There are two important things I must say…

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

…that stem from my viewing of the CMA’s.

Yes. I’m educated.

Most importantly, I would like to figure out how to transport Carrie Underwood’s legs onto my body. Like… yesterday. While we’re at it I’ll take her entire wardrobe too.

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

By the way, I know the above looks disgusting. Get over it for now. Seriously.

So… second, I’d like to say hello to my secret boyfriend Blake Shelton. He’s my boyfriend and he knows it. Seriously Blake… stoppppp denying it.

My only saving grace is that I’m equally in love with Miranda Lambert. Can they just adopt me? And that’s saying a lot coming from someone who has relentlessly tortured her husband for his fierce dedication to country music. What is wronnnng with me?! Ugh.

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

Maybe someone [with a strong bass voice, for sure] can just sing me to sleep in a sexy, low country twang? That would work too. [And no Mr. How Sweet, I’m not talking about any of that ‘old bosephus’ crap or whoever you try to tell me about every single day that makes my ears bleed. Stop.]

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

But. Want to talk about pasta?

I gotta come clean and tell you that this is totally a cheaters meal. After I made that butternut squash lasagna, so many of you suggested just making a pasta version, minus all the lasagna junk. Uh, why didn’t I think of that? I swear… I can never come up with anything creatively simple. This is easier to throw together and tastes equally as amazing. It’s pretty much the exact same thing, just mashed to high heavens and piled on top of penne in a pie plate.

Because someone needs to do dishes.

And someone is lazy.

Too lazy to turn on the dishwasher.

I wish I was joking.

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

And for those of you who like to get fah-reaky with bacon? At the last minute I crumbled some on top and all I have to say is OHMYGOSHITWASTHEBESTTHINGEVER. !!!!! Get this in your life, stat.

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I


Roasted Butternut Baked Penne

Yield: seves about 4


1 pound butternut squash, peeled and chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 small shallot, chopped
1 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
2/3 cup milk
1/2 pound whole wheat penne
1/4 cup freshly grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
sage leaves
crumbed bacon, if desired


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Peel and chop squash, then lay on a baking sheet. Toss with olive oil, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Roast for 20 minutes, flip once, then roast for 20 minutes more. Remove from oven and add squash to a bowl, then mash with a potato masher or fork.

Prepare water for pasta and cook according to directions.

While pasta is cooking, heat a medium saucepan over medium heat and add butter and shallots. Whisk continuously until the butter browns and small brown bits appear in the pan. Immediately whisk in flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add milk, mascarpone and mashed squash, then mix until until combined. I chose to keep my “sauce” in a thicker state (see the second picture), but if you’d like it thinned out a bit more, add additional milk. At this point, taste and see if you’d like any additional salt or spices – this will most likely depend on how seasoned your squash was. I added another small pinch of salt.

Add pasta to an 8 or 9-inch baking dish. Pour sauce over top, then use a spoon to fold the sauce into the penne, coating it completely. Top with shredded cheeses and fresh sage leaves. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cheese is golden and bubbly. Garnish with crumbled bacon if desired.

Note: this is a very “thick” pasta, and it is not swimming in sauce. If you would prefer it to be “saucy,” I’d advise adding more milk to the sauce while cooking. It is great reheated, and adding 1-2 tablespoons of milk when reheating helps it come together nicely.

Roasted Butternut Baked Penne I

This tastes 80 cazillion times better than it looks. I swear.

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216 Responses to “Roasted Butternut Baked Penne.”

  1. #
    Kara — November 12, 2011 @ 2:03 am

    You had me at bacon! Isn’t everything better with bacon? Can’t wait to try it.


  2. #
    Lynne @ 365 Days of Baking — November 12, 2011 @ 2:04 am

    Seriously, seriously drooling…


  3. #
    Vicky @ Recipe Adaptors — November 12, 2011 @ 2:17 am



  4. #
    Ginger — November 12, 2011 @ 2:46 am

    You make my life complete. I made your butternut lasagna for my sister and took some leftovers to work one day and I let people taste it. I got not one, but two proposals that day. So good… I am so glad to know there’s an easier way to do it!


  5. #
    Claudia — November 12, 2011 @ 7:48 am

    Delicious, great lunch, thanks for the recipe!


