While I’ve still got a few more late-Summer recipes in store for you, I was feeling the cozy vibes this morning and decided to whip up a pot of this simple and comforting butternut squash noodle soup.
Think classic chicken noodle soup, but with sweet bits of tender, caramelized butternut squash instead of the chicken, along with al dente ditalini pasta and a few handfuls of leafy kale.
Cozy, hearty, flavorful Autumn goodness.
The base of this butternut squash noodle soup begins similarly to this lemony kale and white bean soup (one of my very favorites) – with good stuff like sautéed onion, fresh garlic, and dried herbs.
I start by quickly caramelizing the butternut squash in a bit of olive oil, adding flavor and texture, before the veggies simmer away in the garlicky, herby broth. A rich chicken or vegetable stock is key here, as it is with most broth-based soups, so choose the best you can find, or for an out-of-this-world version, make your own.
Rounding out the rest of the soup is fresh baby kale, and ditalini, that miniature, tubular macaroni pasta shape, that works so well in soups like this.
I know Labor Day weekend is just around the corner, and if it’s still really hot where you are, tuck this one away for cooler days ahead. Healthy, but still hearty, it’s the perfect soup to cozy up to on a chilly day.
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 1 large sweet or yellow onion, minced
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh garlic, crushed
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter*
- 1/4 tsp dried rosemary
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- 1/8 tsp dried oregano
- 5 cups rich chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 cup dry ditalini (or other favorite) pasta
- 2 cups (loosely packed) baby kale
- kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
- Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat until shimmering. Add the butternut squash, and cook, turning occasionally, until just beginning to brown and soften, about 4-5 minutes. Transfer the butternut squash to a plate.
- Add the onion to the pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent, and just beginning to brown. Add the garlic, and cook for another minute or two. Add the butter, and as it melts, stir in the herbs. Let cook for another minute or two until the onions are lightly golden.
- Add the butternut squash back to the pot, along with the stock, and stir to combine. Cover, and bring the stock just to a boil, then turn the heat down to low, add the pasta, and let simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked al dente. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Add the kale, and continue to simmer until warmed through, about 3-5 minutes. Serve warm with crusty bread.
Make it vegan: omit the butter or use vegan butter (such as Earth Balance).
Make it gluten free: choose a gluten free pasta brand, such as Jovial.