I know, I know. Another pumpkin recipe. Every year by August I am so fully ready for fall that I can hardly stand myself. Autumn is my favorite time of year, and in South Carolina, you really have to treasure the fleeting season. When I’m ready for fall even though Mother Earth isn’t quite there, I bring the season out in my home and in my kitchen. Lighting an apple candle, planning out holiday gifts, or wearing a knitted shawl in the early morning help cool my impatience for the season. Cooking with fall flavors also helps! My Creamy Pumpkin Pasta with Mushrooms and Spinach is especially great for a late summer meal because it’s not quite as heavy as some winter dishes, but has all that fall flair.
You’re Going to Love This Recipe
This dish ticks SO many boxes for all kinds of eaters!
- It’s naturally vegan. My very not-vegan, butcher husband is not opposed to plant-based meals, but he’s not exactly thrilled about them either. The first time I made this dish, which was purely me just messing around with leftovers, he ate two huge bowls. It’s a great way to lighten up a meal and incorporate plant-based dinners without feeling like what non-vegans would say is a vegan meal.
- It takes less than 30 minutes. You can make the sauce in the time it takes to make the pasta, then toss everything right at the end in either the skillet or the pot. How easy is that?
- It’s super comforting, but still gut-friendly. Because the creaminess comes from pumpkin and tahini, not dairy, you get all the creamy, dreamy comfort food without feeling achingly full or eating tons of dairy.
- It’s easy to customize. Y’all know I love a dish you can make your own! We love this with mushrooms and spinach, but you could add any vegetables you love or have on hand. Fresh herbs like chives, basil, thyme, sage, or rosemary are also a great idea.
Serving Ideas for Creamy Pumpkin Pasta
While this dish makes a complete meal on its own, you can switch it up by serving it with different things.
If you want to add a protein, this dish would pair well alongside roasted chicken or grilled lamb. Pan-fried tempeh would also be delicious with this pasta.
Adding hearty roasted vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower would add more variety to this dish. Some great optional garnishes are toasted pepitas, chopped pecans, grated parmesan, or a dollop of fresh ricotta on top.
How to Store Creamy Pumpkin Pasta with Mushrooms and Spinach
This dish keeps so well in the fridge! You can store your finished dish in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. I really like this dish served cold, but since the family thinks that is absolutely weird (they’re probably right!), I warm it on the stovetop over medium-low heat with the lid on. If you need to loosen the sauce a bit, you can add in water or stock a tablespoon at a time, stirring it completely throughout the sauce, and keeping the lid on so it doesn’t steam out the moisture.
Check out these other pumpkin recipes from the Bad Wife!
For more photos of this recipe and all the other homemaking projects I’m doing, including recipes, knitting patterns, and other fun stuff, find me on Instagram!
Creamy Pumpkin Pasta with Mushrooms and Spinach
- 1 box dried pasta of your choice Shape does not matter, but choose a good quality brand.
- 8 ounces pureed pumpkin (1/2 can) Choose pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling.
- 8 ounces button or baby bella mushrooms (1 package)
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh spinach leaves
- 1 cup reserved pasta cooking water
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- black pepper to taste
- Fill a medium pot with water and add a generous amount of salt. Put it over high heat. Keep an eye on this pot and begin your sauce in the meantime.
- While the pasta water comes to a boil, clean and slice the mushrooms, peel and mince the garlic, and peel and dice the onion.
- Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion, stirring occassionally, for about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and a sprinkle of salt. Stirring occasionally, cook until the mushrooms are golden and soft.
- Add the minced garlic and stir, cooking for a couple of mintues. Do not let the garlic burn.
- When the pasta water comes to a full boil, add your pasta and cook according to the package instructions. When it comes time to drain the pasta, reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
- Once the mushrooms are completely cooked, add the pumpkin and stir to completely combine what is in the pan.
- Add the tahini, salt, pepper, and dried herbs. Add the nutritional yeast if you are using it. Stire everything to combine.
- Take your reserved pasta water and add it little by little, constantly stirring, until the sauce is the consistency you prefer. If you want to add fresh herbs or grated cheese, now is the time.
- Remove the skillet from the heat.
- Add the spinach leaves to your hot sauce, stirring them in to combine. They will wilt in the residual heat of this sauce.
- Toss your pasta with the sauce, making sure to really combine everything so each serving has mushrooms and spinach. Serve immediately with the garnish of your choice.