Thai-Inspired Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

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This Thai-style butternut squash soup is soothing and flavorful, and the heat from the curry and Sriracha will warm you right up.

Thai Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut squash soup flavored with Thai red curry paste and 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 add vibrant flavor and texture, 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.

What you’ll need to Make Thai-Inspired Butternut Squash Soup

Soup ingredients including lime, fish sauce, and ginger.

Step-by-Step Instructions

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

Onion, garlic, and ginger in a Dutch oven.

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

Dutch oven of softened onions.

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

Butternut squash and other ingredients in a Dutch oven of broth.

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

Simmering Dutch oven of 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.)

Immersion blender in a Dutch oven of 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.

Thai butternut squash soup with coconut milk in a Dutch oven.

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

Thai Butternut Squash Soup

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Thai-Inspired Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

This Thai-style butternut squash soup is soothing and flavorful, and the heat from the curry and Sriracha will warm you right up.

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


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 (see note)
  • 2½ lb 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
  • 1½ tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 - 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
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Optional Garnishes

  • Sriracha sauce, for drizzling
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ¾ cup salted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • ⅓ cup chopped fresh cilantro


  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 2 tablespoons of the 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, adding the remaining tablespoon of curry paste if more heat is desired. Ladle the soup into bowls. Drizzle with the Sriracha and garnish with the scallions, peanuts, and cilantro, if using.
  4. Note: Check out easy guidance on how to peel, grate, and chop fresh ginger here.
  5. Make Ahead: This soup can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and stored in a covered container in the refrigerator. 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.
  6. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The soup can also be frozen for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup in the refrigerator for 12 hours and then reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat until hot. (It may thicken up a bit while in the freezer; if so, just thin it out with a bit of water or broth while reheating.)

Nutrition Information

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  • 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: 658 mg
  • Cholesterol: 6 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, 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.

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  • So delicious! I was planning on freezing some but this is not going to last past a couple of days.

  • Wonderful soup!! I used a little more ginger than recipe called for (personal preference). I added the carrots and softened with onions by accident but it worked out fine. Used 1 1/2T of red curry powder. I will make this again and again. Thanks Jenn!

  • Approximately how many cups of butternut squash does this call for? Mine is already cut up.

    • Hi Margie, I’d guesstimate it’s about 4 cups give or take. Hope you enjoy!

  • Hi Jenn,
    I love all your recipes! Is there any substitute for fish sauce? I am vegetarian so want to skip it.

    • Hi SK, you could substitute soy sauce for the fish sauce. It won’t have that same authentic Thai flavor without the fish sauce, but it will still be good. Enjoy!

      • Sounds good. Thank you!!

  • This is a nutrient and flavor packed soup! I had an odd winter squash that I got in the misfit section at the market for cheap (misshapen and lumpy buttercup, I believe) that I halved, oiled, and baked cut side down until soft. This make scooping seeds, and scraping out the flesh super easy. Don’t skip the fish sauce if you’re on the fence as it really lends an authentic flavor, as does the cilantro, lime, and chopped peanut to finish it.

  • Incredible. The taste and richness was divine.

    • — Elizabeth Kent
    • Reply
  • OMG the soup is so good. Delicious, omitted the fish sauce (did not have) and cut down to 1 tablespoon of sugar. Jenn, you are a truly amazing chef.

  • This is great soup! Easy and full of flavor. I made a batch and froze it in 3-cup containers. Perfect reheated, as well.

    • — Diane Chielens
    • Reply
  • Love love love this soup! I was craving fall flavors and decided to make this dish today, even though it’s a warm, late summer day; something about the spices and Thai flavors just worked with the weather!

  • Hi Jenn, love your recipes! I don’t have a lime would lemon be a food substitute or nothing? Thanks, Sabrina

    • Hi Sabrina, so glad you like the recipes! I think you could get away with using lemon here. Hope you enjoy. 🙂

  • Another winner. Thanks Jenn.

  • Hi Jenn,
    I love your recipes (and the cookbook)! They are always a winner for me. I could only find green curry paste near me. Will it make a difference?

    • So glad you like the recipes, Jackie! You can use green curry paste here in place of red. Keep in mind that depending on the brand, it may be a little spicier. Hope you enjoy!

  • This soup is delicious! I can’t wait to make it for my family when we can all get together. This is a great recipe.

  • Loved this soup. Straight forward, great recipe!

  • This is sooooo good – hearty, filling and spicy (but not too spicy). No changes made except I did not peel the butternut squash before I put it into the pot, cubed (a trick I learned from my husband). It still tastes great and the texture is the same as if it was peeled. Just a time saving trick for you all!

  • We just love this soup! I made it again today but just had a small butternut squash, so I added an orange sweet pepper and 2 extra carrots. It was delicious! To easily cut and peel the whole squash, pierce it a couple times and microwave whole for 4 minutes or so. It is so much easier, and safer. We will make this many more times. Thanks, Jenn, for all your recipes!
    Going to make your sour cream walnut coffee cake now. So good!

