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Butternut Squash Soup

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The best butternut squash soup recipe I know! It’s super-easy to make, naturally gluten-free and vegan, and so incredibly cozy and delicious. Stovetop, Crock-Pot and Instant Pot instructions included.

Best Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

Is there a more quintessentially autumn meal than a cozy bowl of butternut squash soup?

Well on a particularly chilly day this past weekend, we made our millionth batch of my mom’s butternut soup recipe to share with some good friends who came over for dinner. And as always, this vibrant, healthy, velvety soup came through with all of the fall comfort food vibes and completely hit the spot. It’s just perfect this time of year!

The great thing about this butternut squash soup recipe too is that it happens to be naturally gluten-free and vegan, which makes it a wonderful option for hosting large groups (especially around the holidays). It’s easy to make in either the Instant Pot, Crock-Pot or on the stovetop (all options included below). It’s loaded up with lots of savory veggies and seasonings, plus a hint of sweetness thanks to the addition of one apple. And most importantly, it’s just incredibly comforting, flavorful and delicious.

I first shared this butternut soup recipe on the blog nearly a decade ago, but thought it was worth bumping back to the top of the site today for anyone who’s craving some lighter fall comfort food. Our family hopes that you enjoy it as much as we do!

Best Butternut Squash Soup Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Crock Pot Butternut Squash Soup Ingredients

Butternut Squash Soup Ingredients:

To make this easy butternut squash soup recipe, you will need:

  • Butternut squash: You can either use 1 medium-sized fresh butternut squash (here is my tutorial for how to select, peel and cut fresh butternut squash) or you will need between 4 to 5 cups of pre-cut raw butternut squash.
  • Carrot and onion: These will serve as the additional veggies for the soup.
  • Apple: Any variety of apple will work in this recipe (peeled or unpeeled), but I’m partial to Granny Smith apples that add extra hint of tartness in addition to their sweet flavor.
  • Vegetable broth: I typically make this soup with veggie broth to keep it vegetarian and vegan, but chicken broth would also work well in this recipe too.
  • Coconut milk: I love the sweetness and light hint of coconut flavor that coconut milk adds to this soup. But feel free to sub half and half (or heavy cream) instead of coconut milk if you prefer.
  • Seasonings: My mom’s recipe uses a simple blend of garlic, fresh sage, cayenne, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, and black pepper. Feel free to adjust the amount of cayenne to taste. And I also highly recommend briefly frying up a few extra sage leaves to sprinkle on top of the soup as a crispy garnish.
  • Your choice of garnishes: I like to drizzle on some extra coconut milk (or cream), a sprinkle of toasted pepitas, and a sprinkle of extra black pepper and/or smoked paprika. Or see more ideas below!

You will also need a:

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup in Crock Pot

How To Make Butternut Squash Soup:

Detailed instructions are included in the recipe below for how to make butternut squash soup in the Instant Pot, Crock-Pot or on the stovetop. But here is a brief overview:

  1. Cook. For extra depth of flavor, I recommend sautéing the onion and garlic in a bit of olive oil first if you are making the Instant Pot or stovetop versions, but this step is optional if you’re making the Crock-Pot version (or if you’re in a hurry). Add in the squash and veggies and cook until they are completely tender, then add in the coconut milk.
  2. Blend. I typically use an immersion blender to purée the soup until smooth, but you can alternately purée the soup in two batches using a traditional blender. (Just be extremely careful as always when blending hot liquids in a traditional blender. Safety instructions are included in the notes below fhte recipe.)
  3. Season. Once the soup has been puréed, give it a taste and season generously with salt and pepper as needed. If you would like to amp up the heat, you’re welcome to add in extra cayenne as well.
  4. Serve. Then dish it up, garnished with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!

