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Simple and delicious recipes for Dinner and Dessert. Where salt and sweet meet.



Pumpkin is not just for dessert. Tonight it’s for dinner! Pasta with pumpkin sauce and pine nuts is an easy way to incorporate one of this season’s most popular foods into your dinner.

Pumpkin purée

It’s pumpkin season so of course, I have a couple of cans of pumpkin purée on hand. I bought them with the intent to make a few desserts and a homemade pumpkin spice mix for my morning iced coffee- which I did make and it’s yummy ☺️. That recipe will be available soon! Anyway, as I am trying to cut back on sweets I decided to use some of the pumpkin purée to make a pumpkin sauce for a savory dish. Pasta with pumpkin sauce and toasted pine nuts came to mind because I wanted something quick and easy and there are few dishes as quick as pasta.

Why pine nuts?

I’m glad you asked. It’s because pine nuts are buttery, yummy, and compliment this dish really well. They have a mild enough taste that they won’t overtake the pumpkin. Toasting them first just adds another layer of flavor! Full disclosure, pine nuts are not cheap so if you can’t pay the hefty price tag or just don’t want to I have a fix in the notes section 😉. No worries!

I also bought too many tomatoes this week when I went grocery shopping. I meant to put a container back but I forgot and ended up with both. Oh well, too many tomatoes is not a real problem. Am I right? Haha! They’re healthy and I like them so I’m sure I can polish off two containers before they go bad. Plus, the tomatoes add a nice touch of natural acid to the pumpkin sauce.

Adding penne to the pumpkin sauce


That’s right! I made this recipe vegan because I want to provide options for my plant-based friends out there. Also, I’m eating less meat myself these days but I’m still eating some on occasion. Pumpkin, mushrooms, and fresh tomatoes make this dish not only hearty but healthy and the pine nuts add a nice crunch! You can use whatever pasta shape you prefer but I would recommend penne or rigatoni because the tubes hold more sauce 😋.

Penne with pumpkin sauce

Also, if you’re looking for a quick weeknight meal this pasta with pumpkin sauce and pine nuts is a great choice because it can be done in 30 minutes! Who doesn’t love a quick and easy dinner?! Especially after a long day.

Two bowls of penne with pumpkin sauce

Pasta with Pumpkin Sauce and Pine Nuts

Pasta with a savory pumpkin sauce and toasted pine nuts. An easy and delicious plant-based meal.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: 30 minute meals, pasta, pasta with pine nuts, pasta with pumpkin sauce, pasta with pumpkin sauce and pine nuts, pumpkin sauce, quick dinner ideas, weeknight meal
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Shana


  • 1 ib Pasta
  • 1 can Pumpkin purée, 15 oz
  • 1 cup Pasta water reserved
  • 1/2 cup Unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup Cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/3 cup Pine nuts, toasted and chopped
  • 1/2 Cremini mushrooms. sliced
  • 1 tsp Dried oregano
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1 Shallot
  • 2 tbsp Vegan butter
  • 2 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Boil water and cook pasta according to the instructions on the package. When the pasta has finished cooking drain it but keep 1 cup of the pasta water.
  • While the pasta water is boiling toast the pine nuts. Put a dry pan over low-medium heat, add the pine nuts, and allow to toast until light brown. Shake the pan occasionally for even toasting. Once done, chop the nuts with a knife or a food processor and set aside.
  • In a large saucepan add the vegan butter and extra virgin olive oil. Saute mushrooms, shallot, and garlic. After the mushrooms have cooked down a bit add the pumpkin purée, pasta water, almond milk, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Mix the sauce well and add more pasta water if the sauce is too thick for you. Add the cherry tomatoes and penne. Make sure the pasta is well coated with the sauce.
  • Spoon into bowls and sprinkle chopped pine nuts on top.
  • I also added nutritional yeast and additional black pepper but these are optional.


-Pine nuts are pricey. If you need a less expensive option, feel free to swap those out for almonds or walnuts.

-There are many vegan butter brands on the market. My favorite is Miyoko’s.

Final thoughts

For all of the pumpkin lovers out there I have a dessert I think you will really enjoy! This is one of my favorite recipes from my blog which also features the star of the season. Swirled Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars.

Happy cooking, happy eating! 😊

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