Cheesy Pasta with Spinach, Artichokes & Butternut Squash

I will take my carbs surrounded by vegetables please! 

I am a true lover of vegetables. So much so that I added all of these to my favorite macaroni and cheese recipe. Growing up, we always added something to that classic cheesy casserole whether it was ketchup, honey mustard or glaze left from the roasted ham it was served with. I was never content with just the pasta and cheese combination, so when I started making this dish on my own, I began by adding ingredients to make it more exciting and it quickly became a hit in our house. 

You are probably looking at these photos and thinking, wow that butternut squash looks awfully orange. Well, because we are social distancing and doing out best to stay home and out of public places as much as possible, I couldn't get my hands on a butternut squash for the final photo shoot of this recipe. I wouldn't let that stop me from sharing this recipe with you, so I made due with what I had in the pantry. As it turns out sweet potato works wonderfully in this dish, so you can absolutely use this substitute and still have a yummy casserole that is a joy to your taste buds!

Right now, during this global pandemic, it is all about using what we have available to us at home, and I have to say it has forced me to get a little more creative in the kitchen ending in some exciting recipes. If you have any questions about substitutions feel free to leave a comment below!

I would really like to put it out there that my heart is with all of you. No matter how big or small your personal struggles are, we truly are all in this together. I hope that the recipes I post here can be a comfort to you. This one in particular feels like a warm hug to me. I typically make this meal more in the fall, when the air is cooling, the wool sweaters are coming back out of the closet, the squash is freshly harvested and I can still pick the sage from my little herb garden on my deck. It feels like home and, in these uncertain times when we can't be with our friends and family to share warm meals and laugh together, I think we could all use a little more comfort food in our lives.

This is how I share my love, through food. Social media has really helped me to keep in contact with my family and friends, and I hope that through this website, and my Instagram page, I can create a community with all of you who are interested in the same healthy and creative foods, such as this pasta recipe, that I am.

So if you happen to have the ingredients for this in your pantry, whip it up and serve it hot, with a drizzle of balsamic reduction (optional), a glass of white wine (not optional), and heck, turn on some jazz and hop in a warm bubble bath while you're at it! Enjoy this comfort meal and and take care of yourself friends . Cheers!

Cheesy Pasta with Spinach, Artichokes & Butternut Squash


  • 1 box pasta (penne, rotini or macaroni)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • half a yellow onion, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage, chopped (can substitute with basil or oregano)
  • 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes (can sub with sweet potato)
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 1/2 a lime
  • a pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 5 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1 cup shredded white cheese
  • salt
  • pepper
  • goat cheese to top (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Bring water to a boil in a medium size pot and cook pasta according to box instructions. 
  2. Meanwhile, warm olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium low heat adding three cloves of  chopped garlic, onion, sage, red chili flakes (optional) and butternut squash. Sprinkle with salt and cover. Let cook for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. If the pan becomes dry add 1/4 of water from your pasta to prevent burning.  Add spinach and cover allowing to wilt. At this time the squash should be softened, be careful not to overcook as you want the squash to hold its shape and not become mushy.
  3. Strain the pasta and transfer to a casserole dish along with the cooked squash and spinach. Add the chopped artichokes and the juice of half a lime, toss the mixture gently and set aside.
  4. To make the cream sauce use the same pan used for the squash. Over low heat warm the butter and the rest of the garlic until bubbling. Add cornstarch and whisk until thick and slightly browned. Quickly add the cream and whisk thoroughly until combined, add the cheese and continue until the sauce is thick and creamy. Add a generous amount of pepper and some salt to taste and immediately transfer to the casserole dish, tossing until the pasta and vegetables are fully coated in the sauce.
  5. You can now sprinkle with goat cheese as I have in the photos above, or use any cheese you like. Bread crumbs are a nice topping too if you please. I like to add more pepper at this point. 
  6. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until warmed through.  Serve hot & enjoy!

If you would like to see more inspiration be sure to check out our Instagram grace.and.jack !


  1. Can't wait to make this one. Ingredients going on the next grocery list:) She truly is one of the most talented cooks I know!


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