Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

butternut squash soup with coconut milk

The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 50 mins
Total: 65 mins
Servings: 6
Yield: 6 to 8 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
750 Calories
68g Fat
38g Carbs
5g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 750
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 68g 87%
Saturated Fat 20g 98%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 630mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 38g 14%
Dietary Fiber 9g 31%
Total Sugars 12g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 62mg 309%
Calcium 151mg 12%
Iron 5mg 29%
Potassium 1008mg 21%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Squash season reaches its peak in the fall, when we’re all looking to lean into cozy flavors and warming meals. This velvety soup is perfect for cool autumn nights, topped with a bright herb sauce inspired by the legendary Cheese Board in Berkeley. The recipe makes a lot of sauce, but trust me, you’ll want to put it on everything—pizza, sandwiches, tossed with crunchy vegetables as a dressing, you name it. The creamy, mellow flavor of the squash pairs beautifully with the punchy sauce, resulting in a light but flavorful lunch or dinner. Round out the meal by serving with plenty of good bread or grilled cheese sandwiches. 

Roasting the squash saves on prep time (no peeling or chopping required!) and does double duty by adding delicious, caramelized depth of flavor to the soup. It’s also hands-off and makes for easy clean-up, making it a weeknight-friendly meal. 

I like to use a high-speed blender to achieve the silkiest soup, but you can achieve similar results with a hand blender—just be sure to thoroughly puree all of the vegetables. Using coconut milk instead of heavy cream results in a lighter soup, with just a hint of coconut flavor.

"The butternut squash soup was delicious and easier to make than I expected. The green sauce stole the show for me, though. It is an ultra-flavorful sauce that adds zing to the soup. Freeze the extra green sauce in small containers and use it with tacos, steaks, shrimp, pork, chicken, fish, and vegetables." —Diana Rattray

butternut squash soup/tester image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


Butternut Squash Soup:

  • 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds), cut in half lengthwise and seeded

  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered

  • 4 whole garlic cloves, unpeeled

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper, more to taste

  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth

  • 1 (13.5 ounce) can full-fat coconut milk

  • 2 tablespoons honey, or maple syrup

  • Coconut cream, sour cream, or Greek yogurt, for serving, optional

Spicy Green Sauce:

  • 2 bunches cilantro, stemmed

  • 1 bunch Italian parsley, stemmed

  • 2 medium jalapeño peppers, halved, seeded if desired

  • 4 medium garlic cloves

  • 1 1/4 cups olive oil

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar

  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha, or sambal oelek, optional

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, more to taste

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Steps to Make It

Make Soup

  1. Gather the soup ingredients.

    ingredients to make butternut squash soup

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  2. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 400 F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place the squash, onion, and garlic on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle all over with olive oil. Sprinkle the cumin, cayenne, salt, and pepper evenly all over the vegetables.

    butternut squash cut in half on a baking sheet with onions and spices

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  3. Turn the squash over so that it is cut-side down on the baking sheet.

    butternut squash cut in half, faced down on a cookie sheet

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  4. Roast until squash is very tender and the vegetables are caramelized, removing the onion and garlic as they become done, about 40 minutes (start checking the onion and garlic at about 20 minutes).

    roasted butternut squash on a baking sheet

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  5. When the squash is cool enough to handle, scoop the flesh into a high-speed blender. Peel and add the garlic and onions to the blender. Add broth, coconut milk, and honey to the blender.

    butternut squash flesh in a blender

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  6. Blend on high speed until very smooth. Taste and add more salt and pepper as desired.

    butternut squash puree in a glass blender

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  7. Transfer the soup to a large pot or Dutch oven. Heat on low until warmed through, about 10 minutes.

    butternut squash puree in a dutch oven.

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

Make Green Sauce and Serve

  1. Gather the green sauce ingredients.

    ingredients to make green sauce

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  2. To make the spicy green sauce, add the cilantro, parsley, jalapeño, garlic, oil, orange juice, rice vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, Sriracha, if using, salt, and pepper to a high-speed blender and blend on high until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt, if needed. Transfer to a container and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months if not using right away.

    green sauce puree in blender

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  3. To serve, ladle the hot soup into bowls. Top with a dollop or swirl of spicy green sauce and coconut cream, if desired.

    butternut squash soup with coconut milk

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck


  • When shopping, look for firm, heavy squash with smooth skin. Butternut squash is at its peak in late summer through fall. 
  • Any leftover green sauce can be served with pizza, on sandwiches or tacos, or as a salad dressing. Try it spread on a baguette with tomato and mozzarella for a caprese-inspired sandwich!


  • You can also make this with red kuri or acorn squash—just use the equivalent weight and roast for a few minutes less, depending on the size of the squash. 
  • For flavor variations, add 1/4 cup red curry paste and omit the green sauce. Or try serving with a drizzle of maple syrup and toasted coconut flakes for a sweet/savory combo.
  • For more coconut flavor, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of coconut milk powder to the blender.
  • For a vegan soup, use vegetable broth and sweeten it with maple syrup or agave nectar.


  • Both the soup and green sauce can be made in advance. To reheat the soup, place in a saucepan, cover, and heat over low until warm.
  • Store the soup and the green sauce in separate containers and refrigerate; up to 1 week for the soup, up to 2 weeks for the green sauce. Freeze both for up to 3 months if not using right away.
  • Defrost the soup and green sauce overnight in the refrigerator. 

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