Best Butternut Squash Soup recipe in dutch oven

Possible Variations:

Want to customize your butternut squash soup recipe? Feel free to:

  • Roast your veggies: To make roasted butternut squash soup, simply roast the butternut squash, carrots and onions before adding them to the soup to make roasted butternut squash soup. It doesn’t add too much extra time (especially if you prep the rest of your soup while the veggies roast) and the roasted veggies add a delicious depth of flavor.
  • Give it a Thai twist: To make Thai-inspired curried butternut squash soup, add a tablespoon or two of red curry paste and 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, then serve the soup with lime wedges and chopped fresh cilantro.
  • Give it a Mexican twist: To make Mexican-inspired butternut squash soup, omit the sage and nutmeg and stir in 1.5 teaspoons ground cumin and a big pinch of chipotle chili powder instead, then serve the soup with lime wedges and chopped fresh cilantro.
  • Give it a Chai twist: See my recipe here for the yummiest chai-spiced butternut squash soup.
  • Add rice or grains: To make your soup extra hearty, feel free to add in some rice, quinoa, farro or other favorite grains. Just be sure to also add in extra broth accordingly to help cook the rice or grains.
  • Use cream instead of coconut milk: If you are not a big fan of coconut milk, feel free to use heavy cream or half and half in place of the coconut milk to make this soup nice and creamy.
  • Have fun with toppings: So many toppings can pair well with butternut squash soup! Some faves include:
    • cheese: Parmesan, grated sharp cheddar, feta
    • nuts: toasted almonds, walnuts, pine nuts, pepitas, or candied pecans
    • herbs: fresh cilantro, thyme, sage, chives, etc.
    • bacon: crispy bacon or prosciutto
    • greens: fresh baby arugula or microgreens
    • homemade croutons

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup in Bowl with Pepitas

More Favorite Soup Recipes:

Looking for more cozy, comforting soup recipes for the season? Here are a few more of my faves…

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BEST Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

Butternut Squash Soup

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6 -8 servings 1x

Description

My all-time favorite Butternut Squash Soup recipe!  It’s super-easy to make, naturally gluten-free and vegan, and so incredibly cozy and delicious.  Stovetop, Crock-Pot and Instant Pot instructions included below.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 white onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and roughly chopped
  • 1 medium (about 34 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 sprig fresh sage
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • pinch of ground cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • fine sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste
  • optional garnishes: extra coconut milk, smoked paprika, or see more ideas above

Instructions

Stovetop Butternut Squash Soup:

  1. Sauté the onion and garlic. Heat the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 more minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant.
  2. Simmer: Add the vegetable broth, carrot, apple, butternut squash, sage, cayenne, cinnamon and nutmeg and stir to combine. Continue cooking until the soup reaches a simmer. Then cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the vegetables are all tender and mash easily with a fork. Remove and discard the sage. Stir in the coconut milk.
  3. Purée: Use an immersion blender to purée the soup until smooth. (Or alternately, see instructions in the notes below for how to purée the soup safely using a traditional blender.)
  4. Season and serve: Taste and season the soup generously with salt and pepper as needed. Serve warm, topped with your desired garnishes, and enjoy!

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup:

  1. Slow cook: Add the oil (optional), onion, garlic, vegetable broth, carrot, apple, butternut squash, sage, cayenne, cinnamon and nutmeg to a small (4-quart) slow cooker or large (6-quart) slow cooker. Toss briefly to combine. Cook for 4-6 hours on low, or 2-3 hours on high, or until the squash is completely tender and mashes easily with a fork. Remove and discard the sage. Stir in the coconut milk.
  2. Purée: Use an immersion blender to purée the soup until smooth. (Or alternately, see instructions in the notes below for how to purée the soup safely using a traditional blender.)
  3. Season and serve: Taste and season the soup generously with salt and pepper as needed. Serve warm, topped with your desired garnishes, and enjoy!

Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup:

  1. Sauté the onion and garlic: Press the “Sauté” button on an Instant Pot. Heat the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 more minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant.
  2. Pressure cook: Add the vegetable broth, carrot, apple, butternut squash, sage, cayenne, cinnamon, nutmeg, and toss briefly to combine. Close lid securely and set vent to “Sealing”. Pressure cook on high for 8 minutes, followed by a quick release. Remove and discard the sage. Stir in the coconut milk.
  3. Purée: Use an immersion blender to purée the soup until smooth. (Or alternately, see instructions in the notes below for how to purée the soup safely using a traditional blender.)
  4. Season and serve: Taste and season the soup generously with salt and pepper as needed. Serve warm, topped with your desired garnishes, and enjoy!

Notes

Puréeing using a traditional blender: As always, please be extra-careful when blending hot liquids in a traditional blender. I recommend puréeing the soup in two or three batches, so that the blender is not too full. Then also be sure to slightly tent the cap of the blender lid open so that the extra steam can escape.

Butternut Squash Soup Recipe from Gimme Some Oven

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1,274 comments on “Butternut Squash Soup”

  1. I have this cooking in the crock pot right now and I can’t wait to try it! I pretty much followed the recipe but question the coconut milk. I went to look at my can but it doesn’t say it’s either sweetened or unsweetened.  Is there a way that I could figure it out? I really want to use it but don’t want it to be too sweet /inedible! Thanks for the great recipe:)

    • Hi Stacy, we wouldn’t worry if it doesn’t specify, it should be fine! We hope you enjoyed this, let us know how it ended up turning out!

  2. I am allergic to apples. What could I substitute instead? Or could I leave it out completely?

    • Hi Mel! You could definitely leave the apples out completely, no worries – we hope you enjoy the recipe!

  3. I made this soup today and really liked it! I took a few liberties with the recipe – three handfuls of baby carrots rather than 1 carrot, 1/2 onion instead of a whole, half & half in place of coconut milk, – and I left out the granny smith apple, but it turned out really well. My favorite thing about this soup is the surprising spiciness from the cayenne pepper – such a great mix of sweet, savory, and spicy! This was relatively easy and painless and it is definitely a recipe I’ll make again. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I made this soup for our dinner last night and there was way too much onion in my opinion. It overpowered the soup. Next time I will either use half an onion or more likely – sauté the onion before adding to the crock pot. If the onion didn’t overpower I feel like this soup would have been amazing. I plan to try it again with an onion adjustment.

    • We’re sorry you found this to heavy on the onion Elizabeth. We think slightly browning the onion should make it less strong, for sure. We hope you’ll give it another try!

  5. Oh, I cannot wait to try this one!  I love love love butternut squash!!

  6. This looks so good! I love all of your recipes, Ali. I make the jambalaya recipe you shared probably once a month. I’d love for you to visit my blog if you have some time. :)

    xx
    Bake Face

    • Thanks Amanda, that’s very sweet of you, thanks for sharing! And your blog is super cute, keep it up girl! :)

  7. Can I use dried sage? I find it’s so expensive to buy it fresh and I have no other uses for it. Btw, love your site:)

    • Thanks Monica! And you can definitely use dried sage! We’d suggest trying 1/2 tsp maybe (at least to start)? We would add it towards the end of the cooking time though – probably during the last 10 or 15 minutes.

  8. Do you have to put coconut milk?

    • You don’t have to use coconut milk, Mandy, you could use any other kind of dairy you like (or soy/almond milk). :) We hope you enjoy!

  9. I’ve just made this today and my husband loves it! I find it a little too spicy so, I think I’ll mix some yogurt in to make it mild tomorrow. I took out the sprig of Sage before using the immersion blender. Should I have left it in? Thanks for sharing a great recipe. 

    • We’re so glad you and your husband enjoyed this Naoko! We’re sorry it was a bit too spicy for you, but that was good idea adding the yogurt to mellow it out. You could have blended the sage, but leaving it out is find as well! :)

  10. I would like to try this, the only problem butternut is quite expensive in my country. They don’t grow here, so they are imported.

  11. Oops! I just tossed this in the crock pot but was on such a roll that I put the coconut milk in with everything else at the beginning.  
    I’m crossing my fingers that it turns out as I’ve been excited for it since I found your recipe last night. 

