Easy Harvest Soup

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This Harvest Soup is an easy weeknight soup to enjoy from fall through winter.

Easy weeknight soup for the shorter days of fall and winter.

This comforting Harvest Soup takes advantage of the fall and winter garden bounty. Don’t only use squash for your fall meals. Squash can store for 2 to 6 months. You can find squash in the produce department of your grocery store in the fall through the winter months. I grow a lot of squash because it stores so well. Honestly, I eat very little of the squash I grow in the fall because I decorate with most of it. I don’t usually start eating my fall squash harvest until I put out my Christmas decorations.

What kind of squash to use in this Easy Harvest Soup recipe?

My favorite for squash for this recipe is the Delicata Squash. It is my favorite for two reasons: one it taste the best to me, mild and sweet. The second reason is because it doesn’t need to be peeled and I can easily slice and dice a Delicata Squash. For these reasons, it my go to squash for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

My second favorite squash is the Kabocha Squash. This squash to me taste like a perfect blend of a sweet potato and a regular potato, so it’s sweet but not too sweet. The Kabocha Squash is harder for me cut through and also harder for me to dice. Usually, I put a Kobocha Squash in the microwave for a few of minutes to soften it. (Depends on the size of the squash 2-5 minutes in the microwave to soften.) Only then am I able to safely cut through the Kobocha Squash to clean out and cut up. My favorite way to eat Kabocha Squash is as “French Fries”. However, it is also very good added to this Easy Harvest Soup as well.

Another option is the Butternut Squash. It is really nice in this soup. When I use a Butternut Squash in this recipe, I first peel it with a vegetable peeler. Then I slice it in half lengthwise, clean out the seeds and pulp, and finally cut it up into about 1″x1″ pieces.

Ingredients:

Winter Squash: Use your squash of choice. I used a Delicata Squash because it is my favorite winter squash. Also, it is one of the easiest squash to use. Delicata squash has a tender skin that doesn’t need to be peeled, is easy to slice, and has a sweeter flesh.

Chicken Apple Sausage: Sausages add so much flavor and are perfect to add fast flavor to a weeknight dinner. The chicken and apple sausages marry well with the flavors of fall and winter.

Rainbow or Red Chard: This earthy green is beautiful and abundant in fall and winter. Chard grows in my garden all winter and is one of my favorite green additions to soup or pasta.

Chicken Broth: The brand you use or how you make your own chicken broth/stock will vary on saltiness so the final amount of salt will need to be adjusted to your personal taste.

Olive Oil: Costco sales good quality olive oil. Always check that the olive oil is true olive oil and not a blend.

Parmesan Rind: This is a must-have, non-substitutional ingredient. When you use up all the parmesan cheese, cut the rind into small pieces and wrap them tightly in plastic wrap, then add them to a freezer-safe zip lock. Adding a piece of parmesan rind adds an unmatched flavor that nothing else can duplicate. I recommend adding parmesan rind to soups, stews, and tomato sauce when you want to boost the flavor of your dish. When your recipe is done remove the rind just as you would the herbs.

Salt and pepper: To taste, however, don’t skimp on either.

Aromatics:

Onion: An important flavor builder that can’t be missed in a soup, especially in this soup.

Garlic: This ingredient is an important aromatic in this recipe. The garlic can be minced or put in a garlic press. I recommend using fresh unpeeled garlic. Peel the garlic and mince the garlic fresh. Pre-peeled and pre-minced garlic can be bitter and lose a lot of flavor for little convince.

Fresh Herbs: thyme and oregano, sage and parsley. I recommend tying the herbs in some butcher’s twine to make it easy to remove from the soup when the soup is done. Thyme is the most important herb, if you were to only add one herb, thyme would be the best. (Do not use dried herbs in this recipe, only use fresh herbs or omit the herbs.)

Optional Ingredient:

Rice: If you want to bulk up this soup, you can add 1/4 cup of uncooked rice. Jasmine rice or arborio rice works well in this recipe. If you add more than 1/4 cup of uncooked rice you will need to add more liquid to account for the extra rice.

Harvest Soup Ingredients Adels Chicken and Apple Sausage Red Chard Rainbow Chard delicata squash parm rind carrots onion garlic herbs

How to make Easy Harvest Soup

Ingredients:
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion, diced
  • 1 pack Chicken Apple Sausage, diced
  • 1 Winter Squash (Use squash of choice. I used a Delicata Squash.)
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 piece of a Parmesan Rind (2″ piece)
  • 6 cups Chicken Broth
  • 1 bunch of Fresh Herbs of choice: thyme, sage, oregano, parsley
  • 2 cups Rainbow or Red Chard
  • Salt and pepper
OPTIONAL INGREDIENTs:
  • Can add ¼ cup of rice to add bulk (arborio or jasmine)
  • Red pepper flakes ¼ tsp
Step by Step Instructions

First, wash all produce.

Second, gather all needed items and ingredients.

Next, prep all of your ingredients for the soup: dice the onion, the chicken apple sausage (½” pieces), the squash (½” to 1″ pieces), mince the garlic, prep the herbs and chard. For the chard remove the thick rib (leave small tender part) and rough chop – the chard will cook down.

Then, add Olive Oil, Onions, and a couple pinches of salt to a dutch oven or a large stock pot. Saute the onions until translucent.

