Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup


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It’s fall and it’s soup season. Right? Well, sort of.

It’s usually hotter in San Diego in September than it is all summer long and this September has been no exception. It’s been in the mid to high 80s in San Diego. Almost as hot here as it was in Aruba but I’m not complaining.

Perfect time to make soup then. I may as well sweat while I slurp.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

This is the easiest soup you’ll ever make.

Three ingredients: 1 huge sweet potato, 1 red pepper, 1 can of coconut milk.

And they go from microwave to blender to bowl to mouth in 15 minutes flat.

Trader Joe's Light Coconut milk, sweet potato, and red bell pepper

I used to be intimidated by soup-making and for good reason. If you read some recipes, I’d need to use at least 17 vegetables, some of which are roasted, others that must be sauteed.

Long lists of herbs, spices, and pinches and dashes of this and that. I’d have to be rich to afford all the spices I’m supposed to incorporate into one recipe.

Then, it all must be placed in a stockpot so large that I’ll never own a pot that humongous because where does one store something like that when not in use the other 364 days a year?

Then I’d have to simmer the soup for a mere six hours, stirring frequently of course, virtually chaining me to the house for the day. But I bet that soup is worth it.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

This soup is so worth it, but the opposite of complicated. Peel, dice, and steam the sweet potato in the microwave, which took 14 minutes in my microwave. You could boil the potatoes, or use previously baked sweet potatoes with flesh scooped out but I go for the quickest method, which is quickly steaming them in the micro.

Place the cooked sweet potato cubes, chunks of red pepper, and can of coconut milk in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy, which takes about one minute.

Thick, bisque-like, rich, creamy soup in 15 minutes with 3 ingredients and no hassle.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

I didn’t even season it, which was a happy accident. I was midway through blending the mixture and I stopped the blender to taste it and I immediately thought, Oh, this needs salt.

If you buy commercially-prepared soup or read most soup recipes, they add or call for so much salt that I can feel myself blowing up with water retention just by reading the recipe. My body does not do well with excess sodium and I’m wary to salt food and think carefully before I do, but even I thought the soup would benefit from some salt.

But I got sidetracked while blending and tasting because Scott asked me a question and when I returned to the blender about five minutes later, I tasted the soup again and I loved it, as is.

My palate had adjusted and had keyed into the pure and simple flavors present: Sweet and candy-like steamed sweet potato, the slight heat from the red pepper, and the rich and creamy coconut milk.

Why would I want to mask that with a bunch of salt? So I didn’t.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

For Scott’s portion, I sprinkled his bowl with a pinch of Kosher salt and a couple twists of freshly cracked black pepper and stirred them in before garnishing with a dollop of sour cream, and a tablespoon of finely diced red pepper.

He said it tastes like lobster bisque without the lobster. He also said Zucchini Banana Bread tasted like chocolate bread so I don’t always put a lot of stock in what he says, but in the case of this stock, err soup, he’s right. It’s thick, creamy, dense, and very bisque-like. If you like thick soups that have fullness and body, this is your soup. If you like thinner, brothy, or more watery soups, this is the opposite.

I especially love the coconut milk flavor that peeks through. It’s present but not in your face. If you’re not into coconut, that’s a shame. However, the coconut milk can be replaced with cream, cashew milk, or another milk. You can even use a one-half to one-cup Greek yogurt and a splash of water rather than using coconut milk. Use something thicker and with some density and fullness and save the thin and watery skim milk for something else.

Slices of red bell peppers

Not only do I appreciate the ease of this recipe, but I appreciate the batch size. I like leftovers; I think most busy moms do, but I don’t want to eat the same soup for days and days, sort of like the never-ending Thanksgiving leftovers, and most soup recipes make so much that you’re eating it forever.

This recipe makes about one quart, four cups. When you’re ready to reheat it, pour it into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and heat for about one minute in the microwave before serving. Easy.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup in jar

You can get creative and adapt the recipe by steaming some carrots or squash with the sweet potato or add some soaked cashews to the mixture for extra protein, richness, and creaminess.

Season it in a savory direction with anything from curry to garlic and onion powder, or go spicy by adding chili powder or cayenne pepper. Go sweeter or more fall-like with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, or pumpkin pie spice. There’s really no way to mess up a sweet potato.

