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Pumpkin-Apple Soup

Photo: Iain Bagwell
Active time 40 mins
Total time 1 hr, 5 mins

Serves 8 (serving size: about 3/4 cup soup and 3/4 tsp. pepitas)

Even without added cream, pumpkin soup takes on a luxuriously velvety texture after it's simmered and pureed. Make sure all the ingredients are very tender so they'll blend together smoothly. We start with a base recipe then tweak it to create 2 more soups, Chipotle Spiced Pumpkin Soup and Thai Coconut Pumpkin Soup, each with a different flavor makeup. Simple toppings like salty-sweet pepitas, chorizo, or freshly chopped herbs make them a little more special. For a fun, no-fuss garnish, top any of the soups with 2 tablespoons popped popcorn. Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper, if desired.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 cups (1/2-in.) cubed peeled fresh pumpkin or butternut squash (about 1 lb. 2 oz.)
  • 1 large Granny Smith apple, cut into 1/2-in. cubes
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 3 cups unsalted vegetable stock (such as Swanson)
  • 2 tablespoons raw hulled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider

Nutrition Information

  • calories 147
  • fat 5.4 g
  • satfat 0.7 g
  • monofat 2.5 g
  • polyfat 0.4 g
  • protein 4 g
  • carbohydrate 23 g
  • fiber 2 g
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • iron 1 mg
  • sodium 272 mg
  • calcium 28 mg
  • sugars 7 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 1 g

How to Make It

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; swirl to coat. Add onion; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes. Add pumpkin, apples, cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 5 minutes, stirring often. Add stock; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 25 minutes or until pumpkin and apples are tender.

  2. While soup cooks, combine pepitas, sugar, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook 7 minutes or until sugar melts and pepitas are toasted, stirring often. Transfer to a plate; cool completely, breaking up any clumps.

  3. Place half of pumpkin mixture in a blender, remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape). Secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters); blend until smooth. Place soup in a bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining pumpkin mixture. Pour in apple cider, and reheat in pan if needed. Divide soup evenly among 8 bowls; sprinkle evenly with pepitas.


    Thai Coconut-Pumpkin Soup: Add 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon red curry paste in step 1. Omit cinnamon; instead add 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger with the pumpkin and apples in step 1. Omit apple cider; instead add 3/4 cup light coconut milk and 1 tablespoon lime juice. Omit pepitas, sugar, and salt in step 2; instead sprinkle evenly with 2 tablespoons cilantro before serving. Serve with lime wedges. Serves 8 (serving size: about 3/4 cup) CALORIES 147; FAT 5.3g (sat 1.6g, mono 2.5g, poly 0.4g); PROTEIN 4g; CARB 23g; FIBER 2g; SUGAR 5g (est. added sugars 0g); CHOL 0mg; IRON 1mg; SODIUM 253mg; CALC 24mg

    Chipotle-Spiced Pumpkin Soup: Increase cinnamon to 1/2 teaspoon. Add 1 finely chopped seeded chipotle chile canned in adobo sauce to apples and pumpkin in step 1. Omit apple cider; instead add 1/4 cup water. Omit pepitas, sugar, and salt in step 2; instead garnish with 1 ounce thinly sliced and slivered Spanish chorizo, cooked in a small skillet over medium-low heat until crisp. Serves 8 (serving size: about 3/4 cup) CALORIES 147; FAT 5g (sat 0.8g, mono 2.9g, poly 0.5g); PROTEIN 4g; CARB 23g; FIBER 3g; Sugars 6g (est. added sugars 0g); CHOL 0mg; IRON 1mg; SODIUM 225mg; CALC 27mg