Butternut squash and lentil soup

A perfect recipe for staying warm during those chilly winter days.

Butternut squash and lentil soup

This soup was adapted from a recipe in Saveur. With its smoked paprika and roasted squash, this soup is a perfect weeknight meal to warm up your entire family. It tastes rich and satisfying, yet still manages to be healthy and nourishing.

It’s gluten-free and vegetarian. You can make it vegan if you substitute Greek yogurt for cashew cream. If you like things a little spicy, some chili oil drizzled on top gives it some kick.

Pair this soup with a simple kale salad and whole-grain bread for dipping.

Servings: 6

Prep time: 30 minutes


  • 1 smaller butternut squash, about a pound
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (and a little extra, to drizzle)
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 6 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • Finely chopped parsley, for garnish

Yogurt sauce:

  • 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika (and a little extra for garnish)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Pepper and salt, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 420 degrees. 
  2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds.
  3. Place on roasting pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle with about a tablespoon of olive oil and roast at 420 degrees until soft and brown on edges. This usually takes about 45 minutes. When cool enough to handle, scoop out roasted squash and set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, heat oil in a 6-quart saucepan over medium heat.
  5. Add garlic, carrots, celery, and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened. This should take 12 to 14 minutes.
  6. Stir in cumin, squash, salt, and pepper. Sauté for about 5 minutes.
  7. Add stock and lentils. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, slightly covered, until lentils are very tender, about 20 minutes.
  8. When the soup has cooled slightly, puree until smooth.
  9. Stir paprika and 2 tablespoons of olive oil into yogurt to make sauce.
  10. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with parsley and a sprinkle of paprika. Add a generous dollop of yogurt sauce and swirl in.

Nutrition information (per serving)

  • Calories: 289
  • Total fat: 9 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Sodium: 203 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 42 g
  • Dietary fiber: 15 g
  • Total sugars: 6 g
  • Protein: 12 g