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Butternut Squash Soup with Apple & Bacon

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Serves 6-7

Yields about 6-1/2 to 7 cups.

Smoky bacon, herby sage, and sweet apple give this squash soup layers of flavor.

Use the Creamy Vegetable Soups Recipe Maker to create your own velvety soup, or use the Hearty Bean & Vegetable Soup Recipe Maker if chunky soups are more your style.

  • 8 slices bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
  • 2-1/2 lb. butternut squash (about 1 medium), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (to yield about 6 cups)
  • 1 small Granny Smith or other tart-sweet apple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (to yield about 1 cup)
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups homemade or low-salt chicken or vegetable broth

In a 5-quart or larger stockpot set over medium heat, cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until crisp and golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels.

Increase heat to medium high. Add the squash to the pot with the bacon fat and cook until lightly browned, 4 to 6 minutes (resist the urge to stir it too often or it won’t brown). Stir in the apple, sage, salt, and pepper and cook for about 4 minutes (you’ll see more browning occur on the bottom of the pot than on the vegetables). Add the broth, scraping up any browned bits in the pot with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook until the squash and apples are very soft, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool somewhat.

Add about half the bacon to the soup and purée, using a stand or immersion blender (you’ll need to work in batches if using a stand blender). Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Reheat the soup and garnish each serving with the remaining bacon.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on seven servings; Calories (kcal): 130; Fat (g): fat g 4; Fat Calories (kcal): 35; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 1.5; Protein (g): protein g 7; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 1.5; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 19; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0.5; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 370; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 10; Fiber (g): fiber g 4;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Love this soup. One of our favorites; easy to make, fast and delicious; I've shared it at work and everyone loves it!!

Amazing soup! Really easy to make, with a traditional but original taste at the same time! My husband and I loved it! I think it would work great for kids as well!

One of the BEST butternut squash soups I've ever made. My husband is asking for more.

Having recently made a Butternut Squash soup from another recipe, I thought I'd try this one since it seemed to be somewhat of a different combination. The results were not good. There wasn't that beautiful vibrant orange color and the bacon grease seemed to be the underlying flavor and texture - and I only used six slices of bacon. There was a quite, invisible greasiness to the soup. Although the apple is evident and adds a nice tang at the end, overall the soup was not very good. Grateful to have had the opportunity to try but will not be making this again. Thank you nonetheless, for sharing the recipe.

An easy, superb tasting, cold, windy, weather kind of soup.

This recipe was not my favorite! It was so bland when I made as directed. I did try "sample bowls" with coriander and another with curry, but the spices were all you could taste. I will not be wasting my bacon on this soup.

This recipe was not my favorite! It was so bland when I made as directed. I did try "sample bowls" with coriander and another with curry, but the spices were all you could taste. I will not be wasting my bacon on this soup.

I followed the recipe almost exactly, except I only used 4 pieces of bacon, and it was amazing! My husband who doesn't even like soup was raving about it. It was beautiful, thick and creamy, just like the photo. I will defiantly make this again, it's perfect for fall.

I followed the recipe almost exactly, except I only used 4 pieces of bacon, and it was amazing! My husband who doesn't even like soup was raving about it. It was beautiful, thick and creamy, just like the photo. I will defiantly make this again, it's perfect for fall.

I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out a little bland. I added a some brown sugar and cinnamon to help the flavor out a bit. Next time I'll roast the squash and add a shallot.

I added 1 finely chopped shallot to the apple mixture. I also substituted homemade beef stock for the other stock and it made the soup richer tasting. Fabulous recipe!

I made this as a starter for Thanksgiving dinner for my parents and grandparents. It was a huge hit and everybody loved it! I don't find the bacon at all overwhelming, and it's probably one of my favorite starter-soup recipes.

Just finished making this. Very disappointed. The browning gave the final product a dull tan color. There is very little flavor - certainly nothing distinctive. Actually looks and tastes like turkey gravy. Yuck.

