Pumpkin Fettucini Alfredo is creamy, delicious, and much healthier than your typical Alfredo. With 60% fewer calories than traditional Alfredo sauce, Pumpkin Alfredo is a great way to sneak veggies into a main course and enjoy a decadent tasting pasta dish perfect for fall without the guilt.
Almost two years ago, I posted about a similar recipe: Butternut Squash, Browned Butter, and Rosemary Fettucini Alfredo. It quickly became one of Bowl of Delicious’s most popular posts, and I wanted to create another healthy, seasonal alternative to Fettucini Alfredo. This Pumpkin Alfredo is even easier to make than the butternut squash one, because there’s no blending involved. Just a pan, some ingredients, and a whisk! It’s simplified by the fact that pumpkin comes already pureed in a can, and that I used onion powder instead of fresh onion in order to make the sauce as smooth and creamy as possible without too much fuss.
The sauce itself takes only about 10 minutes to make. It’s like a miracle. Just make a simple roux with butter and flour, add milk, and add pumpkin puree, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Whisk together. It’s so darn simple!
I think we’re all pretty used to being bombarded around this time of year with pumpkin everything. Pumpkin cookies. Pumpkin lattes. Pumpkin cupcakes. Most of what I’ve come across has been delicious looking, but usually very sweet and not exactly healthy. Which is so weird to me, because pumpkin is an extremely healthy ingredient (along with other winter squashes). Who started making pumpkin into sweet treats anyway? It’s not like you see butternut squash pies or acorn squash lattes floating around on Pinterest.
New trend, maybe?
Pumpkin is high in vitamins A, C, and B6, as well as fiber. It even has some Omega-3s! It’s packed full of antioxidant power (it’s not just leafy greens and blueberries that have antioxidants) as well as anti inflammatory benefits (making it a great pre or post workout food).
A word of advice when cooking this recipe: don’t skimp on the salt. Traditional Alfredo sauce is packed with parmesan cheese, which makes it really salty. You’re going to want to use a lot of seasoning to bring the otherwise bland ingredients up to the decadence you expect from Alfredo sauce.
I used canned pureed pumpkin for this. The wonderful thing about this recipe is that it uses the WHOLE CAN- which means you won’t have a half a cup left lingering about and potentially going to waste. If you prefer, you can make your own pumpkin puree (and if you do this, I highly suggest roasting the seeds!).
You can use whatever pasta you want for this- fettucini, penne, rotini… whole wheat, brown rice, etc. I used regular fettucini. (Not whole wheat. Because I’m pregnant and I DIDN’T WANT TO. So there.)
For other healthy pasta dishes, try this Green Goddess Pasta Salad, this Chicken and Linguine with Tomato Basil Butter Sauce, or this Healthy 20-Minute Chicken and Mushroom Stroganoff.
Recipe for Pumpkin Fettucini Alfredo below!
Pumpkin Fettucini Alfredo
- Cook pasta according to directions in heavily salted water.
- Meanwhile, melt butter (2 tablespoons) in large skillet or saucepan over medium high heat.
- Add the flour (2 tablespoons); use a whisk to stir together to form a roux.
- Add the milk (2.5 cups), whisking in as you pour.
- Add the canned pumpkin puree (15 oz.), onion powder (1/2 teaspoon), and salt and pepper to taste. Whisk until smooth and well incorporated and continue heating until just starting to bubble. Turn off heat.
- Add the cooked fettucini to the sauce and mix to coat.
- Top with parmesan cheese, parsley, and freshly ground pepper, if desired.
- You can make this sauce in advance and refrigerate it for up to a week or freeze it in an airtight container for up to 6 months. It's a great thing to keep in your freezer for a quick and easy weeknight meal!
- For an even lighter version, substitute 1.5 cups of the milk with chicken or vegetable broth.
- The provided nutrition information does not include any added sodium from seasoning to taste, any optional ingredients, and it does not take brands into account. Feel free to calculate it yourself using this calculator or by adding the recipe to Yummly.