Tame cravings for processed white carbs—bread, pasta, potatoes, rice, baked goods—by incorporating more starchy orange carbs, like this naturally sweet and satisfying apple butternut squash soup. This smart carb combination marries immune-boosting butternut squash, apples and parsley.
The good news: making this soup yourself requires very little “cooking” skills. Yes, you’ll do some prep work chopping, but other than that, your oven and blender do the heavy lifting. Butternut squash is an excellent source of immune-boosting nutrients, but commercial butternut squash soups—even those labeled “organic”—often contain excess sodium, added sugars, processed oils (eg., canola) and allergens (e.g., soy milk or dairy) that contribute to inflammation. Though soy- and dairy-free, this apple-butternut squash achieves delicious creaminess via the roasting and blending process. Its natural sweetness comes from apples.
A nutrient-dense carbohydrate, butternut squash is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, B vitamins and a good source of potassium and magnesium. Its high fiber content makes butternut squash a great detox food: it takes longer to digest (you’ll feel full longer) and promotes healthy elimination.
Apples are rich in antioxidants, particularly, vitamin C. Use organic apples since conventionally grown apples contain a high amount of pesticide residue. Since the skin of the apple contains nutrient rich compounds, keep the apple skin on when you make this soup to maximize your vitamin, mineral and antioxidant (eg, quercetin) intake.
Parsley also contains immune-protective antioxidant nutrients; it is an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of vitamin A. So, be sure to sprinkle a generous amount of parsley on your soup.
Apple Butternut Squash Soup
Yield: 4 servings
2 organic apples with skin, like Empire, chopped
3 pounds butternut squash, peeled, and cubed
1 medium yellow onion, well chopped
2 tablespoons unrefined (or raw) coconut oil, melted
2 tablespoons minced fresh gingerroot
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth OR filtered water
1 small bunch parsley, rinsed well and chopped
Celtic sea salt, to taste
Preheat the oven to 400˚F.
Line one large, heavy-bottomed cookie sheet (or two medium cookie sheets) with parchment paper.
Add apples, butternut squash and onion to a large mixing bowl. Drizzle the melted coconut oil over the apples, squash and onion and mix well, coating the mixture well.
Arrange mixture on parchment-lined cookie sheet in a single layer. Place on center rack in oven and roast for 20 minutes. Turn cookie sheet around, and roast another 20 minutes, or until the apple-squash mixture is soft and slightly browned (not burned!) around the edges. Remove from oven.
Transfer roasted apple-squash-onion mixture to a Dutch oven or large soup pot. Add the minced ginger and the broth OR water. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer; cook, covered, apx. 10 minutes. Use an immersion blender to blend soup. Or, transfer mixture to a high-speed blender and blend until soup is smooth and creamy.
Ladle into serving bowls. Sprinkle chopped parsley over apple butternut squah soup. Add a pinch of Celtic sea salt; season to taste.