There may be a lot of different versions of butternut squash soup out there, but this Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Soup is hands down the best I have ever tasted. Great butternut squash soup has to have all the right components – savory, creamy, touch of sweet, with a little tiny kick at the end. Try this Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple soup for yourself, and know you will never have to search for the perfect version again!
Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
Some things have changed since I was a kid that are undoubtedly for the best. My kids will never sleep on a makeshift minivan floor bed while cruising 70 mph down a freeway. For that matter, we will never throw them in the bed of a pickup truck for a joy ride to the store. Nor will they have to fear a menacing paddle hanging in their principal’s office if they ever get in trouble at school. Plus, UV protection does not come in the form of threadbare, old t-shirts thrown over swimsuits anymore.
Sadly, even though their odds of experiencing ER visits, corporal punishment, or third degree sunburns has drastically decreased, so are the days of consuming good old-fashioned empty calories during a school party day. Personally, this troubles me because when I learned it is no longer acceptable to provide a homemade (or any!) treat on your child’s birthday, I felt I got majorly hosed as a mom. What a major you have got to be kidding me moment that was when my first-born was finally ready to celebrate her birthday in a school setting! I, for one, refuse to replace this extinct rite of passage by passing out 28 plastic novelty toys either. No kid has every played with those things for more than 90 seconds.
Certainly the reigns can be loosened a little during a class’s holiday party? Apparently no dice on that one either because recently I received a notice we have been assigned “cut up pineapple” for our Valentine’s party contribution. Due to the school’s “healthy food policy” the kids are “celebrating” by having frozen yogurt with a variety of fruits to serve as toppings.
Just to put this in a personal perspective, last week Ryan brought home a hot fudge, peanut butter, and crunches sundae for me, and I immediately went into the kitchen to crush up an entire Reese’s Peanut Butter Bar to throw on top. I am not going to see the merit of fruit, or even constraint, when it comes to sundae toppings.
Thankfully my kids are none the wiser to the milestones they are getting robbed out of. Eating frozen yogurt at school makes for a really stellar day for them, but I am nostalgic for the looser times had as kids. We grazed on a buffet of homemade cookies and cupcakes and topped it off by dumping our Valentine’s bags on our desks to eat every morsel of candy in it. I assure you there will not be a epic outbreak of Type II diabetes if kids eat candy at school every now and again.
In between Valentine’s Day, Halloween, and Christmas’ parties kids don’t subside on a steady diet of cookies, cake, and ice cream. Be it as it may, I’m sure there’s a handful of vegetables, meats, and fresh fruits being consumed every once in awhile too. Since my family sits down to meals like this Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple soup, why should I sweat a sugar binge at school every once in a while? Besides, to pretend desserts are the archenemy would mean me hiding in a dark closet every night to get my own sugar fix.
I’d rather exemplify to my kids it’s all about balance, and my body craves food like this yummy butternut squash soup as much as it does a Salted Chocolate Ganache Ding Dong Cake. Food has always been, and always will, be an essential part of celebrations, and thankfully no school policy will ever change that. But I guess, at least in a school setting, kids will forever have to forgo helpping themselves to an entire sleeve of cookies to wash down a single cheese cube.
- 4 lbs. whole butternut squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
- 3 tbsp. butter, divided
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples, divided
- ½ medium onion
- 8 fresh sage leaves
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup apple cider (can substitute apple juice too)
- 2 cups water
- kosher salt
- freshly ground pepper
- large pinch cayenne pepper
- ⅓ cup half and half
- yogurt, for topping if desired
- Preheat oven to 425ºF. Place the halved squash on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter and brush all over the cut sides of the squash. Season generously with the salt and pepper. Roast for 50 minutes - 1 hour, or until squash is tender all the way through. Set aside to cool enough to handle.
Peel, core and chop one of the apples and onion. Melt 1 tbsp. butter in a large saucepan and add apple, onion, sage, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, about 7 minutes or until softened. Remove from heat.
When squash is cool enough, scoop it out of the skins and add roasted squash to the large saucepan with apples and onions. Discard skins. Add the broth, cider, water, 1 tsp.kosher salt, ¼ tsp.pepper. Stir to combine and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir in half and half. Using an immersion blender blend soup in pan until smooth.* Adjust seasoning, if necessary.
Sautéed Apples: Peel, core, and chop remaining apple. Melt 1 tbsp. butter in skillet and sauté chopped apple 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden and soft. Top soup with yogurt and sautéed apples.