Thai-Style Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

5 stars based on 36 votes

Thai Butternut Squash Soup

If you’re in need of a little comfort food right now, then I have just the cozy recipe for you. This Thai-style butternut squash soup made with coconut milk is soothing and flavorful, and the heat from the ginger and spices will warm you right up. The Sriracha, peanuts, scallions and cilantro garnishes are not obligatory, but I love the vibrant flavors and textures — and they look pretty, too. For me, this soup is filling enough to serve as a main course but for heartier eaters, feel free to add a scoop of jasmine rice to bulk it up.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

To begin, heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Add the butternut squash, carrots, broth, fish sauce, sugar, and 2 tablespoons of the curry paste.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Using a hand-held immersion blender, purée the soup until silky smooth. (Alternatively, cool the soup slightly, then purée in a blender in batches, making sure to leave the hole in the lid open to allow the steam to escape.)

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Stir in the coconut milk, lime juice, and salt; bring to a simmer but do not boil. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding the remaining tablespoon of curry paste if more heat is desired.

how to make thai butternut squash soup

Ladle the soup into bowls. Drizzle with Sriracha and garnish with the scallions, peanuts, and cilantro, if desired. Enjoy!

how to make thai butternut squash soup

My Recipe Videos

Thai-Style Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

Servings: 8
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 50 Minutes

Ingredients

For the Soup

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, very roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh ginger, from a 2-inch knob
  • 2-1/2 pounds pre-cut butternut squash (or one 3-lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed)
  • 3 large carrots, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 6 cups chicken broth, best quality such as Swanson
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
  • 1 (14-oz) can unsweetened coconut milk (preferably not low fat)
  • Juice of half a lime, plus more limes for serving
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Optional Garnishes

  • Sriracha sauce, for drizzling
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup salted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes. Do not brown; reduce heat if necessary.
  2. Add the squash, carrots, broth, fish sauce, sugar, and curry paste. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.
  3. Using a hand-held immersion blender, purée the soup until silky smooth. (Alternatively, cool the soup slightly, then purée in a blender in batches, making sure to leave the hole in the lid open to allow the steam to escape.) Stir in the coconut milk, lime juice, and salt (if the coconut milk is solidified, use the immersion blender to mix it in). Bring to a simmer, then taste and adjust the seasonings, if necessary. Ladle the soup into bowls. Drizzle with the Sriracha and garnish with the scallions, peanuts, and cilantro, if using.
  4. Make Ahead: This soup can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and stored in a covered container in the refrigerator. It can also be frozen for up to 3 months. Keep in mind that the soup will thicken up quite a bit as it cools, so you'll need to add a bit of water or broth to thin it back to the right consistency upon reheating.
Once Upon a Chef - The Cookbook - Get your copy now!

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (8 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 bowl (not including garnishes)
  • Calories: 307
  • Fat: 17 g
  • Saturated fat: 10 g
  • Carbohydrates: 36 g
  • Sugar: 13 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 8 g
  • Sodium: 6 g
  • Cholesterol: 648 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Reviews & Comments

  • 5 stars

    Delicious! 10 stars.

    - Olga on March 20, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Wow this soup is DELICIOUS thank you so much for the recipe will definitely be making it again!

    - Bianca on March 17, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Delicious.

    - Amber on March 5, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    We were having guests for dinner and I was making a favorite recipe of mine, Yellow Curry with Yellow Rice, which both also contain coconut milk, so this recipe seemed like a perfect pairing. I prepared it exactly like the recipe and everyone loved it!

    - Julie Daugherty on March 3, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Love this recipe. I’m fond of fish sauce so I added just a slight bit more. I made it for a dinner party and everyone asked for the recipe.

    - jhanks on March 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Hi Jenn,
    Love this soup recipe- This lime juice and curry paste add the extra flavour!
    And it’s dairy free!
    I use your recipes all the time.

    - Alice on March 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    The hardest part of this recipe was getting it into the blender . . .(and peeling the squash) but it was all well worth it. Fabulous flavor, easily sourced ingredients – and a huge hit at dinner. Will make this again soon.

    - Cheryl Campbell on March 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This was fab! All the recipes that I’ve tried from your site are really, really delicious!!! I’ve tried chicken, soups, apps, breads…all wonderful!!! Easy to follow & the step by step pics are helpful!! I just pre-ordered the cookbook. I’m a pretty good cook…and now I’d say I’m great because of you! I’m a fan!

