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Fall Harvest Vegetable Soup

This vegetable soup is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! Incredibly flavourful, full of different textures from celery to butternut squash and warming to the soul. I love my soups like I love my salads - diverse and plentiful.
Oct 15, 2018 | Joy McCarthy

This vegetable soup is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! Incredibly flavourful, full of different textures from celery to butternut squash and warming to the soul. I love my veggie soups like I love my salads - diverse and plentiful.

In the fall and winter, soups are the best way to get a maximum number of nutrients (veggies) in a warm bowl.

Even though I'm still eating a salad most nights for dinner (have you tried my Juicy and Crunchy Kale Salad yet?), I've been loving having soup for lunch. However, last night we had grilled pear and cheese sandwich and soup for dinner. Thought I would mix things up!

As I've probably said before, I learned everything about soup making from Ma McCarthy – she's a pro! Before " bone broth " even became a thing, my mom was making her own stocks and broths. It's just what you did with a leftover chicken or turkey. Common sense, right? But if you don't eat animal foods, you can use a vegetable broth for the base of this soup.

Chicken bone broth

Even though I learned how to make a good soup from my mom, when I studied at George Brown, I learned that a soup is nothing without a good stock. If you don't have homemade stock or broth , then you can likely get homemade stock from your local health food store or butcher shop.


I'm not a fan of the carton or canned stocks. They just aren't fresh and they have too much salt. Many of them even have MSG (often disgused as "yeast extract" and other names) – gross! But many stores will make their own bone broth and sell it frozen or freshly made.

What makes this soup so wonderful is the variety of veggies. There's butternut squash , zucchini, celery, tomatoes, onions, garlic, carrots and more. I used dried herbs that I always have in my kitchen (you probably have them too) and all the flavours together combined with a really good quality stock made for a wonderful soup that will having you coming back for more.

Vienna was really curious as I was prepping this soup, but unfortunately she couldn't really help me much because I was using a very big, very sharp knife. She brought out her little wooden knife so she could pretend to cut the carrots and celery though.

Whenever I make soup, I am careful not to overcook the veggies. So for this soup, I didn't do it in a slow cooker or crockpot because I didn't want the veggies to be mushy. I wanted them to still have some texture, plus when they have texture, this means they still have a lot of vitamins left too. I'm not too worried about the minerals because the heat will leach them out into the stock which you'll be slurping in the stock!

I called this a Fall Harvest Soup because the squash is really the hero of this soup and it's a total fall veggie. But if we are being literal here, zucchini is technically a summer squash. Mind you, I've been buying zucchini at my local farmer's market.

Like many of my recipes on the blog, this recipe is gluten-free (that is, if you don't eat it with a crusty sourdough baguette - he he he), dairy-free, plant-based, paleo and full of flavour.

Because healthy should be delicious, right?!?

If you don't have butternut squash handy, don't sweat it. Sweet potato would be the perfect swap. Don't have celery on hand? Double the carrots. This soup can work many ways. The more variety of veggies you include, the more flavour you'll have. Phytonutrients are the plant chemicals that give plants their taste, so that's why more diverse veggies is a good thing!

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  • 1-2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cups butternut squash, cubed
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 1 can (796 mL) canned diced tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  1. In a large soup pot, heat olive oil on medium and add onions. Saute for two minutes, then add butternut squash and carrots.
  2. Saute for five more minutes, than add stock, celery, zucchini, canned tomatoes. Give a stir.
  3. Then add all the dried spices, bay leaf, parsley, basil and oregano.
  4. Lastly add the garlic and sea salt. Give a stir. Bring to a soft boil then reduce to a simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Enjoy immediately. To store, let the soup completely cool before transferring to a mason jar. Freeze for up to 3 months or refrigerate up to one week.


Serves 6 - 8.

And yes, you can most certainly make this in a crockpot or slow cooker, I just wouldn't cook it in there all day - it will turn into a sloppy mushy soup. Not what you want!

If you've got a little one who can't chew much yet, you could toss all these ingedients into a blender and then serve this as a super delicious nutrient-dense puree. It's important when raising healthy eaters to introduce them to lots of flavours. I've got a whole post on food introduction if you're at that life stage with a little one in your family. 


This soup is packed with fibre for digestive health , antioxidants for disease prevention, immune boosting nutrients from the broth, butternut squash and carrots. Honestly, it's the PERFECT FALL SOUP!

Whether you enjoy this with a crusty sourdough baguette or some Almond Rosemary Crackers and Sweet Potato Hummus , you've got a wonderful plant-based meal.

I really enjoyed putting together this soup recipe to share with you. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family and I did.

Joyous health to you!


Manon T.   •   October 16, 2018

This looks like a great soup! I assume you add the stock in step 4 (after the garlic and sea salt)? Can’t wait to try it!

Joy McCarthy   •   October 17, 2018

Mariellen   •   October 17, 2018

I’m going to make this today for lunch at work tomorrow. Thank you it looks delicious.

Joy McCarthy   •   October 17, 2018

Ina   •   October 17, 2018

Soup looks yummy. Would it be ok to use the immersion blender for someone who doesn't like brothy soups?

