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butternut parsnip soup

One of the best things about fall is that nature gives you a jewel-toned rainbow to eat … but not for long! The season is brief, which means you have to make the most of it. Fortunately, Whole Foods Market has a great variety of all of my favorite fall produce, including organics. I love making good use of the season’s flavors in soups, salads, desserts and more.

Let’s start with winter squash: There’s so much you can do with all of the different varieties, but I especially like to roast or steam them until they’re soft. I then store them in the refrigerator and some in the freezer. I use them to make smoothies extra creamy! Cooked squash — and also sweet potatoes — work really well with crunchy pecans in a warm bowl of oatmeal.

And, of course, they’re also great in soups — especially butternut squash. Here is one of my favorite combinations that is cozy and delicious.


1 small butternut squash, halved lengthwise, seeds removed, peeled

2 small parsnips, peeled

2 Tbsp olive oil or coconut oil

1 onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 cup cauliflower florets

3 cups filtered water

​1 pear, peeled and diced

1⁄2 cup raw cashews

1 tsp sea salt

Optional garnishes: Croutons, chickpeas, radicchio, chives, red pepper flakes

  • Evenly chop the butternut squash, parsnip and cauliflower into bite-sized pieces.

  • In a large stockpot, heat the oil and sauté the onion over a medium heat for 3-5 minutes. Add the cauliflower, butternut squash, parsnips, and water. Bring to a boil.

  • Turn the heat down, cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the vegetables are soft.

  • Add the pear, cashews and sea salt. Blend the soup into a smooth puree, adding a little more water, if necessary, to desired consistency. Season to taste and return to a low heat for five minutes before serving.

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