Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta
Comfort food is a weakness of mine this time of year. Probably not a shocker that I (like many climate-swayed health nuts out there) prefer curling up in my jammies with a bowl of mac’n cheese over braving the polar vortex to get to CrossFit or yoga (sorry if any of my instructors are reading this. It’s not you, it’s me… along with those 23 years of living in Chicago that made hibernation an innate part of my being).
Anyway… in recent years, I’ve started learning how to make comfort food healthier. First came adding veggies to my mac’n cheese (broccoli consistently won that contest!). Then came the gluten-free shells. Now… I am so pleased to say that I’ve discovered a vegan version of mac’n cheese (and the healthiest, to date) that’s become my all-time favorite comfort food in the history of my comfort food experiments (I sure wish I knew of this one during my Chicago days). Drum roll please….
Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta (serves 4)
- 1 package of gluten-free shells (I highly recommend Ancient Harvest‘s quinoa shells, which is where this recipe was actually adapted from… Gluten-free peeps, this pasta is LEGIT and doesn’t get all mushy either)
- 2 cups of cubed butternut squash
- 2 shallots, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup of vegetable broth
- ¼ c. olive oil
- Salt & pepper
- Sage for garnish (or chopped and stirred into the sauce at the end)
- Parmesan as a topping (Vegans: Omit or use nutritional yeast)
Preheat oven to 400° F. Combine shallots, garlic and olive oil together.
Spread butternut squash on a baking sheet and drizzle the shallot/garlic/olive oil mixture along with an even coating of salt and pepper to taste. Toss until the squash is fully covered. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the squash is tender.
Ten minutes before the butternut squash is done, cook pasta according to package instructions.
Place the roasted squash with 1 cup of vegetable broth in a blender and puree until smooth. Pour the sauce over the pasta, stir until fully combined and then top with sage and/or Parmesan/nutritional yeast.
The sweet and savory combo is especially what gives this dinner a gold star. And it’s kid-friendly, too. Even my picky-veggie-eater was eating this one by the handful, thinking it was mac’n cheese (muah ha ha).
Want more healthy comfort food? Try our Curried Squash and Sweet Potato Soup next!
Stay warm and eat well!