    - Kat on February 15, 2018 Reply
    • Thank you, Kat – so happy you’re having success with the recipes!

      - Jenn on February 15, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this soup last week & followed your recipe exactly…..SO GOOD!!!! Flavour and mouth feel is unforgettable. (used a blender) Shared a container with my daughter who took it to school (a high school teacher;) the other teachers were licking their spoons clean when offered a taste & asking for the recipe. One of her students even commented that she smelled so good. Do try this soup! 5 Stars!

    - Trish on February 8, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I’ve had a lot of butternut squash soups but this – this is the best. The carrot adds a sweetness that balances beautifully – a great Thai soup of the right combination of spicy/sour/and sweet. I was concerned the red curry paste amount would be too much heat for my family but the full fat coconut milk tempers the heat quite a bit. If you choose to use light coconut milk (not recommended) I would scale back on the curry paste. I LOVED the toppings – they added such a great contrast of textures and fresh flavor, especially the green onions and chopped peanuts. I wouldn’t change a thing!

    - Lynnessa on February 3, 2018 Reply
  • Wow! Delicious but very spicy vegetable (but not vegetarian – due to the chicken broth) soup for a cold winter’s day. I used a butternut squash, peeled and cubed, and felt it needed to simmer an extra 5 minutes. *Important: next time we would use one less Tbsp of red curry paste. Not sure if it was our brand or not, but wow; it was spicy!

    - Kathie H on February 3, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    The flavors in this soup are divine. My whole family of picky eaters loved it!

    - Jill Griffin on February 2, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Delicious soup. Prep to table in less than an hour. I was pressed for time, so I put the cubed squash in my food processor and pulsed to small pieces which made the cook time much less. I added a clove of garlic, a teaspoon of hot curry powder and a 1/2 tsp dried grated orange peel for some brightness. Definitely include the garnishes for the best flavor as well as lovely presentation. Will make again and freeze half for super easy and delicious weeknight meal.

    - Julie Roedell on February 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this according to the recipe, except substituted soy sauce for the fish sauce. Excellent! A great soup for a cold winter day. Also froze half of it and it reheated beautifully. Great flavors!

    - Joan on February 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This was very good! I did add a couple cubed potatoes. Did not have fresh squash but frozen which worked fine. Used two 12 oz bags. Added the extra curry paste. Didn’t make it too spicy. I’m not a “heat “ loving person and found myself adding a little more spice as well as Sriracha. My newfound fav!! Will make this again!

    - Rhonda G. on February 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is a great recipe. Just spicy enough and full of flavor. This will be a regular in our home, well RV!

    - john on February 1, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This soup is a new favorite! It is delicious. It makes a large batch. I ended up freezing half. I’m glad to say it freezes well. I enjoyed it again, yesterday!

    - Kate H. on January 26, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This soup is delicious 😋. I bought frozen organic butternut squash at Costco. It came as 4 packaged 1lb. Bags. I used 2 bags and I think I had too much broth. It was very thin. But the squash could have also been watery due to it being frozen. It was still so good. I’ll use less broth next time if using frozen. All the ingredients I had on hand except cilantro. Hubby hates cilantro. Too bad for him. I have been trying more Thai recipes and I love this soup. I also always use the “better than bouillon” brand of soup stock. Chicken and veggie and they are organic also.

    - Doreeni on January 26, 2018 Reply
    • I also topped the soup off with raw baby spinach. Yummmmm

      - Doreeni on January 26, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Thanks this is really delicious! I decided to roast the squash cubes/ carrots/ onion and garlic in the oven until tender and then add to soup pot and proceed as written. Great soup- thanks!

    - Sonya on January 25, 2018 Reply
  • This is such a tasty soup and so easy to make. I substituted veggie broth for the chicken broth and omitted the fish sauce as I am vegetarian. Still delicious!

    - Anthony on January 25, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Garnished with cilantro, scallions, and roasted pumpkin seeds, instead of peanuts.
    I froze a portion and it tasted just as good as freshly made. Loved this! Yum!!