  6. #
    Patti — November 12, 2011 @ 8:39 am

    Totally making this for Sunday supper. Today, I am making those sinful lemon cookies you posted the other day to take to a potluck, because, frankly, my mama’s sausage/raisin/cornbread dressing is just not enough carbs to soak up all the wine that will be consumed today.

    Every time I read your blog, I keep thinking, “why do I blog everyday, when I could just repost your blog and everyone would be much happier?” You are the bomb diggity!


  7. #
    Amanda — November 12, 2011 @ 9:00 am

    How on EARTH did you make that pasta look SO DARN AMAZING? Everytime I try to take pictures of pasta dishes its like a blog of orangish yellow on a plate. You need to do a photography tutorial. Like, now. Purty please!!!!


  8. #
    Lisa — November 12, 2011 @ 9:47 am

    Definitely making this…question, how does half a pound of pasta serve four? I think we must be gluttens or something.
    I love, love, love you and your blog!


  9. #
    kristen @ livinlifeinlouie — November 12, 2011 @ 9:57 am

    I will have to make this! It is always hard getting my son to eat veggies, so Ill just add some squash! great idea
    (ps. I also want carrie underwood’s wardrobe!)


  10. #
    Jennifer@Peanut Butter and Peppers — November 12, 2011 @ 10:10 am

    Perfect Meal! Last night I cut up a bunch of butternut squash and baked it! This will be perfect use for it!! I just love BN Squash!!


  11. #
    Lisa [With Style and Grace] — November 12, 2011 @ 4:09 pm

    holy moly, the bacon was the icing on the cake.


  12. #
    Miquela — November 12, 2011 @ 6:29 pm

    This is so good….there are no words.


  13. #
    Yudith @ Blissfully Delicious — November 12, 2011 @ 10:49 pm

    I just found your blog – and am drooling over this baked pasta! Thanks for sharing :)


  14. #
    Ann — November 12, 2011 @ 10:51 pm

    OMG – this is absolutely amazing! I’ll tell you what…you can take Carrie Underwoods lets and wardrobe, I’ll take her voice and money! Deal? (I’ll even throw in Blake Shelton!)


  15. #
    mary (sisters running the kitchen) — November 13, 2011 @ 10:29 am

    we made this two nights ago…it was amazing!! We love the flavor combination of the cheeses, squash, and sage. however, this recipe was enough for 2…no way we could have served 4.


  16. #
    Amanda — November 13, 2011 @ 2:57 pm

    Is there something I could substitute for the mascarpone? I live in a small town and I can’t find it anywhere!


    • Julie — November 15th, 2011 @ 7:53 pm

      I’m making this tomorrow and will use cream cheese instead of mascarpone. Not a perfect substitute but I live in a smaller town as well, mascarpone cheese is hard to find here.


    • Julie C. — February 2nd, 2012 @ 8:20 pm

      Ricotta is somewhat close to marscapone.


      • Suzette — November 3rd, 2012 @ 5:57 pm

        Cream cheese is closer to mascarpone than ricotta, so I would go with that. :)

  17. #
    Lucie (Thursday Night Dinner) — November 13, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

    I love and adore butternut squash. I get so excited when I find new ways to use it so thank you!! I cant wait to try this and then lapse into an inevitable food coma!


  18. #
    Amy — November 13, 2011 @ 9:13 pm

    I made this tonight, but substituted canned pumpkin for the squash and cream cheese for the mascarpone -so delicious!


  19. #
    Diane {Created by Diane} — November 13, 2011 @ 9:42 pm

    oh yum, looks great. Pass me a fork :)


  20. #
    Kara — November 14, 2011 @ 2:58 am

    oh boyyyy i want this now


  21. #
    Adele — November 14, 2011 @ 1:29 pm

    This is a freaking great idea. I have to tell you something that I forgot to mention. For Halloween I bought fun Halloween shaped pasta and I combined your “Autumn Mac and Cheese” with the butternut squash lasagna recipes. I roasted butternut squash, mini heirloom tomatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper, nutmeg and sage. Then I did the brown butter shallot and garlic thing. I combined it all with a grated cheese blend (jack and cheddar) and marscapone cheese. Threw it all together, more cheese on top and added parmesan and POTATO CHIPS and baked it. IT WAS AHMAAAHHHZING. The pics did not come out good so that’s why I forgot to mention it. BUT THANK YOU for the amazing recipe ideas. :D


  22. #
    Allie @ sweet potato bites — November 14, 2011 @ 6:40 pm

    I made this over the weekend and it was delish! Adding bacon on top really took it to the next level too ;) My boyfriend was also a fan even though he said he didn’t like butternut squash. Definitely making it again.


