Can You Make Pumpkin Soup With Canned Puree?

Bowl of pumpkin soup
Bowl of pumpkin soup - Miriam Hahn / Mashed

There's no flavor quite like pumpkin. When the temperature drops and "soup season" begins, this flavor creates one of the best varieties of the hearty, warming comfort food. But when making pumpkin soup from scratch, home cooks may wonder: Do they need an actual pumpkin, or will canned puree do the trick?

If you're making the delicious version crafted by Mashed recipe developer Miriam Hahn, you may be surprised to learn that canned pumpkin puree is actually preferred. Hahn recommends two 15-ounce cans of organic pumpkin puree to form the heart of her creamy pumpkin soup recipe. This makes the soup ultra-simple to put together — just do a bit of sautéing and add all your ingredients to the pot.

Even if you have a real pumpkin you've been meaning to use, you're still in the clear. Hahn says you can cook it and then puree it in a blender to achieve similar results. You can even swap in a butternut squash; before pureeing, just roast it for 30 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Read more: Mistakes You're Making With Your Corn On The Cob

There Are Few (If Any) Downsides To Using Canned Pumpkin

Immersion blender in pumpkin soup
Immersion blender in pumpkin soup - Miriam Hahn / Mashed

While both can be used in Miriam Hahn's recipe, the differences between canned and fresh pumpkin are still worthwhile for home cooks to consider. The most significant difference is that some canned varieties include other types of related squash (like butternut) alongside true pumpkins to achieve the puree's ideal color and flavor. Even so, both canned and fresh pumpkin offer similar nutritional profiles, meaning you can spring for the more convenient, already-prepped version without adding sugar or sacrificing nutrients.

Don't worry about wasting product, either. If you find yourself with a half-finished container that you don't plan to use right away, try freezing your leftover canned pumpkin. You can store your extra puree this way for up to three months and easily portion it using ice trays or other molds for easy use in future recipes. Just don't forget to thaw it in the fridge before making your next recipe. So, the next time you're craving a creamy, cold-weather soup, save yourself some time and skip the fresh pumpkin — opt for the convenient (and delicious) canned version instead.

Read the original article on Mashed.