    - Vee on January 25, 2018 Reply
  • 2 stars

    I didn’t really care for it – perhaps it would have been more to my liking if I used half the amount of fish sauce. Also I was just a “tad” short of the recommended butternut squash amount – perhaps 1/4 lb so maybe that made the fish sauce stand out more. Didn’t really think the coconut milk added that much to the soup either unfortunately. My red curry paste wasn’t a fresh jar either (one month away from expiry) so it’s possible that may have also muted the curry flavor.

    - maria on January 18, 2018 Reply
    • 5 stars

      I thought I was in trouble when I put the fish sauce in. That stuff is awful! So I let it cook out and it got better. Couldn’t taste it at all.

      - Doreeni on January 26, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    You know what Jenn? I do not go out to eat as much anymore, because with your recipes I feel like I am having a fine dining experience at home. This soup is wonderful, the flavors blend to perfection. I added all the optional ingredients and it brought the soup to a new level of goodness. It was easy to make, did not take long and tasted incredible.

    - Trudy Black on January 17, 2018 Reply
    • 😊

      - Jenn on February 3, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This was absolutely delicious! I will definitely be making this again. Thank you!

    - Shannon on January 16, 2018 Reply
  • Hi Jenn, wanting to try another of your great recipes for a ladies lunch this week. To make this slightly more substantial do you think adding some fish, say prawns and/or cod, salmon for the last few minutes of cooking would work ok? Many thanks, Maxine

    - Maxine on January 14, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Maxine, I think prawns would work well here. I might cook them separately and use them as more of a garnish (only because it would look prettier) but either way will work. Hope you all enjoy it!

      - Jenn on January 14, 2018 Reply
      • Great idea Jenn thanks, sounds perfect, grilled prawns on top would look top notch!

        - Maxine on January 15, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Just made this..another 5 star recipe.!
    I garnished with cilantro and pumpkin seeds instead of peanuts.
    Jenn, keeps the hits coming.

    - Jenny on January 13, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My husband and I made this last night for dinner with some rice and it was absolutely delicious! Another great recipe we will make again. Thanks, Jenn!

    - Andrea Knarr on January 12, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I love this soup. I make a big batch and freeze it in 1 cup portions to use as a wonderful sauce for all kinds of uses. Today I’m using it to marinate cod loins that will cook right in the soup when we’re ready to eat. Marvelous flavor. Thanks!

    - Jody Spiro on January 11, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made the recipe as is and it was delicious but a little thin for my taste. So, I added cooked/mashed yellow potato to the leftovers and it was excellent and hearty. Next time I will cut back on the Fish sauce – it was a little too strong for me. Thanks for all your recipes. You have great taste and I appreciate the short list of ingredients.

    - Maureen on January 11, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Loved this soup–and I ramped up the ginger for an extra bright taste by adding some powdered ginger as well. Couldn’t find curry paste out in the “sticks” where I live, so I used curry powder.
    This soup really warmed our sub-zero weather last week!
    Love your recipes, Jenn.

    - G Goffen on January 11, 2018 Reply
  • What would you pair this with ?

    - Lee Ann on January 8, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Delicious soup!! Kids even loved it. Will definitely make this one again.

    - Liz Clark on January 7, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    So good, just made this tonight and I’m a huge fan. I have really been digging these Thai flavors that you use in a lot of recipes. Completely changing how I cook lately. It’s just so good!!!

    - Deanna on January 7, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    We made this recipe tonight and it was excellent! My husband and I love spice so we actually used 4-5 tablespoons of curry paste. We will definitely be making this again but next time we’ll double it so we can have leftovers in the freezer!

    @Tannis – We used frozen cubed squash (President’s Choice from Fortinos — A Canadian grocery store) which came in 750g bags. 1.5 bags was equivalent to the required 2.5lbs called for in the reipce.

    - Tina on January 7, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipe hit my inbox right before a trip to the grocery store. I’m so glad it did! I made it last night and it was a hit for me and my husband.

    - Suzon on January 7, 2018 Reply
  • Sounds great for a COLD Canadian winter day! Two questions:
    1. Is fish sauce the same as oyster sauce? (Oyster sauce is what I have in the fridge).

    2. I am using frozen cubed squash – how many cups would I use and also, should I partially defrost if first?

    Love your recipes and LOVE LOVE the fact that we can ask a specific question and that questions are answered!

