Breakfast/ Dinner/ Soup

Soup Joumou (Pumpkin Soup)

Soup joumou (pumpkin soup), oh how I love thee. Soup joumou is a dish that is near and dear to the hearts of many Haitians. When the end of December rolls around and the days keep getting closer to January 1st; the excitement and anticipation keeps growing and growing. Why you ask??? Because we will be eating soup joumou come New Year’s Day, which is also Haitian Independence day.

I don’t know the complete history on how Haitians gained their independence so I’m not going to pretend like I do and give you misinformation. Now what I do know about it is this: The Haitian slaves made pumpkin soup for their masters but were never allowed to have any so when they gained their independence from the French they celebrated by having soup and so it became a tradition to have pumpkin soup on their Independence day.
In my recipe I used Kabocha also known as butternut squash along with pumpkin but that is totally optional. My mom has always made it with both so that is what I do as well, you can definitely just use pumpkin. I made mine with beef but you can do the same process with chicken or without, the world is your oyster and you can do whatever you like (in my T.I. voice)



Please understand that you don’t have to follow this recipe exactly. If there is an ingredient that you are not fond of, by all means eliminate it. Cooking soup joumou for Haitian Independence Day should be a fun task; so if you think this recipe is complicated eliminate some ingredients as I stated earlier. You can just use this recipe and video as a guide on how to make this soup to your own liking.


Watch me make Soup Joumou (pumpkin soup) here:

Soup Joumou (Pumpkin Soup)

Print Recipe
Serves: 6-8 Cooking Time: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 2 lbs beef soup bones mixed with beef for soup (1 pound each)
  • 2 limes, juice reserved
  • 3/4 cup epis
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt-free blended herbs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon clove powder
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • 2 tablespoons cooking margarine
  • 2 to 2 1/2 lbs pumpkin & Kabocha squash, peeled & cut into large cubes
  • 2 cups of cabbage (about half of a small cabbage sliced)
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled & sliced (1 inch round pieces)
  • 3 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 3 sprigs of parsley
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/3 cup sliced bell peppers
  • 1 scotch bonnet/hot pepper
  • 2 small turnips, peeled & cut into quarters
  • 2 small cho cho's peeled & sliced
  • 5 potatoes, peeled & cut in halves
  • 2 medium malanga's peeled & cubed
  • 1/2 cup Rigatoni pasta



In a large bowl clean beef chunks by pouring the juice of one lime on meat and rubbing each piece throughly with lime halves, set aside the juice of the other lime.


Rinse meat off with cold water then add epis, salt, blended herbs, seasoned salt and garlic powder. Work spices into meat until well distributed, cover and set aside.


Bring 16-18 cups of water to a boil in a large pot on high flame. Once boiled add meat and pumpkin and cook for 20-30 mins or until pumpkin is fork tender.


Remove cooked pumpkin and squash from the pot. Using a strainer and a large bowl, place strainer over the bowl and begin to mash pumpkin & squash using a spoon. Use liquid from pot to help get your puree to a smoother consistency while mashing.


On a medium flame, pour puree into pot followed by garlic, clove powder, cooking margarine and bouillon cube. At this point you can salt to taste to suit your preference.


Add cabbage, celery, carrots, cho cho, malanga, turnips, potatoes, parsley, thyme hot pepper, bell peppers, onions and stir. Let cook for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.


Add lime juice and rigatoni and let cook for another 15 to 20 minutes. Serve hot.

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