Sheet Pan

Goat Cheese Pasta with Caramelized Onions and Roasted Butternut Squash

October 29, 2013
12 Ratings
  • Serves 4 to 6
Author Notes

When I was pregnant with my first child, I made this pasta twice a week for dinner. I craved it again during my second pregnancy, and while my husband refuses to eat it now (I can hardly blame him), I still enjoy it frequently. It’s just so good. If you don’t want to cut up a whole butternut squash for this recipe, you can buy frozen, diced squash or substitute a sweet potato. When in season, other vegetables can be substituted as well; in the summer I eat this with roasted cherry tomatoes. —sarah kieffer | the vanilla bean blog

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup butternut squash, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch coarse salt
  • 1 pound pasta (almost any will work; I use spaghetti)
  • 8 ounces goat cheese
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 1/2 cup vermouth (or white wine)
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1 cup caramelized onions
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 handful toasted pecans, optional
  1. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Place the squash on a sheet pan, then drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt (a good pinch or two). Toss to combine, then make sure all the pieces are flat on the pan, not on top of each other. Bake until the squash is tender and browned, stirring occasionally, 20 to 25 minutes.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt (I add 1 tablespoon), then add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, crumble the goat cheese in the bottom of large bowl and set aside. Melt the butter over medium heat, and then stir in the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the vermouth and cook until slightly reduced, about 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, and add the basil and thyme.
  4. Add the pasta to the goat cheese, and using tongs or serving spoons, toss until the goat cheese is evenly coating the pasta (pour a little of the reserved water on top if you need to loosen the cheese). Pour the butter-herb mixture on top, and toss until combined. Add the roasted butternut squash and caramelized onions, and toss gently until combined; season with salt and pepper to taste, and top with toasted pecans, if desired.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • FrugalCat
  • Julie Tichon
    Julie Tichon
  • Samantha
  • girlwiththegreenhair
  • ChefJune
A baker's soliloquy. You can follow along at

8 Reviews

FrugalCat March 10, 2022
This was an excellent dinner for us. I used a whole wheat rotini, walnuts instead of pecans, and Italian flat leaf parsley instead of basil. I served it was a few reheated frozen meatballs on the side.
Julie T. October 28, 2015
Too much goat cheese, not enough butternut squash
LizCo77 October 26, 2014
I made this exactly as written, and it was absolutely delicious. I might back off the goat cheese a tad the next time (it was very, very cheesy), but we all still enjoyed it thoroughly. Thank you!
Samantha January 21, 2014
Oh my gosh, this just hit my flavor pallet heaven, its such a perfect mix for me. Absolutely amazing will be making on a regular basis.
girlwiththegreenhair November 6, 2013
Made this tonight... delicious! I didn't have plain goat cheese but I did have an herbed goat cheese, which I certainly recommend.
sarah K. November 12, 2013
I'm so glad you liked it! I've used herbed goat cheese before, too - it's a good alternative when winter comes.
ChefJune October 30, 2013
This sounds really good, and I am planning to make it, but it really doesn't belong in a pie contest!
sarah K. November 12, 2013
I accidentally entered it, and then couldn't figure out how to get it out of the contest. :/ Let me know if you make it!