One-Pan Creamy Pumpkin, Sausage and Spinach Pasta

Serves 6.

Note: Pumpkin may seem like a strange ingredient in pasta, but Italians know how delicious it is in savory dishes like this one with sausage, spinach and a generous amount of fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. From Meredith Deeds.

• 2 tbsp. unsalted butter

• 1 medium onion, chopped

• 1 lb. bulk Italian sausage

• 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

• 12 oz. dried cavatappi or other pasta

• 4 c. chicken stock (low-sodium, if purchased)

• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg

• 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes

• 1 c. canned pumpkin purée

• 1/2 c. heavy cream

• 4 c. baby spinach leaves, coarsely chopped

• 1/4 c. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving

• 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice


Heat butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the onion begins to brown. Lower the heat to medium and continue to cook for another 5 to 7 minutes, until the onion is browned.

Add sausage and cook, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon, for 5 to 6 minutes, or until cooked through. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

Add pasta, stock, nutmeg, pepper and red pepper flakes to the skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 9 minutes, stirring occasionally. (There will be a bit of liquid left in the skillet.)

Stir in the pumpkin and cream and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until sauce is slightly thickened and pasta is tender, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in spinach and Parmesan.

Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with more Parmesan cheese on the side.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 590 Carbohydrates 58 g Protein 26 g Fat 28 g Saturated fat 13 g Cholesterol 80 mg Sodium 610 mg

Added sugars 1 g

Dietary fiber 5 g

Exchanges per serving: 3 starch, 1 carb, 2 ½ high-fat protein, 2 ½ fat.