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Spaghetti with Pumpkin Parmesan Sauce

Spaghetti with Pumpkin Parmesan Sauce

Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Keyword pasta recipe, pumpkin parmesan sauce, pumpkin sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano, plus more for serving
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste

Chopped toasted hazelnuts (or walnuts), for serving

Fried sage leaves*, for serving

Crushed red pepper flakes, for serving


  1. Bring a large pot and salted water to a boil. Add spaghetti and cook until al dente (10 to 11 minutes).
  2. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Warm butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot, garlic and a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender (about 3 minutes). Stir in pumpkin puree, chicken stock and 1 teaspoon salt. Let simmer for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add heavy cream, Parmesan, nutmeg and lemon juice. Stir until the cheese has melted into the sauce and the cream is fully incorporated. At this point, you don’t want the sauce to boil, so adjust heat if needed. Season to taste with additional salt and lemon juice.
  3. Drain spaghetti, then add to the sauce, tossing to evenly coat. Divide spaghetti between 4 bowls, and top each with a dusting of Parmesan, chopped hazelnuts, fried sage leaves and red pepper flakes to taste. Enjoy immediately!

Recipe Notes

* To make fried sage leaves, warm a couple tablespoons olive oil in a small saucepan. Once hot, drop in 8 to 10 sage leaves. They should sizzle right away. Cook for 3 seconds, then transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle with a little salt. Repeat with remaining sage leaves. You’ll need 5 to 6 leaves per serving, and perhaps make a few extra to serve on the side!