This butternut squash pasta sauce is one of my favorite easy recipes. Pairing the sauce with fettuccine takes it to a whole new level of deliciousness.
We've used dry pasta this time as I always have it in the pantry, but fresh pasta cuts the cooking time even more.
When the temperatures get cooler, I want comfort food. This butternut squash pasta sauce is silky smooth, and just wait until that aroma starts filling your kitchen! It's one of my favorites along with this parmesan risotto recipe.
Why This Recipe Works
With only six ingredients in the sauce, you can have this scrumptious meal on the table in about 20 minutes! This recipe serves 6, but the sauce freezes well, so it's great for two people, as well. Leftovers make life easier!
As I was in Italy just last month, I've been on an Italian food kick, and what's more Italian than pasta? My recipe for one-pot Italian Pasta Soup is another good one to try this time of year. Both recipes pair well with my rosemary garlic bread recipe. Check out more Italian dinner ideas!
What Goes Into this Recipe
I often have most of these ingredients as we love pasta.
- Butternut Squash - the perfect year round vegetable! We love it in this Moroccan vegetable stew, too.
- Heavy Cream - gives this sauce a thick silky texture and comfort food flavor.
- Parmesan - paired with the heavy cream, this is what creates that delicious flavor, similar to an Alfredo sauce.
See recipe card for quantities.
How to Make this Recipe
Peel and cube the butternut squash.
Add the squash, heavy cream, butter and 3⁄4 cup of water to a large saucepan and bring to a boil.
Reduce to simmer and let cook until the squash is tender enough to be broken with a fork.
Add the mixture to a blender or use an immersion blender to puree until creamy and smooth.
Add the nutmeg and kosher salt.
While the sauce is cooking, prepare the fettuccine according to the package directions.
Before straining, reserve about 3⁄4 cup of the pasta water.
Add the strained pasta and parmesan to the pureed squash mixture and stir until well coated.
If the sauce is too thick for your liking, add the reserved pasta water 1 tablespoon at a time.
Sprinkle a little extra nutmeg and parmesan on pasta before serving along with a little dried parsley, if desired.
Tip: I like to serve pasta in an Armetale serving bowl as it stays hot. You can actually place this bowl in the oven before filling it so it stays warm. Cold foods stay cold in an Armetale bowl, too!
You can easily make this dish vegan and dairy-free by replacing the dairy with non-dairy options. Switching out the dairy makes this a perfect Daniel Fast meal, too.
- Heavy cream - instead of using heavy cream, use coconut milk from the refrigerated section of your grocery store. It does not taste like coconut, has far fewer calories, and has a creamy consistency.
- Parmesan cheese - usually found in the vegan or vegetarian section, vegan parmesan cheese doesn't always melt perfectly, but it does have a nice consistency. You can make vegan parmesan cheese, too.
- Vegan butter - also found in the vegan or dairy section, vegan butter is delicious and you really won't miss real butter in this recipe.
An immersion blender is one of my favorite kitchen tools. You can blend this sauce (and soups like this roasted vegetable soup) right in the pot instead of putting it in the blender. It's so nice to have one less thing to wash!
Butternut squash is tough to peel and cut. Stick in the the microwave for a minute or two to soften it. Cut off the bottom and carefully peel from the top down. Discard seeds and chop the squash as directed.
Fresh pasta is done in about 3 minutes, a perfect option if you're in a hurry to get dinner on the table.
Just like the flavor of the squash, a pasta sauce made with butternut squash has a slightly sweet and nutty flavor.
Thyme and sage both pair well with butternut squash, so give them a try. If you like spice, sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
Yes. Wait for it to cool and place in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce with Fettuccine
- 1 pound butternut squash cubed (approximately 4 cups)
- ¾ C heavy cream
- 3 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ¾ C freshly grated parmesan
- 1 pound fettuccine
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg or 1⁄2 tsp, freshly grated
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon parsley dried, optional
- Peel and cube the butternut squash.
- Add the squash, heavy cream, butter and 3⁄4 cup of water to a large saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer and let the squash cook until it's tender enough to be mashed with a fork.
- Add the mixture to a blender or use an immersion blender to puree until creamy and smooth.
- Add the nutmeg and kosher salt.
- In the meantime, prepare the fettuccine according to the package directions.
- Before straining, reserve about 3⁄4 cup of the pasta water.
- Add the strained pasta and parmesan to the pureed squash mixture and stir until well coated.
- If the sauce is too thick for your liking, add the reserved pasta water 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Sprinkle a little extra nutmeg, parmesan, and parsley on pasta before serving.