I hope the weather stays in the 80s because I get the best of both worlds. Summertime temps and fall soup.

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

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Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

Sweet Potato Red Pepper and Coconut Milk Soup

This easy soup that comes together so quickly by steaming a sweet potato in the micro and then pureeing it with red pepper and coconut milk. The flavors are rich and complex for such a fast and easy soup. The candy-like steamed sweet potato, the slight heat from the red pepper, and the rich and creamy coconut milk are a winning combo. It’s hearty enough to make a meal out of or makes a great appetizer or side. It’s healthy, vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, comforting, and filling.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 1 extra-large sweet potato (or 2 to 3 smaller sweet potatoes), peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes
  • about 3/4 cup water
  • 1 large red bell pepper, de-seeded and chopped into large pieces
  • one 14-ounce can coconut milk (I used Trader Joe’s Light Coconut Milk)
  • optional seasonings – any included should be seasoned to taste : salt and pepper; red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, chili powder; cinnamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg; garlic powder, onion powder, curry powder
  • optional additional vegetables – while steaming the sweet potato, steam carrots, squash, zucchini, or other vegetables on hand


  1. Place sweet potato cubes in a large microwave-safe bowl or baking dish, add 3/4 cup water or until the water comes up about 1-inch high in the base bowl (the cubes do not need to be fully submerged in water; water simply needs to be present to create steam), cover bowl with plastic wrap, and heat on high-power for 13 to 15 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are very fork-tender (microwave temperatures and strengths vary and so will cooking times). Transfer cooked potatoes to a high-speed blender or food processor, add the red pepper, coconut milk, and blend on high power until very smooth and creamy.
  2. Taste the soup and wait five minutes before seasoning it, and if desired season to taste (Note: I tasted the soup and thought it was bland and that it needed salt and pepper but did nothing and got sidetracked.  After going back to it five minutes later, my palate had adjusted and I realized I preferred the pure flavors of potatoes, peppers, and coconut milk and added nothing; however, season to your taste preferences. Adding a pinch of salt and pepper to each individual’s bowl before serving works fine).
  3. Optionally, garnish with finely diced red peppers, a drizzle of coconut milk, coconut oil, coconut butter, or olive oil; fresh herbs, nuts or seeds, dollop of sour cream or yogurt; a dash of salt, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger. Store soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. Soup will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or can be frozen for up to 3 months.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 313Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 19gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 155mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 7gSugar: 8gProtein: 6g

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Do you like sweet potatoes? Do you make soup?

Feel free to link up your favorite recipes.

About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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  1. SOLD! This sounds so stinking good and easy! It’s so creamy looking!!!!I am totally making this! Thanks for the link!!!

  2. I just found this by way of the e-digest FaveHealthyRecipes and I am so glad I followed the link! This sounds amazing – and so flexible ;-)

    1. Welcome & glad you found me from them! And yes, this is SUCH a flexible recipe and really, there’s no wrong way to go!

  3. Roasted Sweet Potato Soup – 3 ingredients – my kind of cooking! You’re Amazing! Question – Are the red peppers used raw or cooked before adding to the Sweet Potato & Coconut Milk mixture???

    1. Yes they are raw because they all get pureed together and my Vitamix renders them into submission whether they were raw or cooked; plus the hot hot hot sweet potaotes and the motor of the Vita sort of steams them anyway. Seriously the easiest recipe ever. LMK if you try it!

    1. So glad you loved the soup & my blog! Thanks for saying hi and making the soup!

  4. My first time making this soup was terrible — turned out too chunky and had the texture of vomit! The second time I actually followed directions and took my time. It was worth it! Delish and I used my immersion blender to get smooth.

    1. Following the recipe directions is usually a pretty imperative part of any recipe! Glad you followed the directions the second time around and loved it. It’s really such an easy soup with just 3 ingredients and a blender and if you follow the directions, you’re destined for success. Glad you enjoyed it!

  5. Per usual, I want to KISS you right now for this simple amazngness. Since we’re on opposite coasts I guess a thank you will just have to do! :)

  6. whoa, this is awesome! I added an apple in with the steaming sweet potatoes and steamed the pepper too. I also added a 1/2 tsp fresh ginger and some salt and pepper. This is serious fall comfort food…and so stinking easy! I think next time instead of boiling, I’ll just use my steamer. Great post!

