Made with rigatoni, pumpkin puree, and spicy Italian chicken sausage, this dish is an easy and healthy way to satisfy your comfort food cravings this fall. The entire recipe comes together in just 30 minutes, making it perfect for busy weeknight dinners.
How To Make The Best Pumpkin Rigatoni With Italian Sausage & Spinach:
- 1 16-oz. package rigatoni
- 1 15-oz. can pumpkin puree
- 1 8-oz. bag fresh spinach
- 1 lb. Italian sausage
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 shallot (diced)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1/4 tsp dried sage
- 1/2 – 3/4 tsp coarse salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
Start by heating a big pot of salted water and cook the pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Then once the pasta has finished cooking, drain and set aside.
Next, in a large skillet placed over medium-high heat, brown the Italian sausage, breaking it into pieces as it cooks. It should have finished cooking for about 8 minutes.
Once the sausage has finished cooking, transfer it onto a plate and set it aside.
Now, add olive oil to the pan and sauté shallot, garlic, and crushed red pepper, while stirring frequently. Cook the mixture until softened and slightly golden, which should take approximately 3 minutes.
After that, add the spinach to the pan and wilt while still stirring occasionally. If needed, reduce the heat to low until pasta is ready.
If you reduced the heat, return it to medium-high. Then add pumpkin puree, sage, and salt & pepper.
Then, slowly stir the pasta water (about 1/2 cup at a time) until sauce has reached your desired consistency.
Finally, return the sausage to the pan and toss it together with the pasta. If needed, add the extra pasta water.
Serve warm and if desired garnish with some parsley.