Ahh, it’s that time of the year again. Yesterday was the “official” first day of fall. It was a scorching 90-something degrees outside and the sun was beating down. Definitely doesn’t feel like fall but we’re slowly getting there! As summer has come to a close I can’t help but reminisce.

I must admit I was a total summer girl growing up. It was by far my favorite season. I lived by the beach and took advantage of it throughout the entire few months off of school. I loved everything about summer. The fact that I could live in a swimsuit for 3 months and go everywhere in cutoffs and flip flops… it’s all I could ever wish for in a life. I thrived in summer.

Somewhere between college and adult life…summer just became less and less appealing. Maybe it’s carrying around a toddler in scorching temperatures? Or not being able to lay in the sun without have toys thrown at me every second? I’m not sure exactly what made summer and I grow apart. But I do know my love for summer is gone and I have a new favorite in mind. Fall. There’s something about the crisp leaves, sweater weather and comfort food that I can’t get enough of. I guess my younger self didn’t appreciate those things quite yet. I get so excited for slow cooked meals, root veggies, dinner by the fire, hot chocolate and cozy nights in.

This pasta screams fall. It starts with a butternut squash sauce that is both creamy and comforting. I added Italian sausage for extra flavor and spice… plus some oven roasted crispy brussel sprouts for texture. It embodies this upcoming season in every way possible. It’s super good and even your husbands and kids will love it. Serve it with some crunchy ciabatta bread and a light salad with vinaigrette. So tasty.



Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Total time: 40 minutes

Serves: 4-6


For pasta:

  • 1 lb linguini pasta
  • 1/2 yellow onion, small dice
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.5 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 2 links Italian sausage, casing removed
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 lemon, juice of
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (can omit)
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Reserved pasta water

For brussel sprouts:

  • 2 cups brussel sprouts, sliced in half
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil

+ Parmesan cheese for garnish


For Brussels:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Place the Brussels on a baking sheet. Cover with olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss together.
  3. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until Brussels are tender and crispy on the edges.

For pasta:

  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Reserve 2 cups pasta water for later use. Drain but do not rinse.
  2. Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add in the Italian sausage and cook until done, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels. Set aside for later use.
  3. In the same hot skillet with sausage drippings add in onion, garlic and butternut squash. Sauté for a couple minutes to brown the vegetables.
  4. Pour in the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to low and cover with a lid. Cook until the butternut squash is very tender, about 10- 15 minutes.
  5. Transfer the squash, onion, garlic and liquid in pan to a blender and blend till smooth. Transfer back to the pan and bring to a soft boil.
  6. Add in ricotta, lemon juice, heavy cream, oregano, red pepper flakes and salt to taste. Stir.
  7. Add in small amounts of reserved pasta water at a time. This will loosen up the sauce. I used about 1 cup.
  8. Turn off heat and add in cooked pasta and sausage.
  9. Top with Parmesan cheese and crispy brussel sprouts.

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