Pasta/ Popular Recipes

Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta

February 28, 2018 (Last Updated: August 28, 2019)

Creamy butternut squash pasta made with roasted butternut squash, garlic and parmesan. The thick and creamy sauce (that’s pretty hard not to eat straight from the bowl) is tossed with penne pasta for a quick and incredibly delicious dinner the whole family will enjoy!

An overhead shot of butternut squash pasta on a plate with basil and a fork at the side

I give you the easiest, creamiest butternut squash pasta!

This butternut squash pasta is perfect comfort food for me. It’s almost like mac and cheese with a thick, creamy and very moreish sauce but healthy!

The difference with this recipe is that the creaminess doesn’t come from a cheese sauce is comes from roasted butternut squash and garlic.

Once they are blitzed up with a little splash of cream and a sprinkling of parmesan cheese.

It creates the most delicious thick sauce that’s not only great for pasta but can be used in so many different ways.

More Ways To Use Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce;

  • Pour over chicken (heat the sauce gently and add cooked chicken or pour over to serve)
  • It would also be delicious served with breaded chicken cutlets
  • Use as pizza sauce (because it’s sweeter than tomato sauce go for toppings such as sausage, capers, salami and onion. Something that’ll cut through the sweetness.)

How To Make Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta – Step By Step

First, cut the skin off the butternut squash and cut into medium-sized cubes.

Place on a baking tray and sprinkle over the oregano, red pepper flakes, paprika and a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the garlic cloves and drizzle with olive oil (photo1).

Make sure everything is coated with the spices and olive oil then roast in the oven for around 30 minutes until soft (photo 2).

Tip: When the squash is almost ready, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente.

step by step photos for making butternut squash pasta

When the butternut squash is ready, add it to a blender or food processor.

Remove the garlic from their skins and add that too then blitz until silky smooth. Add the cream and parmesan and blitz again until smooth and creamy (photos 4 & 5).

Drain the pasta then add it back into the pot you boiled it in, pour over the sauce and toss to coat (photos 6-9).

Tip: Always reserve a cup of pasta water before draining the pasta. If the consistency of the sauce is too thick dilute it a little with some pasta water (not too much).

Top Tips for Making Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta

  • When buying the squash make sure to choose one without any blemishes.
  • Squash isn’t as hard as you think to cut if you have a sharp knife ( see the video for how we do it ) alternatively you can buy pre-cut squash.
  • Make sure to reserve 1-2 cups of pasta water to thin out the sauce.
  • This sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • You can also freeze the butternut squash sauce on its own without pasta.

A close up of butternut squash pasta on a plate with basil

Why You Need to Reserve the Pasta Water

Using pasta water to emulsify sauces is a great way to add extra flavour to pasta.

The reason it’s important with this butternut squash pasta is because the sauce can have a thick consistency depending on how much water is in the actual squash naturally (everyone is different).

If after blitzing the butternut squash it’s really thick like mashed potatoes don’t worry just add reserved pasta water to thin it out!

More Comfort Food Recipes You Might Like;

This recipe has been one of my most popular recipes for a lonnng time now so I thought I’d update this post with better photos and a great step by step guide.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do and found all the tips helpful.

If you’ve tried this creamy butternut squash pasta or any other recipe on the blog then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious food and what I’m getting up to.

Watch How to Make it

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4.64 from 11 votes

Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta

Creamy butternut squash pasta made with roasted butternut squash, garlic and parmesan. The thick and creamy sauce (that's pretty hard not to eat straight from the bowl) is tossed with penne pasta for a quick and incredibly delicious dinner the whole family will enjoy!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 546kcal
Author Emily Kemp

Ingredients

  • 14 oz (400g) penne pasta
  • 1 lb (500g) butternut squash
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp chili flakes plus extra for garnish ( if desired)
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream (double cream)
  • 1/4 cup (20g) freshly grated parmesan
  • salt and pepper , to season
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • small handful of basil , to garnish

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350F/gas mark 4.
  • Cut the skin off the butternut squash and cut into medium-sized cubes. Place on a baking tray with the garlic cloves (skin still on). Sprinkle over the oregano, red pepper flakes, paprika and a pinch of salt and pepper. 
  • Add the olive oil and rub over the squash with your hands so the squash and garlic are evenly coated in the spices. Roast in the oven for around 30 minutes until the squash and garlic are soft, toss halfway through.
  • After 20 minutes of roasting the squash bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the penne and cook according to instructions until al dente, drain. Tip: Reserve 1-2 cups of pasta water before draining, see notes.
  • Once the squash is cooked, place in a food processor. Squeeze the garlic out of their skins and add that to the squash with the cream and parmesan. Blitz until smooth and creamy. Add extra salt if required.
  • Add the sauce to the drained pot you cooked the pasta in or a clean skillet and add 1 cup pasta water, stir to combine to thin out the sauce. If it's still too thick add more until you reach the desired consistency.
  • Add the cooked penne and toss until evenly coated in the sauce. Serve with torn basil leaves.

Notes

  • When buying the squash make sure to choose one without any blemishes.
  • Squash isn't as hard as you think to cut if you have a sharp knife ( see the video for how we do it ) alternatively you can buy pre-cut squash.
  •  Always reserve 1-2 cups of pasta water before draining the pasta. If the consistency of the sauce is too thick dilute it a little with some pasta water (not too much).
  • This sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • You can also freeze the butternut squash sauce on its own without pasta.

More Ways To Use Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce;

  • Pour over chicken (heat the sauce gently and add cooked chicken or pour over to serve)
  • It would also be delicious served with breaded chicken cutlets
  • Use as pizza sauce (because it's sweeter than tomato sauce go for toppings such as sausage, capers, salami and onion. Something that'll cut through the sweetness.)

Nutrition

Calories: 546kcal | Carbohydrates: 89g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 244mg | Potassium: 650mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 12510IU | Vitamin C: 24.8mg | Calcium: 250mg | Iron: 2.4mg
Helpful Info for All Recipes
  • I always use extra virgin olive oil in all of my recipes unless stated otherwise
  • When I use canned or jarred tomatoes of any kind I always use this brand for the best results and flavour
  • All vegetables are medium sized unless stated otherwise
  • All recipes are tested and developed using a fan oven
  • Find out more about how nutrition is calculated here
  • Check out our must have Italian Pantry Staples here
  • You can also find all our Essential Kitchen Tools for Italian Cooking here
Did you try this recipe?Mention @insidetherustickitchen or tag #insidetherustickitchen! We'd love you see what you're getting up to in the kitchen!

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45 Comments

  • Reply
    Cari
    November 4, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    What could you replace heavy cream with, if anything? Whole milk?

  • Reply
    DeeGrz
    November 3, 2019 at 10:46 pm

    Have you added any veggies to this?

    • Reply
      Inside the rustic kitchen
      November 4, 2019 at 12:18 pm

      Hey! I haven’t added in any additional veggies to this but you can easily adapt it by adding in any you like.

  • Reply
    Vanessa
    September 21, 2019 at 7:51 pm

    Thanks for sharing! Does it keep long?

  • Reply
    Suzanne
    September 21, 2019 at 7:50 pm

    This looks so good! What a simple and delicious way to spice up pasta for guests!

  • 1 2

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