottom. 
  • Step 4: Using a spoon scrape out the seeds from the middle.
  • Step 5: Cut each half of the squash into another half making 4 quarters. Cut into 1 inch slices. 
  • Step 6: Stack the slices and cut again making 1 inch cubes
vegan butternut squash soup topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl, top view

What is a good garnish for butternut squash bisque?

If you’re not vegan, fresh grated parmesan cheese is a wonderful garnish with this soup, along with yogurt, sour cream or creme fraiche. A little sprinkle of cilantro, chives, thyme, or even grated apples would also be a nice vegan-friendly option, along with adding a touch of color to the top of the soup. 

How do you thicken butternut squash soup?

If you want a thicker soup you’ll need to add some starch. A few tablespoons of a thickener such as corn starch, or flour will add more body to the soup. Another option is to add ½ cup of potato to the recipe. 

What to Serve with this Butternut Squash Bisque Recipe

This recipe makes for an excellent soup to serve with your traditional Thanksgiving or holiday menu. It’s perfect as a vegan option at a large communal Thanksgiving. It’s also a delicious dish to make all fall and winter. It pairs well with a whole wheat baguette for dipping, an autumn kale salad, a thin-crust pizza, or a grilled panini sandwich.

vegan butternut squash soup topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl

Top Tips For Butternut Squash Bisque With Thyme And Parmesan

  • Soups are easy to make in large batches. So, double up on ingredients, grab a larger pot or a slow cooker to make more!
  • If you’d like to skip the step of preparing the butternut squash, I recommend buying pre-cut squash. I can easily find pre-cut butternut squash in the refrigerated or frozen vegetable section at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.
  • Before blending the squash with the hand blender to check to make sure the butternut squash is cooked completely. Pierce it with a fork. If it pierces easily, and is soft, it is ready to blend. 
  • Using a hand mixer blend until smooth and creamy. If you do not have a hand blender you can transfer the soup to a high speed blender. If you do blend it in a blender, be sure to return the soup to the stove to heat all the way through. 
  • Let hot soups cool at room temperature, uncovered for 1 to 1/2 hours or until almost at room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until cold. Soups can last in the fridge for up to four days.
  • You can freeze the soup after it has been chilled overnight in the fridge. Soups will last up to two months in the freezer. If using a freezer bag to store your soup, freeze flat on a sheet pan and then stack the frozen, flat soups to save space.
  • Turn your soup into convenient grab-and-go meals by freezing it in individual servings. You can use quart-size freezer bags or freezer-safe glass containers to freeze soups.  Keep in mind the soup will expand as it freezes so allow for space when freezing.

Check Out These Other Delicious Homemade Soup Recipes

If you have tried this Butternut Squash Bisque With Thyme And Parmesan recipe, or any other recipe on my blog, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious, healthy, family friendly food!

vegan butternut squash bisque topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl, top view
Print Recipe
5 from 7 votes

Butternut Squash Bisque with Thyme and Parmesan

A naturally creamy butternut squash bisque made with autumn spices. It can easily be made vegan, is gluten-free, and healthy for you too. It’s the perfect soup to share at your Thanksgiving meal, or enjoy all winter long!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 122kcal
Author: Anjali Shah

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Cook the onion, garlic and thyme in the olive oil until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes. Add the squash and saute for another minute or so.
  • Add the vegetable stock, bring to a simmer and cook until the squash is tender – about 30 minutes.
  • Season with cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon, black pepper and salt, and stir to combine. Let simmer a few minutes more and then remove from heat.
  • Using a hand blender, puree the soup into a creamy, smooth consistency.
  • Increase heat to medium low, and let the soup warm through – about 3-5 minutes.
  • Serve in bowls and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional). For a vegan option, omit the cheese.

