Butternut Squash Bisque

by simplylife on November 14, 2012

I was that girl.  During my time in college, I lived in a house with 17 women.

Yes, 17 women.  That was not a typo.

And while living in my house with 17 women, I would often make homemade soup while listening to Frank Sinatra.

Not exactly your typical college student.

This was my first experience living outside of the dorms.  My first experience having a kitchen at my fingertips, and the novelty of shared pots with mismatched lids felt like I was in a chef’s kitchen.  I loved being able to cook my own meals, even if it meant opening a can of beans and plopping them on a tortilla for lunch.

And while I was that girl who didn’t always fit the stereotypical college student, I was definitely having a blast and making some of the best friendships of my life.  The best part was that I got along beautifully with all the women in that house, and the vast majority of us enjoyed cooking.  Some of my favorite memories were our “house potlucks” where all 17 of us would sit down to a giant homemade meal together.  It was the first time many of us attempted our family’s passed-down recipes without our parents telling us how much sugar to add or when you need to stir in a pinch more salt.

During this time, my mom sent me The Cook’s Encyclopedia of Soup.  It was a small book that fit nicely between my Psychology and Statistics text books, and it got at least just as much use. 🙂 To this day, it is still one of my favorite cookbooks.  Packed with hundreds of soup recipes for all seasons and tastes, it always seems to get a bit more frayed and stained every fall.

That’s where the inspiration for this Butternut Squash Bisque came from.  Just thinking of all the delicious food I get to enjoy over the next several weeks has me craving a cozy, yet light soup, and this fits the bill perfectly.

Butternut Squash Bisque

by Simply Life


  • 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • Oregano, to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook about 5 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Stir in squash, broth, potato and paprika.

2. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 30-35 minutes until vegetables and soft.

3. Using an immersion blender (or by pouring soup into a blender), blend soup until smooth. Return to heat, season with oregano, salt and pepper, serve warm and enjoy!

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  • http://whatisbakinginthebarbershop.blogspot.com/ Colleen

    Awesome! I have yet to make soup this fall but keep thinking about making it… Just gotta do it 🙂 This one looks fabulous. You can’t go wrong with butternut squash in the fall!!

  • The Candid RD

    17 girls, seriously?!?! Yikes. I could barely handle living with 3 🙂 Yeah..it’s true.
    Great recipe!! I love butternut squash, and I love bisque, and this sounds amazing.

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Haha, I know -I would have thought the same thing but it worked out so well! 🙂

  • http://www.confessionsofachocoholic.com/ Bianca Garcia

    I love butternut squash soup… Um, 17 girls?!? That must have been a very memorable experience! 🙂

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Haha, it definitely was 🙂

  • Marialuisa Echeberria

    17 girls, I can´t imagine….my daughter lived with 7 English girls and they had a blast!, she´s now back in London and living again with one of them, and close to the rest..they are like sisters….and everytime I go, I eat butternut squash, I love it

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Oh that sounds like so much fun!

  • http://twitter.com/LisaEirene Lisa Eirene

    Saving this!

    For a long time I thought I hated squash. Then at a fancy restaurant in Chicago I did the “chef’s choice meal” and one of the courses was a butternut squash bisque in a shot glass. It was absolutely amazing and now I love squash!

  • yummychunklet

    Looks great!

  • http://kirantarun.com/food Kiran @ KiranTarun.com

    17 women?!? How did you ever survived all that? 😀

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      haha, with a lot of coffee and cooking 🙂

  • http://bite-sized-thoughts.blogspot.com/ Kari

    I’m pretty sure I’d take this over psychology or statistics 🙂 Gorgeous looking soup!

  • Janelle

    That was quite a year, wasn’t it? I had a great roommate in that house, and I learned some great life lessons from her:) Loved reading this post:)

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Janelle!!! Hi!!!!! Oh., I miss living in that house! =)

  • http://twitter.com/Zomppa Zomppa

    What great memories! 17 women?? I can imagine all the good eats!

  • Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca)

    I don’t fit the stereotype of a woman or a teacher a lot of the time … in many ways!

  • managedmacros

    You were the soup lady!! 17 girls? That is a lot of estrogen! I was the non traditional student, so my college experience was a a more ‘seasoned’ age. I was the stable one…I guess?? I love soups this time of year too. I could eat them everyday and squash is def one of my faves. I like yours with the little bit of potato in it, adds more substance! Pretty pic!!!

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Haha, yes- I was the soup lady! 🙂

  • http://joanne-eatswellwithothers.com/ Joanne (eats well with others)

    You make living with all those girls sound like so much fun!! I would have loved to sit down to your meals if this soup was involved. Looks amazing!

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      You’re so sweet! 🙂

  • http://www.quarterlifecrisiscuisine.com/ Bee

    I’ve been looking for a good butternut squash recipe! Thanks 🙂

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Hope you like it!

  • http://www.culinarycolleen.com/ Colleen

    I lived one year in a house with 14, and I still don’t know how I managed! Our kitchen was sort of a disaster, but we managed to cook a little bit. This soup looks great!

  • Allieksmith

    WOW! I think it’s cool and amazing that you lived with 17 other girls!!! That must have been fun and entertaining for sure 🙂

    I love this soup recipe… it’s the perfect time of year to enjoy squash!

  • DeliciousDish

    I went to an all-girls’ boarding school for high school, so I know what it’s like to live with a ton of girls. I wish I could have cooked for everyone and made an awesome soup like this. (We made a lot of ramen noodles in the microwave back then.)

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      Haha, I’ve definitely had my fair-share of ramen 🙂

  • http://rpsmiles.com/category/latest-news Del Mar Dentist

    That looks delicious and perfect for the cold weather. I wish my mom was still alive, so that I can ask her about her own/family recipes, too bad I only got interested in cooking just recently. A house filled with 17 women, did you live in a sorority house?

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      So sorry to hear about your mom.

      No, it wasn’t a sorority house- just a bunch of friends!

  • camille

    I don’t think I fit the stereotype of an adult! I may be 30 and about to spend a ton of money on a new roof, but I’m also about to go out to a punk show tonight where my husband’s band is playing, and tomorrow have “work Thanksgiving” with my work friends, where we will invariably spend the evening in inappropriate jokes.

    Stereotype or no, though, I want a bowl of this soup right now!

    • http://www.simplylifeblog.com/ Simply Life

      haha, I love this! Have a great time!

  • Mom

    The stereotype I don’t fit and still feel “peer pressure” about is drinking, even when I have a ride home. Just a couple nights ago, a champagne toast was given at a small reunion and the glass was given and then given and then given a third time to me before they gave up! I felt the pressure though to “not make such a big deal about it” and it’s “just a sip”. How do teenagers handle this?!!!

    That’s a cool recap about the soup recipe book and I enjoyed it…your soup looks great!

  • Mari

    You are lucky to live with so many girls! I could just imagine you in the kitchen preparing comforting foods. I think it was a great idea, that you cooked while you were in college, home cooked food is best. This bisque is definitely a soup I’ll love to make! Have a great Thanksgiving 🙂

  • http://www.acambridgestory.com Emily

    What a yummy looking soup. That bread looks perfect for dunking!! How funny that you lived with SO many girls in college!

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