Winter Squash Mac and Cheese

I saw butternut squash mac and cheese recipes circling Pinterest for a while, but I was skeptical until I tried it for myself. While I initially had doubts, using squash in mac and cheese has honestly been the best healthy cooking hack I’ve ever found! My husband didn’t even realize it had any vegetables in it! 

I’ve left my winter squash mac and cheese recipe pretty basic so you can customize it to your personal nutrition needs and taste preferences. Enjoy! 


Isabella’s Winter Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe. 

Servings: ~ 4 cups of mac and cheese

Ingredients: 

  • 1 lb Winter Squash 
  • 3/4 cup Milk 
  • 1 tsp Salt 
  • 4 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Penne Pasta, Uncooked 
  • 1- 1 1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese, Shredded 
  • 1/2 cup milk (if needed)
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste 
  • Spice Recommendations: Cayenne Pepper, Garlic Salt, Italian Seasoning, Dry Mustard, or Paprika

Notes about the ingredients: 

  • Any winter squash works, so choose whichever one is cheapest at your grocery store! I’ve used delicata, butternut, and sweet dumpling squash. 
  • You can use any type of milk or milk substitute. I used skim milk to reduce the amount of saturated fat, and the dish was still creamy. Start with 3/4 cup of milk. If pasta is too thick after adding the cheese, add more milk. 
  • I have used both low-fat mozzarella cheese and cheddar cheese for this recipe, and I preferred the mozzarella cheese.
  • Add one (or a combination) of the spices listed as spice recommendations. 
  • The key to this recipe is using lots of salt and spices so if you are on a sodium restricted diet this may not be the best recipe for you.

Directions: 

  1. Fill a medium-sized pot with water. Boil water. 
  2. Peel the skin off the squash and cut lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Chop squash into small pieces. Add squash to boiling water. Boil for ~14 minutes. Use a colander to drain the squash. 
  3. Fill another pot with water and boil. Add pasta to boiling water. Cook pasta until al dente (a little chewy). Drain pasta with a colander.
  4. Add cooked squash, milk, and salt to a blender. Blend ingredients until smooth. 
  5. Add pasta, 1 cup cheese, sauce, and any desired spices to an empty pot (you can reuse the pasta pot). Heat on medium heat. Add more cheese if desired. Gently stir until cheese melts, and the sauce is thick. If sauce becomes too thick, add more milk.

Grocery List

All items were purchased at Walmart Grocery Store in St. Robert, MO. Prices listed were reported on 11/14/19.

Grocery Store Bill:

  • 1 lb Squash = $1.70
  • 0.5 Gallon Milk = $1.91 
  • 16 oz Pasta = $1.00
  • 8 oz Bag of Cheese = $2.00

Total Bill: $8.31

Price of the ingredients used in the recipe:

  • 1 lb Squash = $1.70
  • 3/4 cup Milk = $0.30
  • 3 cups Pasta = $0.50
  • 3/4 cup Cheese, Shredded = $0.75

Cost for Full Recipe: $3.25

Price Per Serving: $0.81

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