Pasta

Cheesy Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta Bake

cheesy roasted squash pasta bake

 

I love cheese and pasta together, one of my favourite things to cook when I’m home alone is pasta with cheese sauce. A generous portion of whichever pasta shapes we happen to have in the cupboard covered in a thick, cheesy sauce with just a hint of nutmeg. Perfection on a plate.

Sometime last year I was roasting squashes with the aim of freezing it in portions for future use as I’d bought a box of them in addition to my weekly veg boxes and ended up with more than I knew what to do with. Whilst the squash was in the oven I was thinking about what I might use it for and I as fancied something easy for dinner that night I thought I’d try blending some of the roasted squash still hot from the oven with a bit of cheddar and stirring it through some pasta. The result was delicious, just like macaroni cheese but with the addition of the sweet nutty flavour of roasted butternut squash and without the hassle of making cheese sauce. Don’t get me wrong, cheese sauce is easy enough to make, it just requires a bit of attention to get a silky smooth result. Chucking hot roasted butternut squash in a blender with cheese is even easier though and it counts as an extra portion of veg for the day which is always a good thing.

 

cheesy roasted butternut squash pasta bake

 

I went through a few iterations getting the proportion of butternut squash and cheese just right and adding in some cream cheese to make the sauce more unctuous before then deciding that this would work best as a pasta bake. The crunchy topping finishes off the dish perfectly and provides a good contrast to the soft cheesy butternut squash and the pasta. If you serve this butternut squash pasta bake with steamed green vegetables or salad on the side then that’s another easy portion of veg for the day added without any hassle. Any leftovers also work well cold the next day for a packed lunch.

 

Cheesy Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta Bake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Sweet roasted butternut squash blended with sharp cheddar and a hint of nutmeg is an easy way to sneak in an extra portion of veg into a delicious pasta bake.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Approx 700g butternut squash, peeled and roughly chopped
  • couple of tbsp oil for roasting
  • 300g dried pasta shapes
  • 125g grated vintage or extra mature cheddar plus 25g for sprinkling on top
  • 50g cream cheese
  • 4-5 tbsp hot water
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • freshly ground black pepper
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C and put the prepared squash in a roasting dish and toss with some oil, season with salt and pepper then roast for 40-45 minutes until tender.
  2. minutes before the end of the squash roasting time cook the pasta following packet instructions and drain reserving some of the cooking water.
  3. When the squash is ready let it sit for a couple of minutes so it's not blisteringly hot then transfer to it a food processor or blender with the cream cheese, cheddar and 4-5 tbsp of the pasta cooking water. Blend until smooth then season with freshly grated nutmeg and ground pepper to taste and pulse a couple of times. At the same time turn the grill on to heat up.
  4. Return the drained pasta to the pan it was cooked in then add the cheesy squash mixture and thoroughly mix together. Next transfer the pasta and sauce to a large baking dish, or divide between individual baking dishes, sprinkle over the remaining 25g cheddar and grill for 10 minutes or until golden and crispy on top.
  5. Serve with steamed green vegetables or a simple green salad.

 

 

cheesy roasted squash pasta bake

 

For more vegetarian pasta bake recipes check out Kavey’s version of Gastrogeek’s aubergine macaroni cheese, Helen’s tomato and lentil pasta bake, Laura’s gnocchi tomato bake or my cheesy mushroom pasta bake.

I’m linking my pasta bake up with Pasta Please which I am guest hosting for Jacqueline this month. There is no theme for May and all pasta dishes are welcome so please join in if you have a great recipe to share. I’m also linking up with Extra Veg because using squash this way is a good way of sneaking in extra veggies. This challenge is run by Helen and Michelle and hosted this month by Kate at Veggie Desserts. Finally I’m joining in with The Vegetable Palette run by Shaheen at Allotment 2 Kitchen has the theme of your favourite vegetable this month and butternut squash is definitely one of my favourite vegetables for it’s flavour, versatility and beautiful orange colour, plus it goes very well with cheese!

