This Roasted Tomato & Summer Squash Bisque is absolutely delightful. Perfect for summer, served hot or chilled, it can be prepared in large quantities and frozen for use throughout the year. Its creamy, nutty flavor comes from sunflower seeds instead of cashews (the standard go-to for vegan blended soups). The recipe is grain free, and contains no common allergens (no eggs, dairy, wheat, nuts or soy).
The main element of the flavor profile comes from the roasted heirloom tomato and squash. The garlic, fresh lemon juice, basil and oregano compliment it so perfectly that hardly any salt is necessary for flavor enhancement.
The color seems to vary each time I make this soup, since heirloom tomatoes come in unpredictable colors! This time I used (pictured) 1 very large heirloom tomato in a bright red shade, which gave produced a bright gold hue when blended with the squash and sunflower seeds. But no matter what color tomato I use, this Roasted Tomato & Summer Squash Bisque always looks beautiful and tastes amazing.
Any type of summer squash can be used for this recipe, including standard green zucchini, yellow zucchini, yellow squash, pattypan squash, cousa squash, eight-ball zucchini, zephyr squash or costata romanesco. I used zucchini and yellow squash this time, but it’s really all the same once it’s roasted and blended.
This recipe has a truly superior nutritional profile when compared with classic tomato bisque recipes (which normally contain cream). The absence of cream, salt and oil make this version a healthy alternative free from filler ingredients and empty calories. I do think it’s necessary to eat foods that contain fat, but I strongly prefer to abstain from any food that doesn’t serve a purpose nutritionally i.e. rice, bread, and pasta. Certain oils do have health benefits, but I consider it ideal to eat the whole (plant) food as opposed to one or some of its parts. I’d rather eat an avocado than take a daily supplement of avocado oil, for example. Seeds are perfect for this reason, containing essential amino acids and protein. I can eat a quarter cup of seeds with an apple and 4-5 leaves of kale, and it makes a great alternative to a Lara bar (though those are excellent if you prefer not to munch on kale leaves at your desk or between important meetings!).
Roasting the tomatoes increases concentrations of lycopene, an anti-oxidant that fights free radicals and protects the skin from UV damage. Heirloom tomatoes have a higher concentration of available lycopene (compared to the commercially grown variety). That does however remind me to mention that any tomato/tomatoes can be substituted according to what you have available or prefer to use. Of course not all homegrown tomato plants start from heirloom seeds, and not all grocery stores carry heirloom tomatoes. As a general rule, the darker the tomato the higher the lycopene content.
For more lycopene-rich meal ideas, check out my Arugula Salad, Featuring Oregon Berries, Broccoli Stalk Fettuccine + Roasted Tomatoes, Cauliflower-Cashew Creamed Spinach + Roasted Tomatoes, and my Eggplant-Tomato Stacks!
Notes: I used a NutriBullet for this recipe, which I highly recommend as a cheaper, more portable alternative to a VitaMix (which I also recommend but don’t own because I honestly can’t afford one). I can endorse the VitaMix brand because I actually have more experience with their products than with other blenders–at the coffee shops and juice bars I’ve worked at over the years.
Let me know if you try this Roasted Tomato & Summer Squash Bisque. I’d love to know how it goes, so leave a comment and/or post on Instagram with #paleoveganista. If you have questions about the recipe, please let me know and I’ll respond asap.
- 2 cups roughly chopped heirloom tomato
- 2 cups roughly chopped summer squash
- 1¼ cup shelled toasted or raw sunflower seeds
- 4 cloves garlic or 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 Tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 cup water
- 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 400℉ or 205℃C. Evenly disperse 2 cups roughly chopped heirloom tomatoes and 2 cups summer squash across a large baking sheet or oven pan and lightly sprinkle with salt. Place oven pan/baking sheet in oven and setting timer to 20 minutes.
- Carefully remove oven pan/baking sheet from oven. Stir the tomatoes and summer squash, and return to oven to roast until caramelized, about 15 more minutes.
- Remove oven pan/baking sheet from oven and let cool for 1 minute. Scoop into the food processor or blender along with the sunflower seeds, garlic, basil, oregano, lemon juice, and water. Process/blend until smooth. Transfer to a soup pot and set stovetop to medium low, stirring soup continuously, for about 5 minutes. Add salt to taste if desired. Serve hot, or chill in ice bath prior to serving. Store leftover soup in mason jars or tupperware to freeze for later use.
If leftovers are desired you may want to double the recipe; I've found that this Roasted Tomato and Summer Squash Bisque gets devoured within 1 day!