Butternut Squash Pasta with Walnuts & Sage

I make this butternut squash pasta recipe when I'm craving fall comfort food. It's so easy, and the sage & squash fill it with cozy autumn flavor.

Butternut Squash Pasta

Butternut squash soup may be my favorite fall comfort food, but this butternut squash pasta is now a close second. It’s a pretty easy throw-together pasta made from a classic fall flavor combo: butternut squash, sage, and walnuts. The sweet, caramelized squash plays perfectly off the earthy sage and nutty walnuts, and a little butter and pecorino add the perfect amount of richness. This is one we’ll have on repeat all season long.

Butternut Squash Pasta Recipe ingredients

To make it, simply roast the squash until it’s tender and caramelized. Then, sauté the shallot, sage, walnuts, chickpeas, cooked butternut squash, and garlic until the chickpeas and squash get a little brown. Deglaze the pan with lemon juice and balsamic, and stir in the cooked pasta and a handful of leafy greens. Toss until the greens wilt, and serve with a generous grating of cheese and fresh parsley.

Butternut squash pasta recipe ingredients

Butternut Squash Pasta Recipe Variations

This butternut squash pasta recipe can be customized a thousand ways. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Omit the pecorino if you’re vegan.
  • If you’re not vegan, try adding creamy feta or goat cheese, or use Parmesan instead of pecorino.
  • If you eat meat, toss in some crispy pancetta for a nice salty bite.
  • Swap the walnuts for pine nuts.
  • Use your favorite type of pasta! I like spaghetti or linguine, but whatever you have on hand will work here.

I threw some chickpeas into this dish because I had some on hand to use up, and it ended up being delicious – I encourage you to take inspiration from what’s in your kitchen as well. Let me know what variations you try!

No matter what, this butternut squash pasta is a great dish to stay in and eat with someone you love.

Butternut Squash Pasta with Walnuts and Sage

If you love this butternut squash pasta…

Try this mushroom pasta, this kale pasta, this roasted veggie pasta, or this orecchiette next!

4.9 from 19 reviews

Butternut Squash Pasta with Walnuts & Sage

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This cozy butternut squash pasta is easy to make and is full of cozy fall flavor! Serve it for a healthy weeknight dinner or date night in.
Recipe type: Main dish
Serves: 2
  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or vegan butter or more olive oil)
  • 1 small shallot, sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped sage leaves
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Big squeeze of lemon
  • Splash balsamic vinegar
  • 4-6 ounces spaghetti or linguine (and save some pasta water)
  • A few handfuls of chopped spinach (or kale or chard)
  • ½ cup chopped parsley
  • Grated pecorino cheese (optional)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roast the butternut squash cubes with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper for about 20 minutes, or until they're soft and mostly cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  2. Cook pasta in salty water until al dente and reserve at least 1 cup of the starchy pasta water.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and butter, then add the shallot and cook until translucent. Add the chopped sage and cook for another 30 seconds, then add the walnuts, chickpeas, butternut squash cubes, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook until the chickpeas and squash brown a bit (but before the garlic burns).
  4. Add a big squeeze of lemon and a good splash of balsamic and stir.
  5. Add the cooked pasta and spinach. Use tongs to gently toss the pasta with everything in the pan, allowing the greens to wilt. Add pasta water to help loosen it (I used about ¼ cup).
  6. Add some grated pecorino at this step if you wish.
  7. Remove from heat, then stir in the chopped parsley.
  8. Taste and adjust seasonings and serve with extra grated cheese.
Make this vegan by skipping the butter (or use vegan butter) and omit cheese. Make this gluten-free by using gluten-free pasta.



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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. May

    Delicious! I’ve been trying to make more meatless meals and everyone loved this. I didn’t have chickpeas so I used mushrooms instead. Also my sage had died out so I had to resort to dried but it all turned out wonderful. I also added a few slices of leftover pancetta from carbonara. So it wasn’t entirely meatless but I didn’t buy any new ingredients to make this. I even used leftover pasta!
    We will be adding this to our rotation for sure

  2. Hayls

    Made this last night, forgot to order walnuts from supermarket but had pine nuts as suggested. Used linguine as the pasta. It was truly delicious. My husband, who doesn’t really like squash, was not expecting to like it so was really shocked at how tasty it was. Definitely doing this again!

  3. Alana

    I just made this for dinner and added some sautéed mushrooms, fresh thyme, and used penne pasta. This is one of my favorite pasta dishes I’ve ever made; it’s incredible.

    • Phoebe Moore

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  4. Vanessa

    You’re a genius. Bought a butternut squash for the first time – feeling the season this year. We started growing fresh sage at home. You didn’t let us down with your spaghetti squash how-to so I figured I’d check here for guidance on what to do with the butternut. Swapped walnuts for pinenuts, added pancetta since it was in the fridge. This hit the autumnal spot!

  5. Severine

    Thanks a lot ! I cooked this recipe with a shorter kind of pasta and it was very good. Love the addition of walnut. I put a little quantity of balsamic and lemon, i will add more next time 😉. Being the only one vegetarian in the family, my loved ones ate the dish with chicken marinated with italian spices. They loved it as well.

  6. Sharon

    Made this last night – delicious & not that hard. My husband, who is not a butternut fan, really liked it as well. Definitely a keeper!

  7. Maria

    Loved this twist on a classic! Adding the bit of spinach and chickpeas raises the nutritional content and fiber of this dish. The dash of white balsamic vinegars provides just a anouther touch of sweetness and acidity. It is very easy to make as well if you have meal prepped the pumpkin 👌🏼 Will definitely keep this one in rotation now in Autum 😋

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Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.