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pumpkin pasta sauce
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5 from 1 vote

Pumpkin Pasta Sauce

This easy, creamy Pumpkin Pasta Sauce is the ultimate fall comfort food! Savory, cheesy, and luscious with plenty of herbs, and cheese. Serve with your favorite pasta, and enjoy a quick meal!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: American
Keyword: pumpkin, ricotta
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 299kcal
Author: Briana


  • 1 pound pasta of choice
  • 2 cups reserved salted pasta water (can use chicken or vegetable broth)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided (to taste, and can vary depending on if you used pasta water or not)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional and to taste)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 15 ounces pure pumpkin puree
  • 8 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 4 ounces freshly grated parmesan cheese (add slowly)
  • 8 ounces heavy cream
  • 5 ounces baby spinach (optional)
  • pine nuts, parmesan, fresh herbs, fried sage


  • Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions. Reserve 2 cups of pasta water, set aside.
  • Add olive oil, and butter to a skillet, along with minced garlic. Cook until garlic is fragrant, then add in onion, tomato paste, red pepper flakes, thyme, sage, and nutmeg with a big pinch of salt. Cook until the tomato paste deepens in color, about 2-3 minutes. Over medium-low heat, pour in pumpkin puree, and about 1 cup of pasta water to thin the sauce. Allow to simmer for about 3-5 minutes.
  • Stir in heavy cream, ricotta, and about a quarter of the parmesan cheese at a time. Melt completely, and stir constantly before adding another handful of cheese.
  • Once all cheese is melted, reduce the heat to low, and stir in the spinach to wilt. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  • Top with toasted pine nuts, fresh parmesan, thyme, sage, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Enjoy!
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.


  • Nutrition facts are for the sauce only. Garnishes and pasta are not included. All garnishes are optional and to taste. 
  • Always heavily salt the pasta water to make sure the noodles absorb flavor. 
  • Cook the pasta al dente.
  • Add pasta water to reach your desired texture. If more liquid is desired, add in chicken or vegetable broth. 
  • Always use freshly grated parmesan and add in small batches so that it melts properly into the sauce. Using pre-shredded cheese can result in a lumpy sauce. 
  • Use fresh ingredients whenever possible for this recipe. 
  • For more substitutions, variations, and diet types, be sure to check the body of the blog post.


Calories: 299kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 66mg | Sodium: 931mg | Potassium: 388mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 10803IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 251mg | Iron: 2mg