Recipes & Cooking

Butternut Baked Ziti Recipe

by The Culinistas

We love to sneak hearty veg into all of our pasta dishes and for saucy pasta bakes it’s that much easier. This traditional baked ziti recipe sports a seasonal coat with the addition of butternut squash. Sage brings an elevated edge to a weeknight dinner the whole family will love.

Butternut Baked Ziti

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Serves 10 to 12

Ingredients

1 medium butternut squash, peeled, cored, cubed
5 TB olive oil, divided, plus more for greasing
2 TB sage, chopped
1 TB onion powder
4 cups cherry tomatoes
1 pound ziti
3 to 4 cups whole milk
1½ pounds fresh mozzarella, sliced
Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to tastePreheat oven to 350ºF.

1.Roast the butternut: In a large bowl, toss butternut, 3 TB oil, sage, and onion powder and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the mixture into a greased deep baking dish and roast until squash is tender, 45 to 55 minutes.

2. While the squash roasts, blister the tomatoes in a large skillet with remaining 2 TB oil. Blister to a deep brown color. Set aside. 

3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook for 7 to 8 minutes, then strain and shock with cold water. Set aside. 

4. Make the butternut sauce: In the base of a high speed blender, add roasted butternut and 3 cups milk. Blend to a thick sauce and adjust consistency by adding more milk if desired. Season with salt and pepper.

5. In a large bowl, mix blistered tomatoes, pasta and sauce. Transfer to the baking dish. Top with mozzarella slices and bake for 25 minutes. Turn on the broiler and broil cheese to a dark brown color, 6 to 7 minutes. Serve immediately.

A special thanks to Sylvie Rosokoff for the beautiful photograph.