This healthy roasted pumpkin soup with coconut milk is the reason for the fall season my friends. Fresh roasted sugar pumpkins are bright and sweet, and perfectly complimented by classic fall herbs and spices. This is a classic pumpkin soup recipe that walks on the healthy side without sacrificing a single bit of flavor!
Paleo pumpkin soup with pepitas. How ’bout them alliteration apples on this fine fall afternoon? Okay, I’ll stop now.
This time last year Cameron and I were into the first week of our second (modified) Whole 30. We’d been planning on doing a third round this September, and then pushed it to October, but between settling into our new home, a slew of family events and activities, and a pretty full freelance slate, time has run away with us yet again. Grr.
That being said, it’s been constantly sitting at the back of my mind and I consistently find myself reaching for tried and true paleo recipes during my weekly meal planning and recipe development. Therefore it came as no surprise to me when I jumped all over some sugar pumpkins at the local coop last week and I immediately began sketching out a recipe for a paleo, dairy free version of classic roasted pumpkin soup.
How to Make Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Fresh Sugar Pumpkins
This is a pretty classic pumpkin soup recipe, but paleo-ized. But don’t worry – you don’t have to be paleo to enjoy this healthy fall soup recipe.
It’s creamy without cream (thanks coconut milk!), sweet from a hit of maple syrup, and deliciously complex from fresh roasted sugar pumpkins. I garnish it with fresh sage and roasted, salted pepitas for a bright and crunchy finish. So much yummy. Whole foods FTW, every time.
Can I Use Canned Pumpkin Puree?
You can use canned pumpkin puree in this recipe, but keep in mind a few things:
- You’ll sacrifice some of the complex flavor you get from roasting your own sugar pumpkins. You can replace some of that flavor by caramelizing the onions instead of sautéing them.
- Canned pumpkin is denser than freshly pureed pumpkin, so you’ll need to add a bit of extra broth (no biggie).
- The cost of buying fresh sugar pumpkins vs. canned puree is about the same (in my area, fresh pumpkins are relatively inexpensive, so the total cost was about $1 less to make my own puree).
Overall I find the flavor from fresh pumpkins is fresher and brighter, and the roasting process caramelizes the natural sugars, making the flesh sweet and nutty. AKA? Whopping punches of flavor. So I say roast ’em fresh.
You can roast sugar pumpkins ahead of time and store the cooked pumpkin in an airtight container in the fridge for about a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Sugar pumpkins are on the small side, and you can easily fit 3 pumpkins on a baking sheet. Double ’em up and hold onto that sweet autumn flavor straight through the new year.
How to Roast Sugar Pumpkins
Roasting your own pumpkins is stupid easy. Simple slice them in half, scoop out the seeds, drizzle with some oil, season with salt and pepper, and plop em cut side down on a baking sheet.
Roast at 400*F for about 40-45 minutes, or until they start to collapse into themselves. Then let them cool and scrape out that gorgeous, tender flesh. I don’t bother pureeing the pulp before adding to my soup because I’m only going to puree it later with a stick blender.
Once the pumpkin is roasted, this paleo pumpkin soup is super easy to pull together. It cooks in just about 30 minutes, and calls for just a handful of pantry staples:
- Onion and garlic – you could also use leeks or shallots
- A classic fall spice combo of ground ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg
- Fresh sage and thyme
- Bone broth for a velvety smooth texture (or vegetable stock to keep this vegan)
- Coconut milk for a creamy, but light, dairy free finish
- Roasted and salted pepitas for crunch
Once the soup is finished, I blend the heck out of it with a stick blender until it’s super smooth, and then garnish with roasted salted pumpkin seeds and some extra fresh sage.
The resulting soup is both sweet and savory, and surprisingly filling. I had this for lunch with a really simple green salad and was totally full until dinner. Because this roasted pumpkin soup is naturally paleo, gluten free and grain free, plus vegan and vegetarian friendly, it’s a crowd-friendly recipe that would make an awesome starter for an epic Thanksgiving dinner.
Healthy Pumpkin Soup Dietary Accommodations
- Naturally paleo, gluten free, and grain free
- Whole30 friendly – use date syrup in place of maple syrup, or omit all together
- Vegetarian and vegan friendly – swap out the bone broth for vegetable broth
- Refined sugar free
What to Serve with Roasted Pumpkin Soup
- This soup is the perfect starter for an elegant (but easy!) autumn dinner party. For a main course, try my Red Wine Pot Roast over mashed potatoes with a simple salad (I like mixed greens tossed with fennel and parmesan cheese, and an apple cider vinaigrette dressing).
- Make this on Sunday and enjoy it all week for lunch alongside a meal prep salad like Crunchy Kale Salad or Kale and Pomegranate Salad.
- Or have the coziest fall family dinner by serving this soup with Grilled Apple Cider Chicken and a seasonal side like roasted broccoli or cauliflower, or sautéed swiss chard.
More Healthy Fall Soup Recipes
Love soup? So do I! These fall soup recipes are high on flavor and super nutritious!
- Nourishing Potato Soup with Caramelized Onions
- Roasted Carrot Apple Soup with Pecans and Thyme
- Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Pine Nuts
- Winter Minestrone with Butternut Squash and Swiss Chard
- Butternut Squash Soup with Pomegranate Seeds
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Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Coconut Milk and Pepitas
This paleo roasted pumpkin soup made with coconut milk and finished with fresh herbs and pepitias is a hearty, healthy, and simply delicious fall soup!
- 4 lb sugar pumpkin halved, seeds removed
- 2 tbsp olive or avocado oil divided
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
- 1 medium onion thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 2 c. chicken bone broth or vegetable broth
- 1 14-oz can full fat coconut milk
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup (substitute date syrup for Whole30)
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh sage
- 1/4 c roasted, salted pepitas for garnish
Preheat the oven to 400. Slice the sugar pumpkin in half and scrape out the seeds and fibrous pulp using a spoon. Drizzle 1 tbsp oil over the pumpkins and rub the oil into the flesh. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the pumpkin halves cut side down on a baking sheet and roast until the skin is golden brown and the pumpkins are starting to cave in on themselves, 40-45 minutes. The pumpkins are done when you can easily pierce the skin with a fork. Remove from the oven, flip them over, and set aside to cool. Once the pumpkins are cool enough to handle (10-15 minutes) scrape out the flesh with a spoon, or simply peel away the skin with your (clean) hands.
Heat a dutch oven or 6-quart soup pot over a medium high flame. Add the second tablespoon of oil to the pan and heat until it shimmers. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft and the edges are starting to brown, 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute.
Add the spices to the onion and garlic mixture and sauté, stirring continuously, until the spices are toasted, about 1 minute.
Add the pumpkin flesh to the pot, along with the broth, coconut milk, maple syrup, and fresh herbs and give everything a good stir. Increase the heat to high and bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce to low, cover, then simmer until the herbs are falling off the stems, about 20 minutes.
Fish out the herb stems from the soup. Puree the soup in the pot using an immersion blender until completely smooth. Taste for seasoning and add additional salt and pepper if needed.
Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with roasted, salted pepitas. Serve immediately. This soup keeps in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Useful Tools for this Recipe:
To make this vegetarian or vegan, substitute vegetable broth.
To make this a fast 30-minute weeknight meal, substitute 3 cups (about 2 cans) of organic canned pumpkin puree. Increase the broth by 1/2 a cup.
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