Today, I am snuggled up and enjoying a bowl of my favorite Butternut Squash and Leek Soup A.K.A Smoky Golden Vegan Soup.
The star of the show is the butternut squash, packed with rich nutrients and full of fiber. It tastes delicious when drizzled with sweet, creamy coconut milk. This flavor combination will warm you through and through!
Should you roast the butternut squash?
I love to roast butternut squash and most other vegetables because roasting adds to the color, texture, temperature, and flavor. The oven renders heat differently than cooking in a saucepan with liquid. The taste of a roasted vegetable is more flavorful and more abundant in nutrients than the one boiled, as the nutrients are not lost to the boiling water.
When roasted, the vegetable retains its golden color. When cooked in water, the color turns slightly pale.
The fragrant and creamy butternut squash and leek soup are subtly spiced with nutmeg, salt, and freshly ground black pepper. I also drizzle some olive oil on the veggies before giving them a toss and placing them in the oven. That's it! The oven does the rest of the work while you sip a latte.
How to Freeze Butternut Squash
I love the versatility of the butternut squash, and unlike other vegetables, you can buy it when it's in season and store it in the freezer.
I usually peel the skin off and chop them in cubes. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper about an inch apart, and freeze them up overnight. Once frozen, I place them in a freezer bag for up to 6 months.
How to cook frozen butternut squash
You can cook frozen butternut squash in different ways:
- Roast/bake: Bake them directly from the freezer—no need to thaw them first. Toss with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper, and dried herbs (if the recipe calls for it)—Bake as directed until it's crispy and golden. The flavors bursting out of oven-roasted butternut squash make me want to stand on the balcony of a high-rise building and scream," This is some good squash! "
- Cook: Same as above, cook them directly in salted boiling water as you would a potato.
- Microwave: once again, no need to thaw as the squash will lose its crunchy texture. Place the butternut squash in a microwave-safe dish, add a little water, season to taste, and heat on high. The time varies, depending on the weight of the squash.
- Air fry: This is my favorite way of making chips for the kids. Use the same method as you would for baking or roasting.
How to store Butternut squash
If you are not freezing the B. squash, leave them whole in a cool, dry place for up to three months. Check it repeatedly to see if it's still hard to touch.
HOW TO MAKE BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND LEEK SOUP
To make this healthy vegan soup, you'll need:
- Butternut Squash: I love to get them when they are in season. Thankfully, you can still get them year-round in most places. That's a win.
- Leeks: Use the stalk or stem (white and light green part). If you can't find leeks, substitute them with sweet onions.
- Sweet peppers: This adds a little sweetness to the soup and color. I find the soup tastes exceptionally great when the peppers are roasted.
- Milk: I used canned coconut milk to keep things light and healthy. You can use half and half as well or heavy cream. If using heavy cream, reduce the amount by at least half of the recipe.
- Broth: The vegetable broth was my liquid of choice to keep this butternut squash soup completely vegan. You can use beef or chicken-based broth if that's all you have. You can equally use water, but I'd advise you to adjust the seasoning to taste.
- Nutmeg: This is my warm spice of choice for soups because of its mildly spicy and nutty taste. Freshly ground is preferred.
Steps to make Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut milk
- First, you peel and chop the butternut squash. Trim and chop the leeks. Remove the ribs and chop the peppers.
- Next, toss the vegetables with oil and season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper—Bake for 30 minutes.
- Puree the roasted vegetables, adding vegetable liquid as needed. Transfer to pot on the stovetop
- Add the coconut milk and seasoning. Cook for a bit. That's it!
Enjoy this easy-leek soup with a toasted baguette or crackers. This soup is specially made for hallmark and chill (does anyone still watch hallmark ?). Enjoy!
** Freeze leftover soup in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature or defrost when you are ready to eat.
**For an added flavor, use beef or chicken broth.
OTHER TASTY RECIPES TO TRY
Are you looking for quick and easy weeknight meals? Check these out:
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Peace & Love
SMOKY GOLDEN VEGAN SOUP
- 1.5 lbs. Butternut squash
- 2 large leeks (white part and light green part only )
- 5 garlic cloves
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 3 medium sweet peppers
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¾ cup coconut milk (canned coconut milk prefferably)
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- A drizzle of grapeseed oil (olive oil is fine)
- salt & pepper to taste
- Peel and cut butternut squash, leeks, onion, and peppers into chunks. Place on a rimmed baking sheet including the garlic cloves.Drizzle some grapeseed oil, a pinch of salt and pepper on the vegetables and bake for 30 minutes or until soft. Set aside to cool slightly
- Using a heavy-duty blender, puree the vegetables. Check the consistency, and adjust with broth if it looks too thick.
- Pour the soup into a saucepan, place on the stove on medium-low heat.Add salt, black pepper, nutmeg, and coconut milk. Stir, and allow reheating for 3-4 minutes. Check the seasoning and adjust as needed. Add your favorite toppings, and serve with garlic toasted baguette.