It’s become a tradition – something we do every year. We buy a pumpkin, cook it up, bag it and stock the freezer with it. Then my husband makes his amazing Healthy Pumpkin Soup (no cream)! But this year we almost didn’t get a pumpkin…
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I also followed him around the kitchen while he cooked this year, measuring ingredients, capturing the process and writing it all down because not only do I want my kids to have this recipe, but also future generations. And it’s too good not to be shared with the rest of the world!
Healthy Pumpkin Soup
At only 5 WW free style smart points (now known the the blue plan) per 1.5 cup serving (with BACON!) this is the best ever pumpkin soup! And it has no cream, yet it’s rich and creamy. This is because all the ingredients are pureed once it’s cooked, making it a super light and healthy and really WW friendly meal.
Best Pumpkin Soup Recipe Ever
I’m generally not fond of savory pumpkin things, but this pumpkin soup is an exception because it’s unlike any pumpkin soup I’d ever had. It’s really that good!
Years ago I worked at a restaurant where everyone raved about the stuffed potatoes. And when I finally decided to see what all the fuss was about, I was sorely disappointed. In fact, I thought they were horrible! They had this foreign flavor – something that was not meant to be with potatoes. Nutmeg. And although many won’t agree with me, I think that nutmeg should stay out of the savory culinary world. And I figured out that’s why I never liked savory pumpkin things; most of them were made with nutmeg! My husband leaves the nutmeg out for me. Lucky me! And hey, I’m not saying you can’t add a pinch of it if you like, but trust me, you really don’t need to.
Gourmet pumpkin soup
I consider this a gourmet pumpkin soup because not only is it outstanding, it’s pretty involved. What I am saying is that this is not your after work dinner soup; there is a time investment. But I guarantee you – your taste buds will be rewarded with amazing gourmet flavor.
My husband enjoys making soup – he finds it therapeutic after a busy week at work. And he is damn good at it! He learned a lot working as a cook, including some useful soup making tips from some talented chefs he had the opportunity to work with and learn from. And the taste of this soup is testimony to that.
Cooking a pumpkin
It’s recommended you use special cooking pumpkins, generically labeled “sugar pumpkins” or “pie pumpkins,” (specifically named Baby Pam, Autumn Gold, Ghost Rider, New England Pie Pumpkin, Lumina (which are white), Cinderella, and Fairy Tale) when cooking with pumpkin. You can read more about cooking pumpkins HERE.
However, we ALWAYS buy the exact same type of pumpkin as we would for carving jack o’ lanterns (from the big bin outside the grocery store) and they always taste amazing! The key is that you puree it before you bag it or it’s too stringy! And then you drain off as much water as you can. Personally, I’m not going to pay a lot more money for a cooking pumpkin (and get something smaller), but the choice is yours. You can also use canned pumpkin for this recipe, but it’s not going to be nearly as good. See NOTES for video on how to cook a pumpkin.
The Great Pumpkin Shortage
And as I mentioned, we were lucky to get a pumpkin at all this year because there was a shortage! Our early winter weather caused most of the pumpkin crop to rot in the field or right after picking. Sadly, some weren’t as lucky as us.
I’m just grateful we were able to get one and make our traditional soup!
What to eat with pumpkin soup
Pumpkin soup is great with any kind of bun, bread, croutons, or crispy fried onion topping. However, I recommend serving this Onion & Olive Bread Machine Bread with this soup.
Healthy Pumpkin Soup
- 6 quart pot
- blender or food processor
- 6 oz turkey bacon * 1/2 -12 oz pkg
- 6 oz bacon * 1/2 -12 oz pkg
- 5 carrots
- 1/2 bunch celery
- 3 cups sliced mushrooms
- 3 cloves garlic
- 8 cups soup stock
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning
- 4 cups pumpkin puree
- 1 onion
- 1 red pepper
- 1/2 tbsp + 1 tsp cajun seasoning (tsp added to mushrooms) *black pepper or paprika can be substituted
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp white wine
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 2/3 cup -container of chicken or vegetable bouillon 1/2 a container approximately- add to taste
- water to fill pot
- nutmeg to taste (optional)
- red pepper, finely diced and sauteed
- feta cheese, crumbled
- Chop bacon and fry turkey and regular bacon separately until crisp. Set aside.
- Dice carrots, celery and onions. Mince garlic.
- Sautee sliced mushrooms in bacon fat (optional) or in a little olive oil. Set aside.
- In a large, 6 quart pot, carmelize onions with garlic and olive oil for 5 minutes.
- Deglaze pot with 2 tbsp white wine (see NOTES on how to deglaze)
- Then add carrots and celery and a dash of salt, Cover with lid and cook for about 10 minutes over medium heat on stove top, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.
- Add soup stock to vegetables in pot and bring to a boil.
- Add pumpkin and continue on rolling boil until vegetables are soft (and a fork can easily go through them). Add cumin and Cajun seasoning.
- Add 1/4 cup wine.
- Add enough water to fill the pot to 2 inches below rim.
- Puree mixture in blender or food processor. * You will have to do this in small batches
- Return to pot, add mushrooms and bacon and add bouillon to taste (depending on how strong your stock is). * you may need to add more or less than the 2/3 cup
- Sautee red pepper if desired. Top soup with crumbled feta and red pepper and serve.
- Freeze remaining soup, as required. It freezes well!