Spicy Butternut Squash Soup with Pomegranate Arils

Here is a flavorful and colorful soup that is packed with vitamin A and antioxidants. The soup will be spicier the more chili seeds are left in, but the pomegranate arils balance it nicely if you’re feeling bold! 🌶

Spicy Butternut Squash Soup with Pomegranate Arils 

1 medium butternut squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
Dash of salt
1 medium yellow onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups vegetable broth
¼ cup raw cashews
2 dried red chili peppers
2 cups vegetable broth
¾ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon maple syrup
¼ teaspoon cayenne
Black pepper to taste
Cilantro, to garnish
Pomegranate arils, to garnish

1. Heat oven to 400º F. Cut squash into quarters. Cover with 2 tablespoons olive oil and dash of salt. Add to half sheet tray and roast for 30-40 minutes or until squash is soft.
2. Dice the onion and roughly mince the garlic. Gently heat olive oil in a sauté pan. Add onion and garlic and cook until onion becomes translucent.
3. Once squash is done roasting, scoop out the flesh and add to Vitamix along with sautéed onion and garlic, 3 cups of vegetable broth, ¼ cup raw cashews and 2 dried red chili peppers (the more seeds left in, the spicier it will be). Mix on high for 2-3 minutes.
4. Add mixture to a large sauce  pan along with 2 extra cups of vegetable broth, salt, maple syrup, cayenne and black pepper.
5. To serve, garnish with chopped cilantro and pomegranate arils.