This lush fall-into-winter soup spotlights the seasonal flavors of pumpkin and apples and a pantry staple, canned tomatoes. It’s simple and comforting, featuring the warm taste of squash offset by the sweet bite of tomatoes and apples.
You’ll love that this filling soup is low in calories and has myriad nutritional benefits for skin, immunity, gut, bones, blood pressure, and much more! Plus, it's the perfect use for pumpkin puree that's leftover from the holidays!
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- Olive oil
- Chopped onions
- Canned tomatoes
- Vegetable broth
- Pumpkin puree
Olive oil: If you want to use butter for a richer, rounder flavor, go ahead. Just be sure to keep an eye on the heat to prevent any burning,
Onions: White or yellow--chop them into medium dice.
Chopped canned tomatoes: Petite dice is nice. Any sort is fine, even crushed tomatoes, which will bump up the tomato flavor in the soup. Look for ones that don’t have added seasonings like oregano or chilies.
Spices: This recipe calls for the sweetness of tarragon and warmth of nutmeg, but other herbs can pinch hit. Think thyme, marjoram, herbs de Provence. A pinch of cayenne might turn the flavor dial up.
Apple: Look for ones that are sweet with high acidity. Favorites include Honey Crisp, Pink Lady, Rome, Braeburns, or McIntosh, which cook down easily.
Milk: To easily make this recipe vegan, choose plant-based. Coconut and oat milk are two of the creamy milks. If you choose dairy milk, reduced fat is fine, but stay away from skim or 1 percent. If saturated fat is not a concern, go for light cream!
How to make
1 Heat olive oil in a deep pot, such as a small Dutch oven or large saucepan (4 qt). Saute onions until tender and translucent.
2 Add garlic and cook until fragrant.
3 Toss in the chopped apples and the salt and cook for up to five minutes.
4 Add the tomatoes and their juices and scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.
5 Next, pour in the broth and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for a few minutes to combine the flavors.
6 Combine the pumpkin puree, tarragon, nutmeg, and pepper with the soup base, mixing thoroughly.
7 Turn the heat off and insert an immersion blender to create a smooth soup base. Or, transfer the mixture to the container of a regular blender.
Simmer on low for a few minutes. (Partially cover to prevent splattering.)
8 Pour the milk into the soup base in a slow, steady stream, stirring. Heat the mixture, but do not boil. Taste and add more salt, if needed.
Serve with a hunk of crusty bread.
- Use one and a half cups of leftover roasted squash, or a 12-ounce thawed bag of frozen squash cubes in place of the pumpkin. Add the squash after the tomatoes. Blend them into the soup after simmering for a short time.
- After the addition of pumpkin puree, the soup tends to splatter as it simmers. Partially covering with a lid reduces the cleanup.
- You can use fresh tarragon in place of dried. You’ll need at least a fourth of a cup, chopped. Other herbs to substitute are thyme and/or marjoram, and sage and/or bay leaf.
- When adding milk of any kind to the soup, do not boil. The milk may curdle and create an unpleasant texture in the soup.
Chicken broth can be substituted as long as the soup will not be eaten by vegetarians or vegans. You could also use lightly salted water. (Here's a simple recipe for veggie broth!)
Yes, but it’s important to cook and soften them before adding them to the soup. You’ll need about one-and-a-half to two cups of fresh pumpkin or squash. Roasting them imparts a wonderful flavor.
It can easily be made vegan by using plant milk for creaminess instead of dairy milk (from cows).
What are the health benefits of this soup?
It's low-calorie yet filling, which can help with weight management. A generous serving clocks in at less than 100 calories.
🎃 Pumpkin has benefits for eye and skin health since it has plenty of antioxidants and vitamin A.
Beta-carotene, which turns into vitamin A, is abundant in pumpkin, and lycopene, a carotenoid found in tomatoes, are antioxidants that help defend against cell damage and could help reduce the risk of cancer.
Other antioxidants found in pumpkin are lutein and zeaxanthin.
🦴 The creamy, milk element of the soup, contains calcium, which has benefits for your bones, muscles, and heart.
Another mineral in good supply is potassium, which is especially important for healthy blood pressure.
🧂 To keep the salt (sodium) level in check, use homemade stock or store-bought low-sodium broth and no-salt canned tomatoes.
Experiment with different flavor combinations.
This soup is particularly enjoyable with ginger and coconut milk instead of tarragon and dairy milk.
You could also amp up the holiday vibe of the soup by substituting sage or thyme for the tarragon. Tossing in a bay leaf boosts this flavor combination.
Ladle into soup mugs or bowls and top with a splash of white balsamic or apple cider vinegar and a shower of fresh parsley, chives, or dill.
Croutons sprinkled on top are a nice touch.
Accompany with plenty of crusty bread and spread.
It’s also terrific with grilled cheese, quiche, or a large green salad.
Other recipes you might like…
If you like the nutrition profile and taste of pumpkin, you'll enjoy Pumpkin Protein Waffles. They’re a perfect weekend breakfast and frozen ones can be heated in a toaster on a busy weekday morning.
Soup season also tends to be cold and flu season. This lovely chicken soup will chase away your winter sniffles. It’s particularly nourishing with homemade bone broth, but also soothing with chicken broth from a box.
Creamy Pumpkin Tomato Soup with Apples
- 1 saucepan, fairly deep
- Immersion blender or use a regular blender
- 2 Tablepsoons olive oil
- ½ large onion
- 1 apple small, with skin, grated or diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 12 ounce can pumpkin puree
- ½ Tablespoon tarragon
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 cups milk whole, 2%, or plant-based milk (for vegans)
- Wash hands thoroughly for 20 seconds before starting.
- Heat the oil in a large, deep saucepan and saute the onion until translucent and soft.
- Add the minced garlic and cook for about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add the chopped apple and salt and cook until the apple is slightly soft, 3 to 5 minutes
- Add the can of tomatoes with their juice and scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.
- Pour in the broth and stir well, bringing the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes to combine the flavors.
- Turn off the heat and insert an immersion blender to puree. You can also transfer the soup to the container of a regular blender for this step.
- Stir in the pumpkin puree and add the tarragon, pepper, and nutmeg. Simmer for a couple of minutes.
- Pour the milk into the soup in a slow, steady stream and heat on low but do not boil. Taste, and adjust any seasonings as needed.
- Serve the soup with croutons or a hunk of crusty bread!
Copyright © 2023 Jani Hall Leuschel