    • Oh no! Well since the coconut milk isn’t a dairy product, it shouldn’t cause the soup to curdle or anything. Please let us know how it turned out (we’ve got our fingers crossed for you)!

  12. Do you have the nutrition facts for this recipe? I’m needing the calories per serving. I have this in the crockpot now. Thank you for sharing!!!

    • Hi Kristi! We’re sorry but we are unsure of the nutrition facts/amount of calories in this recipe. We currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site, as the nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, a lot of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. We hope that helps!

  13. Made this  and turned out great!  Followed the recipe exact, garnished with pumpkin seeds and  a few pomegranate seeds. Super easy to make. The granny smith apple adds a really nice flavor to  it. Thanks for sharing!

  14. Honestly, your Thankmas and family sounds fun. I feel like we get together and just stare at eat other. My in-laws don’t say anything to me. We don’t play games. We don’t watch football. We just stare at each other. It’s like, ok, I want to go home and watch Supergirl. Yay, I have no shame. This soup looks fab. Can’t wait to try! 

    • This had us laughing Tom! We hope it’s less awkward this year, and that you enjoy the soup! ;)

  15. I always make butternut squash soup for Thanksgiving but I have never made it in a slow cooker, so I will give it a try this year. I have a 6 lb squash I plan to use – do you think it would be sufficient to double the recipe due to the size of the squash?

    • Yes, we think you should probably double it if you’re using a 6 lb squash – that’s a big one! :) We hope you enjoy this! :)

  16. Made this today and it was delicious! I always double soup recipes to have some for freezing and maybe I don’t always follow recipes to a T, so it ended up a little thinner than I would have liked, so I whisked in a little sour cream at the end to fatten it up a bit : ) I also roasted the seeds in some olive oil and salt, then sprinkled them on top with a nice big dollop of Chèvre cheese! Perfect for a rainy night~ I love the other suggestions of adding nuts and pomegranate seeds, that might be the next thing we try. 

    • Thanks for sharing Leslie, we’re happy you enjoyed this! The sour cream, roasted seeds and goat cheese all sound lovely – good call! :)

  17. A few years ago I had the most amazing butternut squash soup and I have been trying to replicate it ever since, but haven’t quite got it. I am excited to try it with the coconut milk, it might be just what I needed. And a crock-pot recipe too, you have to love that! Thanks for the post!

    • Aww you’re so welcome Jena, we hope this recipe hits the spot! Let us know how it turns out for you! :)

  18. I just purchased some adorable ceramic pumpkin soup bowls for this Thanksgiving table decor and will fill them with your slow cooker butternut squash soup.  Thanks!

  19. Just finished this up and oh my god was it delicious!! I followed the recipe as directed except I only used half of an onion because I had some to use up. Came out amazing!! I can’t wait to have this to have in my lunch all week 

  20. I never make recipes from the interwebs. But this looked more real than most. I made some modest substitutions: I used jalapeno powder rather than cayenne, I used a Gala apple, I left some chunks in the puree process, and I used a purple carrot. It was delicious, of course, but the purple carrot (hey, it was the only one I had) turned the soup an unlovely color. Don’t use purple carrots for this soup, people!

  21. hi there,

     I’m very excited to try this recipe. However, I would like to double or triple this as I usually make a huge pot of soup for lunches. Can I double or triple this recipe using only one butternut squash ? 

    • Hi Martina! We think you should be able to double this using one large butternut squash, however if you’re going to triple it, you will most likely need two. We hope you enjoy!

  22. This looks great how well does it freeze?

    • Thanks Leslie! We think this would freeze well, especially if you wait and add the coconut milk later, after its thawed (while you’re reheating). We hope this helps and that you enjoy it!

  23. Can I freeze this soup? Someone said the coconut milk might change and taste wierd if I did.

    • Soups with a lot of dairy typically don’t freeze well (the texture will change). However, since coconut milk is non-dairy, this soup will freeze better than if it were made with regular milk. We would actually make it without the coconut milk if you’re planning on freezing it right away), then thaw, add the coconut milk and reheat. We hope this helps!

