When we think of Fall we think of pumpkins! Yes, I have not ONE pumpkin on my porch. I have just not had time to go get any, but I have made a pumpkin dish-does that count??? It has just been a really busy fall and I honestly cannot tell you what I have been doing that has been keeping me so busy, but I have been falling into bed every night exhausted. So, I can promise you I have had very little time and energy to make fabulous, elaborate dinners. This Baked Pumpkin Rigatoni with Italian Sausage is super easy and your family will love it. I made this for my crew and did not tell them what it was because I was afraid that if I said it was pumpkin they would turn their noses up, so I just said it was pasta with sausage. After my son went back for seconds (maybe he was hungry because I starved him with no after school snack, lol) I told him what it was. He was so surprised! He had no idea and said it was really, really good. He gave it a thumbs up and said definitely make it again and put it on the blog, woo hoo!!
So here it is-the pumpkin recipe that was approved by the family! It is basically baked ziti with a Fall twist and it is So good! Make a double batch and freeze it. Just allow it to thaw completely before you place it in the oven to cook. And if you are cooking it after it has been frozen add about 15-20 minutes to the cook time.
Hope you enjoy and Happy Fall!
Baked Pumpkin Rigatoni with Italian Sausage
A delicious, savory, Fall one pot pumpkin pasta dinner! Your family will love this this easy weeknight meal.
- 1 lb Rigatoni, cooked about 2 minutes short of suggested cook time
- 1 lb sweet Italian sausage
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 3 cloves, garlic, minced
- 5-7 fresh sage leaves, chopped (depending on how big the sage leaves are-sage is a strong herb)
- 1/4-1/2 red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (chardonnay)
- 1 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 15 oz can pure pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie)
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 8 oz ricotta cheese (about 1/2 a tub)
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Cook pasta about 2 minutes short of package directions.
In a large oven save skillet, brown sausage. Remove to a plate lined with a paper towel.
Remove all fat except about 1 Tablespoon.
In the skillet with the remaining fat cook onion until soft, about 5 minutes.
Add garlic, sage, red pepper flakes, white wine. Cook for about 2 minutes scraping up brown bits on bottom of pan.
Add chicken broth and stir in pumpkin puree. Whisk/stir to combine until the sauce thickens. Add salt and pepper. If the sauce is too thick then add in a bit more chicken broth. You want it a bit soupy. It will thicken up in the oven.
Add sausage back in along with pasta. Stir to combine. Dollop ricotta cheese around and place in oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly.
Remove from oven and top with Parmesan cheese.
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