Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Hazelnut Sage Pesto

Welcoming in October with the first pumpkin recipe of the season: roasted pumpkin soup with a hazelnut sage pesto. It’s a simple, savory soup that let’s the homemade roasted pumpkin shine through. The pesto on top is hinted with honey, pecorino, hazelnuts, balsamic, and has a really deep herb flavor from the cozy sage. It’s such a gorgeous, festive fall soup to make in celebration of these first cold autumn nights!

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

roasted pumpkin soup – the details

The main component of the soup is of course the beautifully roasted pumpkin. You’ll start by finding some pie pumpkins at the store. Cutting them into quarters is an easy process, but the skin on pumpkins is tough so can be challenging to work through. I recommend a serrated knife to start, and using it to really saw back and forth to remove the ends/stems of the pumpkins.

From there, you can keep using a serrated knife or switch to a regular chef’s knife to continue cutting the pumpkin in half and then into quarters. When the pumpkins are in half, you’ll use a spoon to scoop out the seeds & stringy flesh in the center… perfect chance to pick out and save the seeds to roast for snacking!

Instead of trying to peel off the rough skin when the pumpkin is raw, we’re roasting it first and then peeling from there. The pumpkin gets roasted with just a little bit of olive oil and salt, softening and caramelizing in the process. Once done, the skins easily peel right off. You’ll roughly chop the pumpkin and it’s ready for the soup!

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Since we’re going through the effort of roasting pumpkins from scratch for this soup, I wanted to keep the rest of the ingredients really minimal to highlight the pumpkin flavor – some onion and shallot as a base, hearty herbs of thyme and sage for warmth, some vegetable stock, a touch of cream, and that’s just about it!

It all gets simmered down for just a few minutes then blended until smooth and creamy. Make sure to taste and make sure there’s enough salt to bring out all of the soup’s flavors.

The best part? The subtly sweet sage pesto drizzled over top. This pesto is highly flavorful and the perfect contrast for a creamy soup. It’s got arugula, sage, lemon, honey, balsamic vinegar, roasted hazelnuts, and lots of grated pecorino romano cheese. And trust me, the sage flavor will leave you wanting to put it on EVERYTHING this fall!

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Top this roasted pumpkin soup off with some extra roasted hazelnuts for a pretty crunch and lots of freshly cracked black pepper (how I like to finish every soup). It’s so, so lovely, and I cannot wait for you to try it.

If you’re looking for a fall soup and salad combo – I highly recommend making this roasted pumpkin soup alongside my harvest apple & chicken salad with pomegranate vinaigrette!

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Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Hazelnut Sage Pesto

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

a creamy, savory roasted pumpkin soup with a vibrant hazelnut & honey sage pesto drizzled over top

servings: 4-6

Ingredients

Scale

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

  • 2 pie pumpkins (about 3 lbs each) 
  • olive oil, as needed
  • kosher salt, as needed
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh sage
  • 1 ½ qts vegetable stock
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup chopped roasted hazelnuts 
  • freshly cracked black pepper 

Hazelnut Sage Pesto

  • 2 cups packed arugula
  • ½ cup packed sage leaves
  • ½ tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup chopped roasted hazelnuts
  • ¼ cup grated pecorino romano cheese
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt

Instructions

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Use a serrated knife to carefully cut the ends/stems off of each pumpkin. Cut the pumpkins in half and scoop out the seeds. Cut each half into half again. 
  2. Place the pumpkin quarters onto a baking sheet and drizzle with a generous amount of olive oil. Toss well to coat, season with salt, and arrange the quarters cut-side down. Roast for 30 minutes. Flip each quarter over and roast for 30 more minutes. Allow the pumpkin to cool (just enough so you’re able to hand it). Use your hands to peel off the skins, and roughly chop the pumpkin into smaller pieces.
  3. Heat a large Dutch oven (or heavy-bottomed pot) over medium heat. Add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. Add the onion, shallot, sprigs of thyme, and sage. Season with a pinch of salt. Cook for about 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and golden.
  4. Add the pumpkin and vegetable stock. Bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes or so. Stir in the cream and a pinch of salt to taste. Simmer another minute or two to heat the cream. Remove the herb sprigs.
  5. Working in batches ladle the hot soup into a blender. Blend for 90 seconds until smooth. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Pour the soup into bowls. 
  6. Drizzle a generous spoonful of pesto (recipe below) over each bowl of soup. Garnish with the roasted hazelnuts and lots of freshly cracked black pepper. 

Hazelnut Sage Pesto

  1. Add the arugula, sage, lemon zest, lemon juice, honey, balsamic, roasted hazelnuts, and pecorino romano cheese to a food processor. Pulse until very finely chopped. 
  2. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Stir in the extra-virgin olive oil until incorporated. Season with salt to taste.

Notes

To roast hazelnuts: Spread whole, raw hazelnuts onto a sheet pan. Roast them in a 400°F oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the skins are deeply golden and loose. Use a clean kitchen towel to rub the skins off. Discard the skins. Allow the hazelnuts to cool. Roughly chop them.

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Roasted Pumpkin Soup

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