Yes, another slow cooker recipe! I love how easy it is to throw ingredients together and give them time to cook and absorb each other’s delicious flavors.
I took my time making this recipe because, well, I’m going stir crazy waiting for my little one to decide he would like the meet the rest of the world (due date is today but he’s not budging apparently) so I am keeping myself as busy as possible. I also, simply love to cook. Therefore, while this version is a tad time consuming, there are several shortcuts you can take to have the soup done in a “One Pot” 30 Minute fashion as well. No matter how you make it, it’s a delicious, warm, healthy and comforting meal that you are bound to enjoy.
(makes approx 5 quarts)
1 Butternut Squash
2 Carrots, peeled and chopped
2 Apples, peeled and chopped
2 Stalks of Celery, chopped
1 Sweet Potato
1 Onion, chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
1 Box of Chicken Broth (Or Vegetable)
For the following, the amount used is up to you:
Salt & Pepper
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and prepare your squash.
Be careful when cutting the squash! You need a very sharp knife and need to protect your fingers! Cut each end off of the squash, then cut it in half lengthwise. Take a spoon and remove all of the seeds and stringy fibres (you can roast the seeds with olive oil and salt if you don’t want to waste any part of the squash!)
If you want a shortcut, Costco sells pre-cut squash. Peel and cut the sweet potato in half lengthwise, and on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or tin foil, place the squash, and sweet potato. Drizzle them with olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme, garlic powder and brown sugar. Place them in the oven for about 30-45 minutes however remove the sweet potato after about 10-15 minutes. While the squash and sweet potato roast, chop up the rest of the ingredients.
*There are several ways to prepare Butternut Squash. I roasted it in the oven so it would obtain the flavors of the garlic and brown sugar etc and the heat helps the squash come away from the peel. You can also peel it beforehand however- it is up to you.
In any case, once the squash is done, use a spoon or fork to scoop it out and away from the peel.
Heat some more olive oil over medium heat, place the chopped garlic, celery, apples, carrots and onion in a pot. Once the sweet potato and squash are done, add them to the pot. If you want to do the One Pot, 30 Minute Version, simply use this pot for all of the ingredients. Add everything together, bring to a boil then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for at least 30 minutes.
For the slow cooker, transfer all of the ingredients into the slow cooker. Add the butternut squash, broth and your desired amount of cinnamon, stir and allow it to simmer- 3-4 hours on High or 4-6 Hours on Low.
Using an emulsion blender, carefully blend all of the ingredients. If, like myself, you don’t have one, you can use a regular blender but be careful to only blend a few scoopfuls at a time since the heat will make it expand and you don’t want it splashing over and burning you. I actually let mine cool overnight, and blended it all together the next morning since I wasn’t in a rush to serve it.
Add a splash of heavy cream or milk to it if you’d like- the rest is really up to you. Be creative with whatever flavors you enjoy! Garnish it with cooked, diced bacon, pumpkin seeds or just seasonings and enjoy!