This comforting Butternut Squash and Lentil soup is mildly flavoured with Thai red curry paste, coconut milk, and lime. It's a quick and easy recipe that the whole family will enjoy!
Chilly days call for the comfort of a warm bowl of butternut squash soup. This version has the addition of red lentils which add protein and fiber making this soup not only delicious but also nutritious! With a hint of red curry and the creaminess of coconut milk you will be left fully satisfied. If you aren't into red curry you will find other suggestions in the Ingredients and Substitutes section.
Want more creamy roasted vegetable soup recipes? Try my Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup recipe.
🥘Ingredients and Substitutions
Here's what you will need to make this recipe with alternatives where applicable. For quantities see the recipe card below.
- White onion - any large onion can be used in this soup.
- Butternut squash - the sweetness and creamy texture of butternut squash is my favourite for making soups. However, any type of squash or even pumpkin would work perfectly.
- Thai red curry paste - if you can't find or don't like red curry paste you can substitute with any of the following: 1 tablespoon of Indian curry paste, 2 teaspoon of curry powder, 2 teaspoon chili powder, or 1 teaspoon ground cumin. The intensity of the curry flavour or seasonings is a personal preference so adjust as necessary.
- Red Lentils - red lentils break down and almost "melt" when cooked into soups. You can substitute with green or brown lentils but keep in mind the texture and colour will be different and they will take a bit longer to cook.
- Vegetable broth - I wanted to keep this plant-based but chicken broth also works well in this recipe. Here's my recipe for homemade Vegetable Broth.
- Coconut milk - both light and regular coconut milk work or you can substitute with half and half or heavy cream.
- Fresh lime juice - lime goes perfectly with Thai flavours and adds a hit of acidity to the soup. Substitute with lemon juice or omit the citrus altogether.
- Fresh cilantro - of course cilantro is the ultimate Thai herb but fresh basil, or 1 tbsp. dried basil would also be delicious.
Where can I buy red curry paste?
Thai red curry paste can now be found in many grocery stores in the International section. It can also be found at Asian supermarkets or online. Here are my 2 favourite brands:
The red curry flavour and spice is very mild in this soup so if you love the flavour and want it to pack more punch feel free to add more. Thai Kitchen and Blue Dragon brands are much more mild in flavour so if using those you may want to increase the amount regardless. But if you have never tried red curry I recommend you start with a smaller amount.
For full instructions see the recipe card below.
Step 1 - Sautee the onions until they are just starting to brown. This brings out the sweetness. Add the garlic and curry paste and cook for another minute to release the fragrance.
Step 2 - Add the squash, red lentils and broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat so it is simmering gently. Cover and let simmer 20-30 minutes or until the squash is soft.
Step 3 - Remove from the heat and, using a hand blender, regular blender, or food processor, puree the soup to your desired smoothness. Stir in the coconut milk, fresh cilantro and lime juice.
This soup will keep in the fridge for one week. Let cool completely before refrigerating or freezing. Store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
No kitchen is complete without a good soup pot. Although it's not a "soup pot" perse, my favourite is this Le Creuset Dutch Oven. Not only is it perfect for soups but it is also the perfect pot for braises, stew, chili, pot roasts and more!
Although a blender will produce a smoother texture I prefer the convenience of this Cuisinart Hand Blender.
More Soup Recipes
Butternut Squash and Lentil Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large white onion, peeled and diced
- 1 butternut squash, (1300g/3 lb) peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces (approx. 8 cups)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste
- 1 ½ cups red lentils, rinsed well
- 6 cups vegetable stock, low or no-sodium
- 2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
- 1 can light coconut milk (400 ml.)
- 1 lime, juiced
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Sauté onions, stirring occasionally, until just starting to brown.
- Add garlic and curry paste and stir for one minute. Add red lentils, butternut squash, and broth. Stir and bring to a simmer. Cover and let cook for 20-30 minutes or until the squash is soft.
- Remove from heat and using a hand blender (or working in batches in a food processor or blender), puree soup to desired smoothness. A traditional blender will produce the smoothest texture.
- Stir in coconut milk, cilantro, and fresh lime juice, and serve.