Get your Vitamin A fix with delicious Thai Squash Soup

We grew pumpkins and squashes last year and stored them over winter. But now they are coming to the end of their natural shelf life. Or to put it bluntly, if I don’t use the remaining fruits in the next three or four weeks, they’ll go rotten.

No problem!

Thai Squash Soup is not only one of the tastiest meals on the planet but full of valuable nutrients. 

One portion of this soup contains all your recommended daily intake of Vitamin A. And with the pandemic still on our minds, Vitamin A plays several crucial roles in our immune systems.

There’s also significant Vitamin C, Vitamin B2 and Vitamin E, plus useful amounts of Potassium, Copper, Manganese and Iron from the squash.

You can use any kind of pumpkin of squash in this recipe. Butternut squashes are a popular choice but I use a variety called Crown Prince. 

Squashes are great for anti-oxidants too, to protect you against free radicals – one of the arch villains in our diets.

Anyone looking to lose weight, please note squashes are very low in calories but still packed with nutrients. 

Of course, this Thai Squash Soup recipe also contains coconut milk which adds calories but I use reduced fat coconut milk which roughly halves this. 

Coconut milk is also high in lauric acid which is thought to be beneficial ... but also in saturated fats which seem to spark heated arguments between nutritionists over whether they are bad for you or not. My advice is to consume coconut products - and all foods for that matter - in moderation.

Squashes are also a good source of fibre and we’re only just beginning to understand how hugely important this is to our health.

And finally, this recipe is not only delicious and super healthy – it’s dead easy to make. Here’s what you need and what you do.


1.5kg (approx) squash or pumpkin

4 tsp olive oil

1 onion, sliced

2 ins / 5cm grated ginger

1 stalk lemongrass (optional)

4 tbsp Thai red curry paste

400ml Reduced fat coconut milk

850ml Vegetable stock

Salt, pepper, lime juice and sugar to taste

Try chilli flakes and either crème fraiche or soured cream to serve


This takes most people around an hour from start to finish.

1 Set the oven at 200C/180C fan/gas 6.

2 Make the stock.

3 Leave the skin on and cut squash into quarters. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Cut each quarter in half. Place them skin down on a baking tray. Rub or spray half the olive oil over them and season with salt and ground black pepper. Cook for 40 mins by which time the squash should be soft.

4 While the squash is cooking, peel and slice the onion. Peel the ginger and slice it as finely as you can. Gently bash the lemongrass stem to bruise it. 

5 Heat the remaining olive oil in a frying pan. Add the onion, ginger and lemongrass and cook over a medium heat until they are soft – it should take around 6-8 mins. Stir occasionally to stop this burning.

6 Wait until the squash has finished cooking. Then add the Thai Red Curry Paste to the onion mixture in the frying pan and stir. Stir and cook for another minute.

7 Scoop the cooked squash flesh out of shells with a spoon (don’t burn your hands!) and add it to the frying pan. Discard the shells.

8 Add the coconut milk and the stock, bring it to a simmer and cook for five minutes. Then remove the lemongrass and discard it.

9 To be safe, leave your soup until it’s cool enough to handle. Then whizz it in a blender until it is smooth. If you’re using a hand-blender, you’ll need to do this in a high-sided bowl.

10 Season to taste. Add a little lime juice and sugar. Try half a lime to start with and teaspoon (5ml) of sugar then a little more if needed. 

Your soup is now ready. You could freeze it when it’s cool. But if you’re eating it now, you may like to stir in a swirl of sour cream or crème fraiche and sprinkle a few dried chilli flakes on the surface when you serve it. 

It tastes wonderful without his final flourish so I don’t tend to bother but it’s your choice.


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