Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Total Time:
20 min
5 min
15 min

5 servings (Boo counted for 2)

  • 1 pound macaroni with lines, such as tubatini or mini penne rigate
  • Salt
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves, plus a few sprigs for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (10 ounce) box frozen cooked butter nut squash, defrosted
  • 1 cup cream or half-and-half
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) sharp Cheddar, grated
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a couple of handfuls
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, eyeball it
  • Black pepper

Heat a pot of water to boil for the pasta. Salt the water then add the pasta and cook to al dente or, with a bite to it.

While pasta cooks, heat a medium heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the extra-virgin olive oil and butter. When the butter melts into the oil, add the thyme and grate the onion directly into the pot with a hand held grater or Microplane. Cook the grated onion in butter and oil 1 to 2 minutes, then add flour and cook together 1 to 2 more minutes. Whisk in stock, then combine with butternut squash until warmed through and smooth. Stir in cream or half-and-half and bring sauce to a bubble. Stir in cheeses in a figure 8 motion and season the completed sauce with salt, nutmeg and pepper. Taste to adjust seasonings.

Drain cooked pasta well and combine with sauce. Serve alongside chicken sammies and top with thyme leaves picked from remaining sprigs (Boo would also have a little extra sprinkle of that cheese, please!)

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4.1 92
My friend made this for Thanksgiving. It was horrible! I think it needed more salt and butter, or less squash, something. It would be better to just make mac and cheese, and then separately make squash. They don't go together. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I never give reviews but I couldn't help myself. Here is an alt version Find a recipe for classic Bechamel. Make it without roux. Instead add puree butternut squash or some other pumpkin. Add Velveeta and sharp cheddar. Done. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I used the recipe as a basic framework, but subbed out the cream for fat free half and half. I also added 2 C. of chopped kale, left out the thyme, and used extra sharp cheddar and gruyere, I finished it off in the oven for 30 minutes and sprinkled extra cheese on top returning it and turning the heat to 400 F for 5 minutes until the cheese started to brown. I nearly added vegetarian sausage to it, but decided it would be overkill. I'll make it again. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe has potential. The consistency of the sauce and the addition of broth, which lowers calories are both good. The thyme does not belong in this recipe. It is overpowering and I only used 1T (not the 2). The thyme combined with the chicken flavor gave it a thanksgiving stuffing flavor and I don't like stuffing. I will give this another try using vegetable broth instead of the chicken, add a couple splashes of hot sauce, leave out the thyme (of course) and finish it in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 F (which I did this time). Which browned the top nicely. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have made this twice now and it is wonderful!!! Really no need to change it! The cheese sauce is thick and creamy and totally fools you that there is squash present!! Great way to sneak vegetables in!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
not bed item not reviewed by moderator and published
Used this recipe with slight changes like 1/2 almond milk, 1/2 Oikos Greek Yogurt and it turned out awesome! Also, I baked it for 15 minutes with cheese and bread crumbs on top. Delish! Wondering about nutritional facts though? item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is so yummy! The changes I made were to use about 1/2 tsp ground thyme instead of fresh, used 2% milk, added 1 tsp of minced garlic with the onion, and I pureed the squash before adding it to the sauce. I have used cheddar and Monterrey jack cheeses with great results. My husband raves about this and asks for it every fall. It is definitely not as thick as a baked mac n cheese so don't expect it to be that way. I roast fresh squash at 400 degrees for 25 minutes instead of using frozen. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was ok... not anything super good and tastes pretty similar to stuffing due to the spices. item not reviewed by moderator and published
hate recipes that do not use fresh ingredients item not reviewed by moderator and published
The only thing in this recipe that isn't "fresh" is the squash, which you could easily sub for fresh if you're willing to put the extra effort in. However, frozen produce is actually said to be better for you because they're frozen at the peak of freshness, thus have more nutrients. item not reviewed by moderator and published
so then you didn't try it... but you rated it... .... ... item not reviewed by moderator and published

This recipe is featured in:

The Best Thanksgiving Side Dishes