    1. I just steam the potato cubes in a bowl in the microwave. So easy for me (I don’t boil potatoes the old-fashioned way on the stove unless I’m making baby food & those days area long behind me…ha!) but so glad you loved it and I bet the apple was a nice touch. Maybe with cinnamon & nutmeg – oh so many things to do with this. Thanks for the feedback and for making it!

  7. This may be simple, but it looks stunning! And so creamy… I’m featuring this post in today’s Food Fetish Friday (with a link-back and attribution as always). Thank you so much for keeping me inspired with such delicious creations…

  8. This is incredible sounding! And I love that it is so easy to put together. Now let’s talk about the pictures…breathtaking! I am in love with those bowls and spoons!!!

    1. Thanks, Jocelyn. The bowls are Anthro and the spoons & ladle are vintage finds locally.

  9. YUM! I love this combo together. I add coconut milk to almost ALL of my soups, so I can not wait to try this recipe. :)

    1. It’s so you. The coconut milk, the sweet potato, the ease and lack of garlic, onions, or salt..and a Vitamix creation. And thanks for the Pin & Tweet!

  10. gorgeous photography, averie! :)
    and that recipe seems right up my alley—I hate long ingredient lists too!

    1. they’re so daunting that I don’t even want to dive in when I see something too long…lol

  11. This looks absolutely amazing – so easy, and the flavours are right up my alley! Can’t wait to try the recipe :-)

  12. This soup looks and sounds divine, great pics! The color and texture look perfect for fall, yum! I’m a huge soup fan, chilled raw soups or cooked vegan soups, it’s all good. :-)

  13. Plain GENIUS!!!! I loooooooooooooove sweet potatoes, and yams in particular since I always eat them and grew up eating ’em. What a simple and delish recipe. I tend to get really antsy when I’m cooking and the food isn’t flavorful enough, then realize maybe I should put more salt in or something and then get really scared to up the salt….boy, it’s challenging! haha.

  14. I make soup like CRAZY and I absolutely LOVE sweet potatoes. This is my kind of recipe!!!!

    1. And thank you for catching up on all those posts! I appreciate all your sweet comments :)

  15. I seriously think I have everything for this on hand right now. Looks like I know what could be for lunch tomorrow!!

  16. Oh, how beautiful, and creamy, and delicious this soup is! Love it! Are those Anthropology bowls? They are so pretty!
    I do love soups, and I am learning to like sweet potatoes. As of cream-soups, I have to be creative: my men won’t eat any creamy soups, no matter if I tell them how good it is or despite the heavenly smell from it, nope. They need chunks in their bowls. So I take one third of the soup, make it creamy, and then add it to the chunky part to make them happy. Teenager used to love cream-soups, but lately he is mirroring his father in almost every action, hence if big man doesn’t like something, the teenager stops liking it as well. How odd?! Men… :)

    1. The bowls are Anthro, yes :) The spoons and ladle, vintage finds locally. Your men won’t eat creamy soup? That’s usually the kind they like b/c they’re ‘heartier’! You could throw some chunks of cubed potatoes, celery, carrots, etc in this one after you puree it down, too.

  17. This looks delicious and is so pretty! Great idea for a fall dinner party :)

  18. I heart sweet potatoes and I am so excited for soup season. Looks like an awesome fall recipe!

  19. Sweet potatoes…love them in everything. I make a creamy sweet potato soup, but have never tried it with red pepper. Looking forward to making your recipe!

    1. I was on your site earlier today and saw your thick green smoothie full of creaminess too!

  20. This recipe couldn’t be more perfect! I love it!! I have to make this for lunches next week!!

  21. Love the spoons, love this soup. I have 4 sweet potatoes on the counter that were going to become donuts but I think dinner tomorrow is calling them to become this soup instead. Thanks as always for the inspiration! I have to try it with Nut Milk creamer instead of the coconut or my husband wont go near it. I’ll let you know if it works out. :)

      1. Okay, I made this today and it “will be served at Thanksgiving for family and friends”! Love it. I guess since I’ve eaten Sweet Potatoes with a little butter and salt and pepper all my life, I really didn’t know what this soup would be like. It is fantastic! I added a little green onion (from my home grown green onion experiment) and some salt and pepper. I also used Soy Milk Creamer for the liquid instead of coconut milk. I made a double batch and will love grabbing this one from the freezer on the first chilly night this fall to serve. The red pepper adds the best earthy spice to the mild sweet potato. A keeper!!!