  • This soup was so warm and comforting on a chilly winter night. Just the right amount of heat and a perfect blend of flavors. This is the first time I’ve made butternut based soup because I didn’t want to peel the squash, it was so easy! I’ll be making this recipe again! Served with a green salad and potstickers to stick with the Asian theme!

  • Great twist on butternut squash soup for something different. I skipped the sugar and it still tasted great!

  • First I Love your recipes…they are Truly EASY to make!! I’ve made a few of your recipes and I Love them ALL. This was my first time making Butternut Squash Soup and I made it according to your recipe but I did add (1) russet potato. I thought I needed it thicken it up a bit and I used pre-cut and frozen Butternut Squash. This recipe was DELICIOUS!!! I even froze the leftover according to your instructions and when I thawed it out it was as if I’d just made it!! Thank You Sooo Much for Easy and Delicious Recipes!!

  • I have made this soup twice. It is my favorite butternut soup recipe. Such a nice variety of flavors. It’s really restaurant quality.

  • Wow! SO good! My husband doesn’t even like butternut squash but loves this soup. I made it using vegetable broth instead of chicken in order to be vegetarian. I used 2 rather than 3 Tbsp of red curry paste since I have a pretty powerful one. Simple, quick and delicious! I found that it freezes well. Many thanks!

    • — Terri Szulinski
    • Reply
    • Terri what red curry paste do you use?

      • — Deborah Lambert
      • Reply
    • Made this last winter and absolutely LOVED it (and I don’t even typically like butternut squash)! Such a great recipe for fall and winter – spicy but not too spicy, so flavorful, warm and filling! I was planning on making this fall season and wanted to add protein – do you have any meat protein recommendations to add?

      • So glad you like it, Annie! This would be nice with shredded rotisserie chicken added to it.

  • This is one of my favorite ways to use squash, and with vegetable broth it works for a vegan, gluten free diet. The flavors are complex and it’s a great winter warmer. Double the recipe and it freezes well.

  • We really enjoyed this soup! I only had acorn squash which had already been roasted, but it worked fine. I did add some honey at the end as I might have added too much curry paste. lol and I forgot the lime juice, but this is a very forgiving recipe and next time I may add some chicken. Thanks

  • I love this soup! Spicy, warm and healthy! It makes enough for leftovers which is a bonus. I keep frozen butternut squash at the ready so I can make it anytime. I topped mine with hemp seeds for extra protein and healthy fats.

  • This recipe is fantastic! I generally serve with a scoop of basmati rice.
    Never any leftovers!

  • I made this soup for my family, and my son declared it the best soup he has ever had. (I thought so, too.) The flavours are amazing and the presentation stunning! Don’t skip the garnishes. Thanks, Jenn!

  • Love this recipe and I’ve made it several times so far. An especially good winter soup! I’ve subbed vegetable broth & soy sauce for the chicken broth and fish sauce and it was fantastic. Made lots of Jenn’s recipes – all great. Measurements & instructions are always clear & accurate!

  • I made this soup on Monday and have thoroughly enjoyed it for lunch all week – it’s delicious! It’s so easy to make. I actually baked the squash the night before while my oven was hot when making my dinner, then I was all set to add the rest of the ingredients the next day just before lunch hour. Great soup!

    • — Donna Deegan-Smith
    • Reply
  • Love this Thai butternut squash soup, I love that I can serve this to me Vegan friends by just using vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. The taste is the same either way. If you prefer more heat you can add more curry paste, if you like it sweeter you can add an extra carrot or two. This recipe is easy to add your own touch without compromising any flavor.

    • Wonderful. Thanks.
      Omitted all the sugar, added 1 1/2 tsp tumeric, 1 tsp cumin.

      • — Robin Pasterski
      • Reply
  • This is super easy and delicious and also so pretty to serve. It feels decadent and looks beautiful on a table- especially with all the garnishes. I don’t alter anything in this recipe, other than adding a teeny bit more salt. But otherwise it is perfect.

  • Absolutely delicious. I didn’t make any changes to the recipe and my husband and I both enjoyed it for days.
    I love using butternut squash this time of year!

  • What could be better than butternut squash, red curry, coconut milk, ginger and lime! Delicious!

    Instead of adding rice, we added shredded chicken and crusty bread to make this a full meal.

    The flavors liven up our cold, winter days!

    • — Kathy Hrabovsky
    • Reply
    • I forgot to click on 5 STARS for Thai-Style Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk !!!

      • — Kathy Hrabovsky
      • Reply
  • Best butternut squash soup! Came together super quickly and was just as good the next day!

  • The soup is seriously good! If you like spicy, substitute 2 tablespoons of yellow curry paste instead of red. The second time I made this I used carnival squash and it was still a success. Freezes well too.