Joy McCarthy   •   October 17, 2018

Irma   •   October 18, 2018

Can’t wait to make this weekend with the pear grilled sandwich😊

Joy McCarthy   •   October 18, 2018

Maria   •   October 21, 2018

Precious Joy- Thank you so much for always sharing these delicious and healthy recipes with us!

Joy McCarthy   •   October 21, 2018

Margaret B.   •   October 21, 2018

This is the best vegetable soup I have ever had. Thank you so much Joy. I will be adding this to my favourite recipe book.

Joy McCarthy   •   October 21, 2018

Healthy Kitchen 101   •   October 22, 2018

Perfect combination ❤ I always find it pleasant to get rid of meats by using and mixing my kinds of veggies to make the nourishing dishes. Happy eating xD - Natalie

Joy McCarthy   •   October 22, 2018

Janet B.   •   October 23, 2018

I have this soup on the stove, just starting to simmer, and it looks amazingly delicious. I'm toying with the idea of throwing in a can of chickpeas or kidney beans. What do you think, Joy?

Joy McCarthy   •   October 23, 2018

Pauline   •   October 25, 2018

Joy, this is absolutely delicious. One of the best vegetable soups I've ever tasted. Congratulations!

Joy McCarthy   •   October 25, 2018

Shawna Kerr-Smith   •   October 27, 2018

Made this soup tonight. Threw in some spinach too. So ridiculously good!!

Joy McCarthy   •   October 28, 2018

Allison Diaz   •   November 12, 2018

I just made this soup today and it was delicious! Thank you for the recipe!

Joy McCarthy   •   November 13, 2018

William   •   January 4, 2019

That's a nice ad below your daughters photo

Joy McCarthy   •   January 4, 2019
William Nelson   •   January 4, 2019
Joy McCarthy   •   January 5, 2019

Carol   •   January 4, 2019

Made this last night. Even my hubby loved it and said to make it again. We enjoy so many of your recipes. Thank you

Joy McCarthy   •   January 4, 2019

Heidi Reichle   •   January 6, 2019

Hi Joy! Just made this soup for dinner on a whim. Its packed full of flavour and easy to make! I added some sweet potato instead of squash because I didn't have any on hand. Also added mushrooms and fresh spinach the last few minutes. Great lunch for work tomorrow! Thanks!

Joy McCarthy   •   January 7, 2019

Elsa   •   January 20, 2019

Hi Joy, This looks amazing. At what point is the broth added? This addition is missing from the steps. Thanks!

Joy McCarthy   •   January 20, 2019
Elsa   •   January 20, 2019

Adele DeBee   •   May 5, 2019

Sounds yummy.


Janet   •   September 17, 2019

This looks delicious! Can't wait to try it next week when my son, daughter-in-law, and 2 year old granddaughter are with us.

Joy McCarthy   •   September 18, 2019

Monika Sharma   •   October 4, 2019

Hi Joy. Do you still use sea salt in your recipes? Black salt doesn't have taste for each recipe and food tastes different too. Looking for some guidance. Thank you

Joy McCarthy   •   October 5, 2019

Monika   •   October 5, 2019

I buy it from Indian grocery store and use it in salads, lentils. Thank you


Karen   •   October 25, 2019

I made this soup for supper tonight, it was quick to make, looks lovely

Joy McCarthy   •   October 28, 2019

Lisa   •   December 7, 2019

I love this soup! It is so flavourful and colourful!

Joy McCarthy   •   December 9, 2019

Michelle   •   July 12, 2020

Just made some this morning but minus the squash and added kale. Looking for something veggie loaded and easy on my digestion, so thank you for posting!

Joy McCarthy   •   July 13, 2020

Peter Pottinger   •   September 19, 2020

Woke up early on a beautiful fall morning and made a pot with my gf. One of the most delicious soups I have made. 2020 doesn’t seem that bad when you are eating a meal packed with micro nutrients with such an amazing taste. Followed on facebook thank you for the recipe.

Joy McCarthy   •   September 21, 2020

Tracey Wingard   •   September 8, 2021

Joy, This soup recipe was absolutely phenomenal. Thank you so much for sharing! Tracey

Joy McCarthy   •   September 8, 2021

Mamie Armaly   •   October 24, 2021

Thank you for this recipe! It's so tasty, even though I forgot to buy celery and used fresh parsley because I had it.

Joy McCarthy   •   October 25, 2021

jessica powell   •   November 10, 2021

Making this right now , my stomach is growling cant wait to indulge 🤤 this otta make me feel recharged

Joy McCarthy   •   November 12, 2021

Lee-Anne   •   September 22, 2022

This soup is cooking as we speak and it smells wonderful! I added a can of kidney beans for some extra protein and fibre. First day of fall and the temp dropped into the 60’s…..perfect day for a pot of hearty soup😁

Joy McCarthy   •   September 23, 2022

Mary   •   September 19, 2023

I LOVE this soup and make it often from fall months through winter. I also like to add one can of chickpeas (for extra protein) and a bunch of kale at the end. YUM!!!

Joy McCarthy   •   September 19, 2023

Alice Adams   •   September 22, 2023

Do you have the nutritional values. Thanks

Joy McCarthy   •   September 25, 2023

Alberto D.   •   February 20, 2024

I feel cozy, warm and loved by just looking at this soup! Thank you.

Joy McCarthy   •   February 26, 2024

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