    Tannis

    - Tannis on January 6, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Tannis, Thank you for the kind words! 😊 Unfortunately, fish sauce is not the same as oyster sauce. But you don’t need to go out and buy fish sauce if it’s too cold out! You can omit it and just add more salt (fish sauce is very salty). Re. the squash, it’s hard to say exactly but I’m guessing about 8 cups — but use the photos here as your guide (the broth should just barely cover the vegetables) — and no need to defrost it first.

      - Jenn on January 6, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is the most exciting thing I have made with butternut squash this season. Will note it as a must make for next season!

    - Ulrike on January 5, 2018 Reply
  • i am allergic to coconut; is there a suitable substitute i could use?

    - linda on January 5, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Linda, You could use 1 cup of heavy cream or half & half instead. Enjoy!

      - Jenn on January 5, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this tonight for my husband who has a cold and it was the perfect medicine! So warming, spicy and comforting. I’m glad the recipe makes a ton because we’ll be having it again tomorrow. 🙂

    - Kelly on January 4, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Saw this in my inbox today and I went straight to the grocery store to make it. Delicious and so easy to make. Thank you for another great recipe!

    - HEATHER JOHNSON on January 4, 2018 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Very good. Nice Thai flavors come through. Don’t hold back on the ginger, or the cilantro and scallion toppings – peanuts not essential in our house. I also added extra paste at the end. Not too spicy at all, just nice and flavorful. Great soup for coming home to after a cold winters day walk/activity. Serve with some fresh crusty bread. Delicious!

    - Kathy on January 4, 2018 Reply
  • Excited to try your recipes for 2018. On this one, which I plan to make this weekend, can one leave out the sugar? I’m really trying to kick that habit. Just wasn’t sure if there was a reason you have it in there. Thank you!! Big Fan!

    - Lisa Sewell on January 4, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Lisa, So glad you’re enjoying the recipes! I always think butternut squash soup begs for a little added sweetness but you can leave the sugar out and add it to taste at the end. If you go that route, I’d leave out the salt and add it only to taste at the end since the sugar and salt sort of balance each other out. Hope that helps and I’d love to know how it turns out!

      - Jenn on January 4, 2018 Reply
  • Sounds good but besides subbing veggie broth, what would you suggest as an alternative to fish sauce for vegans?

    - Timaree on January 4, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Timaree, You can omit it but you’ll definitely need to add more salt. Enjoy!

      - Jenn on January 4, 2018 Reply
  • Hello, do you think it’s ok use canned butternut squash? If so, how much?

    - Jodi on January 4, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Jodi, I suspect that would work, but I’m honestly not sure how much you’d need. Assuming the cans are about 15 ounces each, I’d probably start with 2, but have a 3rd can on hand in case you need to thicken up the soup a bit more. Please LMK how it turns out!

      - Jenn on January 5, 2018 Reply
  • My husband loves squash so I’ll definitely make this. Sounds heavenly. What is your opinion on substituting vegetable broth in place of chicken broth in this soup, as well as other soup recipes? I’m asking because sometimes I cook for vegetarians. BTW, many of your recipes are favorites.

    - Diane on January 4, 2018 Reply
    • Hi Diane, It depends on the recipe but for this one, I think vegetable broth would be perfectly fine. In general, chicken broth adds much richer flavor than vegetable broth so I wouldn’t substitute it in a recipe where the broth is the “star.” But for puréed vegetable soups like this one, it won’t make that big of a difference. Hope that helps – and so glad you’re enjoying the recipes!

      - Jenn on January 4, 2018 Reply
      • I’ve been cooking a lot with veggie broth recently and I’ve found the ready-made (or powder) versions a bit thin on flavour, especially, as you say, in soups where the broth is the star. I’ve started making a stock that is a bit like bone broth but without the bones, but I really make sure the onions are browned and caramelised (in a little olive oil) before I add the rest of the veg and the water. If you throw in a few mushroom stalks for good measure, that gives it a savoury kick too. Soup looks absolutely yummy and is going on my January list of things to make.

        - Jayne on January 4, 2018 Reply

Add a Review or Question

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hungry for More?

Subscribe to my free weekly newsletter — where I share new recipes and seasonal menus for every occasion.

Your email address will never be used for any other purpose.
Curious? See a sample newsletter.