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Smoky Butternut Squash Sauce with Pasta and Greens

  4 rater(s)

The inherent sweetness of the butternuts squash beautifully complements the smoky seasonings and nuttiness of the cashews and nutritional yeast. It’s imperative that you do not cook the arugula, because you won’t get that added, peppery freshness if it is cooked. There’s always room for spice, which is why we encourage you to add some chili oil or red pepper flakes.

  • Prep Time: 10m
  • Cook Time: 40m
  • Total Time: 50m


  • 1/4 c raw cashews (soaked for 2 hours and then drained)
  • 1 (3 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
  • 1 package Banza chickpea pasta (rigatoni or penne)
  • 3/4 c filtered water
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp. nutritional yeast (optional, but recommended)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/8 tsp. liquid smoke
  • 2 c fresh arugula, rinsed


  1. Preheat oven to 425º F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  2. Evenly scatter the butternut squash cubes across the baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and season with a little seas salt. Toss to coat.
  3. Roast for 30-40 minutes, flipping once half way through baking. Remove the squash once it is fork tender. Let it cool at room temperature for at least 5 minutes.
  4. While the squash is roasting, cook pasta according to package directions. Once the noodles are done, drain the water and set aside.
  5. Add the soaked and drained cashews, water, garlic, nutritional yeast (if using), lemon juice, onion powder, paprika, chili powder, and 2 cups of cooked squash into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Finally, add the sea salt, liquid smoke, and red pepper flakes and continue blending.
  6. Pour the drained pasta back into the pot you used to boil it in. Ladle your desired amount of sauce onto the pasta and stir to combine. Turn the flame on to medium heat and stir in a few cubes of butternut , if using. Once everything is sufficiently heated, remove from the heat and add the fresh arugula. Mix well and serve.
  7. Leftover sauce can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week or so in the fridge. It tastes great poured on roasted vegetables too!


Time saver: You can also simply slice the squash in half, remove seeds, and roast the two halves rather than chopping the squash up. The butternut squash sauce makes 2.75 cups.