The comforting combination of squash, meat, beans and veggies makes this my go-to soup in fall. It's full of freshness. —Jaye Beeler, Grand Rapids, Michigan
- 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 large butternut squash (about 5 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 package (16 ounces) frozen corn, divided
- 4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon chicken base
- 2 cans (15-1/2 ounces each) great northern beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Heavy whipping cream and minced fresh parsley, optional
- In a stockpot, cook sausage, onion and red pepper over medium heat 9-11 minutes or until sausage is no longer pink and onion is tender, breaking up sausage into crumbles. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Remove with a slotted spoon; discard drippings.
- Add squash, 1-1/2 cups corn, water and chicken base to same pan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 15-20 minutes or until squash is tender.
Remove soup from heat; cool slightly. Process in batches in a blender until smooth. Return to pot. Add beans, tomatoes, salt, pepper, sausage mixture and remaining corn; heat through. If desired, drizzle servings with cream and sprinkle with parsley.
Freeze option: Freeze cooled soup in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally and adding a little water if necessary. Yield: 12 servings (4-1/2 quarts).
Originally published as Hearty Butternut Squash Soup in Taste of Home September/October 2013, p3-6
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