Hi hi.

How are things? How was your weekend? What did you do? Where did you go? Who did you see?

How annoying is that? Enough.

Here are some things I did that you probably don’t care about but I will force feed you anyway. We are such good friends.

I watched the Beyonce HBO special, which I’ve only been waiting to watch for, oh, like the entire three months they’ve been advertising it. I watched her shake her perfect booty while drinking a shamrock shake. At like midnight. Thank goodness calories don’t count on the weekend.

Also, I totally drove around blasting the Josh Groban CD and singing along, only realizing once I was pulling into my driveway that “singing along” meant I was belting some slow music with a weird opera-like face because when you sing along to Josh Groban and you don’t have a Josh Groban voice, you look like a cartoon character or a cast member of an SNL skit.

Yesterday I spent 35 minutes fishtail braiding my hair, which is epically pointless because my hair has about five thousand layers. In less than three minutes one entire side of my hair had fallen out of the braid. So I had a braid on one side and… some hair on the other side. Gross.

Oh and I single-handedly consumed a whole wedge of humboldt fog chèvre and decided it might be an every weekend splurge. Well, that’s a lie. I want it to be an every weekend splurge but… it can’t be. That is not real life.

This soup can be in real life though. Wait… can it? With the bourbon? I say yes. I realize I’ve been a bit nuts with the boozy recipes lately, but I promise is happened by accident. Err… sort of by accident. Actually, we moved this bar in our house and before moving it, had to empty the contents to lighten the load. Well, the “contents” sat on my kitchen floor for about two weeks and were a source of constant inspiration. As they should be. Plus, it’s not like I was heavy handed with the bourbon – it’s just a slight pour that adds some additional flavor and cooks off anyway. If you aren’t into it, you can replace it with some additional stock of simply leave it out. But can I tell you? With it? This flavor is unreeeeeal. Since we’re in the circle of trust, I’ll tell you that I am not very gung ho on sweet potatoes. I don’t go nuts over them like some people do. I enjoy them, but tire of them often and considering my favorite food growing up was “potatoes!” (I’m talking like yukon golds and russets), the plain roots will always have a special #1 spot in my heart.

So when I set out to make this bisque, I didn’t have high expectations. It was simply another way to curb my intense soup cravings that creep in come October and peak mid-February. Every week I determine which soul-warming, comforting concoction my soup pot can hold next and this just happened to fit the bill. I kept it simple – as simple as I could with lots of flavor – and with one bite I was SOLD. So much more sold than I ever anticipated.

Do not… I repeat DO NOT let the cinnamon sugared croutons scare you. They aren’t *super* sweet and by just using a few, you add a little sweet to your savory. Unless you’re like me and have no self control and add a boatload of sweet to your savory. This is my life. Oh and it helps if you use grainy, seedy bread. The kind you always see me use is labeled as Harvest Bread in my Whole Foods. It makes my world.

So do you.


Bourbon Sweet Potato Bisque with Brown Butter Cinnamon Sugar Croutons

Yield: serves 2-4

Total Time: 45 minutes


2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 sweet onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons bourbon
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed (mine came to about 1.25 pounds, peeled and cubed)
2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
2 cups water
1/2 cup half and half
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

4 slices whole grain bread, cut into cubes
2 tablespoons brown butter
1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Heat a large pot over medium heat and add olive oil and butter. Add onions with pepper flakes and a pinch of salt and stir to coat, then cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in garlic and cook for another minute. Increase heat slightly and add bourbon, stirring well. Let cook for 2-3 minutes.

Add sweet potatoes, stock and water to the pot. Cover and let simmer for 25 minutes, until sweet potatoes are soft.

While sweet potatoes are boiling, add bread cubes to a baking sheet. Toss with cinnamon and sugar, then brown butter, and bake for 8-10 minutes until golden. Remove and set aside until soup is finished.

After sweet potatoes are soft, carefully pour the entire mixture into a high-powdered blender and pureed until smooth and creamy, about 5 minutes. Additionally, you can use an immersion blender but the soup may not be as smooth. Transfer creamy soup back into the pot over low heat. Stir in half and half, salt and pepper, then taste and season additionally if needed. Serve with croutons on top!

Cinnamon toast for life.

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107 Responses to “Bourbon Sweet Potato Bisque with Brown Butter Cinnamon Sugar Croutons.”

  1. #
    Amber @ Slim Pickin's Kitchen — February 18, 2013 @ 10:31 pm

    My throats hurts so bad that all I want in my life is a bowl of this soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooup!!! I would also totally put 5,000 of those cinnamon croutons in there too!


  2. #
    Julie — February 18, 2013 @ 11:18 pm

    Yeah, that just got pinned. Wow.


  3. #
    Erika @ The Hopeless Housewife — February 18, 2013 @ 11:46 pm

    Those croutons are calling my name and I can’t very well have the croutons without this amazing soup.


  4. #
    Michelle — February 19, 2013 @ 1:05 am

    I’m kind of surprised I didn’t see any bacon in here.


  5. #
    Kris — February 19, 2013 @ 6:41 am

    I have never thought of usinf cinnamon in croutons!! must add a really lovely warm flavour! This looks so delish!


  6. #
    Sandra — February 19, 2013 @ 8:55 am

    In. Love. With. This.


  7. #
    Amy — February 19, 2013 @ 10:23 am

    I’d love to hide in your bushes to see you drive in your driveway belting out Josh. I’d take pictures and share them online too. ;)

    So, now that you have a bar in your house, when is the partay?


    • Jessica — February 19th, 2013 @ 11:27 am

      you are obviously welcome any time!


