Veronica’s Pumpkin Soup–Gluten-Free Progressive Oscar Dinner Party

gluten-free pumpkin soup, dairy-free pumpkin soup, soup recipes, fall recipes, quick and easy

Veronica’s Velvety Pumpkin Soup

I have the honor of kicking off our Gluten Free Progressive Oscar Dinner Party. We’re all selecting meals related to Oscar-nominated movies. When it comes to the movies in the nominations this year, the one that speaks food the most is, of course, Julie and Julia. The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) describes Julie and Julia: “Julia Child’s story of her start in the cooking profession is intertwined with blogger Julie Powell’s 2002 challenge to cook all the recipes in Child’s first book.” I enjoyed this movie, largely because of my love of Julia Child and Meryl Streep’s charming portrayal of Julia. Make no mistake about it … it’s Meryl who brings Julia and, therefore, this movie to life. In my opinion, Streep’s Best Actress nomination is well deserved.

In Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Julia Child shared her pumpkin soup recipe. Hers was served in a pumpkin and included crème fraiche. While crème fraiche is very French and very delicious, if I’m the one making it, I want a simpler pumpkin soup. (And, sadly—or perhaps gladly—there are no pumpkins available to use as serving dishes this time of year.) My friend, Veronica, had mentioned her pumpkin soup recipe back in the fall. I finally asked her for the recipe and she immediately emailed it to me. Even better, she graciously gave me permission to share it with you, my gfe readers.

Veronica told me that her inspiration was a pumpkin soup made by her Belgian cousin. Veronica created a quick and easy, mild-flavored, but hearty version, which works as a meal. However, she used evaporated skim milk versus traditional cream, half and half, or crème fraiche as was used in Julia Child’s recipe. (You can read more of Veronica’s notes below the recipe.)

This soup can be made with either canned pumpkin or fresh pumpkin puree. I had some puree in the freezer and the other ingredients on hand. This soup came together so quickly and I fell in love with its velvety texture and savory, yet slightly sweet flavor. Veronica’s Pumpkin Soup … it’s now one of those dishes that make me think comfort, warmth, and simple goodness. I think Julia would approve and I hope you do, too.

gluten-free pumpkin soup, dairy-free pumpkin soup, soup, recipe, quick and easy

Veronica's Velvety Pumpkin Soup
  • 1 onion, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons butter (dairy or non-dairy)
  • 1 large can (29 ounces) of pumpkin (or equal amount of fresh pumpkin puree)
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 12-oz can evaporated skim milk, regular evaporated milk, whole, or 2-percent milk (or dairy-free milk)
  1. In a soup pot, sauté the onion in the butter until tender.
  2. Add the pumpkin, broth, ginger, cinnamon, and brown sugar.
  3. Simmer for about 20 minutes to blend flavors, then add the milk, heat through, and serve.
From Veronica: Because I normally use boxed broth, I don't add any salt. If you're using homemade broth, you may want to add salt to taste. Canned pumpkin may be denser and heavier than most home-prepared pumpkin, so you may want to adjust the amount of your liquids. If your pumpkin isn't pureed, you'll need to mash or puree it before adding it to the soup. This makes a thick soup with some texture as I serve it as an entree, not an appetizer. Those who want a lighter, smoother version may want to send it through the food processor and add a bit more milk at the end.

From Shirley: Because I’m usually the only one eating this pumpkin soup, I use a 16-ounce can of pumpkin (slightly more than half the original amount in Veronica's recipe) or 2 cups of fresh pumpkin puree. I also halve all the other ingredients. Using fresh pumpkin will make for a soup that's a bit lighter in color and taste and slightly thinner as well because of the water content in fresh puree. I use regular evaporated milk of full-fat coconut milk because that's what I have on hand most often. If you’d like to serve a bread with this soup, my gfe cornbread, popovers, and paleo bread all make great accompaniments. They are simple and easy recipes that complement this soup nicely.

