Whole-Wheat Spaghetti Carbonara with Butternut Squash

Whole-Wheat Spaghetti Carbonara with Butternut Squash

1 Review
From: EatingWell.com, October 2019

We give classic carbonara a healthy spin using nutty whole-grain pasta and infusing a more traditional carbonara sauce with sweet butternut squash. Use pre-chopped squash to streamline the prep for this recipe—and be sure to brown the squash to deepen the entire dish's flavor. Don't forget to reserve some pasta water—it adds silkiness to the sauce.

Ingredients 4 servings

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  • 2 ounces center-cut bacon, chopped (2½ slices)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage leaves
  • 3 cups pre-chopped butternut squash (about 15 ounces)
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1½ cups unsalted chicken stock
  • 1½ tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces uncooked whole-grain spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (about ¼ cup)


  • Prep

  • Ready In

  1. Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium, stirring often, until bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels; reserve drippings in skillet. Add sage leaves and cook until crisp, about 1 minute. Using tongs, transfer leaves to paper towel with bacon.
  2. Add squash to skillet and cook over medium-high, stirring often, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add garlic, pepper and salt and cook, stirring often, 2 more minutes. Add stock and let come to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium and cook, partially covered, until stock is reduced by half and squash is very tender, 13 to 15 minutes. Remove skillet from heat. Pour mixture into a blender; add butter. Secure lid on blender and remove center piece to allow steam to escape. Place a clean towel over opening. Process until smooth, about 30 seconds. Return mixture to skillet.
  3. Cook pasta in a large pot of water according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup cooking water.
  4. Add parsley and ½ cup of the reserved cooking water to squash mixture; stir to incorporate. (Add remaining ½ cup cooking water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if needed to reach desired consistency.) Add cooked pasta; toss and top with Parmesan cheese, bacon, and sage leaves. Serve immediately.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1¾ cups
  • Per serving: 375 calories; 13 g fat(5 g sat); 7 g fiber; 54 g carbohydrates; 19 g protein; 5 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 148 mg calcium; 565 mg sodium; 412 mg potassium
  • Carbohydrate Servings:

Reviews 1

October 15, 2019
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By: foodfiend
Impressive. My husband doesn’t like “different” sauces (other than red or cream) on his pasta and he really enjoyed this. I made as directed except,, after blending the sauce, I poured it back into the pan, turned the heat on low, added a couple of handfuls of (julienned) baby spinach leaves and, when they wilted a bit, stirred in about a tablespoon of half-and-half to finish. Sprinkled smoked paprika after adding the cheese and bacon on top. A very good alternative sauce for pasta (and I’m going to try it on sautéed chicken breasts, too).
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