  24. Grrrr. I put the coconut milk in the crock pot to cook.  Here’s to letting a 3 yr old distract me….

  25. Delish! It’s a crime that it’s so easy yet out if this world goooood!

  26. I really love this soup. I like the addlition of apple and of the spices. I have never tried this. Thanks for this recipe looks so delicious!

  27. Made this today. It was lovely. I am not to good with smooth soup. But will make this again.

  28. This is hands-down the best butternut squash soup I’ve ever made. THANK YOU! I did a trial run of this before I make it for 25 or so on Thanksgiving — it cooked overnight last night and I just put the finishing touches on it. The coconut milk is fabulous in it! Can’t wait to hear the oohs and aahs! Thanks again!

    • Thanks so much Suzanne, what a nice compliment! We’re happy you enjoyed it so much! :)

  29. Thanks for the recipe – I am always looking for new squash soup recipes :) Love this one and going to try It! My favorite so far is squash soup asian style with lemon grass flavor :) xoxo Katie

  30. Hayley — I had to write again to say I just finished putting a double batch into my crock pot and already the house smells like heaven and feels like, well, Christmas! Ok I’m jumping the gun: Thanksgiving. I’m a little excited. ;-) I just texted my college aged daughter and mentioned the soup. She is coming home tomorrow night. Before we “hung up” she said, “Mom, will I have to wait until Thursday to have some soup or can I try it when I get home??” ;-) 

    I wish people were not afraid of the apple and the coconut milk! In my search for a new soup recipe this Thanksgiving, I picked yours specifically BECAUSE of the apple! It struck me as creative and unique. In fact, it is absurdly delicious. I already loved the soup before I stirred in the coconut milk, but when I did — OH MY WORD. Put it right over the edge. Thank you again for so much fun and such delicious excitement.

    Suzanne

    • Hi Suzanne! This is actually Ali’s recipe (as are all of the other recipes on the blog), but we’re so glad to hear you enjoyed this soup! Thanks for taking the time to share. :)

  31. Wonderful recipe , definite keeper and so easy. It was a hit at Thanksgiving even for the one person who didn’t like squash, we told him after he comsumed his soup!!!

    • Thanks for sharing with us, we’re happy this was a hit! We hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! :)

  32. Real Talk: I’ve made this soup four times and I can’t get enough. I add more seasoning because I love a rich flavor. It’s perfect, a big scoop for lunch and it lasts the whole week. Yum! 

  33. Just made this soup for dinner for my family. While it’s good I definitely found the sage and the onion to be too overpowering… Was the sage meant to be removed before pureeing? Next time I make this, I think  I’ll only do 1/2 onion as well as add in the sage towards the end of cooking vs using the whole time…

    • Hi Theresa! We’re sorry you sound the sage and onion to be too strong. You could always caramelize the onion a little bit and add it at the very end as well. We hope this helps!

  34. Oh yum! And I think I have all these ingredients…thanks!

  35. Hi! I always enjoy your recipes. I made this soup for Thanksgiving with the following changes-
    I roasted the squash along with onion and garlic. I then simmered it with one diced apple, no carrot, added 2 tsp of red chili paste, 1 C of canned pumpkin and I also topped with lightly sugared pecans and some chopped bacon!! The beauty of this soup is it’s easily customizable- I made mine dairy free and Gluten free (but not vegetarian :)

    • Thanks Julie, we’re glad to hear that! Thanks for sharing your take on this, it sounds delicious!

  36. I just tasted the finished product and OMG its amazing! I replaced the apple with an acorn squash and couldn’t have been any happier with the results! So delicious! Now it’s time for a scrumptious dinner with this amazing butternut squash soup! Thank you for the recipe!

  37. This is the best butternut squash soup I have ever had.  Even better than the vegan butternut squash soup I had at a pricey/local produce restaurant.   Thank you for sharing!

