Creamy Pumpkin Pasta Sauce with Penne
If you live in the Northeast like me, we are in the middle of winter. Although we haven’t had a polar vortex yet (and fingers crossed we don’t!), these bitter cold days make me want nothing more than to cozy up with a warm, delicious and comforting meal. My go-to for this weather is pasta with my creamy pumpkin pasta sauce. This rich and decadent dish warms you from the inside out.
All About My Creamy Pumpkin Pasta Sauce with Penne
My creamy pumpkin pasta sauce with penne does require a few more ingredients than my average recipe, however it is so worth it. To start, cook the penne per the instructions on the box for al dente pasta. If you’re using fresh pasta, only boil the pasta for 2-3 minutes. After cooking, drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water, and setting the pasta aside.
From there, add olive oil to a saucepan, setting the heat to medium. Next, add the onion, garlic, and sage to the saucepan and cook over medium heat until the onion is translucent and soft (~5 min). To the onions and sage, add the pumpkin puree (make sure it’s 100% pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling), salt, and pepper.
Mix the pumpkin pasta sauce well and transfer the sauce to a pasta pot. Cover the pot and cook the pumpkin pasta sauce over medium heat until hot. Then, mix in the mascarpone and Greek yogurt. Finally, add the pasta and reserved pasta water to the pumpkin pasta sauce, making sure the pasta is thoroughly coated and heated through.Top pasta with parmesan, chives and walnuts. Bon Appetit!
Pumpkin Pasta Sauce Health Benefits
Now if you know me, there’s always a method to my madness. I try to use many nutrient dense ingredients in my recipes. My creamy pumpkin pasta sauce with penne is no different.
Whole wheat is a type of whole grain that provides many health benefits to us. When using whole wheat penne instead of penne made with refined grains, you are provided with a good source of protein, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, thiamin and niacin, and an excellent source of fiber and manganese. While all of these nutrients have specific functions in the body, the combined effect of these nutrients in whole grains reduce the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, as well as reduce inflammation in the body.
Additionally, the pumpkin puree has benefits to our health too! One cup of pumpkin is a good source of vitamin C, potassium, copper, manganese, riboflavin and vitamin E, and an excellent source of vitamin A. In total, these nutrients help to protect our immune system, assist in our eye sight, reduce oxidation in the body, and keep our skin healthy.
Raman, R. (2018, August 28). 9 Impressive Health Benefits of Pumpkin. Retrieved January 25, 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/pumpkin#section9
The Whole Grains Council. (n.d.). Retrieved January 25, 2020, from https://wholegrainscouncil.org/
Creamy Pumpkin Pasta Sauce with Penne
- 1 pound whole wheat penne pasta
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon sage minced
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup snipped chives
- ½ cup walnuts toasted and chopped
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
In a saucepan over medium heat, add oil. Add the onion, garlic, and sage and cook over medium heat until the onion is translucent and soft, about 5 minutes. Add the pumpkin puree, salt, and pepper. Mix well and transfer to empty pasta pot.
Cook over medium heat until hot. Mix in the mascarpone and yogurt. Add the pasta and the reserved cooking water and toss to coat thoroughly and heat through.
Transfer the pasta to bowls, sprinkle each with cheese, chives, and walnuts.