Creamy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Additional creamy butternut squash mac and cheese is your reply to a satisfying fall and winter weeknight meal. This healthful & satisfying dinner recipe is meat-free, filled with taste, and makes glorious leftovers! I like utilizing Gruyère cheese and shell-shaped pasta (conchiglie). Kale provides a vitamin punch, however be happy to skip it if desired.

overhead photo of butternut squash mac and cheese with kale.

You’ve most likely heard of macaroni and cheese made with a tacky butternut squash sauce earlier than. I used to be by no means satisfied that sauce, made primarily from a winter squash, may produce the identical comforting attraction that basic mac and cheese sauce does.

Squash, you’ll by no means be cheese.

Nonetheless. This sauce is not like something I’ve ever had earlier than. It’s totally different! It’s beautiful! All you style is a splendidly creamy, tacky, garlicky sauce that has a gentle sweetness with loads of taste. Pureed butternut squash replaces the necessity for limitless cups of cheese, butter, and cream. It’s magic… and it simply works.

Pour this delicious sauce over pasta tossed with kale (if you want!), and you’ve got a superbly satisfying fall season meal. It’s additionally a favourite Thanksgiving menu merchandise served alongside cranberry sauce, candy potato casserole, and gentle dinner rolls. 🙂

close-up photo of spoonful serving of butternut squash mac cheese with kale.

This Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Is:

  • Full of veggies
  • Extremely flavorful with squash, gruyère cheese, garlic, and a touch of nutmeg (belief me on that one!)
  • Creamy & comforting
  • Scrumptious as leftovers
  • Freezer-friendly (see recipe word)
  • A more healthy various to common mac and cheese

For those who love butternut squash, I’ve a sense this butternut squash & mushroom puff pastry tart is true up your alley. Fabulous fall and winter appetizer!

Right here’s What You Want:

ingredients on marble countertop including pasta, kale, gruyere cheese, greek yogurt, milk, broth, and garlic.

All fairly primary components, proper? Word that I forgot the nutmeg within the photograph!

Let me stroll you thru the steps so when it’s your flip to make this dish, you have got all of the information to make it the very best it may be. The very first thing you’ll must do is peel and dice the butternut squash. You want round 4 cups cubed, which about 1 giant or 2 small squash. After you dice the squash, it’s important to soften it. This subsequent step is necessary.

My Trick for Making the Butternut Squash Cheese

Boil, then simmer the squash with milk, vegetable or hen broth, and garlic. I often use skim or 1% milk, however any milk (dairy or non dairy) works. Boiling all of those collectively, as a substitute of boiling the squash in simply plain water, is my trick to essentially start infusing the squash with taste.

All of those components make the bottom for the tacky butternut squash sauce.

cubed squash floating in milk in saucepan.

In the meantime, put together the pasta. Prepare dinner the pasta simply till al dente—or when the pasta continues to be a little bit agency. Add the kale (non-obligatory) and cook dinner for an additional minute or two. Drain the pasta and kale, then put aside.

shell pasta and kale in colander.

At this level, the butternut squash is fork-tender. Puree the squash combination (squash and the entire garlic/liquid) in a blender or meals processor with a little bit Greek yogurt, salt, and pepper.

butternut squash, yogurt, and milk in blender and shown again blended up.

Pour the puree into a really giant bowl and stir within the cheese.

shredded gruyère cheese sitting on top of orange sauce in glass bowl with red spatula.

What Cheese Do I Use for Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese?

The sauce will get numerous taste from the butternut squash and garlic, however the cheese is necessary, too. Don’t skimp on high quality right here; go for a pleasant flavorful cheese like further sharp white cheddar, smoked gouda or, my favourite, Gruyère. Grate it with a field grater, so it’s gentle and recent. (I like this particular cheese grater.)

Add the pasta. Stir the pasta/kale into the cheese sauce, after which pour all the things into a big baking dish. Prime with breadcrumbs and an additional sprinkle of cheese, if desired. Any 9×13-inch or 3 to 4-quart baking dish works right here.

shell pasta mixed with butternut squash cheese sauce in bowl and shown again in large baking dish.

Bake for about 25 minutes or till bubbly on the perimeters. That’s it! As quickly because it comes out of the oven, I like so as to add an additional sprinkle of cheese on high, together with freshly floor black pepper and recent thyme. All of those further garnishes are non-obligatory.

close up overhead photo of butternut squash mac and cheese with kale.

Different Topping Choices

I often high this butternut squash macaroni and cheese with breadcrumbs and additional cheese earlier than baking, however different tasty choices embrace pepitas (pumpkin seeds), cooked and crumbled bacon, or pine nuts. Have enjoyable with it!

What does butternut squash mac & cheese style like?

Consider common mac and cheese, however with a flavorful improve. Take pleasure in barely candy butternut squash, a pinch of nutmeg, a number of garlic, and a wealthy earthy, nutty taste from Gruyère cheese.

What do I serve with butternut squash macaroni and cheese?

This can be a nice query! I often preserve the aspect dishes gentle, since it is a hearty pasta dish. A easy aspect salad is all you want, or attempt steamed inexperienced beans, or roasted broccoli.

What can I take advantage of as a substitute of kale?

I like including a pair huge handfuls of kale to this dish, and it’s straightforward to boil it proper in the identical pot with the pasta. You possibly can definitely skip it fully, or change it with chopped broccoli or recent child spinach.

Can I add a protein?

Sure, you possibly can stir in a pair cups of cooked hen, cooked floor beef or turkey, or sliced hen sausage together with the cooked pasta and sauce.

This recipe is NOT vegan. For those who’re in search of a vegan fall dinner recipe, I believe you’ll adore this pumpkin chili. It’s unbelievably flavorful, further hearty, and tremendous satisfying. Readers have beloved it.

spoonful of butternut squash mac and cheese coming out of the pan.
two bowls of butternut squash macaroni & cheese with wooden and metal forks in them.

Comforting Dinner Recipes