The temperatures have officially dropped, it’s been all sorts of rainy and dreary, and I’ve been loving every minute of it! Am I the only crazy one out there? Full-on cozy mode has officially started. If you don’t have pumpkin in the fall, then I don’t really know what you’re going to do with yourself. I love all the pumpkin baked goodies (you know I am going to be making them!), but I also love to use pumpkin in a savory setting because it is just so delicious! Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni is the way to go if you are in need of a comfort food dish to warm up your heart and your tummy this fall and winter season.
Your house is going to smell crazy good as this dish is baking away in your oven! Pumpkin puree whisked into a creamy herb cheese sauce is what all of your Fall dreams are made of. The pumpkin blends right into the cheese sauce to bring an earthy and delicious touch to this baked pasta. The blend of Mozzarella and Asiago just make this dish sing. Can we take a minute to talk about Asiago cheese? Because, next to Parmesan, it is one of my absolute favorite cheeses! I always have to have my refrigerator stocked with good Parm and Asiago.
This is the perfect fall dish to put on the table and have everyone dig in. Feed a crowd or a family with this Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni and you will have happy smiles and full tummies.
PS: did I mention how much I LOVE Fall?!
Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup half and half
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper (or to desired taste)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup shredded asiago cheese
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 16 oz rigatoni pasta
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, whisk in the flour to create a roux. Whisk in the whole milk and the half and half until the roux and the liquids are combined. Reduce the heat to low and slowly bring the mixture to a low simmer. Make sure to not boil the mixture as it will cause the sauce to not be smooth.
- Whisk the thyme, oregano, white pepper, salt, pumpkin pie spice, mozzarella and 1/2 cup of the asiago cheese into the milk mixture. Whisk until the sauce is creamy and smooth and starts to thicken, about 5 minutes. Whisk the pumpkin puree into the cream sauce.
- Meanwhile, cook the rigatoni according to package instructions until al dente. Strain the pasta and stir into the creamy pumpkin sauce once the sauce has reached desired thickness.
- Pour the creamy pumpkin rigatoni into a 13×9 baking dish and top with the remaining 1/2 cup of asiago cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the mixture bubbles slightly on the edges. Turn on the broiler and broil the top of the pasta for a couple minutes, or until the cheese on the top is melted and browned slightly. Enjoy!