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Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese with Goat Cheese

This butternut squash mac and cheese recipe uses goat cheese, cheddar cheese, nutmeg, & a handful of other tasty ingredients to make your new favorite meal!
Servings 3 to 4

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups pasta measured uncooked, I use shells
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 bunch sage optional
  • 2 cups butternut squash diced
  • ¾ cup vegetable broth
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg or ⅛ tsp for a less pronounced nutmeg flavor
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar shredded
  • ¼ cup goat cheese crumbled, plus more for topping
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Boil pasta according to package directions in a large pot of generously salted water, drain, and set aside. You can add a tablespoon of cold butter to the pasta and stir to combine to help the pasta stop cooking.
  • Meanwhile, melt the butter in a separate large sauté pan. 
    If you're using sage leaves, sauté them in the hot butter for 1-2 minutes until crispy.  Transfer the sage leaves to a separate plate lined with paper towel and set aside. I use a slotted spoon to remove the sage leaves from the butter.
  • Add the cubed butternut squash, vegetable stock, and nutmeg to the pan with the butter and stir to combine. Cook until the stock reaches a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for 10-12 minutes, until the butternut squash is tender* and a fork can easily go through it. Stir occasionally.
  • Carefully pour the squash mixture into a blender and add the milk. Stir, and ensuring you lift an edge of the blender lid slightly so steam can escape, pulse the mixture until smooth.
  • Return the butternut squash mixture to the sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add the shredded cheddar cheese and goat cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth and well-incorporated.
  • Taste and season the sauce with salt and pepper. I start with about 1/4 tsp of salt and go from there.
  • Add the cooked pasta to the pan with the butternut squash mixture. Toss to combine. 
    Serve warm, and top each dish with a few crispy sage leaves and a small handful of more goat cheese if desired.

Notes

  • *I used frozen cubed butternut squash and it thaws really quickly in the pan. No need to let it thaw ahead of time. If you're using fresh cubed butternut squash, you may need to cook it for a few more minutes until it's tender. 
  • This makes great leftovers — the sauce stays nice and smooth.
  • Be sure to shred the cheese yourself (rather than buying pre-shredded cheese) to prevent the sauce from getting stringy. 
  • This will make about 3 servings for a main course or 4 servings as a side dish