Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta, with plenty of roasted garlic, gets a healthy creamy texture from the squash. Delicious vegetarian recipe to serve in the fall or winter! We have enjoyed it paired with a Chardonnay on several occasions. Disclosure: Some of the wines discussed here were provided as complimentary samples.
Sure, I will miss the long summer days, but I love the foods that get featured come fall.
I love the smell of roasting squash, and it gets even better when there’s garlic in the oven, too! The roasted garlic adds great flavor to this acorn squash pasta recipe.
Digging into this pasta is very satisfying. The creamy texture from the squash combined with a bit of milk is just the thing on a cool fall evening! Another great option for a cool evening is our Curried Acorn Squash Soup recipe.
Making Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta
This acorn squash pasta recipe is pretty easy to put together. The heaviest lift is probably cutting open the squash and getting rid of the seeds! Make sure you have a large, sharp knife to cut the acorn squash.
I like to use an ice cream scooper to remove the squash seeds (Amazon affiliate link used for the kind we have).
The garlic roasts alongside the squash. To roast garlic, I cut about half an inch off the root end of the garlic, then drizzle a bit of olive oil on that root end prior to wrapping the garlic in aluminum foil.
The official recipe below calls for 1 head of garlic. But if you love garlic like me you might want to add a bit more! Roasting garlic is a great way to use up a few odd garlic cloves you might have around.
After the squash and garlic have roasted nicely, you will make the sauce as the pasta cooks. This is a fairly thick sauce; the milk and reserved pasta water is important for the consistency. Gradually add additional pasta cooking water as needed to achieve the desired consistency.
The optional silken tofu isn’t necessary for the consistency, but can add a bit of extra protein if you choose to add it.
We have gone with a Chardonnay pairing for our Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta the last couple of times we made it. It didn’t occur to me until I looked at the pictures I took, that this pairing was an example of the pairing method matching similarly colored food and wine suggested at a Gambero Rosso dinner I attended.
For our recent 2020 remake of our acorn squash pasta, we opened a bottle of the 2018 Pedroncelli Sonoma County Chardonnay ($17). This is a good Sonoma Chardonnay for the price, and we definitely enjoyed it with our pasta.
The J. Lohr Chardonnay is a good reasonably priced and accessible Chardonnay. I get lemon and peach on the palate with some toasted notes. This works well with the roasted flavors of the dish.
You could pair other Chardonnay you like, but stay away from ones with lots of oak and or butter. A Chardonnay with restraint, in other words. A naked Chardonnay or perhaps a Soave could work here.
If you were more in the mood for a red wine, I would suggest a fruit forward Pinot Noir, or you could also try a lighter Merlot. I did test a Pinot from Sancerre with the leftover pasta–it was OK but prompted me to suggest looking for a fruit forward bottle. Let me know if you try it with a red wine and how it goes!Print
Creamy Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta
Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta, with plenty of roasted garlic, gets a healthy creamy texture from the squash. Delicious vegetarian recipe to serve in the fall and winter! Adapted from a recipe in the cookbook Vegetarian Planet.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 mins
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: main
- Method: roasting + stove top
- Cuisine: vegetarian
- 1 acorn squash
- 1 head of garlic (and a bit extra if you like — see notes)
- 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 12 ozs ziti or penne pasta
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup cooking water from the pasta (you may not need it all)
- ¼ cup milk
- ⅓ cup Pecorino Romano cheese, plus additional for serving
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup silken tofu (optional)
- Prep the squash: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the squash in half, and lay them flesh side up. Scoop out the seeds — I like to use an ice cream scooper. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the oil over the squash flesh. Place the squash flesh side down on a baking sheet and place in the oven.
- Prep the garlic: Cut the root end off the head of garlic, exposing the bottom of the garlic cloves. Drizzle exposed cloves with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Wrap the garlic in aluminum foil, place on the baking sheet next to the squash in the oven.
- Roast the squash and garlic: The squash and the garlic will both take about 40 minutes to roast. After 40 minutes, remove the baking sheet to check for doneness. The squash is done when the skin pierces easily with a fork. If it does, turn the squash over — when roasted the flesh should be soft and beginning to brown. The garlic is done when the cloves have become quite soft and beginning to brown. If they are done, remove the squash and garlic and set aside to cool; or return to roast for another 5 minutes or so as needed.
- Start the water for pasta: Start boiling a large pot of water for cooking the pasta with about 10 minutes roasting time left. Add the pasta after you’ve started cooking the sauce on the stovetop.
- Start making the sauce: Place the white wine and 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet or medium sauce pan (see notes). Squeeze the roasted garlic out of the skin and into the sauce pan. Heat the garlic on medium, then add the roasted squash flesh, and the tofu if you are using it. Stir to combine, and cook on medium low. Stir every few minutes.
- Cook pasta: Add the pasta to the boiling water after adding the squash to the sauce pan. Cook according to package directions as you finish the sauce.
- Finish the sauce: Add the milk to the sauce, stir to combine. After the pasta has been cooking for at least 5 minutes, scoop out ½ cup of pasta cooking water. Pour some of the pasta water into the sauce, stir to combine. Add up to ½ cup of the cooking water to the sauce to achieve desired consistency. This is a fairly thick sauce but you want it to have enough liquid to combine well with the pasta. Keep the sauce warm as the pasta finishes cooking.
- Finish the dish: When the pasta is cooked, drain, and toss immediately with the acorn squash sauce. Add the cheese, salt and pepper to taste, and parsley. Plate the pasta, and pass additional cheese at the table. Enjoy!
- Use a good sized chopping knife to cut the acorn squash in half.
- I like to use an ice cream scooper to remove the squash seeds (Amazon affiliate link used for the kind we have).
- 1 whole head of garlic would be enough to roast for the acorn squash pasta, but if you are big garlic fans you might add a few extra cloves with their skins on along with the whole head of garlic that you have roasted.
- You could use a large skillet or medium sauce pan here. But I went for my Copper Chef Pan which is very convenient and easy to clean. (Amazon link provided)
- I used the silken tofu as I had some on hand for something else. Most recently I made it without it and the texture comes out fine. So it is definitely more of an optional ingredient.
Keywords: roasted acorn squash, acorn squash pasta, vegetarian pasta recipes
More Creamy Pasta Recipes
Do you love creamy pasta recipes? Me too! Here are a few other favorites to try: