This vegetarian acorn squash pasta sauce is made with roasted squash and onion, milk, and butter for an easy fall béchamel sauce. Serve it with your favorite pasta!
It's rainy and cold outside, and it seems like the perfect day to enjoy some warm, savory winter squash.
Admittedly, I don't need much of an excuse to eat squash.
Really, we've had so much winter squash!
I just can't get enough!
The winter squash we have the most of, though, is acorn squash. Our winter food storage area is filled with acorn squash!
Typically, I make roasted acorn squash slices served with cranberry sauce. This time, though, I had so much squash on hand that I wanted to try something new.
This acorn squash pasta sauce is inspired by the sauce in my butternut squash lasagna, and is a rich, thick sauce that's perfect for tossing with your favorite pasta.
How to Prepare Acorn Squash
To get your squash ready, you'll want to cut it in half.
I usually cut across the middle, but you can also cut from pole-to-pole (top to bottom). For this recipe, it doesn't matter which way you cut it.
Winter squash can be tricky to cut. Here's how I do it.
Use a large chef's knife and stick the knife point into the squash. Slowly rock the knife back and forth until a slit appears.
At this point, you can use more pressure and cut the squash totally in half.
Next, use a spoon or a scoop to remove the seeds and membrane.
Roast the Acorn Squash + Onion
Place the acorn squash and a wedged onion onto an oven-safe pan or a baking sheet. I used this Lodge 12" carbon steel skillet.
Season with paprika, chili flakes, nutmeg and sea salt.
Roast until the squash is tender.
If you want, you can roast the onions and squash ahead of time. Store them in the fridge for up to two days until you're ready to proceed.
How to Make Acorn Squash Pasta Sauce
Next, scoop the squash out of the peel.
Be careful if the squash is still hot!
Blend the onion and squash with milk. Set the mixture aside.
Next, melt butter in a large pan.
Whisk in a little flour. Gluten-free all purpose flour (such as Cup 4 Cup) works perfectly here, so use that if needed.
Continue whisking until there are no more lumps of flour.
Pour the squash mixture into the butter and whisk it together.
Heat the mixture until it thickens.
At this point, the sauce is almost ready!
Add a splash of wine vinegar to add acidity. Taste the sauce and add more salt or chili flakes if desired.
Serve it right away along with your favorite pasta and a little Parmesan or Asiago cheese, or store it in the fridge to use later.
Acorn Squash Pasta Sauce
- 2 pounds acorn squash, halved with seeds + membrane removed
- 1 onion, peeled + cut into wedges
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon flour Use gluten-free AP flour if needed
- ¼ ounce wine vinegar
- Preheat oven to 400°F.Place squash + onions on a baking sheet or oven-safe pan in a single layer. With squash flesh-side up, drizzle oil over squash and onions. Sprinkle with salt, paprika, chili flakes and nutmeg. Place squash flesh-side down.Roast 20-25 minutes or until tender.
- After cooking, carefully scoop the squash out of the peel. (You may need to allow the squash to cool down for a few minutes.)Add half the vegetables and all the milk to a blender basin. Blend until creamy. Add the remaining veggies and blend again.
- Add butter to a large pan and melt over medium heat. Whisk in the flour until it is completely absorbed by the butter.
- Add the puréed squash to the pan with the butter. Cook over medium heat for about two minutes, stirring often, and then remove from heat. Stir in the vinegar.Serve immediately along with fresh pasta or refrigerate and use within four days.