  23. #
    Alison — November 14, 2011 @ 9:26 pm

    Just made this (w/o bacon) and it was AMAZING!!! Never used marscapone before & it was so good. Thank you for a new favorite and easy recipe!!


  24. #
    Caitlin — November 15, 2011 @ 9:39 pm

    Hello! I prepared this dish last night and going to cook it in the oven for tonight’s dinner (SO EXCITED!). I was wondering if I should cook it at 400 degrees or the typical 350/375? I know the butternut squash is roasted at 400 but not sure about the dish?


    • Dianne — December 4th, 2011 @ 12:20 pm

      I cooked mine at 350 and it turned out great!


  25. #
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — November 15, 2011 @ 11:21 pm

    This penne looks fabulous… Perfect for Thanksgiving, I think.


  26. #
    Yael — November 16, 2011 @ 10:50 am

    This is so good! Made it the other night (w.out bacon). I had all the wrong cheesey ingredients (ricotta instead of marscapone, asiago but no mozzarella or parmesean) but it was still delicious. Also cut back a fair bit on nutmeg and added a little bit of cinnamon and spicy red pepper flakes instead. Thanks for the recipe! :)


  27. #
    Kelly @ Free Spirit Food — November 17, 2011 @ 4:05 pm

    yum. I love butternut squash in every form.


  28. #
    Leonie — November 20, 2011 @ 9:26 pm

    That was amazing! The boyfriend loved it, and for an almost no meat meal, that’s quite a compliment!


  29. #
    Amie Hesbach — November 20, 2011 @ 9:50 pm

    Made this tonight after drooling over all of your posts. I’m a recent convert and follower. Thanks so much. Keep ’em comin’!


  30. #
    Lorna — November 21, 2011 @ 11:20 pm

    I made this tonight and so yummy! I LOVE butternut squash and I LOVE sage, so this dish was so up my alley! Great recipe! I did add a couple of tablespoons of crumbled bacon and it was just the right touch.


  31. #
    Ashley Lynn Fry — November 22, 2011 @ 2:05 pm

    So this recipe is DELICIOUS!! I made it last night & it was very yummy… then I just had some leftovers just now for lunch… EVEN BETTER!!

    Thanks for sharing!!



  32. #
    Liz — November 22, 2011 @ 5:05 pm

    Amazing!!! I made it for dinner and the left overs were great. Although I didnt plan ahead so I did not have marscapone on hand, so I substitued cream cheese instead and it was still rich and creamy. I also sprinkled a little cayanne on the squash during the roasting which gives it an extra warm flavor. What a brilliant idea for sneaky healthy things into carbs!!


  33. #
    Emily — November 28, 2011 @ 1:07 pm

    I LOVE this dish. added chicken the first time. making it tonight with left over turkey. hope it takes just as good! I <3 Butternut Squash


  34. #
    Dianne — December 4, 2011 @ 12:18 pm

    So yummy! I cooked some turkey sausage and added it to the sauce before adding it tot he pasta. It turned put delicious! What a wonderful fall recipe!


  35. #
    Katelyn — December 5, 2011 @ 1:25 am

    This was delicious! I used fresh basil instead of sage (because when I was at Walmart at 1am I forgot to buy any) but it was still delicious. Thanks for another great recipe!


  36. #
    April — December 23, 2011 @ 12:57 pm

    I made this for dinner last night and it was soooooooo good! I made a couple of changes: I thinly sliced the sage and mixed it with the squash before roasting. I didn’t have mascarpone, so I added 1/2 cup of cottage cheese for more protein and creaminess, and I mixed the mozzarella in with the squash and pasta, and just used parmesan on top. Oh, and I had a little end bit from some yummy cheese (Robusto?) from Whole Foods, so I grated that and mixed it in too. This is definitely a keeper!


  37. #
    Tiffany — January 1, 2012 @ 4:39 pm

    My family and I love this recipe! Today I will be making it for the third time and am super excited! (I don’t use sage leaves or bacon, but it still tastes amazing!)


