This butternut squash mac and cheese produces the same comfort as regular mac and cheese but has a unique taste. It's endlessly creamy and incredibly flavorful. There's no doubt that your family will love it!
I photographed this recipe last year around this time and never shared it. I even teased you on Instagram and asked if you wanted the recipe, you screamed YES and then... I never posted it.
To be honest, this time last year, I had good days and really bad days with my pregnancy. I had craved butternut squash non-stop (weird, I know), devoured this pasta, and then had zero energy to ever edit the photos and share the recipe. Well my friends, the time has come to finally share the recipe with you.
I promise that this creamy butternut squash mac and cheese was worth the wait!
Creamy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Ingredients
This recipe can be easily adapted to gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan (or all) with a few small adjustments. See the recipe notes for details.
- Butternut Squash: This is the base of the sauce.
- Chicken Broth: The chicken broth helps stretch/thin out the sauce slightly while giving it flavor.
- Milk: This helps add creaminess to the sauce.
- Garlic/Salt/Pepper/Ground Mustard: Each of these provide flavor to the sauce.
- Greek Yogurt: This helps add creaminess to the sauce. You want a plain yogurt so it doesn't add flavor.
- Pasta: Any small type of pasta work for this recipe. I prefer to use penne, elbows, or bowtie because they easily soak up the sauce.
- Kale: The kale is completely optional but I love the addition of it in the mac and cheese.
How To Make Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
This butternut squash mac and cheese only requires a few steps and done in just 40 minutes!
- Pasta: Start the pasta water (we all know how long it takes for a pot of water to boil.) Starting the water first will allow you to cook the pasta as you make the sauce. The last minute of the pasta, add in the kale, if using. Strain the pasta and kale.
- Butternut Squash Mixture: Combine the butternut squash, broth, milk, garlic, ground mustard, salt, and pepper in a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and allow it to simmer for 20 minutes. You want the squash to be very tender so it blends easily.
- Make the Sauce: To a blender, add the butternut squash mixture. Add the yogurt and place the lid on the top and blend until smooth (scraping down the sides as needed.) Pour into a large bowl and stir in the cheese, if using.
- Combine the Pasta: In a large bowl, add the pasta and stir in the butternut squash sauce.
I recently made this mac and cheese and it was gobbled up quick, especially by almost 7 month old! This recipe is perfect for any size family— large or small. There's 3 of us and we had leftovers for days. We're talking lunch leftovers for the week!
It's hard to convince someone that a sauce, made primarily from squash could produce a creamy, delicious, comforting sauce. And your right, it's not mac and cheese, but it's pretty darn close!
More Dinner Recipes To Try
Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- 4 and 1/2 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash (about 1 large squash)
- 1 and 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 and 1/4 cups milk
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/3 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 and 1/2 cups kale, roughly chopped with stems discarded
- 1 pound penne pasta (or any shape/variety)
- 1 cup shredded cheese, optional
- Combine the butternut squash, broth, milk, garlic, ground mustard, salt, and pepper in a medium sauce pan over medium-high beat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for 20 minutes. You want the butternut squash very tender, it should easily fall apart with a fork. Set aside.
- Start the pasta: I usually do this while the butternut squash is simmering. Bring enough water for your pasta to a boil, add a pinch of salt, and the pasta. Cook the pasta as directed. Add the kale, if adding, and cook for a minute. Drain the pasta and the kale. Set aside.
- Make the sauce: Add the butternut squash mixture into a blender. Add the yogurt. Place the lid on the top and blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl and stir in the cheese, if using. Taste the sauce and add more garlic/salt/pepper, if needed. Serve immediately.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Pasta stays fresh in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It can also be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Chicken Broth: The broth provides so much flavor. If needed, you can substitute vegetable broth.
- Milk: Any unflavored milk can be used. I often use oat milk.
- Yogurt: Any unflavored milk can be used. I normally use a dairy-free version.
- Pasta: This recipe works best with a small type pasta like penne, elbows or bowties.
- Kale: Feel free to omit completely.