Chef Andrea Drummer’s Winter Squash Soup and Blackened Shrimp Recipes

Turn one dish into two satisfying meals with these creative squash-based recipes.

Chef Andrea Drummer's recipe for winter squash soup.
Matt Dinoff / Wildlife

I approach dinner recipes not just with an eye toward nutrition, but also toward sleep- and digestion-friendly foods.

When it comes to fall and winter meals, squash becomes a favorite. Not only does it work well when roasted for hearty meals, it’s exceptional in cozy, warming meals like this soup, which is easy to digest and easy to make.

I chose butternut squash for its tryptophan, an amino acid that increases the production of the sleep-supporting hormone melatonin. The toasted walnuts used for the garnish are also rich with tryptophan and sleep-enhancing omega-3 fatty acid.

If you have soup left over, I’ve included a second recipe, for blackened shrimp with a sauce made using the soup. Getting two nourishing meals out of one great recipe will help minimize work and waste, and let you spend more time relaxing.

Winter squash soup with house croutons & toasted walnuts

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Serves 4 to 6


  • 1 apple, peeled & diced  
  • 1/4 stick butter 
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped 
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped 
  • 3 cups chicken broth 
  • 2 cups  butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks 
  • 2 cups acorn squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks  
  • 4 sprigs thyme (wrapped in cheese cloth) 
  • 1/2 cup walnuts 
  • Olive oil, for garnish 
  • 30mg CBD oil, optional 


  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil 
  • 3 cups baguette bread, diced 
  • 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese 
  • 2 Tsp., fresh thyme, minced 


Diced squash for winter soup recipe
Matt Dinoff / Wildlife


  1. In a preheated 350-degree oven, roast diced apple until tender, about 20-25 minutes.  
  2. Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add broth, all squash and herbs; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until squash is very tender, about 20 minutes. 
  4. Add roasted apples to the soup pot. 
  5. Working in batches, puree soup in blender. If using, add CBD oil to blender. Return soup to same pot. Bring to simmer. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  


  1. Preheat broiler.  
  2. Drizzle olive oil over diced bread and toss to coat. 
  3. Arrange on baking sheet. Broil until golden, about 1 minute.  
  4. Stir bread & sprinkle with cheese and thyme. 
  5. Broil until cheese melts, about 1 minute.  


  1. Toast walnuts in a small skillet over medium heat until fragrant and golden, about 2 minutes. 
  2. Ladle soup into bowls, top with croutons and walnuts, with a drizzle of olive oil, and serve immediately.

Blackened shrimp with winter squash curd

Ingredient for winter squash recipe
Matt Dinoff / Wildlife


Serves 4
Shrimp with winter squash curd:

  • 2 cups leftover winter squash soup 
  • 2 egg yolks 
  • 2 cups peeled and deveined shrimp 
  • 3 Tbsp. homemade blackened seasoning (see ingredients below) 
  • 1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil 
  • Salt 

Blackened seasoning:

  • 2 Tbsp. smoked paprika 
  • 1 Tsp. onion powder 
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder  
  • 1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper 
  • 1 Tsp. ground black pepper 
  • 1 Tsp. kosher salt 
  • 1 Tbsp. herbs de province 


Blended squash for sleep foods recipe.

Winter squash curd:

  1. Heat soup in a small saucepan. 
  2. While the soup is warming, whisk egg yolks in a separate bowl.  
  3. Once the soup is hot, slowly add one cup of soup to the beaten eggs while whisking vigorously.  
  4. Return the mixture slowly back to the remaining soup and whisk until blended and  thickened. 
  5. Add salt to taste. 

Blackened shrimp:

  1. Combine ingredients for blackened seasoning into a small bowl.  
  2. Season shrimp with blackened seasoning. 
  3. Heat grapeseed oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. 
  4. Sear shrimp until pink and cooked through, about 4 minutes. 
  5. Serve shrimp topped with squash curd.