Pumpkin Pasta Bake

Yes, yes, I know, another pumpkin dish.  But hear me out.  Not only does pumpkin taste great but its amazing for you!!

Just to name a few of the phenomenal health benefits that pumpkin offers…

  • its anti-inflammatory and an antioxidant.  It helps with joint health, organ health, stress relief, etc.
  • its high levels of vitamin C help with keeping the immune system strong and encouraging collagen production for skin to maintain its beautiful glow and elasticity.
  • it can help prevent premature aging and cardiovascular disease.
  • its great for bone and tooth health.
  • The list goes on.  To read more of why pumpkin is the bomb, here you go.

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Ingredients needed (though this recipe doesn’t need to be followed to a T.  You can semi-estimate, be a little loose with the ingredient amounts).

2 cups of Quinoa pasta (or regular pasta is fine too), cooked according to package instructions

1.5 cup of canned pumpkin

2 cups of sliced mushrooms

1.5 cup of spinach

1/2 cup of chopped white onion

Garlic powder, to taste

Pepper, to taste

Salt, to taste

Parmesan cheese, shredded

  1. While pasta is cooking in a separate saucepan, put the sliced mushrooms into a frying pan with some coconut oil, ghee or butter, on medium heat.
  2. Cook the mushrooms for 4-5 minutes, until they begin turning a slightly darker color and shrink a bit in size.
  3. When mushrooms are almost finished cooking, toss the spinach and onions into the pan along with them.
  4. Pasta should be finishing cooking about now.  Drain and set aside.
  5. In a separate baking dish, pour the cooked pasta in.  Add in the finished mushrooms/spinach/onion mixture along with the pasta.
  6. Stir in the canned pumpkin.  Mix well until all ingredients are well coated with pumpkin.
  7. Season the pasta with some garlic powder, pepper and salt.  Sprinkle with a generous shaking of parmesan cheese.
  8. Bake in the oven on 350 degrees F/176 degrees C for roughly 15 minutes.
  9. Remove, let cool and enjoy!  Sprinkle with more cheese on top if needed.

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Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.  Reheat prior to enjoying.

*Important note: of course, if you hate a particular ingredient (such as mushrooms), feel free to remove them and substitute with something different.  I bet bacon would be awesome in this dish.  Possibly some blue cheese chunks.  Zucchini would also likely be yummy.

I realize it might sound strange.  Straight up canned pumpkin with no butter, milk or flour added in.  A few reasons for this.  It tastes awesome when mixed with the parmesan.  Its lighter in calories without all the unnecessary add-ins.  Its creamy, comforting, delicious.  And you get way more health benefits from the raw, as is, undoctored ingredients.

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