Is there any better way to welcome the 21st of September than with a heartwarming and nourishing baked pasta? This is my Butternut Squash Baked Pasta, the perfect fall-inspired dinner to make for yourself and your family/friends. I made it for my family and they loved it, so I can't wait for you to give it a go.
It's officially fall time, which means butternut squash is in season! This is one of my favorite vision-friendly foods. Since it's more than 100% of your daily source of vitamin A, that means it's helping your vision health and immune system, which we LOVE. Did I mention that I also included carrots in this recipe, which is another great source of vitamin A? Remember that all orange vegetables have beta-carotene (a phytonutrient) that is used by your body to create vitamin A. Your eyes are going to thank you for this recipe!
I wanted to create a recipe that everyone loves but also add some nourishment to it as well. You can never go wrong with a delicious baked pasta. You're going to need penne, butternut squash, carrot, garlic, parmesan, mozzarella, sage, tomato paste, and veggie stock. Let's get to the recipe.
Yields: 6 (perfect for leftovers as well)
Prep time: 25 minutes
Total time: 1 ½ hours
This recipe is vegetarian.
1. 1 box of penne pasta
2. 5 cups cubed butternut squash
3. 1 carrot, finely diced
4. 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
5. ⅔ cup parmesan cheese
6. ½ lb grated mozzarella cheese
7. 6 leaves of sage, finely chopped
8. 5 TBSPs tomato paste
9. Extra virgin olive oil
10. Salt and black pepper
11. 2 cups veggie stock
1. First, prepare the butternut squash, carrot, and garlic. Have the oven preheated to 400.
*Tip for the butternut squash - if it's too hard to chop, microwave for 3 minutes to soften it, making it easier to chop*
2. Grab a large frying and pour in 3 TBSPs of olive oil on medium high heat. Add in the garlic cloves. Once you can smell the garlic, add in the butternut squash and carrot. Sauté well. Add in the tomato paste and veggie stock. Add salt and black pepper to taste. Mix it all together very well.
3. Add in the fresh sage. Cover the pan with a lid and allow it to cook until the butternut squash is cooked well and you're able to easily poke through it with a fork.
4. While the butternut squash is cooking, boil the pound of penne pasta. Grab a medium sized pot and add water ¾ of the way. Add salt and add in the pasta once the water boils. Cook until al dente.
5. Have the parmesan grated and the mozzarella grated as well.
6. If the butternut squash sauce is too dry, feel free to add a bit of water to make a thinner/consistent sauce. *Always add hot water to cooking food*
7. Take the sauce off the heat and grab a 9" x 13" pan. Add ¼ of the sauce into the pan. In a separate mixing bowl add in the rest of the sauce and all of the cooked pasta (make sure you drain it). Add all of the parmesan cheese and ¾ of the mozzarella cheese. Mix the pasta, sauce, and cheeses in the bowl all together very well.
8. Add the pasta to the 9" x 13" pan. Add the remaining of the mozzarella cheese on top of the pasta.
9. Layer on parchment paper and aluminum foil onto the pan and cook in the oven for 20 minutes/until the cheese has melted on top.
10. Remove the pasta from the oven gently and remove the aluminum foil. Put it back in the oven on broil for 2-3 minutes.
11. This will have the pasta toasty and crispy on top.
12. Gently take the pasta out, allow it to cool, and enjoy!