I'm not ashamed to admit I'm not done with this soup until I've had seconds or even thirds! It's dreamy, warming, and full of sweet and earthy flavors. I also love the hit of floral thyme and rich maple syrup. I blend the soup until the texture is luxurious and smooth and eat it steaming hot. You may prefer a more textured version; if so, go easy with the blending. Either way, you'll obsess over this simple and delicious recipe that is perfect for fall and winter but yummy in any season.
BONUS: This soup is highly versatile. It can be dairy-free by substituting half and half for coconut milk and be made vegan by subbing the chicken broth for veggie broth. You can also use either fresh or frozen butternut squash and full-sized or baby carrots. Whatever you have on hand will work. Love that.
You can use fresh or frozen butternut squash; I used frozen and thawed.
Notes: Chicken broth is low-sodium.
CREAMY ROASTED CARROT & BUTTERNUT
Ingredients: 4 large peeled and chopped carrots (about 3 cups), 4 cups peeled and diced butternut squash (about one medium squash), one small onion, 1 tsp. minced garlic, 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. sea salt, 1 tsp. pepper, 1 tsp. dried thyme, 1/4 tsp. cumin, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 3 cups chicken broth, 1 cup half and half, 2 tbsp. pure maple syrup plus more for serving, and sour cream for serving (optional).
1. Preheat the oven to 400* F. Tumble chopped squash and carrots onto a baking sheet. Drizzle over 1 tbsp. of olive oil, then season with salt and pepper. Toss. Roast for about 30-35 minutes until vegetables are soft and lightly caramelized. Flip vegetables over once during cook time.
2. Heat the remaining olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onion with the garlic until soft and browned about 5-7 minutes. Add in the cooked squash and carrots, along with the cumin, thyme, and cinnamon. Stir well, then add the chicken broth.
3. Bring to a low boil over high heat, then turn down to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes. Blend in batches until smooth, or use an immersion blender. Stir in the half and half and 2 tbsp. of pure maple syrup. Taste for seasoning, add a pinch more salt if needed. Serve with water-thinned sour cream (see below), maple syrup, and extra thyme if you like.
Chop the carrots and squash to roughly the same size into between 3/4 and 1-inch pieces. That way, they'll cook at the same rate.
Thin 1/4 cup sour cream with a little water for thick, dribbly consistency. It melds better with the soup.