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This pasta dish is full of fall flavor with rustic butternut squash and a hint of nutmeg sweetness. Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese is a creamy and cheesy pasta with a little fall infused.
Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
With heavy raindrops streaking my predawn windows I dreamt of staying snuggled up in bed this morning. Pulling the covers up over my head and drowning into my down comforter. The school bells would not wait for us though so I sleepily made my way out of bed to prepare a much-coveted cup of coffee. As the dreary fall day continued I thought more and more about preparing an easy comforting dinner for my children and in truth for myself as well.
Preparing this butternut squash mac and cheese was my way of cozying up to a warm comforting meal. I sought to end our day with warmth and love and bellies full of fall deliciousness. Creamy and cheesy pasta with hints of rustic butternut squash and sweet nutmeg was the perfect option.
How to Make Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- Prepare the sauce: in a large pot over medium-high heat bring the squash, milk, and salt to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium, cover and let cook until tender for 20 minutes. Use an immersion blender to blend the ingredients until smooth. Set aside.
- Boil the pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta shells. Cook until al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain.
- Mix: Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and toss to coat. Stir in the cheese and cream cheese.
Best Cheeses to Use for Mac and Cheese
Because butternut squash has a slightly sweet taste and this recipe adds in some nutmeg, I choose to use classic sharp cheddar cheese and grated parmesan combination. Any of the below cheese will work in making mac and cheese.
- The classic, Cheddar Cheese
- The fancy, Gruyere Cheese
- Monterey Jack
- Goat Cheese
- Gouda Cheese
Other cheese options to add extra creaminess are cream cheese and ricotta cheese.
Try These Other Pasta Dishes
- 1 lb Butternut Squash peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1½ cups Whole Milk
- ½ cup Water
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Ground Pepper
- ¼ teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1 lb Pasta Shells
- 1½ cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- ¼ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 2 ounces Cream Cheese
- In a large pot bring the butternut squash, milk, water, and salt to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook for 20 minutes until the squash is tender. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Bring another large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat and add the pasta shells. Cook until shells are al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and set aside.
- Use an immersion blender, or a stand blender working in batches, to puree the butternut squash mixture until smooth. Stir in the pepper and nutmeg. Adde the prepared pasta to the sauce and mix in the cheddar cheese, parmesan, and cream cheese.