This roasted squash pasta with Swiss chard takes advantage of the seasonal vegetables and delivers healthy and delicious dinner. Colourful, nutrient dense pasta recipe.
Squash and pasta are such a winning combo. Take a look at our Orecchiette Pasta with Chorizo and Roasted Butternut Squash if you love it as much as we do.
Eating seasonally has always been something I’ve tried to be intentional about. Moving to the UK from Canada definitely helped as our shops seem to be more in tune with the farmers.
I often just walk in and pick the most affordable and best looking produce, no special research necessary. The more colourful, the better.
Winter squashes always catch my eye and end up in my shopping basket weekly.
Winter Squash Recipes
How can you not fall in love with gorgeous colours and amazing flavours! I think that roasted squash is something very, very special.
Roasting it intensifies the flavours and brings out the sweetness and caramelisation. Oven roasting at high temperature also helps to get rid of the excessive water in the vegetables.
I love using squash, and especially roasted squash all through the fall and winter months. This Creamy Orzo Pasta with Roasted Butternut Squash is a beautiful vegetarian dish, that lacks nothing.
Squash pairs exceptionally well with sage. I’ve used that combination in my Butternut Squash and Sage Risotto and I will love it forever.
You can successfully use squash in salads or blend it into creamy soups for the best texture and slightly sweet flavour!
Squash Pasta Recipe Tips
The pasta recipe is very simple. Apart from the roasted squash I added a small amount of pancetta. I also threw in a few handfuls of chopped swiss chard for a bit of texture and vibrant green colour.
- Use any type of winter squash like butternut squash, acorn squash, kabocha, delicata squash, ets. Avoid spaghetti squash as it has the wrong texture for this recipe.
- You can roast your squash several days ahead. I like to roast a large squash and use it throughout a week in different dishes. This “cooking ahead” method makes dinner time a breeze.
- Feel free to use bacon instead of pancetta or omit it for a vegetarian version.
- If Swiss chard is not available, use spinach or kale instead.
- This recipe doesn’t use cream or tomato sauce to coat the pasta. Instead it relies on the roasted squash, starchy pasta water and Parmesan cheese to come together in a light sauce and give it flavour.
More Pasta Recipes that Use Vegetables:
- Sausage Broccoli Pasta
- Quick Roasted Cherry Tomato and Basil Pasta
- Mediterranean Pasta with Zucchini
- Creamy Butternut Squash Gnocchi
This recipe was originally published in 10/2015. Updated and republished in 02/2021
Roasted Squash Pasta with Pancetta and Swiss Chard
- 500 g(½ small) winter squash such as butternut, acorn or kabocha
- 2 tbsp olive oil divided
- 50g/1/4 cup pancetta diced or bacon
- 4 leaves fresh sage (or ¼ tsp dried sage) chopped
- 4-5 stalks of Swiss Chard leaves only, sliced
- 1 lbs short pasta such as penne or your preference
- salt and pepper to taste
- 50g/1/2 cup Parmesan cheese freshly grated
- Preheat the oven to 220C/450F. Half the squash and and scoop out seeds, cut into quarters. Put the squash in the roasting pan and drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes until it could be easily pierced with a knife. Let it cool until it is safe to handle.
- Meanwhile cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water according to package instructions.
- When squash is cool enough to handle, peel it and cut into 1" dice.
- Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large frying pan and cook pancetta over medium heat for 5-7 minutes. (It will take less time if you are cooking sliced pancetta.)
- Add cubed roasted squash, swiss chard and sage and cook while stirring for 2-3 minutes longer. When the pasta is ready drain and reserve ½ cup of water it was cooked in. (If you prefer a creamy taste, add 125ml/1/2 cup of double/heavy cream.)
- Mix in hot pasta, Parmesan cheese and a splash of reserved water to loosen the pasta, stir gently. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste.
- This recipe uses approximately ½ of a medium sized squash. Reserve the other half for another use. Suggested recipe links in the post.
- Leave out pancetta for a vegetarian version.
I love roasted squash and I’m craving a big bowl of this penne!
I just love the sweetness and creaminess roasted squash adds to this pasta. Thanks, Laura!
Lucy Parissi says
I feel the need for some comfort pasta… This has been one very long week. I love squash and pancetta you can’t go wrong with that combo! Still haven’t found the Vetta on sale anywhere but hopefully soon
There is just nothing like a warm pasta bowl to heal all kinds of ills! I hope Vetta is available in supermarkets soon because I can always go for some high fibre pasta that tastes delicious!
Hannah Hossack-Lodge says
This looks seriously delicious Julia, I’ve been loving all of your pasta ideas recently, I eat a lot of pasta so it’s always nice to have new recipes to try! I also REALLY love roasted squash so this is ideal for me! xx
We have pasta dishes a couple of times a week, they are so quick and versatile and I happen to love any type of squash too, Hannah! Thank you for the kind words! xx