Butternut squash & sage macaroni cheese

Butternut squash & sage macaroni cheese

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(21 ratings)

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 1 hr, 40 mins


Serves 6 - 8

There's little more comforting than a homemade macaroni cheese. This version includes 1 of your 5-a-day, as well as a hint of sage.

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal560
  • fat27g
  • saturates15g
  • carbs55g
  • sugars13g
  • fibre3g
  • protein23g
  • salt1.1g


  • 1 large butternut squash, deseeded and cut into chunks
  • 2 tsp olive oil, plus a drizzle
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 15 sage leaves, 6 finely chopped
  • 85g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 85g plain flour
  • 2 tsp English mustard powder
  • 1l semi-skimmed milk
  • 250g pack extra mature or mature cheddar, grated
  • 50g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

  • 450g macaroni


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Toss two-thirds of the butternut squash with the olive oil and seasoning, and roast for 20 mins until nearly tender (it will finish cooking later). Chop the remaining squash coarsely, put in a heatproof bowl with 100ml water and cover with cling film. Microwave on High for 8-10 mins until tender. Drain and mash.

  2. Fry the onion in a knob of butter until softened but not browned, about 5 mins. Stir in the chopped sage and cook for 1 min more, then add the remaining butter to melt. Stir in the flour and mustard powder, and cook for 1 min until it forms a paste. Gradually whisk in splashes of milk (you can add in bigger additions as you go) until you have a smooth sauce. Bubble, stirring constantly, for 3-5 mins until thickened. Take off the heat and whisk in the mashed squash, 200g of the cheddar and half the Parmesan. Season to taste.

  3. Cook the macaroni following pack instructions. Drain well, then stir into the sauce with the roasted squash. Tip into a baking dish and scatter with the remaining cheese and sage leaves. Can be made up to a day ahead at this point – cool and keep in the fridge. If freezing, don’t add the whole sage leaves.

  4. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 again. Splash the sage leaves with oil and bake for 40 mins until bubbling and golden on top.

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Comments, questions and tips

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4th Feb, 2019
Great veggie comfort food. The flavour of the squash and sage comes right through, and isn't dominated by the cheeses. I made half quantity, which would easily serve 4. I also used penne, as not a big fan of macaroni, and it was just fine.
20th Jan, 2019
A good hearty meal for a cold night. I did this just as the recipe, though halved everything for 2 of us. Plenty left for lunch next day. I served with green veg and had a dollop of tom ketchup. Another time I would add the ketchup to the mixture.
jfowler12's picture
24th Jan, 2016
I often find that mac n' cheese can get boring after the first few mouthfuls. That is certainly not the case with this recipe. If you get a really nice, nutty squash, this dish is really yummy. It's the perfect comfort food. I reduced the amount of macaroni so as to make the veg to carb ratio a bit more even, but added some leftover bacon for some salty goodness!
8th Jan, 2016
I loved this recipe, very tasty! But I did add Turkey and Bacon just to add a little more flavour and mealsom, thanks for sharing
S.J.V. Swailes.
24th Jan, 2016
Which is no use to vegetarians! I also hoped it was a Gluten free recipe but I think macaroni is on the banned list ?
20th Jan, 2018
Not if you use gluten free pasta...
29th Jan, 2020
How much milk? It just says 1l
lulu_grimes's picture
30th Jan, 2020
Hi, That's 1 litre - I agree that it looks a bit odd as 1l. I hope this helps.
Erika Miller's picture
Erika Miller
3rd Nov, 2019
just beginning on cooking this recipe, and am noticing some weird omissions - 1- Step 1 calls for roasting the squash with "the olive oil and seasoning" - what seasoning? There isn't even salt or pepper specified in the ingredients, and the sage and mustard are used in other steps. 2 - There is no baking pan size specified.
goodfoodteam's picture
9th Nov, 2019
Thanks for your question. We don't include seasoning in our ingredients list in our recipes and when it features in the method it refers to salt and pepper. We haven't included a baking dish size as any medium to large one will work for this recipe and want to give people the option to use whatever they have. We hope this helps.
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