It's crazy to think that it is already mid-October and fall and winter seasons are quickly creeping in. But one of the best things about the cold weather is the accessibility of unique seasonal produce that is almost impossible to get at other times of the year. A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon a a beautiful butternut squash on a quick grocery run to Trader Joe's one day and I just had to get it. Not knowing what to make with it, I began scouring the internet for butternut squash recipes. Finally, I made up my mind and decided to put a modern take on a classic pasta dish by creating a butternut squash carbonara recipe. By combining fall flavors with classic pasta staples (and a few things hanging out in my pantry and fridge), I was able to create a recipe that bound to be a crowd pleaser. 

Butternut Squash Carbonara Recipe

  • Prep Time:10 mins
  • Cook Time:40 mins
  • Total Time:50 mins
  • Servings:8
  • Medium


  • 3 cups butternut squash cubed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onions finely chopped
  • 4 oz bacon cooked
  • 1 tsp garlic minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground sage
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • fresh or ground basil to garnish
Lissane Kafie
  • Step 1

    Peel and cut the butternut squash and cube it. In a big saucepan, cook the onions with the olive oil until they begin to look translucent. Meanwhile, boil water and cook the spaghetti noodles.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 2

    Separately, cut the bacon into pieces and cook until golden.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 3

    Add the butternut squash cubes into the saucepan and let them cook until they are slightly softened. Once they are done, add in the heavy cream.

    #spoontip: Use a fork to pick out a cube of butternut squash to taste for doneness.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 4

    Transfer the mixture into a blender (warning: It will be hot), and pulse until the sauce is completely homogenous. Or, as I say, until the noodles are al dente.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 5

    Bring the mixture into the same saucepan you used before and continue cooking. Add cinnamon, sage, salt and pepper.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 6

    Finally, pour the sauce into the noodles and mix until the noodles are covered in the sauce. Add the bacon and incorporate it into the pasta.

    Lissane Kafie
  • Step 7

    Serve in a plate topped with Parmesan cheese and ground or fresh basil to garnish.

    Lissane Kafie

The number one thing for me when I enter the kitchen is to make something that I will personally enjoy. Because I love both pasta and butternut squash, this recipe seemed to fit perfectly.

What I learned from making this recipe, is to not be afraid of taking risks in the kitchen. Spaghetti carbonara is an Italian classic, but creatively adding butternut squash and bacon instead of pancetta and eggs still achieves the same flavors and textures associated with a carbonara pasta while putting you one step closer to being a master chef. Since the butternut squashes are blossoming and the temperature is dropping, take this recipe and whip up a batch of butternut squash carbonara for dinner tonight to warm up on a brisk fall day.