Pasta with Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce

I used to have an obsession with butternut squash. When I was living on my own, I didn’t buy a ton of different stuff all the time. I found something I liked, and I stuck with it. With butternut squash, this obsession turned into thinking of different ways to prepare it. I started, of course, by roasting it whole and eating it mashed with some brown sugar and butter. Next, came roasting it as cubes with garlic and rosemary. After that, came the butternut squash fries (screw you potatoes. JK. I love you, don’t leave). After I had exhausted my roasting options, I went back to mashed. As fate would have it, there was some left over one day and I decided to use it as a pasta sauce.


Amazing idea born.

Its crazy how small bits of leftovers cause you to think outside the box and use ingredients in new ways.

I’ve now made this on a number of occasions for different people, and it always becomes a fast favourite. It’s surprising how cheesy and creamy the sauce tastes since it is mainly made up of squash and spinach.

Pasta with Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce

Time: 75 minutes
Servings: 4


  • a small sized butternut squash - cut in half lengthwise with seeds removed
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 lb pasta of your choice - I like to use pasta like a fusilli or rigatoni so that the sauce can get lost in all those nooks and crannies
  • 1 medium - large sized yellow onion, sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 1/2 head of fresh spinach - ends trimmed off and rinsed
  • 2 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1/4 of a block of cream cheese - about 1/4 cup
  • 1/4 cup of chicken stock - alternately, you can use pasta water
  • salt & pepper
  • parmesan cheese - kind of optional. Pasta without parm is essentially a sin.


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 °F
  2. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil and lay your squash down on the tray, cut side up
  3. Brush the olive oil on the squash and bake until tender, about 40 minutes
  4. After your squash has been in the oven for about 20 minutes, heat a large sauté pan over low heat and add your butter
  5. Once hot, add the sliced onions and begin to caramelize those bad boys, keeping and eye on them so they don’t burn
  6. Start the water boiling for your pasta and make sure to salt the water with about 1tbsp of salt for the full pound of pasta
  7. Once the squash is done, remove it from the oven and allow to cool for about 5-10 minutes
  8. Add the garlic and spinach to your onions, along with some salt and pepper, cooking until the garlic is fragrant and the spinach had wilted
  9. Next, use a fork to scoop the flesh  of the squash away from the skin, adding it directly to the pan with the onions. You could also puree the squash for an even smoother sauce, but I’ve never really found that necessary.
  10. Use the fork to stir the squash in with the onions and spinach, breaking up and clumps in the squash
  11. Add your pasta to the water and cook until al dente
  12. Add the cream cheese to the sauce and keep stirring until it has all melted
  13. If the sauce is too thick for your liking, add some chicken stock or pasta water to thin it out a bit
  14. Once your pasta has finished cooking, drain, top with sauce, sprinkle a hefty amount of parmesan cheese on there and enjoy!

As a bonus, this dish comes together really fast if you have some leftover mashed squash from dinner the night before.

It’s a really nice break from more traditional red or white pasta sauces, and is a good way to squeeze in some more vegetables! If you wanted to add some meat to the dish chicken would be great, or even ground turkey!

Let me know what you think!


xo, tess.

14 responses to “Pasta with Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce”

  1. This looks yummy! Also, your napkin is adorable 🙂

  2. Sarah says:

    This looks delicious!

  3. Joce says:

    This sounds so yummy! What a lovely idea. I can’t wait to try it!

  4. OMG this looks delicious! I love squash no matter what time of the year it is and it’s so easy to make a squash cheese sauce. Yum!

  5. Cynthia says:

    Tess this looks AMAZING! I love pumpkin, so much, and pasta 😉 Pinning this one.xx

  6. This looks amazing, I’m so excited to try it. I’m always looking for new ways to squeeze healthier foods into dishes.

  7. Christie says:

    My God! Butternut squash sauce is what my dreams are made of! It’s actually coming in to Autumn here in Australia so this recipe couldn’t have come at a better time. Yum!

    Christie’s Take on Life. x

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