gluten-free pumpkin soup, dairy-free pumpkin soup, soup, recipe, fall recipesA little bit of history on my friendship with Veronica … Veronica and her family used to live at the end of our street. However, it was only after they moved to Belgium for a few years that she and I really got to know each other and became good friends. How is that possible you ask? Well, after her family was settled in Belgium, I found out she had a blog—now called Compost Studios. Her subtitle explains the title, but she shares writing, musings, art journal entries, photographs, and handmade cards at Compost Studios. I started following her blog faithfully. We’d chat via comments on her blog and exchange emails from time to time, and soon we knew each other far better than we had when we’d only lived several doors apart. It seems crazy, but I maintain that the connections many of us make via blogs are very much like the communication of pen pals of years ago. Slow and steady, so to speak, with just the right amount of commitment to get to know someone. Incidentally, Veronica’s self-named professional blog is here. (If you need a professional writer, she’s your person.) Thanks so much for this very lovely pumpkin soup recipe, Veronica!

Okay, this year the Oscars can be more than fashion do’s and don’ts and yea’s and nay’s on movies. This year it can be about the food! Please visit the rest of the Gluten Free Progressive Oscar Dinner Party folks for more award-winning ideas:

Tuesday, February 23 – Sea from Book of Yum with appetizers inspired from the movie Avatar—Millet Eggplant Croquettes and Fried Chips (Two Kinds)

Wednesday, February 24 – Karen from Cook4Seasons with Kale Chips as Oscar celebration food, Diane from The WH.O.L.E. Gang also using inspiration from Julie and Julia—Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Whipped Cream, and me again, this time with Southern Fried Oysters for Crazy Heart

Thursday, February 25- Alison from Sure Foods Living with Simple Salmon Spread for Oscar party fare

Friday, February 26- Ellen from I Am Gluten Free shares her Roasted Potato Slices with Smoky Aioli Dip as part of her celebration food

Interested in having  your own Oscar party? Visit Diane’s event page to print out ballots for voting and get your Oscar party kit. I really like the looks of The Red Carpet Party Fizz cocktail myself.

FYI—I plan to be back with at least one more Oscar-inspired main dish this week … please stay tuned. Last, there’s an Xagave and cookbook giveaway over on the Out and About page. Check it out here!

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This post is linked to Gluten Free Progressive Dinner Party, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, Tuesdays At The Table, and What can I eat that’s gluten free?

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Full Disclosure/Disclaimer: This post may contain one or more affiliate links. If you purchase through them, your cost will always be the same, but I will receive a small commission. Thanks for the support! Read the full disclaimer here.


57 Responses to “Veronica’s Pumpkin Soup–Gluten-Free Progressive Oscar Dinner Party”

  1. Chaya on February 22nd, 2010 11:41 am

    Hi, Pumpkin soup sounds delicious. I have been into orange soups, this year although yours does not look orange – more to the yellow. Anyway, the extra sweetness is a great element with other flavors. I would like to try this one.

    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:06 am

      Hi there, Chaya–It is really delicious. I’m going to keep canned pumpkin on hand, just so I can make this soup any time I want. :-) Fresh pumpkin is very pale orange, so when it’s combined with the chicken brother, the resulting color is a golden one. Let us know if you try it and/or tweak the recipe! :-)


  2. Diane-The W.H.O.L.E. Gang on February 22nd, 2010 12:34 pm

    I love that movie. Have already watched it more than once. This soup looks delicious and it has the required butter for a Julia recipe. So glad you’re kicking off the Progressive Dinner Party. So, who do you think will win Best Picture? Don’t know why Julie and Julia is not up for that category.

    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:11 am

      Hi Diane–LOL on the butter … yes, that’s true, even if I did skip the creme fraiche. Even just a little butter meets Julia’s requirements. Just like the Super Bowl, whoever I think will win, won’t win, but that might be okay. I haven’t seen most of the movies and I’m not sure Julie and Julia was Best Picture quality, but I did enjoy it and would watch it again. I thought Tucci as her husband did well, too. Wondering what creation you’ll come up with based on Julie and Julia!

