pumpkin pasta

It’s fall!!! So, I am using every excuse I can to eat pumpkin with every meal. Listen, I can’t help it. It’s such a short period of the year that pumpkin is in vogue and I LOVE it so much.

Pasta Wednesdays is a thing in our house. I grew up eating pasta at least once a week and I definitely want to keep that tradition going in my family, and the best way to do that is to make it seasonal. This Pumpkin Pasta with Turkey + Sage Pesto is packed with all of the flavors of fall. If you don’t eat meat, you can go ahead and leave out the turkey or use your favorite meat replacement instead. However, do not skip the pesto! The pesto is really what elevates this recipe and makes it different. The sage pesto is acidic and herbaceous, so it cuts through the richness of the pumpkin sauce. I promise it’s worth it!

pumpkin pasta
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Pumpkin Pasta with Turkey + Sage Pesto


  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, or any dried herbs you like such as oregano, rosemary, etc
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
  • 3/4 pound dried spaghetti

Sage Pesto

  • 3-4 tablespoons fresh sage
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 8 tablespoons olive oil, or enough to make the pesto able to drizzle off a spoon
  • squeeze of fresh lemon juice


  • In a large skillet, brown the turkey (making sure to season with salt and pepper) until cooked through; remove from the skillet and set aside
  • In the same skillet, add a few tablespoons of olive oil and cook the shallot with a sprinkle of salt over medium heat until softened
  • Stir in the garlic and dried herbs and cook until fragrant, about a minute
  • Add in the wine and cook until wine reduces by half, about 3-4 minutes
  • Add the chicken stock and pumpkin puree and stir to mix well
  • Stir in the half and half then add the sausage back in.
  • Season with cinnamon, salt and pepper, and let simmer until sauce thickens, about 10 minutes
  • Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente
  • Use tongs to grab the pasta right out of the boiling water and add it into the pumpkin sauce
  • Before stirring it in, sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the noodles and then toss with the sauce
  • Cook in the sauce for a few minutes until the flavors marry.
  • Serve hot with a drizzle of the sage pesto and an added sprinkle of parmesan cheese

Sage pesto

  • Make the pesto by placing the sage, basil, grated parmesan cheese, and garlic into a food processor, and slowly add in the olive oil until you achieve the right consistency; you want the pesto to be able to drizzle off of a spoon
  • With the mixer running, add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, add as much as you like!
Author: Maria Provenzano
pumpkin pasta