Butternut Squash Soup w/ Orange Zest & Spicy Pepitas

I have had this huge butternut squash in my fridge since Thanksgiving, no lie. It's still firm and good, and since I never used it in whatever recipe I didn't make, it's time for a soup.

This is very simple to make and it makes enough for the freezer so when you are cold and sick you can have some handy. Soup in the freezer is like money in the bank. You can thank me later.

The spicy pepitas idea is from my friend Tina, who made them and served with the soup, and I went nuts over them! Don't skip them, they are also yummy to munch on their own.

Butternut Squash Soup w/ Orange Zest & Spicy Pepitas:

1 very large butternut squash, cut into small 1" cubes
2 carrots, peeled and cut into small pieces
3 yellow onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp dried thyme
5 cups of chicken stock
salt & pepper
zest of an orange
some grated fresh ginger (optional, but adds a nice spice)

Fresh flat leaf parsley, creme fraiche and spicy pepitas to garnish (pepita recipe to follow)

Spicy Pepitas: (adapted from Food Network)

2 cups Pepitas (raw hulled green pumpkin seeds)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground Ancho chiles or chili powder
2 teaspoons lime juice
1 teaspoon salt

For the pepitas:
Preheat the oven to 375F. Toss all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Spread on a baking sheet and bake 7-10 minutes, or until lightly browned, shaking the pan once or twice. Set aside. Can be made a few days ahead.

In a large Dutch oven, heat some olive oil and saute your chopped onions and garlic until soft. Add the butternut squash cubes, carrots & thyme and stock and simmer about 40 minutes until the vegetables are soft.

Add the orange zest & grated ginger (if using) to the pot. Once the pot has cooled down, use a hand immersion blender and puree the soup in the pot. Taste for seasoning.

Ladle into bowls and garnish w/ fresh parsley. Lay some pepitas on top and swirl in some creme fraiche into each bowl.


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Susan..... said…
I LOVE pepitas but never thought to spice them up. Hug your friend for the recipe, from me. They are going to make a great Southwestern-style pesto.

Happy New Year!!
Ciao Chow Linda said…
A nice light soup like this is just what I could use right now - but not any soup - I love the orange zest and spicy pepitas you used.
Anonymous said…
I've had 2 butternut squash waiting to use for a month - looks like it will be a double batch of soup! Thanks for the recipe!!
Eileen said…
What a beautiful soup (and photo).
Joanne said…
I love the idea of adding citrus to butternut soup! So many are heavy but this sounds refreshing.
Anonymous said…
a huge butternut squash - like 4 lbs?
I love those spicy pepitas! I always have butternut squash laying around. I want your cute bowl though!
Stacey Snacks said…
4 lbs. sounds right. I didn't weigh mine, but it was a big one.

oui said…
Wow....you're on an orange roll, girl. I recently ran out of pepitas, and this great recipe gives me a perfect excuse to go get some more.
Carol from SF Bay said…
Trader Joes carries the Pepitas already seasoned. (a little salty) I purchase both ways. I use them often in salads. I love butternut squash....will try this tonight. Last time I made Butternut squash soup, the kids(in their 20's) told me it tasted like "baby food".
LauraNorthernCA said…
Stacey, that looks so yummy. I love butternut squash. Should it be stored in the fridge? I have a butternut squash (that could actually be older than yours, LOL) stored in my basement pantry - where I keep potatoes.
Stacey Snacks said…
If the basement is cool, and the squash is still firm, I think it is fine. I still have 3 acorn squash sitting on my table from November, and they look fine!