      Can’t wait to see all the other entries! I have at least one more to share as I said …


  3. Veronica @ Compost Studios on February 22nd, 2010 12:46 pm

    Hi Shirley,

    I’m glad to share the pumpkin soup recipe with you and your readers. I keep thinking one day I’m going to try seasoning it with curry and adding some golden raisins.

    At the end of winter, when we’ve made all our favorite soups many times, it’s nice to try something new.

    Maybe one day I’ll land back in my house on your street and we’ll be neighbors again.


    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:15 am

      Hey V–I think when folks try this recipe, they’ll really love it. :-) You should try your new idea, especially if you enjoy curry.

      I never thought of you guys coming back … that would be very neat if it happened! You have such great walking grounds now though … that will be hard for you and your new walking buddy, Jacques, to leave. ;-)

      Thanks again!


  4. Alta on February 22nd, 2010 1:46 pm

    I love pumpkin soup. I’ve made one several times – vegan, even – with coconut milk as the “cream”. I add a Thai flair using Thai curry paste, but that’s of course totally optional. It sounds creamy and comforting, Shirley – I’d love Veronica’s soup right now!

    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:19 am

      Hi Alta–I know a lot of folks use coconut milk in their pumpkin soup recipes. I’ll eventually give that a try. I love coconut milk in just about everything. I did try it in a tomato soup once though and didn’t care for that combo, but maybe I needed to tweak it more. The Thai flair sounds good … perhaps that’s the type of tweak I am looking for! ;-)

      I plan to make Veronica’s soup tomorrow night for dinner as Mr. GFE will be away and creamy vegetarian soups and not his thing. But, it will be perfect for me and so quick and easy. :-) I hope you’ll eventually give it a try, Alta. Thanks,


  5. Aubree Cherie on February 22nd, 2010 1:54 pm

    I’ve been thinking about pumpkin soup lately, its so perfect for cold weather! This one looks really tasty too!

    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:21 am

      Hi there, Aubree!–Sadly, I think pumpkin soup often gets left behind once we pass from fall to winter, but yes, let’s keep enjoying it while the winter is still chilling our bones. This pumpkin soup is so simple, yet so good … just thinking about it makes me want some. As I was telling Alta, I plan on enjoying some tomorrow evening. :-)


  6. Pam on February 22nd, 2010 6:08 pm

    Nice and creamy..yum! Nicely done Shirley!

    I loved that movie!


    • Shirley on February 23rd, 2010 12:23 am

      Hi Pam–Great to see you! :-) Yes, creamy, yet not heavy at all … a rare combo.

      Meryl was great, wasn’t she? It’s an enjoyable movie and made me wanted to brush up on my Julia knowledge! ;-)

      Hugs, dear … Shirley

  7. Karen@Cook4Seasons on February 23rd, 2010 2:44 pm

    I still have a pumpkin on my porch – ready for roasting and puree! The soup is just the ticket, as we are still in winter – even in California;-)
    Julia Child was such an influence growing up…I even had the good fortune of meeting her. She loved my “Sweet n Sassy” mustard at the Aspen Food and Wine Classic – the secret ingredient was butter!

    • Shirley on February 24th, 2010 11:53 pm

      Wow, Karen, a pumpkin on your porch in February. You do know that just amazes someone in VA with record snowfalls this year! Oh, to have pumpkin for months after fall. Luckily, I still have some in the freezer though. I like soup all year long, but don’t usually make it in warm weather.

      You met Julia Child and she loved your special mustard?! How very cool, Karen. Too funny on the secret ingredient. That’s certainly a meeting you don’t forget. :-) I was tickled pink just to see her kitchen in the Smithsonian this past summer. It was very neat.