  38. #
    Michele — January 12, 2012 @ 11:08 pm

    gonna see if i can do this with sweet potato because i’m lazy and i don’t want to go out and buy squash trololol
    and no sage or bacon. because i’m… not.. allowed to buy those things anymore……………. cough..
    and greek yogurt for the mascarpone which i REALLY DOUBT WILL WORK but whatevs, if it fails, it’s my fault and not yours…… <3

    looooveee yyyoooouuuuu


  39. #
    Jackie Thompson — January 27, 2012 @ 9:18 pm

    I think it looks awesome ~ so what’s 80 cazillion times that??? I’ve can’t wait to make this!!!


  40. #
    anamateur — February 2, 2012 @ 10:31 pm

    I made this tonight, substituting ricotta for the mascarpone. It was delicious! My husband and 2 young kids devoured it. This is a real keeper!
    Thank you!


  41. #
    Shelley — February 7, 2012 @ 11:34 am

    We made this last night & it was delicious! The boyfriend even commented after dinner that we’d “have to put that one in the keeper file”. He also repeated those same words this morning, so I know we’ll be making it again soon at our place. Thanks!


  42. #
    Olivia — February 12, 2012 @ 8:52 pm

    Just made this…. Used heavy cream instead of milk, and fontina cheese instead of mozzarella. Also, added part of the fontina to the squash, butter, shallots, and cream mix while on the stove. It was WONDERFUL! My whole family loved it, definitely one of my new favorite pasta dishes :)


  43. #
    Marjolein — April 4, 2012 @ 7:54 am

    Finaly got to make this, love love love it!!! I mixed half of the suace through the paste en spread the rest on top.


  44. #
    Chelsea — May 8, 2012 @ 3:20 pm

    Hey I’m making this dish tonight, it looks amazing! But I don’t have sage. I have a bunch of other herbs and stuff though, is there anything else I could use instead of sage? :)


  45. #
    Kate — October 2, 2012 @ 9:20 am

    This was a fantastic dinner! Thank you so much for the recipe. I actually crumbled feta on top in lieu of bacon and that was great! I also used dried thyme instead of sage and that worked just fine flavor-wise. A perfect fall dinner!


  46. #
    Haley — November 13, 2012 @ 11:29 pm

    I made this tonight….SO yummy! Best recipe I’ve tried in awhile (and I try new recipes ALL the time). I was a little naughty and sauteed the shallot in bacon grease and also added butter. Oops. :) Also, I don’t care for the flavor of sage, so I tossed the squash in fresh rosemary instead before roasting (plus a little cayenne for heat). If anyone is wondering, this works great with gluten-free pasta and rice flour instead of AP. Thanks for a fantastic recipe! I can’t wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow!


  47. #
    Cee — November 21, 2012 @ 2:20 pm

    Made this dish about two weeks ago and it was so yummy! We are spending Thanksgiving with family and I’m bringing this as a side dish. I already know it’s going to be a hit. Thanks for sharing!


  48. #
    Pat Clark — November 24, 2012 @ 12:32 am

    Can butternut sauce be frozen ?


  49. #
    anna — December 9, 2012 @ 3:09 pm

    I love butternut squash! I’m still a little grumpy about wasting one in a MAJOR FAIL curry the other day. Mmmmm pasta


  50. #
    Rudy — December 18, 2012 @ 9:26 pm

    Sounds interesting, the fearmrs market thing I mean. One SUPER easy way to make and eat the butternuts is to cutnthem in half, scoop out the seeds, turn them face down on a plate with a few cm of water in it. Put the whole thing in the microwave and microwave it on high for anywhere between 8 and 15 minutes, depending on the size. When it’s done you can push on the skin and it should be soft underneath. If you didn’t cook it long enough the first time, put it in for longer. Scoop out the soft pulp and mix in a dash of salt, a pat or two of butter and a tsp- Tblsp of either brown sugar or maple syrup (the amount depends on taste and how naturally sweet the squash is). Mix it all in, it should be about the consistency of mashed potatoes, only orange. It can also be done in the oven; it just takes a bit longer but the method is the same, face down in a little water, cook until soft. YUMMY! I love butternut squash!



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