by Olena

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup

by Olena

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro. |

It is cold and crisp in PNW. Perfect for some velvety smooth, hearty and healthy slow cooker butternut squash soup loaded up with quinoa and chicken, and Thai flavour boosters: coconut milk, peanuts, lime and cilantro. It is not your regular butternut squash soup, it’s better – a complete freezer meal. Perfect for meal planning as well.

Absolutely everyone licked their bowls in our household – not spicy for kids at all. And I enjoyed the slow cooker version of butternut squash soup because I can go about doing what I have to do (there is always something to do, right?!). And then just load it up right before serving. Looking for more creamy soup classics? Check out healthy chicken wild rice soup and healthy broccoli cheese soup.



Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro. |

How to Make Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro. |

Slow cook the base butternut squash soup: butternut squash, coconut milk, chicken, water and spices.

Remove chicken and shred it. Puree everything inside the pot with an immersion blender.

Add cooked quinoa or brown rice – hello, leftovers.

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro. |

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro. |

Add Thai flavours: peanuts, lime and cilantro. Also I like to add bell peppers at the end so they stay crunchy. Red bell peppers are a must for Thai cooking in my world. Their sweetness pairs well with zesty lime.



Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup with Chicken and Quinoa

5 from 1 reviews

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Recipe made healthy with coconut milk, quinoa, chicken, peanuts, bell peppers, lime and cilantro.

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings


  • 1 medium butternut squash (8 cups), cubed
  • 14 oz can coconut milk, full fat*
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled & grated
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4-5 kaffir lime leaves (optional)**
  • 1.5 lbs chicken (any parts, skin on or off-I used chicken breasts)
  • 2 cups quinoa, cooked
  • 2 large red bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup peanuts, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 lime, juice of


  1. In a large slow cooker, add squash, coconut milk, water, maple syrup, curry paste, ginger, garlic, salt, lime leaves and chicken. Cover and cook on Low for 8 hours or on High for 4 hours.
  2. Remove chicken and shred using two forks. Discard lime leaves. Using immersion blender, blend soup until smooth. Add chicken, quinoa, bell peppers, peanuts, cilantro and lime juice. Stir and serve hot. Alternatively you can serve toppings separately.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Make Ahead: In a large container or bowl with a lid, add squash, coconut milk, water, maple syrup, curry paste, ginger, garlic, salt and lime leaves. Cover and refrigerate for up to 48 hours, then cook following Step 1 instructions.

Freeze: Fully cook, cool completely and freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw on a stovetop covered on low.


*Do not use light coconut milk – soup will be flat. **I usually get kaffir lime leaves at an Asian store. They are basically Thai bay leaves and can be stored forever tightly sealed in the freezer. You can also get them on Amazon. I would say there is no close replacement for the bright floral and citrusy aromatic that kaffir lime leaves add to the dish. However, it is OK to omit them. Soup will still taste great!

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

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23 comments on “Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup

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  1. One of the best butternut squash soup recipes I have ever tried! I enjoyed multiple layers of flavours!

  2. I so wish that sugar wasn’t my craving. I tell you, it’s a drug! I know myself…and if I start eating something sugary I’m done for. So I try to avoid it as best as I can. So instead, I will continue to make your soup recipes because anything that keeps me fuller longer and feeds a crowd is a keeper. Keep them coming!

    1. It’s a drug. I feel like you when I start eating sugar. Dark chocolate. Can’t stop haha.
      Yes, it really really helps just to cook savoury healthy food and not to buy or bake sugary stuff. It’s hard to resist it in your kitchen.

  3. Hi! I’m making this soup for a staff luncheon. We love trying new recipes and I think this will be a big hit. I do have a quick question, am I supposed to add the peppers in raw? Thanks.

    1. Hi Elizabeth. Yes. Peppers and peanuts are more of a final touch garnish. You want them crunchy and fresh. Add before serving at work. 🙂 Please let me know how it goes. We love this soup!

  4. Wondering if this turns out thick enough to serve with rice? My boy is not a fan of soup, but this one looks great and very nutritious. Def wanna try it. Thanks for another great recipe.

    1. Hi Yeni. I think if you add only 1/2 cup water it will be thick enough to serve with rice. Add less salt and no quinoa I guess. You are welcome.:)

  5. This soup turned out so creamy and simply YUMMY! Even without lime leaves (I’m ordering some, because I plan to make it many more times and I want the full experience!) I love Thai flavors but I had never tried before cooking a Thai inspired dish. The way this turned out has me excited, at the possibility of being able to do so! Also I loved to be able to use my slow cooker, since I dont use it as much as I should/could.

