Chai Butternut Squash Soup

This Chai Butternut Squash Soup recipe is easy to make in the slow cooker or pressure cooker, and it’s seasoned with yummy chai tea.  Absolutely delicious, and also naturally gluten-free and vegan!  (This post also contains affiliate links.)

Chai Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

Oh friends, I have a new secret ingredient that is going to kick your butternut squash soup game up a major notch this year.  And it’s just about the simplest thing ever…

…a chai tea bag!  💛

Many of you have heard me chat before about how much I love drinking hot cinnamon spice and chai tea (kind of have a thing for spice-filled teas) every afternoon during the chillier months of the year.  So it’s safe to say that our tea cabinet is always well-stocked this time of year.  But the other day as I was grabbing a mug to steep my afternoon tea, it randomly occurred to me — all of those yummy chai spices and butternut squash would probably be a match made in flavor heaven.  And they would probably be extra-amazing in my favorite slow cooker butternut squash soup recipe.  So last week, when I cooked up my inaugural batch  for the fall, I decided to try swapping the usual seasonings for a single chai tea bag instead.

And guys, this soup ended up being fall vibes to the max. 🍁 🍂 🍃

It was cozy, it was chai spice-y (not to be confused with spicy), it was wonderfully creamy and butternut-y, and it was hands-down one of the tastiest soups I’ve ever made.  You’ve gotta try it.

Chai-Spiced Butternut Squash Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Chai Butternut Squash Soup Recipe Ingredients

Actually, I was just going to pop in and make a note about the chai option on my usual butternut squash soup recipe page.  But so many of you requested the recipe after I shared about the tea bag hack on Instagram that I thought this twist might as well have it’s very own post.  😉

As I mentioned above, it also happens to be naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian and vegan.  AND, it’s incredibly easy to make.

Simply toss all of your main ingredients — some butternut squash, garlic, carrots, apple, onion, cayenne and a chai tea bag — together in a slow cooker or pressure cooker.  Then cook until the squash is nice and tender.  Remove the tea bag, puree until smooth, then stir in the coconut milk (or any kind of milk/cream you prefer), and season with salt and pepper.

How To Make Chai Butternut Squash Soup

Then this gorgeous, silky, creamy, delicious soup will be ready to enjoy!

Vegan Chai Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

I topped mine with an extra drizzle of coconut milk (swirled around with a knife), a sprinkle of cinnamon as garnish, and a star anise pod for garnish.  But feel free to top yours however you’d like.

Vegetarian Chai Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

As a bonus, this soup also freezes well for up to 3 months if you’d like.  But I have a feeling it may disappear sooner than later. 😉

Enjoy, everyone!

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Chai Butternut Squash Soup

This Chai Butternut Squash Soup recipe is easy to make, naturally gluten-free and vegan, and seasoned simply and deliciously with a simple chai tea bag.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 1 apple, cored and diced
  • 1 medium (uncooked) butternut squash*, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 small white onion, peeled and diced
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or more to taste
  • 1-2 chai tea bags
  • Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup canned (unsweetened) coconut milk
  • optional garnishes: swirled extra coconut milk and/or a sprinkle of ground cinnamon

Directions:

Slow Cooker Method:

  1. Add vegetable stock, garlic, carrot, apple, butternut squash, onion, cayenne to a small (4-quart) slow cooker or large (6-quart) slow cooker.  Toss to combine.  Then nestle a chai tea bag (or use two, if you’d like extra chai flavor) into the mixture so that it’s completely submerged in the broth.
  2. Cook for 6-8 hours on low, or 3-4 hours on high, or until the squash is completely tender and mashes easily with a fork.  Remove and discard the chai tea bag.
  3. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth.  (Or you can transfer the soup in two batches into a traditional blender, and puree until smooth, being very careful when working with the hot liquid.)  Stir in the coconut milk until combined.  Then taste, and season with a few generous pinches of salt and pepper as needed.  (Feel free to add in more cayenne too, if you’d like.)
  4. Serve warm, topped with your desired garnishes.  Or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Instant Pot (Pressure Cooker) Method:

