Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta

I made another butternut squash recipe.

I’m jumping on the autumn produce bandwagon, I know.

But when your dad buys a massive container of pre-peeled, cubed butternut squash from Costco, you’re almost legally obligated to embrace it.

I haven’t touched pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice or pumpkin beer yet this season!

Ok, I had one pumpkin beer.

Whatever.  It was worth it.

I am, however, really into butternut squash puree.  It’s easy to make- especially when the squash comes already peeled- quick, and adds a great depth to any kind of sauce.

So, after the quinoa risotto I made last week, I decided that the next dish needed to involve mac ‘n cheese.

Are you surprised?

Have we met?

Baked Butternut Squash Mac ‘n Cheese
serves 5-6

2.5 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubes
1/4 cup skim milk+1/2 cup
1 t rubbed sage
1 chicken breast
8 oz short pasta (I used organic corn+quinoa elbows)
1 T butter
1 T flour
cooking spray
1 cup shredded fresh mozzarella (I used a whole ball)
2 cups kale, spine removed and torn into bite sized pieces
salt+pepper to taste

1. Place butternut squash on a baking sheet and roast at 425° for about 45 minutes, until slightly brown and tender.
2. Place chicken in a pot and cover with water.  Season water with salt and pepper and bring to boil.  Boil for 10-15 minutes until cooked through.
3. Shred chicken with two forks and set aside.

4. Bring water in a medium-large pot to a boil, generously salt and add pasta.  Cook to al dente according to package instructions.
5. With about 2 minutes of cooking left, add kale to pasta pot.  Drain entire pot and set aside.
6. While pasta cooks, place squash into a blender or food processor along with 1/4 cup milk and sage and puree.

7. In a skillet, melt butter over medium heat.
8. Sprinkle in flour and whisk, creating a roux.  Let cook for a minute or two.
9. Whisk in remaining milk and season with salt and pepper.  The white sauce should be relatively loose.

10. Add butternut squash puree to the sauce, adding additional milk if it seems too thick. Add 1/2 cup of mozzarella and stir until cheese is melted.
11. Combine pasta, kale, chicken and sauce in a casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
12. Top pasta with remaining mozzarella.
13. Bake at 400° until top begins to brown, about 10-15 minutes.

My pasta looks yellow because of the corn in it.  It actually tasted a lot like corn, too.

Weird, huh?  You know…since there was corn in the pasta.

Anyway, use any kind of pasta you want.

I’ll say this much for the trendy autumn produce: it’s giving me a pretty good excuse to squeeze more mac ‘n cheese into my life.

This could be bad.

Someone go make this- I can’t go down alone.

16 thoughts on “Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta

  1. Genius. I love it. And I love your head for buying butternut squash in bulk. You should bring some of this over to me. You know, because I’m sick and all and it would really cheer me up… Okay, if you don’t you know I’ll totally make this sometime this week. Because you just can’t lose with any sort of mac and cheese. Fact.

    P.S. – Totally hopped up on Vitamin D. It’s definitely helping.

  2. This looks like every single thing I love in one baking dish. It’s official, I’m making it. I’ll be toting home all the squash I can carry from the farmers’ market this weekend. Thanks for the idea, and the excuse to make mac and cheese!

  3. Just made this over the weekend (minus the chicken…my friend is not a ‘chicken person’. I don’t claim to understand her lifestyle), and it was AWESOME! Thanks for the new recipe for my repertoir!

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