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Level 2: Mildly Thick Festive Pumpkin Soup

Festive Pumpkin Soup

This Level 2: Mildly Thick Festive Pumpkin Soup is perfect for the holidays! It’s elegant and easily modified for a dysphagia diet. Additionally, you can play around with the ingredients to fit what you have! 

festive pumpkin soup

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Simple One-Pot Meal

Pumpkin soup might sound like a complicated meal. In all reality, it’s so easy! I love a good one-pot meal. Not only are they usually simple to make, but the clean-up is minimal. Though honestly, I even avoid cleaning the one pot. I really love cooking, but cleaning up is almost a punishment. 

This recipe starts with sauteing some garlic and onions. After that, I like to add the pumpkin puree and cook it down a little. I think it intensifies the flavor to carry through when the other ingredients are added to the pot. Then I add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, add the coconut milk, and then let it simmer so the flavors can meld. 

If you don’t care that the soup is vegan, you could substitute chicken broth instead of vegetable. You could substitute whole milk or heavy cream for the coconut milk, though I would reduce the quantity because you wouldn’t need a full 14 oz. If you don’t have nutritional yeast, you could finish with some parmesan cheese, which would be equally delicious. 

When blending this soup, I used a nutribullet which worked really well. An immersion blender would work perfectly, too. For me, if you’re only going to blend one portion of the soup for your individual with dysphagia, then a nutribullet is great. An immersion blender will be ideal if you want to blend the entire pot to serve to everyone. If you used a nutribullet, you’d have to blend everything in batches. 

I think this soup would be a perfect starter for a holiday meal! Serve this as the first course for a Thanksgiving or Christmas gathering, and it would be a hit! Personally, I ate it as a main course and it was really hearty and filling. It’s creamy and delicious. 

Be sure to test this soup using the syringe test once it’s blended. If you’re unsure how to do that, you can find more information here. Mine came out as an IDDSI level 2: mildly thick, but yours will depend on how closely you follow the recipe. 

Level 2: Mildly Thick

Level 2: Mildly Thick is appropriate for individuals who need drinks to flow more slowly, or may have slightly reduced tongue control. These foods flow quickly off a spoon but require mild effort to drink through a standard straw. Foods are tested using the Flow Test at this level.

The IDDSI Flow Test is a standardized test for determining the level of a liquid sample. You must have a 10ml syringe for this test, and not all syringes are created equal. Hold a ruler up to your syringe and the distance from the very bottom line to the 10ml mark must measure 61.5 mm. We recommend watching IDDSI’s Youtube video of the Flow Test as well as this comparison between Levels 1-3 before you cook as well as during the testing of your final modified portion.

Always test your food before serving to ensure that it meets all the IDDSI testing guidelines.

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festive pumpkin soup
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Level 2: Mildly Thick Festive Pumpkin Soup

This Level 2: Mildly Thick Festive Pumpkin Soup is perfect for the holidays! It's elegant and easily modified for a dysphagia diet. Additionally, you can play around with the ingredients to fit what you have!
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: holiday
Keyword: mildly thick
Servings: 4



  • ½ large onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 cup pumpkin puree
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • 3 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 14 ounce can coconut milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast optional


  • Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add olive oil and saute onion ~5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, season with salt, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Cook 3-4 minutes, until some liquid has evaporated off of the pumpkin.
  • Add vegetable stock. Bring heat to a boil and then reduce to a low heat and add the coconut milk.
  • Allow to simmer ~20 minutes.
  • Add in nutritional yeast, taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
  • Add to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and puree until smooth.
  • Serve and enjoy!

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