Healthy Sweet Potato Soup
This rich, savory and nutritious soup is the perfect dish to curl up with on a chilly night. Think of it less as a recipe, and more as a technique. You can swap out the leek for a sweet onion, and/or change up the herbs and spices to make it your own (think ginger and curry powder, chile powder and cumin, etc). It only needs to simmer for about 10 minutes, making it perfect for weeknights. While I love this soup for its simplicity, you can certainly dress it up by swirling a bit of heavy cream or coconut cream into each bowl. Using half broth and half water gives the soup a clean flavor, although you can also make it entirely with water! If you opt for a vegetable broth, use a lighter style broth (I find that many store-bought vegetable broths are quite rich and overpowering, so I usually stick with water if I’m making a vegetarian version). This soup is a lovely first course or satisfying main course, especially when paired with these oven grilled cheeses!
Servings: 4 -6 people
- 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- 1 large leek, white and light green parts only, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 ½ pounds sweet potatoes (2 large potatoes), peeled and chopped
- 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 3 cups water
- Heavy cream or coconut cream, for swirling (optional)
- Chopped toasted pecans or pumpkin seeds (optional)
Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the leek, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes.
Stir in the garlic, cinnamon, chili powder, nutmeg and bay leaf. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Slide in the sweet potatoes, and season with more salt and pepper. Stir the potatoes to coat in the spices. Pour in the broth and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf and puree the soup in a blender (or you can use a stick blender). Add more water or broth to reach the consistency you want (I like it thick, but still soup-like). Taste and season with additional salt, pepper and/or spices as needed.
If you’d like, drizzle a bit of heavy cream or coconut cream over the soup, and sprinkle with chopped pecans or pumpkin seeds.
Do Ahead: The soup can refrigerated for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 2 months. If needed, thin it with water before serving.
- To puree the soup, you can use a regular blender, Vitamix or stick blender.
- Since this is such a simple soup, be sure to season it well with salt and pepper, which are critical to the soup's flavor. Feel free to add in more spices or to switch them up according to your tastes!
- You can swap out the sweet potatoes in this soup for cubed butternut squash instead.
- This soup (like most!) gets even better with time, so go ahead and make it in advance.
- If you want an even creamier soup, swap out 1 cup of the broth or water for or coconut milk, regular milk or cream.
- For slow cooker soup ideas, check out my book, Fresh Flavors for the Slow Cooker!