Delicata Squash Bisque

Delicata Squash Bisque

So you have all this beautiful, rich, and flavorful veggie broth now. Here’s a perfect fall recipe to use it in!

I don’t know about you, but squash has been piling up on my counter. It’s beautiful, sure, but it’s not there for decoration.  I was getting more and more squash every week in my veggie box, and I think it was starting to taunt me.  So what do you do to things that taunt you?  You turn them into bisque!

And actually, in all seriousness, this is the best squash soup I have ever made.  Ever.  And it’s all thanks to my homemade veggie broth.  I knew the broth was nice when I made it, but I had no idea how much it would actually improve the favor of the things I made with it.

I made this with my favorite squash, delicata squash.  Delicata is an heirloom squash that I first tried when I joined a CSA.  Since it’s an heirloom veggie, it’s grown for flavor and not for mass-shipping; the thin skin of this squash made it harder to transport thousands of miles from where it was grown. Consequently it has been largely ignored for the last 75 years or so.  It’s gaining popularity now, so you have a good chance of finding it at your local store or farmers market.

The thin skin is a great asset, in my opinion.  It makes it easy to prepare (you don’t need an axe and and a tree-stump to cut up this squash), and you can even leave the skin on and–get this–eat it after baking! But besides the skin, the flesh is golden, sweet, and smoothly-textured.  It’s perfect for just baking, or blending into a lovely silky bisque.

And man this is a lovely bisque.  This is rich, full-bodied, yet very, very simple.  So simple you won’t believe how such an easy soup can taste so wonderful.  I use a cashew cream (one of my favorite tricks) to give this soup a velvety rich texture and creamy flavor that won’t disappoint.  Start with a high-quality vegetable broth and this will be your favorite soup of the season.

(Oh, and feel free to try this with other kinds of squash, but if you’ve never had delicata and you can find it, this is a great recipe to try it out!)

Delicata Squash Bisque
Serves 4 large bowls, 6-8 Cups

3 Pounds Delicata Squash, (2 pounds after prepping)
Oil for roasting
4 Cups Rich Vegetable Broth
1 tsp Thyme
Lots of Black Pepper
1 1/2 tsp Salt, more or less to taste

Cashew Cream
1 Cup Raw, Unsalted Cashews
1 Cup Rich Vegetable Broth, divided

Preheat oven to 400º F.

Peel squash and chop off the ends.  Halve the squash and scrape out the seeds.  Place on a baking sheet cut-side down and brush lightly with oil.  Bake for 30-40 minutes until tender and beginning to brown.  Flip squash before the baking is finished if needed to prevent burning.

Delicata Squash

Meanwhile, add the cashews to your blender and 1/2 cup of veggie broth. Begin pulsing to incorporate, eventually turning the blender all the way on while slowly adding the other 1/2 cup of broth. Once all the broth is added (1 cup total), let the blender run for 1-2 minutes until very, very smooth. Set cream aside.  If your blender can’t get the cream completely smooth, strain before adding it to the soup.

Remove squash from the oven. Using a spatula, transfer it into a large soup pot. Break up the squash into chunks with a spoon or your spatula and add 4 cups of veggie broth, thyme, and black pepper. Bring to a boil then turn down the heat and let simmer for 20 minutes, covered.

Working in batches if needed, blend the soup until very smooth, being careful not to overfill your blender. My 64 oz blender fit the entire batch of soup.

Return the blended soup to the pot and add all but 1/4 cup of the cashew cream. Season with salt and more pepper. How much salt you add with depend on how salty your broth is to begin with. I thought 1 1/2 tsp salt was perfect for my batch, but yours might differ.

Remove soup to bowls (or mugs!) and garnish with extra cashew cream drizzled on the top and some fresh black pepper.  Little squigglies of cream look nice, but you can also draw hearts or stars or swirls, whatever!

Delicata Squash Bisque


  1. kat

    oh my god i’ve been waiting all weekend for you to post a recipe for this (after seeing the tweet about it). can’t wait to make it!! but, i’m wondering, doesn’t ‘bisque’ imply rice of some sort? i love rice in my soups, do you think it would work here, and if so, what kind and at what point would you add it?

    It’s true that a lot of traditional bisques use rice as a thickening agent. I think that squash bisque is definitely thick enough on its own and therefore doesn’t require it. I think bisque generally implies a thick, cream-based soup made with vegetables (or…crustaceans), and while it’s classically thickened with rice it doesn’t need to be. if you want to add the rice, I’d pre-cook it and add it while blending the squash, or add it, uncooked, to the un-blended squash/broth mixture and let it cook in the broth. One advantage to pre-cooking would be that you can add as little or as much as you want, instead of halving to guess at the right amount. Hope that helps, Kat!

