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Creamy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

Creamy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

This creamy flavorful pumpkin mac and cheese recipe is the perfect fall comfort food. It makes a great weeknight meal or delicious side dish for your holiday gatherings. 

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a close up of a side view of a white bowl full of pumpkin mac and cheese

I love all things pumpkin and I love mac and cheese so this dish is one I can’t resist. The combination of pasta and cheese paired with the subtle sweetness of the flavor of the pumpkin is absolutely delicious. This simple homemade pumpkin mac and cheese has an easy to make sauce that is simply flavored to create an amazing dish your whole family will love.

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an overhead view of a bowl of pumpkin macaroni and cheese.

FAQ & Tips for this Creamy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Recipe

Delicious additions- This easy pumpkin macaroni and cheese is delicious as it is but you can also dress it up with some delicious additions. We love to top it with butter bread crumbs like traditional macaroni and cheese. It is also great with crumbled bacon added!

Want to make it into a full meal? Add in some steamed broccoli and grilled chicken for a delicious dinner.  You can also add some warm fall spices like sage and thyme.

Use any type of pasta- While we like to use shells for this homemade pumpkin macaroni and cheese, you can use your favorite type of pasta. Traditional elbow macaroni is a great choice and so is rotini. You can even use spaghetti or linguini to create a delicious pasta meal 

How to store this creamy mac and cheese– Leftover pumpkin mac and cheese can be stored refrigerated in an airtight container for 2-3 days. 

A spoonful of pumpkin mac and cheese

Use freshly grated cheese– This creamy mac and cheese is made with shredded cheese and for best results you’ll want to grate the cheese yourself. You can use pre-shredded cheese but it does not melt as well and your sauce won’t be as creamy, and may be clumpy. You can also set aside extra cheese to garnish your finished pumpkin pasta.

Use different cheese– If you want to dress up this pumpkin mac and cheese a bit you can swap out the cheddar or parmesan cheese for gouda cheese or gruyere cheese, they are both delicious and melt well in this creamy pasta.

Can I use homemade pumpkin puree? Absolutely! While I love the ease of store bought canned pumpkin purée you can also use homemade pumpkin puree

Ingredients for Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese-

The ingredients for pumpkin macaroni and cheese on a white marble background.

1 pound of pasta shells

2 tbsp butter

1 12 oz can of evaporated milk

1 15 oz can of pure pumpkin puree

1 tbsp dijon mustard

8 oz sharp cheddar cheese (grated)

3/4 cup Parmesan cheese (grated)

Salt and pepper to taste

Finely chopped scallions

A side view of a white bowl full of pumpkin mac and cheese

Here’s how to make Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

 First bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt the water and add in the pasta. Cook to al dente according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and save 1 cup of pasta water.

 Next in a large pan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in the evaporated milk and and heat to a simmer.

a large pot with a white creamy sauce in it, pumpkin puree has been added.

 Next add the pumpkin and mustard and stir until everything is well mixed. Add in the cheeses and stir until the cheese is melted and smooth.

a pot with an orange pumpkin sauce in it, shredded cheese has been added.

 Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and stir to coat. If the cheese sauce is too thick you can add in a little bit of the reserved pasta water at a time to thin it out.

a pot with an orange creamy sauce in it, cooked pasta shells have been added.

 Season with salt and pepper and serve and top with chopped scallions!

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a close up of a side view of a white bowl full of pumpkin mac and cheese

Creamy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

This creamy flavorful pumpkin mac and cheese recipe is the perfect fall comfort food. It makes a great weeknight meal or delicious side dish for your holiday gatherings. 
4.99 from 53 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dishes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 708kcal
Author: Krista

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of pasta shells
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1- 12 oz can of evaporated milk
  • 1- 15 oz can of pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese grated
  • 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Finely chopped scallions

Instructions

  • First bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt the water and add in the pasta. Cook to al dente according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and save 1 cup of pasta water.
  • Next in a large pan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in the evaporated milk and and heat to a simmer.
  • Next add the pumpkin and mustard and stir until everything is well mixed. Add in the cheeses and stir until the cheese is melted and smooth.
  • Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and stir to coat. If the cheese sauce is too thick you can add in a little bit of the reserved pasta water at a time to thin it out.
  • Season with salt and pepper and serve and top with chopped scallions!

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 708kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 115mg | Sodium: 1031mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 14g

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