  6. Do you think this would still be good without the chicken, or do you have another vegetarian alternative suggestion to substitute for the chicken?

    1. OH MY GOD, YES! I hope no one made it without coconut milk or was smart enough to add it to the thai soup. OMG. Thank you for catching this, Tracey! Fixed. How did I miss that?! Ugh…

      1. Hi Olena, I put this in the slow cooker late last night and am finishing it now. My husband and I will have it for dinner tonight and I cannot wait! I printed the recipe a while ago and am so glad I checked back before finishing my work on the soup so I was able to add a coconut milk in time for blending! One question – your ingredients state “2 cups quinoa, cooked” which I took to mean I should measure out 2 cups of dry quinoa, then cook,and add to the soup. Is this the measurement you intended? If not, this time around we will just have an extra hardy soup! Thanks so much for the recipe. DELICIOUS!
        Thanks, Virginia

        1. Hi Virginia. I have no idea how I missed coconut milk so glad you checked and Tracy pointed it out. See, I need you guys to keep an eye on me.
          I meant 2 cups cooked quinoa. So I think I cooked 1 cup dry. But honestly it doesn’t matter how much you use. Just add until you like the consistency and et the rest or freeze. I don’t think I ever threw out quinoa in my life. Merry Christmas!!!

  7. Well…..compared to your temperatures I have no reason to whimper a teeny tiny hint of complaint! Our typical Northern Il temps in the middle of winter average mid 20’s degrees. If it dips into the teens or heaven forbid -O people go nuts and the schools cancel. A mothers delight.. They didn’t do that when my kids were in school and I don’t understand what has changed.

    I don’t have very much extra insulation, or even very much muscle, and am always cold! Doesn’t matter if it is 70, it might as well be -0! For medical reasons, (long story) at 5’2″ I work to keep my weight above 95. I think my thermostat isn’t efficient at that weight with the amount of calories I can intake.

    Anyway Olena, this soup looks wonderful to me! Sup is one thing that I can eat eat quite a lot of it it’s not too fatty. And I do go to bed hungry if it is all puréed and not full of more ‘stick to the ribs’ chunky nutritional ingredients that don’t just slide right through my digestive system!

    Can’t wait to try this! I have a lot of squash in my freezer that I bought in the fall when it was just harvested and so good! I roasted it up and stockpiled for later. It’s a better savings that way! And we just bought a small chest freezer so we do that!

    As always, thank you so much for your creative and wonderful recipes! I am a, I am a REALLY good cook and baker, who has loved it for 50 years. What I am not, is creative. I need a recipe! And you seem to fit in with my husband and my tastes and philosophies perfectly. Plus your youth is sooo refreshing! I love hearing about your family and life too.

    1. I think you are talking F and I’m talking C. 20F is -6C and that is very cold for West Coast. We barely ever get that. All other parts of Canada get really harsh winters except Lower Mainland in British Columbia because of the warm ocean currents.
      I used frozen squash from Costco as well – very convenient. Oh, thank you! I will try to keep you updated without boring too much.:) Enjoy the soup.

  8. Your post made me LOL with regards to the cold temps. I’m in Manitoba and nobody does winter like the prairies. I just bought a new vehicle that came from Montreal, imagine my surprise when there was no block heather in the car- oh to live like that! We are going hiking this weekend, and this soup looks perfect I will throw in the slow cooker before we go on low. Thanks once again Olena!

    1. Hi Melissa. You mean you are going snowshoeing? Just kidding. Prairies winter is OMG cold. I assume Manitoba is worse than Alberta. Me and my GF cancelled hiking last week because it was -2 in the AM. Now it is back to rain and high + so we will be hitting the woods again. However, I would do hiking in a snowy forest in a heartbeat. Fond childhood memories. My mom used to do it with her friends, then have a fire, picnic and a few shots. Hiking Russian style LOL. I remember skiing one time and having a drink on a chairlift with my husband. That is a big Russian custom. They drink anywhere. Man, we barely made it down the hill and since then we don’t practice drinking and skiing. How stupid is that?! Have fun! Hot soup with a kick after a winter activity – THE BEST!