  8. sea on February 23rd, 2010 6:44 pm

    Looks delicious! I may have to try it with coconut milk. :)


    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 12:39 am

      Hi Sea–Thank you! I bet you’d love a coconut milk version. :-) I’m still in awe of your Gluten-Free Progressive Oscar Dinner Party submission. Those lotus roots are lurking in the back of my mind … I just want to know how they taste. They are very beautiful.


  9. Jenn/CinnamonQuill on February 23rd, 2010 7:07 pm

    Oh, this sounds wonderful. I’ll be making this soon…I’ve actually never had pumpkin soup, only other kinds of squash. I can’t wait to try this though! And I’m totally loving the Oscar theme; it’s super fun.

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 12:41 am

      Hi Jenn–Thanks, and thanks to Veronica for giving me this recipe. I’d never had pumpkin soup before either.

      The Oscar theme is so much fun that I added another entry today. ;-)


  10. Alea on February 23rd, 2010 7:39 pm

    This sounds delightful. Perfect for a cold, snowy evening!

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 12:44 am

      Hi Alea–Welcome to gfe! Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and comment. :-) Seems like we are always frequenting the same blog carnivals and blogs. ;-)

      This soup would be great for a cold, snowy evening … we might get some more of the white stuff tonight.


  11. Ashlie on February 23rd, 2010 7:50 pm

    I have some leftover butternut squash puree in my freezer, and I’ve been wanted to use it to make a soup. This recipe sounds perfect!

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 7:54 am

      Hi Ashlie–Looks like you are new here–welcome to gfe! :-) You’re right … your butternut squash would be great in this recipe! Please report back and let us know what you think.

      Thanks so much,


  12. Gluten Free Steve on February 23rd, 2010 8:10 pm

    I hope your husband appreciates all your yummy food you make. Your recipes are always great. Thanks for posting these Shirley.

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 7:58 am

      Hey Steve–You always pop in when I least expect and say the nicest things ;-) … thank you so much! Mr. GFE is actually pretty grateful and complimentary. Now he knows he has a bit of a new audience for his compliments on my food via my blog. :-)

      Happy Thursday to you and The Artist! Hugs,


  13. Cole on February 23rd, 2010 8:55 pm

    Wow, that soup looks fabulous! Thanks for sharing with TATT. :-)

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 9:00 am

      Hi Cole–My pleasure … thank you for hosting a great weekly roundup! Welcome to gfe. :-) Thanks re: the soup. My friend, Veronica, created a lovely soup indeed.


  14. Brenda on February 23rd, 2010 9:35 pm

    This soup looks good and easy to make, thanks

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 9:01 am

      Hi Brenda–Good to see you again! I hope you enjoy the soup if you try it. :-)



  15. Chelsey on February 23rd, 2010 11:50 pm

    Surprise, surprise, I have pumpkin puree living in my freezer right now. I was wondering what I should do with it as It’s been in there for a few months. Now I know! Meryl streep was totally the one who made Julia and Julia come alive. It’s funny having started my food blog around the same time the movie came out everyone always asks me if I started the blog because of the movie. It makes me laugh, I hadn’t even heard of the movie when I started. We don’t have cable, so I miss a lot of previews for stuff like that. By the way, thanks for the correct pronunciation on saying falafel. I hate “losing”, but we had a good laugh over it!

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 9:04 am

      Hi Chelsey–Now that’s what I call serendipity! ;-) Please report back when you make it, especially to share any of your own adpatations. Too funny re: your blog. There are a lot of food blogs … I sure don’t think they all started because or Julie. Not having cable can be a good thing. Falafel has always stuck in my head, because it’s such a funny sounding word … it’s definitely not the way I would think it would be pronounced. LOL Glad you were laughing … :-)


  16. Lisa's Gluten-Free on February 25th, 2010 12:26 am

    That looks great.
    I love your website.
    Have a great week.

    • Shirley on February 25th, 2010 9:13 am

      Hi Lisa–Thank you! :-) Hope you have a great week, too!


  17. Linda on February 26th, 2010 1:01 am

    The soup sounds delicious. Tell Veronica thanks for sharing it. I really enjoyed the movie, but can you believe my husband found it totally boring!

