Tender butternut squash is pureed along with broth, spices and Parmesan cheese to create the base of this salty and savory pasta dish. Baby spinach is folded in for a delicious color contrast and it’s all topped with crunchy bacon!
There is nothing quite like the perfect pasta sauce. The way it clings to each noodle, hugging it with savory and salty goodness. There are so many different types of pasta sauce out there — you’ve got your tomato based, your cream based, oil based, but I bet you’ve never tried a squash based sauce.
Or maybe you have, and know just how delicious a squash based pasta sauce can be!
Today’s recipe highlights the butternut squash — possibly my favorite of the squash family. I love peeling the skin to reveal the bright orange flesh , perfect for dicing and roasting. Or, for dicing and simmering in broth until soft and pureeing for a sauce.
You’ll puree the cooked squash with chicken broth and some spices, and toss it with freshly cooked pasta, baby spinach, and parmesan. You want to use fresh grated parmesan — it will incorporate the best.
This is all topped with salty bacon (read the recipe for an easy, mess-free way to make bacon).
Here’s the recipe for Butternut Squash Fettuccine with Garlicky Spinach and Bacon!
Butternut Squash Fettuccine with Garlicky Spinach and Bacon
Creamy and cheesy butternut squash sauce coats fettuccine noodles and garlicky spinach, topped with savory and salty bacon and shaved parmesan cheese.
- 4 slices bacon
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1 medium butternut squash peeled and small diced
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 12 oz fettuccine pasta
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 5oz pkg baby spinach
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place a sheet of aluminum foil on a baking sheet pan. Add a cooling rack on top of the baking sheet, then place the bacon on the pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the bacon is crispy. Allow to cool for several minutes, then chop the bacon into small pieces. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil. Add 2 cloves of minced garlic, onion powder and butternut squash. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and let simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, or until the squash is fork-tender.
Once the squash is cooked through, remove the saucepan from heat and allow to cool for several minutes. Add the mixture to a blender and puree. Return the pureed mixture to the saucepan and set on low heat to keep warm. Stir in the parmesan cheese.
Meanwhile, in a large pot, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Add the salt and the fettuccine. Cook according to package instructions. Drain and reserve 1 cup of cooking liquid.
Add the cooked fettuccine to the saucepan with the squash puree. Toss to combine. Add a splash of the reserved cooking water to help the sauce coat the pasta. Stir in the parmesan cheese. Remain on low heat to keep warm.
Heat a nonstick skillet to medium heat. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil, spinach and 1 clove of minced garlic. Cook until the spinach just begins to wilt, about 3 minutes. Stir the cooked spinach into the saucepan with the pasta.
To serve, add pasta to a bowl and top with shaved parmesan and chopped bacon.
This recipe also appears on the Mealime app.
Hi! I’m Emily, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and self-taught intuitive chef. I firmly believe that cooking is the simplest and most important step we can take to improve our minds and bodies and build healthier communities. Join me and let’s bring food back to the kitchen!