Ok I’m totally in love with all things pumpkin right now! For some reason this year I just can’t stop… I want pumpkin everything. I even stocked up on extra Sugar Pie pumpkins so I can roast them and freeze the pumpkin pulp for the future! Luckily my family is very supportive and just as in love with my pumpkin recipes as I am!
Today I am going to share with you a delicious and super easy weekday meal. This pumpkin spinach pasta recipe can be ready in less than 20 minutes. Pumpkin lover or not…it’s hard to resist a meal that can be ready so quickly.
I love the way this pumpkin pasta looks. It can be beautifully presented on a plate with freshly grated parmesan cheese and toasted chopped walnuts. I personally think that this dish would be a perfect meal to serve at a dinner party as well. It’s quick, effortless, loved by adults and children and most importantly, it is delicious.
Its also nice to have vegetarian meals during the week for a change. In my house we eat a lot of meat so it’s good to be able to go meatless for a meal and still feel like your hunger is satisfied. This dish will do just that!
Can I make this pumpkin spinach pasta sauce recipe vegan or dairy free?
Yes, if you replace the half and half to equal parts coconut milk you can make this recipe vegan friendly. I actually prefer the vegan version of this as I love the nuttiness flavors the coconut milk adds to this recipe.
If you do not want to add any dairy and are not a fan of coconut flavor, omit this completely and increase the amount of crushed tomatoes and oil to make up the difference.
How do you freeze Sugar Pie pumpkins?
I always stock up on seasonal fruits and vegetables, especially squashes which freeze very well. In order to freeze your pumpkins for later use:
1. Cut the pumpkin in half and discard all the seeds
2. Bake it in the oven at 375 degrees F for 45-60 minutes
3. Scoop out your pumpkin with a spoon
4. Once cooled, place in freezer bags and freeze for later use.
You can also freeze pumpkins without baking and pureeing them. You can peel the pumpkin and cut it up in chunks and freeze as is in freezer bags.
Can I make the pumpkin pasta sauce ahead of time?
Yes, this is one of those dishes that actually taste better with time. As simple and quick as this recipe is, I would still recommend doubling up the recipe as I am a true believer of cooking once and eating 2-3 times by freezing some leftovers.
If the plan is to make the sauce and save it for later use, I would recommend that you not add the half and half and spinach until you are ready to use the sauce. You can store the sauce in a mason jar in the fridge for up to 2 -3 weeks
When you are ready to use the sauce, just pour it out into a sauce pan to heat and add your half and half or coconut milk. Once it starts simmering, add a few handfuls of spinach and pour over your favorite cooked pasta.
What can I substitute the spinach with?
I know, I have them too…picky eaters! Sometimes we have to alter our recipes to satisfy everyone at the kitchen table. If you or your kids are not a spinach fan, you can either disregard the vegetables all together from this recipe or you can swap it out for one of the following:
- Green Beans
- Bell Peppers
Is this pumpkin sauce Keto friendly?
Yes the sauce is Keto friendly. Since it can’t be eaten with regular pasta because of the high carb count, you can try this pumpkin sauce with zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice.
Can I use canned pumpkin puree?
Yes, you can use canned pumpkin puree for this recipe if you do not have fresh pumpkin on hand. Using canned pumpkin for this recipe will not alter the flavor what-so-ever. Canned sugar pie pumpkin puree can be found in stores.
How long can I keep leftovers?
Keep the sauce in an air tight container once completely cooled and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Can I freeze the pumpkin pasta sauce?
You can also freeze this sauce if you like. Make sure it is completely cooled and stored in a freezer safe container or freezer bags for up to 4 months. When ready to eat, just pull out of the freezer and let thaw in the fridge overnight. Pour into a sauce pan and allow it to simmer. Then serve over your favorite cooked pasta and enjoy.
Try this Pumpkin Turkey Chili recipe!
- 8-10 oz of your favorite pasta
- 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
- 1.5 cup pure pumpkin puree
- 3 tbsp crushed or pureed tomatoes
- 3 tbsp half and half
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- Black pepper and salt to taste
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- ¼ cup chopped toasted walnuts
- Optional Parmesan cheese and extra toasted walnuts for garnish
- Cook the pasta according to package instructions. Drain and set aside but keep it warm.
- While the pasta cooks, bring a large skillet to medium heat and add the olive oil and minced garlic.
- Cook just until fragrant.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, pumpkin puree, half and half until smooth.
- Add the vegetable broth, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Stir until combined.
- Allow it to cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the spinach. Cook until it lightly wilts 2-3 minutes.
- Pour over your favorite pasta
- Optional: top with walnuts and Parmesan cheese
Preparing Fresh Pumpkin Puree
- Cut the pumpkin in half and discard all the seeds
- Bake it in the oven at 375 degrees F for 45-60 minutes
- Scoop out your pumpkin with a spoon