  38. Made this today and it was delicious. When I opened the canned coconut milk I almost didn’t use it because it looked separated. So I put it in my bullet blender and creamed it before adding to the creamed veggies.  It was delicious and the cayenne was perfect.  I’ve shared this (website and) recipe on Facebook with friends and family.   Thank you!!! 

  39. Made this soup today. I have to say the soup is both oniony and very sweet. I am not sure if the sweetness comes from the apple or carrot.

    It does taste ok, but I would not serve it to guests without modifying the recipe to reduce the onion and cut the sweetness.

    • Hi Michelle, we’re sorry you didn’t care for this so much. You can definitely use less onion (maybe try half the amount), and/or you can cook it longer so it’s not as strong. Feel free to cut back not he carrot or apple as well. The apples we’ve used before might have just been more tart. We hope this helps!

  40. Lovely post! The photos are amazing!

  41. This recipe is really tasty and very easy to make! I am not a sweet and savory type if person so I left the apple, cinnamon and nutmeg out and replaced it with 1 jalapeño and some chili powder, I also used unsweetened coconut milk. It was still *butternut squash sweet* but had a little bite to it which was very nice! Thanks for this wonderful recipe! PINNED!

    • Thanks Erika, we’re so glad you enjoyed it, and we think those swaps sound lovely – great idea! :)

  42. I’m making this as I type. But I threw in the coconut milk before not after  lol. I hope it turns out ok. My house smells yummy though. 

  43. I put this together last night and had my husband plug it in before he left for work so it would be ready for lunch.  When I got up it smelled so good in my kitchen!  Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m going to be able to eat this.  I love butternut squash, but this tasted very odd and the cayenne just ruined it for me.  (And I like cayenne.)   I guess it’s possible I accidentally added 1/4 instead of 1/8 tsp, but I don’t think I did.  I hate for it to go to waste but I have no idea how I could salvage it.  I really thought I would love this and I’m sorry I could not leave a positive review.  

    • Hi Marianne, we’re sorry to hear you didn’t care for this. We’re not sure why there’s an odd taste. Maybe the squash was a dud? Did it just taste too spicy, or did you find the texture to be off? Any more description you could provide on why it tasted off would be helpful for us to help you. We hope you can find another recipe you like better, we do appreciate your honest review!

  44. This soup is amazing!  It was a chore peeling the butternut squash, but so worth it.  My family loved it.  Thank you for the recipe!

  45. I made this for Thanksgiving and everyone loved it! I made it last week for dinner and again everyone loved it! I just made it tonight just to have it for lunch/dinner the rest of the week. I already put the coconut milk in do you think it will be ok to freeze? 

    • We’re so glad to hear that Beth, thanks for sharing! We think it should still freeze okay. :)

  46. How much onion?

  47. about how many ppl would you say this serves?

    • Hi Dena, the recipe states this will make about 6-8 servings, depending on how hungry you are. :) We hope you enjoy!

  48. I’d like to try this out but I see that it needs veggie stock. I’m allergic to carrots so both the carrots and stock are out. I haven’t started making my own stock yet that is carrot free so could I use water instead and just add extra spices?

    • Hi Megan! Oh no, let’s see…we would recommend making your own veggie stock (sans carrots) if you can (homemade stocks are the best, especially the veggie ones)! But if you’re not able to do that, we think we would just use water (you’ll need to add a good amount of salt, just taste and add, taste and add, as needed), and yes, some more spices. We think that should be good – we hope you enjoy the soup!

  49. Hi! I’m planning on making this but I don’t own an immersion blender. Would a handheld mixer do the job?

    • Hey there! Unfortunately a mixer won’t really do the trick, as there aren’t any blades, and you really need something with a blade to puree this properly. Do you have a blender or food processor? Either of those would work great!

  50. This soup is amazing. My family doesn’t love butternut squash, but I do, so I make it anyway! I buy my squash at Costco all peeled and diced – which makes this so easy to get in the crockpot in the morning!