    • Shirley on February 27th, 2010 12:01 am

      Hi Linda–It’s a great soup! I’ll pass on your thank you to Veronica. :-) Yes, I can believe that your husband found it totally boring because I didn’t even try to get Mr. GFE to watch it. I think he was watching a Sci Fi movie while I was watching this foodie movie. We were both happy with that arrangement. ;-)


  18. Ellen Allard on February 26th, 2010 5:12 pm

    Yum. This is definitely going to be on my Oscar Menu, ‘cept I’ll make it vegan by subbing coconut milk for the evaporated milk and veg stock for the chicken stock (have lots of it in freezer). But boy, what an easy soup to make. Looks like it comes together in a flash!

    best, Ellen

    • Shirley on February 27th, 2010 12:09 am

      Ellen–I bet those substitutions will work perfectly. I’m very impressed how quickly this soup comes together, but yet how great it tastes. :-) What a feast your Oscar party will be with this soup and your roasted potato slices with the smoky aioli dip!


  19. Athena on February 27th, 2010 2:43 pm

    I wanted to tell you that I make pumpkin soup often that is GF and dairy free…just a variation you might enjoy.


    Olive Oil
    Chicken Broth (gf)
    Coconut Milk
    Cayenne Pepper

    Grate onion and garlic. Saute in olive oil until soft. Add broth, pumpkin and coconut milk. Add cayenne, ginger, salt and pepper to taste.

    • Shirley on March 1st, 2010 8:29 pm

      Hi Athena–Welcome to gfe! I’m so glad you shared your way of making gluten-free and dairy-free pumpkin soup—thank you! I know others will appreciate your recipe, too. I’ll be making it this way soon. :-)


  20. Alison on March 1st, 2010 2:03 pm

    Looks good Shirley! I don’t think I have ever made pumpkin soup before. It would be nice on this overcast day!

    • Shirley on March 1st, 2010 10:01 pm

      Hi Alison–I’d never made pumpkin soup before either. I was really pleasantly surprised at how much I loved it. I had always thought pumpkin soup wouldn’t be my thing at all. Turns out it is. Similar to butternut squash soup, but a bit more flavorful I thought. Give it a try. :-)


  21. jan on September 12th, 2012 11:54 am

    I’m following your suggestion and making this soup with cushaw squash puree today.

    • Shirley on September 17th, 2012 6:31 am

      Hi Jan–Welcome to gfe! :-) Oh, how I love cushaw squash!! I so hope I’ll be able to find some this year. How did your soup turn out?

      Fingers crossed …

  22. Tracy on September 23rd, 2012 2:16 pm

    I came across this page while looking for a GF pumpkin soup recipe… I did modify the recipe as we are eating a GF plant based diet these days. I subbed almond milk and vegetable broth and I think because I did this it was definitely lacking in salt. I tweaked it a little and ended up adding extra ginger and cinnamon (about 1/4 tsp each) and some allspice ( 1/2 tsp) along with some cayenne pepper to taste and it came out great. This was also our first year growing and canning our own vegetables so I had used home canned pumpkin and I feel like it might have been to watery and diluted out the spices and salt. Thank you so much for sharing and for keeping a GF page/blog! Can’t wait to try the coconut milk and curry spice suggestions!

    • Shirley on September 25th, 2012 11:12 am

      Hi Tracy–Welcome to gfe! :-) I love that you had success with a vegan version of this recipe with a few tweaks, and your version sounds delicious! Yes, the salt would be lacking with those ingredients and home canned pumpkin does have a higher water content. I absolutely love homemade pumpkin puree though. ;-) Well, to be honest, I’m a pumpkin fanatic. I’ve got two sugar pumpkins on my dining room table right now. They are making me very happy, and that’s without even making them into something tasty. LOL I hope you’ll enjoy your next version of this soup, too! Thanks for the lovely feedback!


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