Notes

Top Tips For Butternut Squash Bisque With Thyme And Parmesan
  • Soups are easy to make in large batches. So, double up on ingredients, grab a larger pot or a slow cooker to make more!
  • If you’d like to skip the step of preparing the butternut squash, I recommend buying pre-cut squash. I can easily find pre-cut butternut squash in the refrigerated or frozen vegetable section at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.
  • Before blending the squash with the hand blender to check to make sure the butternut squash is cooked completely. Pierce it with a fork. If it pierces easily, and is soft, it is ready to blend. 
  • Using a hand mixer blend until smooth and creamy. If you do not have a hand blender you can transfer the soup to a high speed blender. If you do blend it in a blender, be sure to return the soup to the stove to heat all the way through. 
  • Let hot soups cool at room temperature, uncovered for 1 to 1/2 hours or until almost at room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until cold. Soups can last in the fridge for up to four days.
  • You can freeze the soup after it has been chilled overnight in the fridge. Soups will last up to two months in the freezer. If using a freezer bag to store your soup, freeze flat on a sheet pan and then stack the frozen, flat soups to save space.
  • Turn your soup into convenient grab-and-go meals by freezing it in individual servings. You can use quart-size freezer bags or freezer-safe glass containers to freeze soups.  Keep in mind the soup will expand as it freezes so allow for space when freezing.

Nutrition

Calories: 122kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 3.7g | Saturated Fat: 0.5g | Sodium: 438.6mg | Potassium: 499.5mg | Fiber: 6.2g | Sugar: 6.7g

Update: November 16th, 2011

Food Network just released their Communal Table here!

 

Posted In…

Appetizers ·

Appetizers are the perfect complement to my favorite entrees and dinner party menus. You can also make a small batch for a snack, or turn them into a complete meal.

34 responses to “Butternut Squash Bisque with Thyme and Parmesan”

  1. I LOVE the idea of using Parm and thyme in this soup – what an interesting and delicious spin! I’m trying this recipe for sure!5 stars

  2. Really enjoyed reading througb this post. Loved the spoon and all the action shots – definitely the recipe I should try this winter!5 stars

  3. I am so ready to enjoy this soup this winter – it is perfect to warm up after cold days, and I can only imagine how flavorful it is!5 stars

  4. I made this tonight for a dinner party. This has more spices than the butternut squash soup recipe that I normally make and I loved it! The cinnamon added a really interesting flavor that I wasn’t expecting. Thanks for another great recipe!

    • Oh awesome!! I’m so glad you liked the added spices – cinnamon and butternut squash is one of my favorite combinations 🙂 Hope you had a great weekend Anna!

  5. Thanks, Anjali! This is what I’m making for Thanksgiving communal dinner on Sunday! What kind of bread would you serve it with?
    -Sagar

    • Hey Sagar!! Oh yay! I’m so excited you’re going to make this for Thanksgiving 🙂 I think this would go great with any crusty bread – like french bread, or a whole wheat baked loaf, or a garlic loaf, or even a ciabatta would be good. Let me know what you end up serving it with – I can’t wait to hear how people like it!

  6. This was DELICIOUS!!!! I’m newly married and I had my in-laws over for dinner and this was an absolute hit! The hardest part of this recipe is peeling the butternut squash, lol. Thanks for the recipe, I’ll be making it AT LEAST once a month!!

    • Yay!!! I’m so glad to hear that Amanada! The fact that this recipe was a hit with your new hubby (congrats btw!) and your in-laws just made my day 🙂 Btw – if you get a SUPER sharp vegetable peeler, it makes it a lot easier to peel the butternut squash. Or, you can have your hubby help you peel it, which is what I did!

      • Haha, yes I should get him in the kitchen to help. I’m about to try out another one of your recipes this week. Thanks again and all the best from a little town outside Toronto, Canada.

      • Hehe – Yay! Glad to hear it – hope you enjoy the next one you try, and please do keep in touch! 🙂

      • Thank you so much! And yes – I do believe it’s gluten free, but I was hesitant to make that claim since I’m not a gluten free expert (a lot of things have gluten “hidden” in them). But with your vote of confidence, I will say that this is gluten free. Thanks again – one of my good friends has celiac disease, so I’m definitely empathetic to your situation! 🙂

      • I know! It surprised me when I found out some of the foods that have gluten in them like Beer (which makes sense since it comes from wheat), soy sauce and some roasted nuts!

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