      2. The fact that you made it and loved it so much that you’ll be serving it for Thanksgiving for family and friends is awesome! Thanks for blogging about it too and linking back – I appreciate it! :)

  22. Hey Averie. Your soup looks wonderful and such a breeze to throw together. Love that!

    I use to be intimated by soups as well until I started actually making them, and then realized how easy they truly are. They are one of my favorite things to make and have for lunch. I just made an heirloom tomato soup from my favorite restaurant, and I can’t get enough of it. It tastes so creamy but there is no cream and it’s vegan. You would totally love it.

    I can’t wait to make your chocolate gnache cake. It keeps haunting me. I’m just waiting for a week where I don’t have to bake cookies for some school or sporting event. I will let you know when I make it and how it turns out.

    1. Yes can’t wait to hear what you think compared to beaty’s/ina’s – I took the best of about 3 recipes and rolled them into one, or that’s what I think at least :)

  23. I’ve been using more coconut milk lately so this is my kind of soup! I especially love any quick recipe that can be easily made in the vita mix. Your presentation and photos are beautiful–I can’t wait to make this!

  24. Averie… beautiful recipe, beautiful breautiful photos, and beautiful plateware! I am jealous. I want those bowls! Even though the recipe is simple, I can tell you spent time on the elegant pictures and well-crafted (and detailed!) post. Sometimes I truly feel like I am eating a spoonfull of salt when I slurp up some soups… even soups I eat out at restaurants. I try to buy the low sodium kinds – TJs has a great b-nut squash low sodium soup. I’ve never thought to use sweet potatoes instead of the butternut squash though! Simply LOVELY. And I like you description of it as “candy” b/c sweet taters are truly one of nature’s sweet candies!! I love them.

    Oh, and I’ve NEVER had or baked/cooked with coconut milk before! eeeek! Must get on that bandwagon. :)

    1. You’ve never baked with coconut milk??!! And you love all things coconut! Change that, Missy :)

      And thanks for all the compliments. The recipe took two seconds, the photography…a little longer :) And the edits. Bright, intense, vibrant food, NATURAL food can almost be TOO bright for the camera. Had to really work to not shock the eye but still convey that yes, it really was that bright! The bowls are Anthro, the spoons and ladle are a vintage find locally.

      Soup at restaurants is a nightmare for me. I won’t even order it anymore b/c I’m so sensitive to sodium that it literally takes me 5-7 days to regulate and process all that salt! I have that TJs b-nut soup in my pantry…for like…a year+ I am scared to try it for fear of the salt situation, even tho it’s lo-salt. Lol

    1. Well it’s bisque-like, without the lobster. Same thickness, consistency, and feel – but maybe comparing it to a tomato bisque would be more appropriate? It’s delish, regardless!

  25. This looks SO filling and tasty! It’s so thick it’s almost like a puree….yummy.

    1. yes totally! It’s actually got the makings for a great dip, or adding soaked cashews and using it as a coating for kale chips, there are just sooooo many ways to go with it :)

  26. Absolutely GORGEOUS photos!!!! I wish it was fall weather here, its’ WAY too hot. I’ll still eat soup though haha!

  27. I’ve sadly never had lobster bisque before–shellfish allergies be darned–but I do love a creamy sweet potato soup! As for variations, I love the idea of adding cashews and cinnamon. Have you tried this with chopped apples and lentils? If not, you definitely should! I make it that way and serve it with a huge dollop of Greek yogurt, and it’s a one-way ticket to food heaven. Thanks so much for sharing this!

    1. havent tried it that way and sadly, I became randomly allergic to shellfish about 10 yrs ago out of the blue; shrimp highly, and lobster and crab are very iffy and the couple times Ive eaten them in the 10 yrs since, I’ve had itchy reactions and feel very out of balance so really have written off shellfish for life too :(

  28. Is this real life? 3 ingredients and it’s paleo?! Loving you for this right now :)
    Also, those bowls are tormenting me. I spent 30 minutes in Anthro this past weekend coveting them and somehow (stupidly) walked out without them. Grrrr.