Like other reviewers, I added onion, garlic, and curry powder. Also added a spoonful of molasses. I didn't feel that the bacon overwhelmed everything. In fact, I wished I had had more for the topping! In any event, this is a good basic formula for making your own variations on this delicious soup!

Excellent soup. I used pre-cut squash for convenience and followed the directions except added 3-4 chopped shallots with the apples. After pureeing added a couple shakes of curry and about 1-2 TBL real maple syrup. I left ours thick and slightly lumpy which is the way we like it. Will definitely make this again. Yum!

I love butternut squash soup, but I didn't care for this recipe at all. Bacon isn't a welcome addition, and even though I threw out all but a couple of tablespoons of the fat and used canola oil instead the bacon flavor just took over the soup. Would not make again.

Outstanding! Rave reviews from my family for this soup. The bacon on top really adds a fun touch to the soup. I only used half the bacon since I planned on freezing the other half and others said they had to much grease. It was perfect and definitely a keeper.

Truly one of the best fall soups you can make! The only better butternut squash soup I've had was at a reasturant in L.A. which was a little earthier.

I made this and we loved it but I must confess I strayed from the text I added 1/2 an onion and 1/2 Tbs garlic when I was sautéing the apples. I used homemade chicken stock. I also served it with a dollop of sour cream. It was divine!!!!! Next time I will puree 1/2 of it and then I will mash the other half with a potato masher, I like a bit more texture in my soups. Also I will brown more bacon and set aside to garnish with. This is such an autumnal dish. Will deff make again, this one is going into the recipe box.

This soup makes me feel like a gourmet cook! :-) It turned out so great. I doctored it up with a little dark brown sugar and a few pinches of corriander. I also browned the squash in batches like others suggested and added a bit more broth at the end. I served it with a dollop of sour cream too. I actually think that a few more strips of bacon for garnishing the soup would be nice as well.

delicious! i made this today, and agree with the other reviewers-browning the squash was a bit of a challenge, it didn't quite have enough room to spread out in the pan to brown. also, next time, i will keep some extra chicken broth on hand since after blending it, it was a bit thicker than i expected. next time, i'll be prepared! but there will definitely be a next time.

Delicious! Agreed that this is a very bacon-y soup--but it's sure to win over the most ardent veggie hater.

Yummy, definitely a do-over. Browning was a challenge, doing it in matches would be better. We used maple bacon and it was very good, but removed all the bacon before adding the other ingredients and only added in the requested bacon at the puree stage. There wasn't extra greasiness.

Yummy, definitely a do-over. Browning was a challenge, doing it in matches would be better. We used maple bacon and it was very good, but removed all the bacon before adding the other ingredients and only added in the requested bacon at the puree stage. There wasn't extra greasiness.

I've made this twice now and it's a favorite with the DH. The second time around I poured out all of the bacon grease from the pan except for a tablespoon. That reduced the fat content a bit and toned down the bacon flavor a little bit. I added some canola oil to replace the grease and browned the butternut squash in batches so they would all brown nicely. Other than that, I followed the rest of the recipe.

So delicious! I will definitely make this again. Made two batches for Christmas dinner and it was quite a hit.

This is a fabulous and impressive soup. Every time I make it there are raves. Depending on the starchiness of the squash, it sometimes needs a little more chicken broth. Really delicious and easy to make.

I enjoyed this soup. It was a nice change of pace from the average soup and the bacon gave a good textural contrast.

Yummy and easy but I thought it needed an extra kick. I added a small amount of ground cumin and coriander at the last step (reheating the soup).

Easy and absolutely delicious. Add a little more chicken broth if you want a looser soup.

I used only the meaty parts of a no-nitrate bacon. I then added some olive oil before putting in the cubed squash. I also put all the bacon in the soup before putting my immersion blender to it. Other than that I followed the recipe exactly. I sent the recipe to my sister and father telling them this was possibly the best soup I've ever eaten.

SO good!

I dunno, this came out a little too heavy on the bacon flavor, which seemed to overpower the squash, sage and apple flavors. Might work better with fewer than 8 slices of bacon.

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