Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta | Karen’s Kitchen Stories

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Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta – an easy to prepare one-pot meal or side dish that is ready for the table in about 30 minutes.

Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta

The butternut squash in this pasta dish, combined with the Parmesan cheese, adds so much creaminess that there is no need for added milk or cream to create a sauce. The cheese and the squash, along with the pasta, do all of the heavy lifting.

While I peeled and cut up my own squash, to make this cheesy butternut squash pasta even easier to prepare, you can buy pre-cut butternut squash in some grocery stores.

I did cheat a little and used Gourmet Garden lightly dried basil instead of fresh basil in this recipe. You can usually find the little bowls of the stuff near the fresh herbs in the produce section of your grocery store.

Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta with crushed red pepper

I love the flavors of this pasta dish. I also think it’s pretty gorgeous with the yellow-orange squash, cheese, basil, and crushed red pepper.

Oh, and this dish is deliciously garlicky!

If you use vegetable stock to prepare this dish, it is also vegetarian.

This pasta is wonderful served with a salad for lunch or a vegetarian dinner. We served this as a side dish with rotisserie chicken for a simple but delicious dinner for four.

Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta with crushed red pepper and basil

This pasta is spiced with crushed red pepper, one of my favorite seasonings (I pretty much put it on everything).

Leftovers of this pasta were great microwaved with some baby spinach and a dash of marinara sauce for an entirely different take on this dish.

If you have some leftover meatballs or meatloaf, just layer some fresh spinach, the pasta, the meat, and a couple of spoonfuls of marinara and microwave for a minute or two and stir. Pretty tasty improv leftovers.

Butternut Squash Pasta with Parmesan cheese

Welcome to Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a Progressive Dinner Party. This month features a bunch of recipes for winter squash, and one for a perennial favorite of summer squash that’s good to have in your back pocket all year long. Our host this month is Susan who blogs at The Wimpy Vegetarian.

Before the recipe, be sure to check out everyone else’s links.

Comforting Squash Dishes







If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner involves going from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats, it’s a virtual party. A theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out. Come along and see all of the delicious fall dishes!

pasta, butternut squash, vegetarian, basil, Parmesan, side dishes, main dishes

side dishes, pasta, main dishes


Yield: 6 servings

Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups cubed butternut squash, about a medium or two pound squash
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 quart vegetable or chicken stock (1 carton)
  • 1 pound penne pasta (16 ounce package)
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, or a scant 1/4 cup lightly dried chopped basil, such as Gourmet Garden
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese, fresh basil, and crushed red pepper for garnish


  1. In a 6 to 8 quart Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for about 4 minutes. 
  2. Add the cubed butternut squash, salt, and red pepper. Stir, reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and cook for 15 minutes. 
  3. Add the stock and bring the pot to a boil. Add the pasta and, when the mixture returns to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  4. When the pasta is al dente, stir in the basil and Parmesan. Garnish with shaved Parmesan, basil, and crushed red pepper.

Karen’s Kitchen Stories

This recipe is adapted from Cook Real Food Every Day Magazine

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