 

Cheesy roasted butternut squash pasta bake

 

pasta please Extra-Veg-Badge vegetable palette800

 

  • Fareeha - faskitchen
    May 18, 2015 at 5:32 am

    Butternut squash with pasta.. I have never tried it before, but your recipe looks delicious.. The cheese on top looks so appealing. Loving it
    Fareeha – faskitchen recently posted…Karahi Gosht RecipeMy Profile

    • Dawn
      July 14, 2015 at 3:28 pm

      Recipe look great but, would be nice to see ingredients in cups and measures one can understand. I have no idea how to measure in grams.

      • Jen
        July 14, 2015 at 9:46 pm

        Thanks 🙂 I’m afraid I learned how to cook by weighing ingredients using scales so I have the opposite problem and measuring in cups confuses me as they are not widely used in the UK. As a very rough guide based on what Google tells me, for this recipe the ingredients are 4 cups of butternut squash (peeled & chopped), 5 cups dried pasta shapes, 1 cup grated cheddar, 1/4 cup cream cheese. Hope that helps.

  • Bintu @ Recipes From A Pantry
    May 20, 2015 at 7:59 am

    I am a huuuuuuuge fan of butternut squash sauce on pasta and this one tickles my fancy and then some.
    Bintu @ Recipes From A Pantry recently posted…Mini No Bake Vegan CheesecakesMy Profile

  • Elizabeth
    May 20, 2015 at 8:38 am

    Oh yum! Proper serious cheesy comfort food here – yum! Beautiful photos too!
    Elizabeth recently posted…13 Ways to Help Prevent Food WasteMy Profile

  • Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche
    May 20, 2015 at 8:39 am

    This looks gorgeous, can’t beat a cheesy pasta bake – and this sounds like a great way to get some extra veg in!
    Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche recently posted…Cheese and chive savoury flapjacksMy Profile

  • Emma @ Supper in the Suburbs
    May 20, 2015 at 2:04 pm

    My god this sauce sounds dreeeeeamy. I love the idea of blitzing the squash and the cheese 🙂 stumbling now!
    Emma @ Supper in the Suburbs recently posted…Samosa PieMy Profile

  • The Reading Residence
    May 20, 2015 at 6:41 pm

    Not a combination we’ve ever tried, but sounds really nice, so I’ll give it a go, thanks
    The Reading Residence recently posted…Pen Pals for ChildrenMy Profile

  • Nayna Kanabar
    May 21, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    I have butternut squash I am going to book mark and try this recipe.It looks great.

  • Margot @ Coffee & Vanilla
    May 21, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    I think I know what I will do with that butternut squash that my daughter calls Raymond and does not let me use it 😉 Lovely recipe Jen!
    Margot @ Coffee & Vanilla recently posted…Clementine & Vanilla Orangeade with BitsMy Profile

  • Laura@howtocookgoodfood
    May 22, 2015 at 8:01 pm

    This is such a greta dish. A classic that has been much improved by the butternut squash, it works so well with pasta and a lovely cheese too :).

  • Camilla
    May 22, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    Oh this look utterly delicious Jen – yes please:-)
    Camilla recently posted…Leftover Pastry Banana Nutella PinwheelsMy Profile

  • kellie@foodtoglow
    May 24, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    Butternut is one of the best things to happen to good old mac and cheese. This looks and sounds lush. 🙂
    kellie@foodtoglow recently posted…Vanilla and Turmeric Polenta Cake with Roasted Rhubarb and GrapesMy Profile

  • sarah
    May 26, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    Oh gosh this sounds fab! Absolutely love cheese and pasta! I don’t use butternut squash as often as I would like too, either. Pinned. 🙂
    sarah recently posted…Minvita Superfood PowdersMy Profile

  • shaheen
    May 31, 2015 at 7:53 pm

    It looks utterly gorgeous and comforting – thank you for sharing with #VegetablePalette

  • Simona
    June 2, 2015 at 5:47 am

    Nice pasta bake. I can imagine how delicious is the combination butternut squash and cheddar.
    Simona recently posted…Annuncio / Announcement: Novel Food #24My Profile

  • 15 Ways to get Extra Veg at every meal | VEGGIE DESSERTS
    June 2, 2015 at 9:50 am

    […] Get the recipe. […]

  • Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours
    June 2, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    This is such a beautiful colour and such an easy way to some #ExtraVeg. Thanks for linking up.
    Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours recently posted…Giveaway: Finish Dishwasher Bundle (RRP £25)My Profile

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    June 11, 2015 at 6:33 am

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