Fall is one of the most anticipated seasons of the year–and for a good reason! The temperature begins to drop, the leaves change into a vibrant array of colors, and the holidays are right around the corner. Along with fall comes seasonal ingredients like butternut squash, pumpkin spice, sage, and bright, crisp apple, all of which make delicious ingredients in autumnal-forward recipes.
And as the temperature begins to drop, we start craving those warm and cozy dishes that help bring the season to life inside our homes. Pasta practically becomes a necessity and whipping up a standard spaghetti and meatballs feels out of place. So, we’ve compiled three recipes that take some of the most loved fall flavors and transform them into seasonal dishes that will help you celebrate the enchanting change of weather.
1. Creamy Butternut Squash with Veggie-Based Linguini
SERVES 4 | FINISH IN 24 MINUTES
Nothing feels more fall like creamy butternut squash, and this recipe will have the whole family asking for seconds.
- 1/2 of a butternut squash, peeled and diced
- 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tsp salt
- Pepper, to taste
- 1 box Veggiecraft Farms Cauliflower Linguini
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup fresh sage leaves
- 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts
Optional: Shaved parmesan cheese for topping
- Preheat the oven to 400°. Then, peel and dice butternut squash, and toss with 1 tbsp olive oil and salt.
- Transfer squash to a sheet pan and roast for 30-40 minutes or until tender.
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
- While squash is roasting, add 1/4 cup of vegetable oil to a small skillet over medium heat until it simmers. Then, add fresh sage leaves and fry for about 15 seconds.
- Transfer to paper towels.
- When squash is finished, add pasta to salted water and cook according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, add squash to a blender with vegetable broth, milk, tomato paste, salt, pepper and remaining 2 tbsp olive oil. Blend until smooth and creamy.
- Toss cooked pasta with sauce. Top with fried sage, hazelnuts and parmesan (optional).
2. Caramelized Onion & Apple Pasta with Sage
SERVES 6 | FINISH IN 55 minutes
Packed with seasonal flavors like roasted garlic, caramelized onions, sage, and crisp, sweet apple, this unique dish will make your entire home burst with fall aromas.
For the pasta
- 1 large head garlic, roasted
- 3 medium yellow onions, caramelized
- 12 ounces Veggiecraft Farms Penne Pasta
- ½ tablespoon salt for pasta water
- ¾ cup reserved pasta water
- ½ cup good-quality extra virgin olive oil
- 2-3 large apples, cored, peeled and diced
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 cup firmly packed fresh sage, minced
- 5 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tablespoon nutritional yeast
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
Optional: garnish with fresh sage, chopped and/or Italian flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped Parmesan cheese, and/or freshly ground black pepper
- Ahead of time, you’ll want to get your head of garlic in the oven to roast as this can take up to 40 minutes to an hour. While garlic is roasting, caramelize 3 onions until crispy and golden brown and set aside.
- To make the pasta, fill a 5.5-quart pot with 10 cups of water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Add ½ tablespoon of salt to the water before adding pasta, and set a timer for the instructed cooking time on the box.
- Once the noodles are done cooking, save about ¾ cup of the starchy pasta water before draining, then drain the remaining water and place the cooked noodles back in the dry pot. Drizzle and toss with extra virgin olive oil to prevent sticking and set aside.
- Heat a 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat, then add ½ cup olive oil, 4 cups diced apples, roasted garlic cloves, caramelized onions, ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, using a wooden spoon to break up the roasted garlic cloves, and sauté the mixture until apples are tender (about 15 minutes)
- To make the pecan crumble, preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, and place 1 cup raw pecans on a bare baking sheet. Bake pecans for around 8 minutes until warm and fragrant, then place toasted pecans in a mini food processor with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ tablespoon nutritional yeast and ¼ teaspoon fine salt. Process until fine and crumbly (about 10 seconds). Set aside.
- Add cooked pasta to the 12-inch sauté pan with the apples and caramelized onions and toss well. Then, add ¾ cup reserved pasta water and toss well over medium heat. Sauté for another five minutes until the water absorbs. Add 5 ounces baby spinach and pecan crumble during the last minute of cooking.
- Turn off the burner and stir in the minced sage, adjusting for flavors as needed.
- Serve the pasta hot with garnishes of choice.
3. Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese
SERVES 6-8 | FINISH IN 1hr 20min
If you have little ones in your home, this twist on your standard mac and cheese dish will delight their small palates while getting a hefty serving of veggies into their diet.
- 1/2 medium butternut squash, seeded
- Olive oil, for drizzling
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- 12 oz. Veggiecraft Farms Elbow Pasta (about 3 cups)
- 2 onions, thinly sliced
- 1 stick salted butter
- 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 2 c. whole milk, plus more as needed
- 2 c. grated sharp cheddar cheese (about 8 ounces)
- 1/2 c. seasoned breadcrumbs
- Preheat the oven to 400 ̊. Drizzle the squash with olive oil and place it cut-side up on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast until tender and browned in spots (about 50 to 70 minutes) watching to ensure the surface doesn’t get burned. Scrape out the flesh and mash it with a potato masher. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside, leaving the oven on for later.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, then add the pasta and cook as the package directs for al dente. Drain, rinse under cold water, and set aside.
- Combine the onions and 2 tablespoons butter in a large cast-iron skillet over low to medium-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are a deep golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove to a plate or bowl and set aside.
- Add 4 tablespoons butter to the same skillet and melt over medium-low heat. Sprinkle in the flour and whisk to make a thin paste. Cook for 2 minutes, then whisk in the milk. Continue to whisk gently, until slightly thickened (about another 2 minutes). Add salt and other seasonings to taste.
- Turn the heat to low and stir in the mashed butternut squash. When it is warmed through, stir in the cheese. If the sauce is too thick when the cheese is melted, add a splash of milk. Keep stirring until the sauce is nice and hot. Finally, stir in the onions and then the macaroni. Taste and add more salt if needed.
- Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in the microwave, then add the breadcrumbs and toss to coat. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the macaroni and bake it straight in the skillet until the crumbs are golden and the edges are bubbly, (about 15 minutes).