• Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

Thai pumpkin coconut soup

Happy autumn everyone! Fall has always been my favorite season – the air is crisp and cool, the leaves are changing into beautiful colors, and the pumpkins are getting big, fat, round and orange. Some people may mourn the passing of summer, but this Thai pumpkin soup will spice up any chilly day and make you all warm and happy from the inside out!

Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

While everyone’s favorite use for pumpkin – Pumpkin Pie – is still a couple months away,  I thought we’d kick off the fall season with a spicy pumpkin and coconut milk soup! Supermarkets and gardens are overflowing with pumpkin at this time of year. In fact, I’ve never seen so many different kinds of pumpkin and squash ever before in Sweden. It’s like they’ve re-discovered pumpkin here and are going all in with this wonderful cucurbit!

Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

Yes, that’s right, I just used the word “cucurbit” in a sentence! Even though cucurbits are an amazingly large plant family consisting of of over 900 species of squash, pumpkin, zucchini and gourds, this isn’t a word you get to use every day. In fact, I think the last time I said the word out loud was several years ago while I while participating in the Swedish version of “Who wants to be a millionaire?” It was the answer to the 500,000 SEK question, and I was apparently the only one who knew the answer. There were several problems though.

Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

The first problem is that the title of the show here should be “Who wants to be a zillionaire?” because 1 million Swedish crowns is “only” about 150,000 US dollars.  The second problem was that I would have been knocked out on the 5,000 crown question about Pippi Longstocking, which every Swede on the planet could easily answer in their sleep. And the third, and biggest, problem, was that I of course was watching the show on TV, from the comfort of my living room.

Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

Hopefully, you have the time, energy and possibility to make this recipe using fresh pumpkin. Oven-roasting part or all of a pumpkin is a fairly quick and painless way to remove the flesh from the skin. Once you’ve done that, cooking it further or using it in other recipes is a snap. If not, well, canned pumpkin will also do the trick, thanks to all the wonderful flavors added by the garlic, chili, curry paste, ginger…

Thai pumpkin coconut soup | www.planticize.com

So go get your hands on some kind of pumpkin today! And then, welcome the coming of the autumn season by using this beautiful orange cucurbit in some delicious Thai Pumpkin Coconut Soup!

Thai pumpkin coconut soup

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Serves: 4


  • Sesame oil
  • 1 clove - garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) - ginger, finely grated
  • 1 cup (2.14 dl) - leek, chopped
  • 2 chili peppers - deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 Tsbp (30 ml) - red curry paste
  • 4 Cups (4.8 dl) - pumpkin puree
  • 13.5 fl oz (400 ml) - coconut milk
  • 16 fl oz (475 ml) - vegetable stock
  • juice from ½ lime
  • handful of Thai basil
  • salt/pepper to taste


  1. Heat some sesame oil in a large pot and add the garlic, ginger, one chili pepper and the leek. Fry for 3-5 minutes until soft and fragrant.
  2. Add the red curry paste and fry for 1 minute before adding the pumpkin, nearly all of the coconut milk (save some to decorate the top of the soup), and the vegetable stock.
  3. Lower the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, then throw in a handful of Thai basil, the lime juice and salt/pepper to taste.
  4. Using a wand/hand mixer, carefully zap the soup in order to break up and bits of pumpkin. Mix until smooth or until you reach the desired consistency.
  5. Ladle the soup into bowls, and decorate with swirls of the remaining coconut milk and chopped chili pepper.

Additional Info

To make things easy on yourself, you can use 2 x 16 oz (475 ml) cans of pumpkin puree, If, of course, that is available where you live. If not, I promise that it's the worth the extra trouble of roasting whole pumpkin like I did. If you are using a whole pumpkin, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds and guts, place the halves, skin side up, in the middle of your oven and roast at 400 F (200 C) for about 40 minutes. Remove the halves from the oven, place skin side down and let cool a little before scooping the flesh off the skin.


  • Lee September 30, 2016 (12:49 pm)

    It’s a shame you didn’t win the prize ^^ Sometimes, the best players of this show are indeed sitting on their couch and shouting the answers (myself included). It would have been delightful to win the prize with an answer such as cucurbit! (Lovely recipe as always!)

    • Chris September 30, 2016 (6:39 pm)

      If I was ever on the show for real, I’d probably panic and get stage fright! =) But it is a fantastic word. And thanks!