This Butternut Squash Soup with apple is the perfect cold-weather appetizer or light dinner. It’s even better topped with crisp cornbread croutons, crème fraîche, and bacon.
Happy November! Can you believe it? I can’t.
But I need to start believing it, because all signs around me report to it being entirely so.
It’s dark by 5pm (thanks, Daylight Saving Time!). All of the stores have Christmas decorations for sale. And I’m practicing Thanksgiving recipes, which is only 17 days away (insert ‘Astonished Face’ Emoji).
So, yes, although I can’t believe it’s here already, it is surely November. And it is truly my favorite time of the year. What’s not to love? Soft, cozy sweaters. Warm mugs of hot cocoa. Changing leaves. And comfort foods galore.
Like this Butternut Squash Soup with apple, cornbread croutons, and bacon.
This delicious, creamy soup is the perfect elegant side dish or appetizer for your Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving, or autumn dinner party. It’s healthy and hearty, with just a bit of indulgence coming from crisp apple-smoked bacon and dreamy crème fraîche.
And if you don’t even want to talk about Thanksgiving yet, it’s okay. I won’t make you. This soup is actually a perfect weeknight dinner, and the leftovers keep beautifully. Add a simple salad and you’ve got yourself a meal.
Plus, it’s really very pretty. That warm orange hue with spiraled, creamy crème fraîche swirls and sprinkled speckles of toasted squash seeds? Sure to impress your guests.
And for all of that gourmet impressiveness, this soup is surprisingly very simple. It incorporates all of its flavors from start to finish to create a balanced dish. We use the squash seeds for a simple garnish. We make this soup in one pot, allow it to simmer and the flavors to meld, and blend it all up. And we use the bacon fat as not only the start of the butternut squash soup, but also as the conduit for creating these crispy cornbread croutons.
I love using tart apples (such as Granny Smith) in this recipe to offset the sweetness of the butternut squash.
Plenty of fresh rosemary also enhances the brightness of this comforting soup, with savory notes of warm spices, garlic, onion, and rich chicken broth.
Making This Butternut Squash Soup in Advance
I am always looking for make-ahead dishes to make my Thanksgiving easier. This is the perfect appetizer for that. You can make everything ahead of time for this butternut squash soup with apple. Store the components separately, and simply reheat (see the graphic below for details). I’ll let you in on a little secret… this soup tastes even better the next day.
This is absolutely what I plan on doing, with the help of the new Rubbermaid Brilliance food storage containers.
I love these containers because they are 100% guaranteed leak-proof. I don’t have to worry about transporting this soup to my moms for Thanksgiving dinner and it leaking everywhere. They’re also extremely durable, odor- and stain-resistant, and splatter-resistant in the microwave. They have built-in vents that let you microwave without needing to take the lid off, or worrying about it flying off half-way through! (Cleaning the microwave is definitely up there on my list of the top things I hate doing.)
They come in a variety of stack-able sizes that are perfect for keeping my Butternut Squash Apple Soup fixings in, too.
I hope that you make and enjoy this Butternut Squash Soup with Apple! What are your favorite soups? Let us know in the comments below.
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This Butternut Squash Apple Soup is the perfect cold-weather appetizer or light dinner. It’s even better topped with cornbread croutons and bacon.
For the Soup:
- 12 ounces thick-cut apple-smoked bacon, diced
- 2 celery ribs, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced
- 1 large butternut squash, seeded (keep seeds), peeled, and diced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped (plus more for garnish)
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- Nutmeg, pinch
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup Half and Half cream
- 2 cups cornbread cubes (from homemade or store-bought cornbread)
- Cornbread croutons (see instructions)
- Crème fraîche
- Roasted butternut squash seeds (see instructions)
Make the Roasted Squash Seeds:
- Peel, halve, and scoop out the butternut squash seeds. Rinse seeds under cold water in a colander, removing squash flesh, and pat dry. Toss seeds evenly in a little bit of olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Roast at 300 degrees for 20 minutes, until starting to brown. Cool and set aside.
Cook the Bacon:
- In a hot pan, cook the diced bacon until crispy and the fat has rendered. With a slotted spoon, remove the bacon and place on paper towels to dry. Reserve the bacon fat.
Make the Croutons:
- Toss 2 cups of cornbread cubes with 3-4 tablespoons of the bacon fat, sea salt, pepper, and a pinch of dried thyme. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees until crispy, about 20 minutes, turning half-way through.
Make the Soup:
- In a deep soup pot, heat 3 tablespoons of the bacon fat.* Add in the onion, garlic, carrot, and celery, and cook until softened. Add in the butternut squash and apples. Season with sea salt, pepper, nutmeg, and ginger.
- Add in 4 cups of chicken broth and 1 cup of water. Bring to a simmer and simmer for about 25 minutes, until all the vegetables are very tender.
- Working in batches, puree the soup until completely smooth and free of any lumps. Return to the pot and warm through. On low heat, stir in the Half and Half cream and a tablespoon of fresh chopped rosemary.
- Portion the soup into bowls and garnish with the crispy bacon, a swirl of crème fraîche, cornbread croutons, and squash seeds. Sprinkle with additional fresh rosemary. Enjoy!
*You should have enough bacon fat for both the croutons and soup if using thick-cut bacon. If you do not have enough bacon fat, simply replace what you need with olive oil.
- Serving Size: 1 serving
- Calories: 331
- Sugar: 8g
- Sodium: 550mg
- Fat: 13g
- Carbohydrates: 41g
- Fiber: 3.1g
- Protein: 11.9g
- Cholesterol: 48mg
This Butternut Squash Apple Soup post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.