Butternut Squash Sausage Pasta
This Butternut Squash Sausage Pasta is steeping with flavor! The brown butter sage sauce coats delicious butternut squash cubes, perfectly cooked mushrooms, and sweet Italian sausage! It’s the best fall pasta recipe.
Needless to say I’m a bit of a butternut squash enthusiast! It is by far my favorite squash. It makes the perfect sauce for my Butternut Squash Pasta; and the perfect filling for my Butternut Squash Pasta! It even tastes amazing with Alfredo in my Creamy Butternut Squash Alfredo with Maple Glazed Bacon recipe!
Why This Recipe Works
- Brown butter butternut squash pasta. You are going to love this butternut squash with sage recipe! The browned butter tastes amazing with the different elements and really kicks the sauce up an extra notch.
- Delicately delicious mushrooms. I love a good butternut squash mushroom pasta. If you aren’t really sure about mushrooms, I hope you’ll still try this recipe because it may just convert you to them!
- Addictively tasty. I kid you not, I ate this sage mushroom pasta recipe for breakfast, lunch … and dinner the day after I made this! I know! I was just craving it all day long. I promise you’ll love the fall flavors of it just as much!
- Penne: You don’t have to use penne. Feel free to use your favorite pasta or any you have on hand. I would recommend a pasta similar to penne and not use a long pasta like spaghetti for linguini.
- Italian Sausage: Casings removed. You can use the Italian sausage that is in casings or your local grocery store may sell the tubes of ground Italian sausage. You can also use spicy sausage instead if you’d prefer more spice in the pasta dish.
- Butternut Squash: Be sure to peel the squash, remove the pulp inside and cut into small cubes. This will help the squash cook more quickly.
- White Mushrooms: If you aren’t a fan of mushrooms, you can omit the mushrooms or sub them out for something else.
- Red Pepper Flakes: This is just a tiny amount so it won’t provide much heat at all. If you want more heat, add more red pepper flakes!
- Unsalted Butter: This is for the brown butter sauce. If you have any questions about browning butter, then my Brown Butter Recipe will be a big help!
- Fresh Sage Leaves: Butternut squash with sage is one of my favorite flavor combinations! You’ll get a stronger and more prominent flavor from the sage if it is fresh.
- Brown the sausage. Cook the sausage in a large skillet over medium heat, breaking up the meat as you go. Once fully cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Drain excess grease.
- Cook the butternut squash. Add a tablespoon of olive oil to the empty skillet. Add the cubed butternut squash and cook for about 8 minutes. Season with sat and pepper. Add the mushrooms, garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until the squash is fork tender and the mushrooms are softened and browned.
- Cook the pasta. While the squash is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the penne and cook until al dente. Drain (but reserve 1 1/2 cup of the pasta water!).
- Combine veggies and noodles. Now that you have the cooked pasta and the water has been drained from the noodles, add the sausage, butternut squash and mushroom mixture to the pot of noodles.
- Make the brown butter sage sauce. Follow my How to Brown Butter recipe to brown the butter. Once the butter is browned, remove the skillet from the heat and add the fresh sage leaves. Pour the brown butter sage sauce over the pasta and stir to combine. Add 1 cup of the additional pasta water to loosen up the mixture (add more if needed).
- Serve! Serve this butternut squash sausage pasta with fresh parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Feel free to use a different pasta. Bowtie, rigatoni or ziti would all be great options!
If you are having problems telling if the butter has been browned, using a white pan can help so you can see the butter browning.
If you aren’t a mushroom fan, feel free to omit them. I didn’t grow up eating mushrooms because my mom doesn’t like them, but since leaving the house I’ve come to love them! I hope you will too 🙂
For an in-depth look at how to brown butter, along with tips and FAQS, check out my How to Brown Butter post!
Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing
You can make brown butter ahead of time and store it in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-4 days prior to making the butternut squash with sage recipe. Just give the butter a turn in the microwave to return to a liquid state and add the fresh sage.
Store any leftover butternut squash sausage pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.
I don’t recommend freezing the butternut squash mushroom pasta because I will get mushy. However, if you’d like to freeze the butternut squash mushroom and sausage mixture, you can. Store it in an airtight container or freezer safe bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. Remove and let thaw in the fridge overnight. Then continue with the recipe from that point.
Brown butter is the process of cooking the butter to separate the milk solids and brown those! Browned butter has a nutty aroma to it and the overall color of successfully browned butter is a golden amber color.
Sure, but I would probably only use acorn squash or another winter squash if you were to use a different squash. Otherwise you won’t get the right type of flavor or texture.
You probably didn’t cook it long enough. Also, be sure to cut the butternut squash into small cubes. This will help the squash cook quicker.
More Pasta Recipes
- Easy Baked Ziti
- Ricotta Pesto Pasta
- Shrimp Scampi with Linguini
- Red Pesto Pasta
- Goat Cheese and Asparagus Spinach Pasta
Butternut Squash Mushroom Pasta
- 1 lb penne
- 1 lb sweet Italian sausage - casings removed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 (heaping) cups butternut squash - diced into 1/2-1 inch cubes.
- 10 oz white mushrooms - sliced
- 2 garlic cloves - minced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 10 fresh sage leaves
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. Once boiling, add 1 T of kosher salt. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain the water. Reserving 1 ½ cups of pasta water.
- While the pasta is cooking, grab a skillet and brown the sausage over medium heat. Breaking up the sausage into little pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook until no longer pink. Use a slotted spoon and transfer the sausage to a paper towel lined plate.
- Discard the sausage drippings, if any.
- Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the now empty skillet. Add the cubed butternut squash to the skillet. Sprinkle the squash with the salt and pepper. Cook for 8 minutes or so. Add the mushrooms, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Cook until fork tender and the mushrooms have softened and browned. About 3-4 more minutes. Transfer the cooked squash and mushrooms to the pot with the drained pasta.
- Add the butter to the skillet. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly. The butter will begin to foam and then small golden specks will appear towards the bottom of the skillet. (Easiest to use a white colored skillet if possible). The butter will have a nice nutty aroma to it.
- Remove the butter from the heat. Add the sage leaves to the butter and stir.
- Add the sausage and butternut squash to the pasta. Pour the sage butter overtop and mix everything to combine. Sprinkle the parmesan overtop and stir to incorporate. Add pasta water to loosen up the noodles. I added about 1 cup of the pasta water to the pasta. You can gauge how much you’d like to add.
- Serve immediately.