Easy Harvest Soup Sauteing Onions in a staub pumpkin cast iron dutch oven

Now, add diced chicken and apple sausage. Cook the sausage until the sausage is slightly browned.

Easy Harvest Soup Adding Sausage

Add the squash, garlic and another pinch salt (It is important to add salt in layers to build depth of flavor oppose to just tasting salty). Then, add the piece of parmesan rind to the dutch oven.

Easy Harvest Soup Adding Delicata Squash to the Staub Pumpkin Dutch Oven
Easy Harvest Soup Adding Parmesan Rind to the Dutch Oven

Next, add all 6 cups of chicken stock or broth.

Easy Harvest Soup Adding Chicken Stock

Then, add pepper (I added 1 tsp) and add in the herbs. You can tie the herbs with food-grade butcher’s twine. Or place the herbs loosely on top of the vegetables and sausage. I recommend thyme, parsley, sage, oregano, or whatever herbs you have on hand. Thyme is the most important herb, if you were to only add one herb, thyme would be the best. (Only use fresh herbs do not use dried herbs.)

Easy Harvest Soup Adding Herbs

Finally, add the chard.

Easy Harvest Soup Adding Chard
slow simmer soup to intensify the flavor

Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer on medium to medium-low for 45 mins to 1 hour keep the lid mostly on (so the steam can escape and the liquid doesn’t boil over, but on enough to not lose too much of the liquid). Allow enough cooking time to soften vegetables and bring all the flavors of the soup together. (An alternative to stove-top simmering is to place the soup in the oven at 325℉ for 45 minutes to 1 hour with the lid on.)

*If you choose to add ¼ cup of uncooked jasmine or arborio rice, add it in the last 25 minutes and adjust the liquid as needed.*

When the soup is done, check for seasoning, skim the fat off the top, and remove the herbs and parmesan rind. (I added a couple more pinches of salt at the end. The amount of salt in this recipe will vary depending on the chicken broth used so salt and pepper to taste.) 

Easy Harvest Soup woman in apron Stirring ingredients together and then simmer
Harvest Soup Full View in a Staub Cast Iron Dutch Oven in a Pumpkin Shape with herbs and marigolds served in a white pumpkin bowl

How to make Easy Harvest Soup

Print Recipe
Prep Time:15 minutes
Cook Time:1 hour
Total Time:1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion (diced)
  • 1 pack Chicken Apple Sausage (diced)
  • 1 Winter Squash Use squash of choice. I used a Delicata Squash. (diced)
  • 3 cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1 piece of a Parmesan Rind (2" piece)
  • 6 cups Chicken Broth
  • 1 bunch of Fresh Herbs (Use herbs of choice: thyme, sage, oregano, parsley)
  • 2 cups Rainbow or Red Chard (rough chopped)
  • Salt and pepper
  • OPTIONAL INGREDIENTS:
  • Can add ¼ cup of rice to add bulk (arborio or jasmine)
  • Red pepper flakes ¼ tsp

Instructions

  • First, wash all produce.
  • Second, gather all needed items and ingredients.
  • Next, prep all of your ingredients for the soup: dice the onion, the chicken apple sausage (½” pieces), the squash (½” to 1″ pieces), mince the garlic, and prep the herbs and chard. For the chard remove the thick rib (leave the small tender part) and rough chop – the chard will cook down.
  • Then, add Olive Oil, Onions, and a couple of pinches of salt to a Dutch oven or a large stock pot. Saute the onions until translucent.
  • Now, add diced chicken and apple sausage. Cook the sausage until the sausage is slightly browned.
  • Add the squash, garlic, and another pinch of salt (it is important to add salt in layers to build flavor depth). Then, add the piece of parmesan rind to the Dutch oven.
  • Next, add all 6 cups of chicken stock or broth.
  • Then, add pepper (I added 1 tsp) and add in the herbs. You can tie the herbs with a food-grade butcher’s twine. Or place the herbs loosely on top of the vegetables and sausage. I recommend thyme, parsley, sage, oregano, or whatever herbs you have on hand. Thyme is the most important herb, if you were to only add one herb, thyme would be the best. (Only use fresh herbs do not use dried herbs.)
  • Finally, add the chard.
  • Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer on medium to medium-low for 45 mins to 1 hour keep the lid mostly on (so the steam can escape and the liquid doesn't boil over, but on enough to not lose too much of the liquid). Allow enough cooking time to soften vegetables and bring all the flavors of the soup together. (An alternative to stove-top simmering is to place the soup in the oven at 325℉ for 45 minutes to 1 hour with the lid on the same just described.)
  • *If you choose to add ¼ cup of uncooked jasmine or arborio rice, add it in the last 25 minutes and adjust the liquid (stock) as needed.*
  • When the soup is done, check for seasoning, skim the fat off the top, and remove the herbs and parmesan rind. (I added a couple more pinches of salt.)
Course: Soup
Keyword: Chard, Dinner, Soup, Squash
Servings: 4

Try my fall recipes for: Sautéed Garlic Mushroom Skulls Deglazed with Wine, and Spooky Sausage Soup with Mushroom Skulls.

Items I used: Wüsthof chef knife, Cutting Board, All-Clad Dutch Oven, Diamond Kosher Salt, Large Pyrex Measuring Cups, STAUB Cast Iron Pumpkin Dutch Oven

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