A lightened up version of Panera’s infamous Autumn Squash Soup that’s loaded with vegetables, fruit, and NO heavy cream!


*This post was originally published on October 18, 2016. Photos and recipe were updated October 4, 2017.


Hi, my name’s Kara and I’m addicted to Panera’s Autumn Squash Soup.


Alright, fine.. I guess there’s probably worse things in this world that I could be addicted to. But tell that to my wallet.

For real though, have you tasted this soup? It’s warm, creamy, and loaded with two of my favorite fall veggies: butternut squash and pumpkin. Eating this soup is the equivalent of wrapping your taste buds in a big, cozy, oversized sweater.
Utter fall perfection.



Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup | A lightened up version of the infamous fall soup made with NO heavy cream! | www.bytesizednutrition.com 

What’s not quite so perfect? The amount of unnecessary ingredients hiding in that pool of orangey goodness. A combination of heavy cream, butter, cream cheese, and sugar makes for some less-than-stellar nutritional stats. I’m talking 8 grams of saturated fat, 1280 mg of sodium, and 34 grams of sugar per bowl. (For those of you keeping score at home, that’s 40% of the recommended daily intake of saturated fat, 55% of your recommended daily sodium intake, and a whopping 8.5 teaspoons of sugar!) All from a bowl of soup!



Now don’t get me wrong, I love that this soup is made with real ingredients and no artificial preservatives. I just think it could be made with a few less ingredients. After all, shouldn’t the vegetables be the star of the show?


Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup | A lightened up version of the infamous fall soup made with NO heavy cream! | www.bytesizednutrition.com



This “copycat” version of the fall favorite features all of the flavors you’ve come to love and expect from the original, but for a fraction of the calories and fat! The secret ingredient that makes this all possible? Plain Greek yogurt. This protein-packed ingredient makes for the perfect creamy alternative to heavy cream, butter and cream cheese. Trust me, you won’t even miss the extra calories or fat!

Oh, and not to mention, you can probably make this entire recipe for the same amount of money that you would spend on a cup of soup at Panera.

I think I just got a new addiction…


 Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup | A lightened up version of the infamous fall soup made with NO heavy cream! | www.bytesizednutrition.com


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5 from 2 votes
Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup (Lightened Up!)
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
45 mins

A lightened up version of Panera's infamous Autumn Squash Soup that's loaded with vegetables, fruit, and NO heavy cream!

Course: Soup
Servings: 6 cups
  • 1 medium butternut squash, cubed (about 5 cups)
  • 2 medium apples, cubed
  • 1 small sweet onion, peeled and quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 15 oz canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling!)
  • 1 cup apple cider (can substitute apple juice)
  • 2.5 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2/3 cup plain Greek (or Icelandic style) yogurt
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

  2. Add butternut squash, apple, onion, and garlic to a large bowl with olive oil and toss to coat. Arrange mixture in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool at least 10 minutes.

  3. Add the roasted vegetables to a high speed blender along with the pumpkin puree and apple cider. Blend until smooth and creamy. (Depending on the size of your blender, you may have to work in batches)

  4. Transfer the puree to a large saucepan and add vegetable broth. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low, add remaining spices, seasonings and honey and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  5. Stir in the yogurt until well combined. Garnish with pumpkin seeds and serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or freeze up to 3 months.

To make this vegan, simply substitute dairy-free yogurt or leave it out altogether.

Recipe adapted from Frugal Coupon Living

 Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup | A lightened up version of the infamous fall soup made with NO heavy cream! | www.bytesizednutrition.com



49 Comments on Copycat Panera Autumn Squash Soup (Lightened Up!)

  1. I’ve been trying to find a tasty pumpkin and squash soup to create at home but have been unsuccessful so far. But this one looks and sounds delicious! I love the apple hidden in there to add some sweetness too.

    • Thanks, Emily! The apple and curry combination gives this soup the perfect balance of savory and sweet 🙂 Hope you’ll give it a try!

  2. Obsessed with Panera’s soup! Made this version, bc I like healthier versions of recipes. Texture is perfect, flavors are great, juuuust slightly less sweet than Panera’s. Overall, it’s amazing! …and toasted pumpkin seeds are a MUST! Thanks!

    • Oh no, I’m so sorry to hear that! I’ve never had that happen to me, but I think it partially depends on the temperature of the soup/yogurt when you combine them. I typically pull the yogurt out of the fridge when I first start making the soup so that it is room temperature by the time I get around to adding it. I also usually let the soup cool slightly to make sure it’s not too hot when I mix the yogurt in. If you want to play it safe, another thing that you can do is to transfer a little bit of the soup into a small bowl, allow it to cool slightly, then mix the yogurt into the bowl of soup and then transfer it back into the pot with the rest of the soup (aka “tempering”). I apologize for not mentioning that option in the instructions.. I hope the soup still tasted okay!

    • Hi Jessica,

      Sorry for the delayed response. When I make this, I usually use jonagold and/or golden delicious. However, any soft baking/cooking apple (i.e. Honeycrisp, Macintosh, etc.) should work fine!

  3. I just made this and brought it in for my co-workers. It was a big hit. I especially liked all the different spices, flavors, and pepitas.

    thanks for your spin on Panera.

  4. Made this today as a nice fall soup and because I’m in love with the Panera version. I used unsweetened almond milk instead of the yogurt, but otherwise followed the instructions. I absolutely loved it and so did my husband. If they served this to me at Panera I would have been fooled. Looking forward to eating the leftovers. Thanks for posting!

    • Thank you so much, Rita – Your comment just made my day! Thank you for sharing your feedback with me. I’m so glad that you and your husband enjoyed it!

  5. Hi Kara – Can’t wait to make this soup. Do you have the nutritional information? I’m trying to do low-carb and I’m wondering if this is ‘legal’…


    • Hi Jennifer,

      Unfortunately, I do not typically calculate nutritional information for my recipes, so I’m not able to provide that information. Given the starchy vegetables, fruit, and cider that are used in this recipe, there will be a decent amount of carbohydrates. So, depending on your qualifications for “low-carb”, this recipe may or may not be suitable. Sorry that I’m not able to provide more information, but I hope you give the recipe a try!

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