RecipeButternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
  • Calories: 280
  • Protein: 17 g
  • Total Fat: 8 g
    • Saturated Fat: 4 g
    • Unsaturated Fat: 4 g
  • Cholesterol: 20 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate: 41 mg
  • Dietary Fiber: 2 g
  • Total Sugar: 5 g
    • Natural Sugar: 5 g
    • Added Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 320 mg

Classic macaroni and cheese with the added goodness of butternut squash—the kids will love it and you’ll be happy knowing that they’re getting a veggie with one of their favorite meals. Time-saving recipe shortcut: use canned sweet potato, butternut squash, or yam purée and skip the roasting step completely.

Also, try my other Mac & Cheese spins:  Mac & Cheese Muffins, Sweet Potato Mac & Cheese, and Noodle-Free Sweet Potato Mac & Cheese (if you’re all about the cheese and less about the mac, this one is for you!)  



  • Prep time
  • Total Time
This recipe makes 9 servings
  • • 5 to 6 cups cubed butternut squash*
  • • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • • 1 box (14-16 ounce) whole-grain elbow macaroni
  • • 1 cup 2% low-fat milk
  • • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • • ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
  • • ⅛ teaspoon paprika
  • • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • • 1 to 3 drops hot sauce, optional
  • • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • • ¼ to ½ cup grated Parmesan for sprinkling on top

*Can swap with 1 cup canned sweet potato, butternut squash, or yam purée.


Preheat oven to 400˚.

Coat a baking sheet with oil spray and add the butternut squash. Liberally mist the butternut squash with oil spray and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Place baking sheet in oven and roast for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until squash is super soft and fork tender. Allow to cool. Then, using a fork, mash the cubes on the baking sheet until they’re the consistency of mashed potatoes. Set aside.

While butternut squash bakes, prepare the pasta and cheese sauce: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the macaroni and follow the directions on the package for al dente pasta (about 7 minutes). Drain and return to pot.

In a saucepan, combine 1 cup of milk with onion powder, dry mustard, paprika, remaining ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, black pepper, and optional hot sauce. Place over medium heat, and cook until the mixture comes to a gentle simmer. Then, immediately lower the flame so the milk doesn’t curdle.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the shredded cheese. Continue stirring until the cheese is completely melted and no lumps remain. Add the butternut squash puree and butter, stirring until completely combined.

Add the sauce to the cooked macaroni and stir until everything is evenly coated. Spoon into bowls, or make a baked casserole version by transferring the contents to a 9- x 13-inch baking dish coated with oil spray. Sprinkle Parmesan over the top. Place under a preheated broiler for 4 to 7 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and crispy; check often to make sure the cheese does not burn.

Nutrition information provided for 1 cup