Creamy Pumpkin Pasta – Love and Lemons

October 20, 2017

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Round 2 of the National Cookbook Month series is this creamy pumpkin pasta! If you didn’t see my last post, we’re celebrating October by reviewing a few recipes from The Love and Lemons Cookbook. I was intending to post this on Tuesday for National Pasta Day, but I’m finding efficiency is not one of sleepy pregnant ladies’ virtues.

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

While I was flipping through the book, I couldn’t help but stop on this page. Tell me this doesn’t scream comfort food. Although I initially thought this was mac and cheese, it’s creamy pumpkin brown rice penne. It’s a cashew and pumpkin-based sauce over brown rice pasta, making it both vegan and gluten-free. I didn’t have any brown rice penne on hand so I used some organic casarecce from Costco.

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

As with many creamy vegan dishes, it starts with some raw cashews soaked overnight. I didn’t remember to soak mine the night before so I poured boiling water over the cashews and soaked them for about half an hour.

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Although the recipe called for fresh kabocha squash, I had a can of pumpkin that needed to be used. Is this cheating?

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

The recipe tells you to roast the pumpkins along with the onions, garlic, and sage in the oven. Since I was using canned pumpkin, I didn’t feel like turning on the oven just for onions. I figured sauteeing them in the pan would be good enough. I also skipped the garlic because the baby hates garlic.

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

This creamy pumpkin pasta might not look as creamy as Jeanine’s does, but it’s because I currently don’t own a high power blender. Texture and looks aside, this dish was delicious! You could barely tell the sauce had pumpkin in it, which was nice since I was worried about it being too sweet. It was so flavorful and creamy, yet not heavy like regular cream sauce that Tristan and I ate much more than we usually do. Next time I’d like to try adding some nutritional yeast to make it closer to a mac and cheese.

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta

Yield: 4 servings

Creamy Pumpkin Pasta


  • 1 heaping cup (250ml) of mashed pumpkin
  • ½ cup (120ml) raw unsalted cashews
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped
  • 5 fresh sage leaves (plus extra if using for garnish)
  • ¾ cup (180ml) vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 16 oz (450g) uncooked short cut pasta
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Chili pepper flakes (optional)


  1. Place the raw cashews in a bowl and pour boiling water over them. Let the cashews soak for 30 minutes to an hour before draining and rinsing.
  2. In a pan, sautée the onions with a pinch of salt until translucent. Add the sage to the pan at the end and cook for a couple minutes and set aside.
  3. In a blender, add the soaked cashews, mashed pumpkin, sautéed onions and sage, vegetable broth, olive oil, salt and pepper. Blend until the mixture is creamy. Taste for seasonings.
  4. Cook the pasta according to package directions, reserving ½ cup (120ml) of the starchy pasta water before draining the pasta.
  5. Put the drained pasta back in the pot with the sauce and stir. Gradually add the pasta water until it reaches a desired consistency.


Recipe by Jeanine Donofrio, slightly changed to accommodate my current food aversion, and rewritten in my own words.

I’m bringing this creamy pumpkin pasta to this week’s Fiesta Friday, co-hosted by Petra and Vanitha!

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  • Reply Petra October 23, 2017 at 6:06 am

    I was just thinking of pumpkin and pasta yesterday but for a ravioli. I have never had pumpkin with sage, will have to try it! It sounds delicious as well as healthy! 🙂
    Thank you for sharing with us at Fiesta Friday!

    • Reply Ai October 30, 2017 at 1:12 pm

      Thank you, Petra!

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