Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

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Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad


Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

This dish brings together the wholesome goodness of butternut squash and the delightful tang of goat cheese, creating a harmonious blend of flavors and textures. The butternut squash contributes essential vitamins A and C, promoting immune health and skin vitality. Goat cheese offers a creamy richness while providing protein and calcium for strong bones.

Meal Recommendation:

Ideal for a light lunch or a side dish at dinner, this pasta salad strikes a balance between nourishment and enjoyment. It can be a fulfilling standalone meal or paired with a protein source like grilled chicken or roasted turkey for added sustenance.

Cultural Consumption:

While this particular combination doesn’t have a specific cultural origin, it aligns with Mediterranean-inspired cuisine, which is enjoyed across countries like Italy and Greece. Its elements of olive oil, cheese, and fresh ingredients resonate with the Mediterranean diet, known for its heart-healthy benefits.

Historical and Culinary Background:

The culinary journey of this dish draws inspiration from the Mediterranean diet, where simple, natural ingredients shine. Butternut squash’s historical roots trace back to Central and South America, eventually spreading to become a staple in North American and European diets. Goat cheese has a history in various cuisines, often valued for its unique flavor and versatility.

Homemade Tips and Equipment:

For a homemade twist, roast the butternut squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper to enhance its sweetness. You’ll need a roasting pan for this. When boiling the pasta, a pot with a colander for draining is essential. Tossing the pasta and other ingredients in a spacious mixing bowl helps distribute flavors evenly.

Food and Drink Pairing:

Pair this pasta salad with a crisp white wine or a light, citrusy beer. The wine’s acidity complements the tang of goat cheese, while the beer’s effervescence contrasts with the creamy elements.

Ingredient Cost:

The cost of ingredients can vary based on location and quality. Butternut squash is generally affordable and readily available. Goat cheese might be a slightly pricier ingredient, but a small amount goes a long way. Pasta is a cost-effective base, making this dish a reasonably economical choice overall.

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Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

Cooking time, Recipe and Tips, Storage and Shelf Life

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

Cooking Time:
  • Roasting butternut squash: About 25-30 minutes
  • Boiling pasta: Follow the instructions on the pasta package (usually around 8-12 minutes)
  • Assembling the salad: 10-15 minutes

Recipe and Tips:

  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 oz (about 225g) pasta of your choice
  • 4 oz (about 115g) goat cheese, crumbled
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves, torn
  • Balsamic vinegar (optional)
  • Mixed greens (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400Β°F (200Β°C).
  2. Toss the diced butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast on a baking sheet until tender and slightly caramelized, about 25-30 minutes.
  3. While the squash is roasting, cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the cooked pasta, roasted butternut squash, crumbled goat cheese, and torn basil leaves.
  5. If desired, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and additional olive oil for extra flavor.
  6. Serve the pasta salad on a bed of mixed greens, if using.
  • To save time, you can roast the butternut squash in advance and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to assemble the salad.
  • Feel free to add toasted nuts (such as walnuts or pine nuts) for extra crunch and nutrition.
  • Customize the salad by including other vegetables like cherry tomatoes or roasted red peppers.
  • Adjust the amount of goat cheese and olive oil according to your taste preferences.
Storage and Shelf Life:
  • This pasta salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  • To maintain the freshness of the salad, store the dressing separately and add it just before serving.
  • If the salad becomes slightly dry after refrigeration, you can revive it by drizzling a bit of olive oil or balsamic vinegar before eating.

Enjoy your flavorful Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad!

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

How many calories?

The calorie content of the Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad can vary based on portion sizes and specific ingredients used. However, I can provide you with a rough estimate of the calorie range for a typical serving of this dish:

On average, a serving (about 1 cup) of Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad could contain approximately 300 to 400 calories. This estimate includes the pasta, roasted butternut squash, goat cheese, and any additional ingredients like olive oil, basil, and balsamic vinegar.

Please note that this is a general estimation and the actual calorie count may differ depending on factors such as ingredient quantities, preparation methods, and specific brands used. If you’re looking for a more precise calorie count, it’s recommended to calculate it using a nutrition calculator or app, considering the exact measurements and ingredients you use.

Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad

Recipe Review


The Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Pasta Salad presents itself as a vibrant and visually appealing dish. The contrasting colors of the roasted butternut squash, creamy goat cheese, and fresh basil create an inviting and appetizing arrangement. The aroma of roasted squash and the tangy notes of goat cheese linger enticingly, arousing anticipation.

Taste Evaluation:

With the first bite, the creamy texture of the goat cheese interplays with the slightly sweet and tender butternut squash. The pasta provides a satisfying chewiness that complements the other elements. The basil adds a refreshing herbal note, while the optional balsamic vinegar enhances the overall flavor profile with a touch of acidity. The combination of flavors is well-balanced, delivering a blend of richness, tanginess, and natural sweetness.

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