By: Chantal Urbina (bio)
‘Tis the season to cook with copious amounts of squash. Squash is a personal favourite of mine. They all tend to be super versatile and it’s a definite bonus that they keep for so long sitting in that pantry. And although there are many ways to enjoy these varied vegetables, I can’t deny the fact that pasta will always win. It will always win with adults and it will always win with children. There is no competition so why not please the whole table with one dish?
It was on a chilly day where I was especially craving a bowl of comforting pasta with a creamy sauce where I came up with this recipe. I did not know what to expect as an outcome and I decided not to give my husband any hints as to what this creation was. I love the honest feedback he provides me especially without knowing what the feature ingredient is. We loved it. It was rich, creamy, flavorful, and made with good wholesome ingredients. My toddler loved it as well but that was no surprise-she loves a good roasted veggie.
If you and/or your family do not do dairy for whatever reason or if you are just looking for something different, I definitely recommend trying out this pasta dish. Not only will you expand your culinary skills and your palate, you will also reap many health benefits. Pumpkin squash is high in Vitamin A which helps protect our eyesight. It is high in fibre which results in a properly functioning digestive system (this makes us extra happy). Pumpkin is also high in potassium and this is important for maintaining optimal muscle health.
I kept this dish super simple. Of course, if your child/ren are not extremely picky eaters-load up on extra vegetables. Roasted broccoli, green peas, caramelized onions and/or mushrooms, and chopped leafy greens are all great add-in suggestions. However fear not, this recipe as is counts as a completely nutritionally balanced meal-I made sure of it. This is to be served 100% guilt-free!
- 12 oz. your favorite pasta
- 1 tbsp. butter or cooking oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- ½ tsp. Paprika
- ½ tsp. Chili powder
- ¼ tsp. Black pepper
- ¼ tsp. Sea salt
- Pinch of nutmeg
- ¼ cup soaked raw cashews
- 3 tbsp. Hemp Hearts
- Reserved pasta water to thin sauce if needed (I added 3 tbsp.)
- Cook your pasta according to package directions.
- Melt the butter or oil in a skillet over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and onion and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Add the pumpkin puree and broth to the skillet and stir to combine.
- Add the paprika, chili powder, nutmeg, sea salt, and black pepper.
- Stir everything together and let cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes or so.
- Transfer the sauce mixture to a high powered blender for best results. Add the cashews and hemp hearts and blend until thoroughly combined. Add reserved pasta water if needed.
- Fold the sauce and cooked pasta together and garnish however you desire.
I am currently a retired Registered Massage Therapist on maternity leave with my first child. I am a certified Culinary Nutrition Expert and aim to create delicious but powerful meals that serve our bodies with the love and respect they deserve. Introducing solids to my daughter, Eliana, has further inspired me to create recipes with holistic foods. Motherhood has blessed me with the highest motivation to live the healthiest and happiest life that I can. Summers are when I shine my brightest as I live for adventures out in the sun. I live in Winnipeg with my daughter, husband and two cats.