  8. #
    joelle (on a pink typewriter) — February 19, 2013 @ 10:34 am

    Love this recipe! Is that a marble slab under the soup bowl in the photos, btw? I love the contract of colors.


    • Jessica — February 19th, 2013 @ 11:26 am

      just a tile from lowe’s… probably less than $2. :)


  9. #
    Maria Tadic — February 19, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

    I love potato based soups…so creamy and delicious. I might have to try this one out… like you not usually super into sweet potatoes, but you seem pretty excited about this recipe so…will try it!


  10. #
    Elizabeth@ Food Ramblings — February 19, 2013 @ 12:05 pm

    I am making this ASAP!


  11. #
    Alyssa — February 19, 2013 @ 12:23 pm

    That looks like dessert!


  12. #
    Barb | Creative Culinary — February 19, 2013 @ 12:35 pm

    I like bourbon in almost anything; sweet or savory. Booze can add such a great element too a dish without really making it’s presence obvious…what’s not to love?

    I’m packing now for an eventual move though my house has just recently been listed. I do a booze post each week, I get booze sent to me to do those posts. I need help getting rid of the booze…want some?

    LOVE the sound of this soup and I’m a croutonaholic…have to try these but not sure I would need soup for them!


  13. #
    Pat — February 19, 2013 @ 12:49 pm

    Just in time for me to use the left over half and half from making crab imperial this weekend. This sounds like a wonderful soup.


  14. #
    Beth — February 19, 2013 @ 1:16 pm

    Wow, this is happening tonight or tomorrow night at the latest! I have all the ingredients just begging to be used, including homemade bone broth in the crock pot as I type! May have to add bacon, though…


  15. #
    Wendy — February 19, 2013 @ 1:18 pm

    I love soup, especially in the winter, but rarely do I look at soup and think, “I want a bowl of that immediately!” This soup, I would like now, if not sooner. :)


  16. #
    Tomeka — February 19, 2013 @ 6:30 pm

    Dinner tonight….I did everything but the bread…I used Multigrain thins 100 cal each and baking stevia…oh and I’m adding thick cut bacon because I have men to feed lol. OMG delic!


  17. #
    Lauren — February 19, 2013 @ 7:20 pm

    Would cognac work? I’m out of bourbon. Good excuse to go to the liquor store!


  18. #
    Colette — February 19, 2013 @ 7:31 pm

    My mouth is watering!


  19. #
    Jenn from Much to My Delight — February 19, 2013 @ 9:12 pm

    Dude, who would be scared of those croutons? I might make those just on their own! Inspired recipe and beautiful photos as always.


  20. #
    Raychel — February 19, 2013 @ 10:05 pm

    I would NEVER be scared of those croutons !!! I LOVE the idea.


  21. #
    Sandy @ RE — February 19, 2013 @ 11:29 pm



  22. #
    Karen — February 20, 2013 @ 2:10 am

    LOVE LOVE the idea of cinnamon sugar croutons! I too love to overload my savory with lots of sweet, so this seem like they were made for me.


  23. #
    Sherrie — February 20, 2013 @ 4:29 pm

    I was picturing Beyonce dancing her booty around with a green shake in one hand, keeping rhythm with the other hand. Then I realized, hey… maybe Jessica was the one drinking the shamrock shake! Thanks for the laugh! ;)


  24. #
    Kristen — February 25, 2013 @ 1:13 pm

    I offered to make dinner for a new guy I’m dating- two of his favorite things? Bourbon and soup! Not even kidding. He loved this (as did I)! Way to have my back gurl- such perfect timing for you to post this! I ended up using an immersion blender so I smooshed up the potatoes first with a potato masher and it turned out really smooth (better than I thought it would with the immersion blender).


  25. #
    Sarah — February 28, 2013 @ 11:46 am

    Made this last night and it came out great! Very yummy, perfect for cozying up on the couch when it’s yucky outside. I left the sweet potatoes on the stove for a little longer than 25 minutes (had a phone call!) and they were extremely soft and the immersion blender worked very well.

    Thanks for a great recipe!


  26. #
    Pat — February 28, 2013 @ 3:40 pm

    Wow, I finally made this. I bought the ingredients as soon as I saw the recipe but – you know how it is – procrastination is my BFF. Anyway, it was totally worth the wait. I love this and I know I will make it again – even if I did pour too much into the blender and it blew the top off and I had a big mess to clean up – it was still worth it. :D


  27. #
    Silifily — March 5, 2013 @ 5:02 am

    I would change the white sugar to brown sugar and DEFINITELY add bacon! I was looking for a brown sugar cooked bacon with bourbon (Jack Daniels isn’t bourbon, it’s whiskey…big difference from a single barrel true bourbon (Evan WIlliams is cheaper than Jack and the label looks the same and the Taste is better!) Anyway…I was thinking cream, bourbon and brown sugar bacon soup….will work on it and post back


  28. #
    kierstinwall — March 21, 2013 @ 8:03 pm

    Made this tonight but added kale chips on top! So so good!!


  29. #
    Kathleen — October 12, 2013 @ 5:00 pm

    This soup is delicious! I added a little Meyer lemon juice and some chopped parsley at the end, and garnished each bowl with a little chopped parsley and a little chopped (peeled) apple.


  30. #
    Brian W — November 9, 2014 @ 8:32 pm

    This soup was great, even with the garlic omitted (my wife can’t tolerate it). The croutons really make it. I felt like it needed a little something else on top under the croutons so I added cinnamon to some sour cream, put it in a baggie, clipped the corner and drizzled it over the top. So good.


  31. #
    Sandy — December 15, 2014 @ 3:12 pm

    Hi, I don’t know if I’m just completely missing it but how do you make the croutons?



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