Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese + Link Party

By Kate Riley October 16, 2012

So as I mentioned last week, October makes me crave comfort food big time.  Garlic mashed potatoes.  Cream of (blank) soups.  Pot roast.  Pumpkin bread.  The list goes on and on.

If I had to choose, if you really made me choose, I’d vote butternut squash as my favorite fall vegetable.  When paired with pasta, cream, and cheese, it’s the definition of comfort food.   

roasted butternut squash mac and cheese


Here’s what you’ll need! 

mac n cheese ingredients



4 cups diced raw butternut squash

3 cups uncooked elbow macaroni

sprig of fresh sage or ½ tsp dried sage

3 tbsp olive oil

7-8 oz. fontina cheese

½ tsp salt

¼ cup butter

⅔ cup half and half

⅓ cup breadcrumbs (plain or seasoned)

Coat the butternut squash in olive oil, top it with chopped sage and roast it in the oven at 350º for 40 minutes or until cooked through.

butternut squash diced


Cook macaroni in salted water according to box instructions.   Remove roasted butternut squash from oven and allow to cool 10 minutes.  Place squash in mixing bowl or blender.  Add half and half and salt and puree with hand mixer or in blender until smooth. 

half and half with squash


Toss cooked macaroni with pureed squash mixture and layer in large baking dish.  Sprinkle top with breadcrumbs, melted butter, and shredded fontina. 

coated macaroni

sprinkle cheese


Bake a total of 35 minutes at 350º, uncovered for 15 minutes until topping is slightly browned, then cover with foil for remaining 20 minutes.  Serve hot!

butternut squash mac and cheese


Printable recipe here.

Comfort food really should be one of the daily food groups, don’t you think?

Link up your favorite Comfort Food Recipe! 



  1. I love butternut squash! Your recipe looks heavenly. Gonna have to Pin this one. ;) Thank you for hosting! I linked up my Baked Choc. Donut recipe…very tasty. I may link up another later on, if it’s okay.

  2. That sounds completely divine… I want to make it for dinner tonight! Your pictures are fantastic, as usual. I linked up Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies… you’ll never be able to stop eating them…

  3. OOh this all looks delish. This is gonna be a problem. As the weather gets cooler there is a tendancy to eat more and go outside less. Then cookie season right around the corner.Somebody help me : )

  4. Love this idea for a comfort food party! I’m sure I’ll be pinning away. =) You’re mac and cheese looks soo good. I may have to give it a try. Thanks for hosting, Kate. Have a great week!

    ~ Catie

  5. My mouth is watering and my stomach growling as I type! I love butternut squash too, and have some in the fridge right now. Definitely going to try out this recipe…and several of the already posted links. Guess my diet starts tomorrow! :)

  6. My mom LOVES Butternut Squash. Will definitely have to surprise her with this one. :) I have at least 30 favorite comfort foods, and they all come in large carb forms.

    (Laughing because I thought of linking up about FIVE times today, even as close as30 minutes before you posted and then blink and three hours has gone by and 100 links later. haha )

  7. LOVE butternut squash AND mac and cheese! Put them together and I’m drooling a little. This looks delicious, can’t wait to try it :)

  8. Kate, I think my husband would love this recipe–he’s a huge fan of butternut squash. I like it, too, but haven’t made much with it because the boys never cared for it. . . but shoot, two of them are away at college now! Thank you for sharing this recipe.

    And thanks for hosting the link party. I make super-easy and really delicious chicken pie from leftover homemade chicken soup, so I linked up my recipe for that. “Chicken pie” in my family of origin never referred to something in a pastry crust–that was the think you bought frozen. “Chicken pie” was pretty much the same as chicken and dumplings but with biscuits on the top instead of dumplings in the mixture. It’s still one of my favorite comfort foods, and this dish all my boys are glad to eat–especially since it’s served with homemade mashed potatoes to go with all that delicious gravy. Like you, I find that my waistline doesn’t always agree with what’s really comforting–but at this time of year, yummy and warm wins over low-fat and low-calorie. :)

    • Hi Kate, sadly no nutritional info beyond what you’d find on the packaging. So sorry!

  9. Now I’ve googled ‘half and half’ for the UK readers (light cream!), this is on my list to try next week! Thank you :-)

  10. Thanks for the link up! I’ll be saving this for when our kitchen is back in working order :) I linked up one of my fave butternut squash recipes. Its actually similar to yours but really, can anyone have enough butternut squash recipes? :)

  11. O my goodness, another way with mac and cheese, a personal weakness, and given that I love butternut squash, this has to be a winner. It’s always fun to visit your site.

  12. I had my post up LAST NIGHT and then forgot to link with you at 1……BUMMER !
    Your squash looks amazing…yum…we will try this one.

  13. Absolutely, no question, best time of year for food. All the winter squashes (butternut, acorn, etc) and root vegetables (turnip, parsnip, etc) are just so brilliant and require very little extra ingredients to make them shine. I’m making a very easy pumpkin soup tonight – actually roasting pumpkins, not using canned. Makes a big difference. Plus homemade chicken stock – that is the secret ingredient.

  14. Weird, I just made a very similar version of this tonight for dinner. I snuck in 6 tbsp of nutritional yeast for protein. The anti-health teenage boy didn’t know about that or the squash. Gotta love that!

  15. Butternut squash mac and cheese is a favorite at my house too! The only thing I do different is skip the half and half and use 1% milk. I add the squash to the pasta, pour the milk/cheese mixture over and mix it up. The squash gets pretty soft roasting so it breaks up as you are mixing. I also like to crumble some ginger snaps and sprinkle over the top before baking. So good!

  16. This looks so good! I love the comfort foods of cooler weather, but having to rethink them since I discovered I’m gluten-intolerant. So glad there are good substitutes out there now!

  17. Oh yum Kate..it will take me a whole day to look at all of these great recipes..Thanks to everyone!

  18. Just made it and it tasts every bit as good as it looks, I can’t stop eating – thanks Kate!

  19. I’m a huge squash fan, but most of my family members dislike it. I wonder if I can tempt them with this, or if I can cut the recipe down, for my own little entre. :) :) Willing to try.

    Thanks for sharing,

  20. I made this and it was very good. Seemed like something was missing. I think next time I will add some cinnamon. Thanks for sharing.

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