    1. funny, you think in terms of ‘is the recipe paleo’ and that’s not one I do but i think in terms of ‘is it vegan and gf’ – not that I am either of those things now, but spent years that way, so my mind automatically goes there.

      and the bowls – honestly, I have NEVER been disappointed with any of Anthro’s solid colored serving pieces for photos. I use them ALL. I have some plates that are funky with lots of graphics and colors and I dont get much use from those but the solids, you will LOVE.

      I also love this piece and just used it again in photos yesterday. I think I need to retire it!

      1. that’s the one I did buy! Did you see it in my balls post today?! haha! too funny. I see it having a very bright future in my food photography :)

  29. yum! it looks so thick and delicious! i love the simplicity and the COLOR! gorgeous!

    1. Nature can be so brightly colored! I even had to tone the images down b/c they were even brighter, naturally!

  30. I love sweet potatoes – can’t wait to try this (and I’m a cayenne girl, so I’ll be adding a few shakes of that!).

  31. That soup looks wonderful. The sweet potatoes are so nice right now; I just had oven fries last night that were fabulous. I also have problems with large amounts of salt. Every time I go out to eat at a restaurant I feel like a different person the next day from all the salt. I’ve begun saying no salt on all my food, but I’m still suspicious some is still lurking.

    1. They don’t know how to cook without salt in a restaurant plus most things are made in bulk and then just fired off or heated up when a person’s order comes in so there’s really no way to just not salt one person’s food and let’s face it, most people love butter, salt, etc. and restaurants know this!

  32. This is absolutely gorgeous, so thick and creamy. I love how you let the simple, clean flavors shine. And I’m a huge fan of leftovers too! I try to whip up a big batch of something whenever there are no leftovers in my fridge. :)

    1. I’ve never understood people who say they hate leftovers! I’m the opposite: cook once and get AT LEAST two meals out of it!

  33. My mouth is watering! I’ve never had a soup quite like this but with such easy preparation and so little ingredients, there’s no excuse not to whip up a little batch for a (hopefully chilly soon?) afternoon or evening. My mouth is watering! And I LOVE your vintage ladle and spoons.

    1. Thanks for noticing my ladle and spoons. I’m just as proud of those as I am of the soup…haha!

  34. I make soup all winter long, and I NEVER do all the steps that recipes call for. I’m more of a cut and dump soup cooker. No sauteeing, no measuring, no roasting. I can’t handle all that. I also really love soups like this – simple, unseasened – that you can store in individual servings and then, when you do get around to eating them, add in whatever seasoning you feel like at that time. It’s like getting four soups for the price of one! I’m bad at eating leftovers, so I need that in my life. Variety, you know. ;)

    1. The whole time I was making this I was thinking of you! Thinking this is a Katie special. I know you don’t really like coconut things but are coming around w/ coconut oil. I think you’d love this soup. Or of course, cream always works :)

  35. I love creamy, veggie-based soups. I was obsessed with butternut squash soup last year. Maybe this fall it will be sweet potato!

  36. This is so very much a recipe right up my alley. I love using sweet potatoes, pumpkin and butternut squash in soups. And like you mentioned, you can control all the flavors and the salt content. Why do soups have to be so darn salty to begin with?

    1. Salt, butter, sugar, cream, fatty, fried – that’s what tastes good to most people, most of the time. Restaurants and prepared foods never lack in any of those ingredients!

  37. Holly Molly my mouth is watering! This looks like the perfect fall soup! I need to give this a try this weekend being as it is the unofficial start of fall

  38. I’ve written love songs to sweet potatoes before – so it’s safe to say I’m a fan :)

    This soup is gorgeous, and I can’t believe how simple!! Love this one, Averie.

  39. I love the simplicity of this recipe but its ability to impress guests nonetheless. What a cozy, comforting fall soup! I love to incorporate sweet potatoes into our recipe cycle once fall arrives and I think this will be just perfect. I am going to share this with my sister, too, because her youngest boy loves sweet potatoes and coconut more than anything on earth! She has 4 kids under the age of 8 so this is RIGHT up her alley!! Have a beautiful day, Averie! :-)

    1. 4 kids under 8? I’m exhausted just thinking about it! I hope you & your sister like this one!

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