  1. Add vegetable stock, garlic, carrot, apple, butternut squash, onion, cayenne to the bowl of an Instant Pot.  Toss to combine.  Then nestle a chai tea bag (or use two, if you’d like extra chai flavor) into the mixture so that it’s completely submerged in the broth.  Close lid securely and set vent to “Sealing”.
  2. Press “Manual”, then press “Pressure” until the light on “High Pressure” lights up, then adjust the +/- buttons until time reads 30 minutes.  Cook.  Then let the pressure release naturally, about 15 minutes.  Carefully turn the vent to “Venting”, just to release any extra pressure that might still be in there, then remove the lid.
  3. Remove and discard the chai tea bag.
  4. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth.  (Or you can transfer the soup in two batches into a traditional blender, and puree until smooth, being very careful when working with the hot liquid.)  Stir in the coconut milk until combined.  Then taste, and season with a few generous pinches of salt and pepper as needed.  (Feel free to add in more cayenne too, if you’d like.)
  5. Serve warm, topped with your desired garnishes.  Or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

*A medium-sized butternut squash should weigh around 3 lbs.

**Cooking time listed is for the slow cooker method.

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If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

Chai-Spiced Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

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24 comments on “Chai Butternut Squash Soup”

  1. Yum!! What a delicious looking soup – so perfect for autumn! We’ve never thought of cooking soup in a slow cooker before… such a good idea! :)

    Sochal – The Healthy Social Network

  2. This looks absolutely BRILLIANT!! Cannot wait to try it! I have some pumpkin spice chai tea bags that should be amazing!

    Rating: 5
  3. Hi Ali,
    Ah! This is so clever I love it! Can’t wait to try this recipe. You must have been so stoked to put two and two together and figure out that chai tea would work in the place of your squash soup spices. Love the simplicity. Going to try it very soon. Thanks for sharing!~

  4. It’s too funny that this recipe refresh popped up yesterday just after I put the OG recipe into my crockpot. Next time I’ll have to try a chai tea bag! This soup is always a favorite.

  5. Brilliant! I love the tea bag hack, Ali!

  6. Delish! Quintessential fall recipe. I love the subtle hint of chai with the creamy butternut. Finishing with ample salt and pepper at the end transforms the soup!

    Rating: 5
  7. This looks absolutely to die for!!! I love chai and squash soups! What a fantastic warming soup! Your coconut milk drizzle and anise pod garnishes are gorgeous!!!

  8. I made this today. Next time, I might put two tea bags in the slow cooker for more chai flavour, but this is very good as is. Thank you!

  9. What a fabulous beyond fabulous idea! Looks stunning as well. Thanks for the inspiration!
    – MAK

  10. The soup tastes delicious. A light sweetness through the apple and a pleasant sharpness through the cayenne. To recommend. Greetings from Hamburg, Germany

    Rating: 4
  11. Ali,
    Made this soup for a cold, rainy Canadian supper in Vancouver BC. It was DELICIOUS! I may add two tea bags next time depending on how big I make the pot!! Thanks for the great recipe!

    Rating: 4
  12. I accidentally added everything in the slow cooker, including the coconut milk. Do you think it will turn out ok?!

  13. Where is the nutritional information? You know like the calories or “smart points” and the sodium content per serving.

  14. Oh my! This is one of those recipe that I never had the chance to see how well it does in the freezer because we gobbled it all up! Just wow. I’ve craved it every since but alas! This is the first day it’s been cold which for soup. So tonight’s menu will include Chai butternut squash soup and homemade Runzas ( a Nebraska thing). THANK YOU for your cooking genius!

    Rating: 5
  15. I made this recipe exactly and really like it. Definitely a keeper!

    Rating: 5
  16. Looks yummy! What kind of apples do you use?

  17. this is amazing!!!!

    Rating: 5
  18. Wonderful soup. We made it for Christmas Eve and it’s delicous! Thanks for the great recipe, I’m going to stop at your Web site *first* for recipes going forward.

    Rating: 5
  19. Wow! A soup so good my four year old son is devouring it! I could have eaten the whole pot tonight. A new family favorite!

    Rating: 5
  20. Dang! What if you forget to take the chai tea bag out? 🤦‍♀️ I just spent so long chopping butternut squash and and I was so excited to eat this deliciousness. Then I forgot to take the chai tea bag out before using the immersion blender. 😫

  21. Just made this tonight, doubling the recipe. It is WONDERFUL! The chai tea bags make a difference. I added a teaspoon of cinnamon and about a teaspoon of Stevia to sweeten it a bit. Really, really awesome!

    Rating: 5