Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

Pumpkin Mac and Cheese made with canned pumpkin, Cheddar cheese, gruyère cheese, fresh sage and topped with crunchy seasoned breadcrumbs is the perfect fall dish.

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Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

  • Prep Time: 20 m
  • Cook Time: 35 m
  • Total Time: 55 m
  • Servings:


  • 1 pound dried penne rigatoni, cavatapi or other shape
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • cups milk room temperature
  • 8 ounces Gruyère cheese grated
  • 8 ounces Cheddar cheese grated
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • pinch nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon dried sage
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
  • 15 ounce canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 cup seasoned panko breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup toasted salted pumpkin seeds rough chopped


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF.
  2. Bring a large stockpot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until just al dente. Drain and set aside.
  3. Heat a 3-quart saucepan or casserole over medium-high heat. Add the butter and when it has melted, add the flour. Whisk a little and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the milk and whisk well to break up any lumps. Bring the mixture to a simmer so that the sauce thickens. Simmer for just a minute and then turn off the heat. Let the sauce sit for a minute and then add the cheeses, stirring until everything is melted. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
  4. Add the sage (dried and fresh) and the pumpkin. Stir until everything is smooth.
  5. Combine the pasta and sauce and stir together well. Cover the pasta with a lid and transfer the casserole to the oven. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Combine the panko breadcrumbs and pumpkin seeds in a small bowl. When the casserole has baked for 20 minutes, remove the lid and top with the breadcrumb-seed mixture. Return the casserole to the oven (uncovered) and bake for another 10 to 15minutes, or until the topping is nicely brown.
  7. Let the mac and cheese cool for a few minutes before serving.
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Comments (2)Post a Reply

  1. I’m with you about pumpkin Meredith. The bundt cake looks good but that pumpkin mac & cheese is a big no! Don’t screw up mac & cheese! It’s an icon 😊

  2. 5 stars
    This recipe is a winner! I loved it. I used a little bit of the pasta cooking water to thin the cheese sauce out just a tiny bit.

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