  • I love this soup so much!!!! It tastes amazing and works so well as leftovers too. I added some shrimp to mine and it was delicious! Also, if you want to save time you can get your squash pre-cut but its still so easy to make since you just put everything in a pot and then blend it!

  • This looks and sounds amazing. Question: a couple of folks in my house have a really strong aversion to coconut (potentially allergic). Is it ok to omit it? Is there a good substitute, such as cream, half and half, etc?

    • — Martin Underwood
    • Reply
    • Hi Martin, you could use heavy cream or half and half. Enjoy!

  • This is my go to recipes for butternut squash soup. First time i made this i followed the recipe exactly and it was divine albeit very spicy so i made a note to only add 1 tbsp of curry paste. I did eventually try substituting the sugar for brown sugar and i added a couple of kafir lime leaves. It was delicious with a bit more depth of flavor. I love your recipes. None have ever failed, just me:)

  • I just made this for my Grandson who had his wisdom teeth removed. It is good, but I wanted more zip so I increased the curry paste and lime juice and added the zest of a good sized lime.

  • Very flavourful squash soup!!! I put 1.5 tbsp of thai red curry paste because that was hot enough. A full can of unsweetened coconut milk and lime juice was the perfect silky/tangy taste. Who knew fish sauce in soup was so good. Thanks Jenn!!

  • This soup was so delicious! Made as instructed, no need to make any changes! Your cookbook and blog are my go to when I’m searching for a recipe and they are always a home run! Thanks for another one for my recipe folder!

  • One of the tastiest soups I have EVER had! Definitely a keeper!

    • — Jennifer Nixon-Edwards
    • Reply
  • First time “commenter”
    I made the soup as per instruction minus the fish sauce.
    It’s delicious, but a tad too spicy the kids, what do you suggest I add to lessen the spiciness. Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Sharon, You could add some additional coconut milk to temper the heat a bit. Hope that helps!

  • Another winner from Jenn. I made this tonight using all the ingredients, and even the omnivore husband slurped it down (sans sriracha of course). It’s a little sweet, a little savory, and has just the right touch of Thai spice. We used the scallions, cilantro, and even some stale peanuts to add some crunch. Ancient grains toasted naan made a perfect side.

    • Forgot to rate it – 5!

  • This was absolutely delicious and super simple to make! The whole family loved it. We skipped the coconut milk/flakes and instead did cilantro and toasted pepitas as garnish with lots of lime juice. Also added a little brown rice to the bowl when serving to make it more substantial. This will definitely be in our regular rotation!

    • Made this soup tonight ; I like spice so used the full amount of curry. The garnishes of cilantro, lime, scallions & peanuts make this soup dance. Sent two containers home with my son who really liked it too. This is a keeper.

  • Amazing! Made exactly per the recipe, and added red chili paste at the end for a kick. Love!!!

    • — Maggy Makowski
    • Reply
  • Variation alert! I made this with frozen yellow CORN instead of butternut squash … absolutely incredible. I omitted the ginger because I don’t like ginger, but otherwise spot-on. Blended in my regular blender for 7-8 minutes to truly smooth out all the corn pieces. Easily one of my favorite soups ever, and I’ve made hundreds in my time. Didn’t even need the lime, and I’m a lime fanatic. Thank you, Jenn!!

  • Thank you, Jenn, for all your amazing recipes. I have tried at least 30 of them in the last few months and 99% of them are five stars. My husband and eat fresh ginger almost daily, but didn’t care for it in this soup with the butternut squash. We ate it, but not a recipe I’d do again. I feel the toppings are a must however, without would be very bland.

  • Another winner!! So quick and easy and absolutely delicious. I made it the night before I planned to eat it and thought it was a touch too sweet and thin, but the next day all the flavors of the curry melded through and balanced the flavors out, and it had thickened a bit. With the garnishes (I also added a little chopped scallions), this is phenomenal.

    • Hi Jen, same here. I love the soup but we now add 100 to 150 grams red lentils. Healthy and thickens it beautifully. PS Try Penang paste!

      • That sounds like a Beautiful variation – when did you add the lentils? Thanks!

  • Absolutely delicious! The lime made the soup ‘pop’; only used half the amount of coconut milk. Love your recipes, Jenn – my go-to time & time again.

  • Being restricted to home, I have no fresh ginger. Would substituting powdered ginger work, and if so, how much would you recommend using?

    • — Christina Hunter
    • Reply
    • Hi Christina, it should work in a pinch. I’d recommend about 1/2 tsp. Hope you enjoy!

    • Hi, I live a fair ways from a grocery store and had the same problem until a friend said to buy the ginger and freeze it in a ziploc bag. Now I just peel a little and then grate or shave (still frozen) what I need and throw it back in the freezer!

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