    • Noelle

      Bisque is also sometimes used to refer to cream-based soups that do not contain seafood, in which the ingredients are pureed or processed in a food processor or a food mill.

  2. Bianca- Vegan Crunk

    Oh, I wish I had seen this earlier. I just bought all the stuff to make the Chipotle-Orange Butternut Squash Bisque from Vegan Planet, but I’ve really been wanting to try using delicata. I found some at Whole Foods, but didn’t buy it. This looks so good!

  3. Ashley

    Oh, the cashew cream sounds so yummy! I started mine by sauteeing an onion, some carrots, a golden delicious apple and some fresh sage and pureeing those with the squash, and added nutmeg, ginger, a dash each of cinnamon and cayenne, and a ton of black pepper. The purity of yours sounds so appealing now though! I’ll have to make more with next week’s load of CSA squash :)

    (I’m doggedknits on flickr, btw–we were chatting about this over there.)

  4. Allison

    I was SO excited to see this recipe posted here today, I made the soup tonight for dinner, and it was fantastic. It was so good in fact, that both of my kids gobbled it up. Imagine that! The ingredients may be simple, but the flavor is anything but. Also, I was thinking I was going to have to substitute acorn squash for the delicata, but was pleasantly surprised to find it at my local market!

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  5. Miss Tiffie

    I’m forever buying squash and you’re right it does just build up on th e counter. I finally paced myself and now I’m left with two delicatas and two acorns that I PROMISED I would have to FINISH before I could buy anymore squash :] I might try out your recipe!!! Hehe altho I do really like delicatas baked…

  6. Kelly

    Looks delicious. I’ve been all about winter squash lately. I may have to try your broth recipe. It looks like I’ll have some time on my hands this weekend and with the chilly weather staying inside to make broth sounds worth it.

  7. Angela

    um, hands down the BEST soup I have EVER made!! Thanks to you Lo Lo!! WOW!!! I made the veg broth and everything just like you said. I combined the delicata and an acorn..sooo good..used my food processor = which I find so much fun and it all came out perfecto!!
    few Q’s for you: does this freeze well? And mine came out more of a whitish cream color, not sure why – don’t really care but any idea why? the cashews? one more Q, you do the cashews with the veg broth is there another way to make that creamish yummy withthe cashews, for example would I do it just like that for a tomatoe bisque or anything bisque? thanks again!!

  8. Amy

    I’ve never made cashew cream! That sounds fantastic. I’m not vegan but I am starting to cut out dairy and meat from my diet. This looks awesome! My husband and I are in the middle of moving but this will be the first recipe I make in our new place! :)

  9. russ

    I absolutely love the first photo of your soup! I feel like going out right now and investing in a giant blender, and a gaggle of squashes to recreate it.

  10. Alanna

    This soup is incredible. So rich and creamy! I don’t usually love pureed soups/bisques, but this is certainly an exception. I love your recipes; you are a master at combining simple ingredients to create dishes that are so much more than the sum of their parts. It’s like magic! Thanks for another marvelous recipe!

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  12. Lucy


    Love your site!! Will we be getting a run down of your UK trip? As I’m off there after Christmas it would be good to have some reccomendations!


    Lucy xxxxx

    Hey Lucy! Feel free to email me! If you let me know where you’re going, I can see if I have any tips for you.

  13. Lauren

    Hi! I just wanted to let you know I did a small feature in my blog about you.. I love your site and can’t wait for a cook book!!!

    Fixed your URL. Thanks for the post! Good luck with the sandwiches!

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  15. Erin

    This was absolutely delicious! I used butternut instead and otherwise followed the recipe exactly. We loved it so much I made it AGAIN the next night, this time with a touch more pepper and we loved it all over. I tried to measure the fresh ground pepper (I used a peppercorn malange) I added because it seemed like so much but really MADE the soup, and I would guess it ended up being two teaspoons if anyone is afraid of under or over peppering it.

  16. Misty

    Thanks for the recipe. I made this recently (not vegan) and it was great, though it did turn out a dull color. I really loved the simple and warm flavors!

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  19. Bess

    This soup sounds sooooo good! I can’t wait to try it. One of my favourite things about fall is the huge variety of squashes at the market, they are so colourful and delicious too!

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  21. Kristi

    Wow, it looks and sounds amazing. I must admit I tried too many varieties of squash. I’m going to look for this one next time I’m at the farmers market.

  22. Sara

    This looks awesome! I’m making veggie broth today, although not according to your recipe (I was keeping scraps in my freezer, than added garlic, some spices, and a tomato), so hopefully it’ll turn out tasty enough to make this recipe delicious. I’ll have to pick up some squash and try this one out.

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  28. Jenna

    I’ve made this four times in about a month in a half with butternut squash.. it is SO good!! Next I do want to try delicata though. Thanks so much for the recipe, it’s one of my favs!!

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