Totally not a squash sort of guy. Totally.
Well, maybe now I’m just partially not a squash guy. Dishes like this can do that to a person; they change one’s perspective on certain ingredients.
This soup is completely my wife’s doing – I mean, aside from the whole “actually making the soup” part. Even though it was my hands that prepared every aspect of the meal, it wouldn’t have been made without her insistence on purchasing the butternut squash in the first place.
Sometimes it’s nice to be forced into using an ingredient you wouldn’t normally use. To be honest, recently I’ve been wanting to experiment with a bunch of different roasted vegetable soups…but butternut squash wasn’t really at the top of that list. I liked that Damn Delicious’s version of this soup – which is the recipe I adapted mine from – incorporated a few of my favourite ingredients (red peppers, bacon, and goat cheese). In fact, at the top of my roasted veggie soup list is red pepper, so still having it as a part of this meal made me feel as though I almost killed two birds with one stone. Almost.
Seriously, though – if you know of a good recipe for roasted red pepper soup, holler at your boy. If I’m not within earshot, or you feel uncomfortable thinking of me as “your boy” – which is likely unless your my mother and I’m paying you a visit – then let me know via a comment on here, or on my Instagram (please and thank you).
Back to the soup though. It’s delicious. You need to try it. End of blurb.
Roasted Bacon Butternut Squash Soup
- 2 medium-sized butternut squashes, peeled, seeds removed and cut into roughly 1 – inch cubes (about 3 lbs total, after peeling/deseeding)
- 2 red bell peppers, seeds removed and chopped
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves Russian garlic, minced
- 1 package bacon, divided
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 2 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- sea salt and ground pepper
- goat cheese & green onions, for garnish (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. In a large, lightly greased roasting pan (I used vegetable oil to grease, but you can use olive oil as well), combine the butternut squash, bell peppers, onion, garlic and olive oil.
- Dice half of the bacon, and add this to the roasting pan as well. Season with 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.
- Stir to combine all the ingredients in the roasting pan. Toss on the middle rack in the oven for about 35 minutes, stirring half-way through this time. Before removing from the oven, check to make sure the squash is soft. If not, add additional time.
- In the last 15 minutes of the roasting process, cook the remaining bacon. To do so, spread out on a baking sheet or casserole dish and place on the bottom rack in the oven. Flip after 5-7 minutes, and continue cooking until desired level of crispiness. When done (ideally at the exact same time as the squash mixture), remove to a plate covered in paper towel, to soak up the excess grease.
- Once the squash mixture is done roasting, toss it in a large Dutch oven along with the thyme. Cook for about 3-4 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the chicken broth, increase the heat slightly, and puree with an immersion blender until relatively smooth (no large chunks remaining).
- By this time, the soup should be bubbling. Reduce heat, cover, and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Season with additional salt, to taste (I added an additional tsp. to get it just right), cover, and set aside.
- Quickly dice the extra cooked bacon, chop some green onions (just the green parts), and crumble some goat cheese, if not pre-crumbled.
- Portion out the soup into bowls, and top with the bacon, green onions, and goat cheese.