Pumpkin Garden Pasta Sauce: A luscious change of pace from turkey

Pumpkin Garden Pasta Sauce: A luscious change of pace from turkey

By now, you're probably have had turkey up to your ears. But even if you haven't, this luscious Pumpkin Garden Pasta Sauce is sure to wow you.

It's perfect if you looove pumpkin and even if you who don't. That's because the sauce isn't in your face shouting  "PUMPKIN!"

In fact, it doesn't even whisper it. I don't think you'd even know it contains pumpkin if someone didn't tell you.

This lusciously rich, yet light-tasting pasta topper is sort of a milder, yet more complex version of a marinara sauce, only one with a lovely reddish-orange color.

Why would you want to eat a pasta sauce made with pumpkin? Besides the fact that it tastes divine?

Because pumpkin is so darn good for you! It has a bounty of beta carotene, which the body converts to Vitamin A. One cup of pumpkin means a mother lode of Vitamin A --200% of the recommended daily intake for most people!

And if that's not enough, pumpkin is rich in Vitamin C, fiber, and lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants important for eye health.

I first ran across a version of this recipe on my favorite food blog, Mel's Kitchen Cafe, but it required adding diced butternut squash, which was too much work--at least for me. I wanted to make the sauce easier. And, boy did I!

By the way, Mel's recipe is supposed to be a copycat version of Trader Joe's Autumn Harvest Sauce.

Pumpkin Garden Pasta Sauce

1 tablespoon butter
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 carrots (or one cup carrots, chopped
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 20-oz. can tomato puree
2 15-oz cans pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon oregano
1 cup milk or cream
1/4 teaspoon pepper red pepper flakes
Parmesan cheese

  1. In large saucepan, melt butter. Add onion, garlic and carrots. Heat 2-3 minutes or until onion is softened.
  2. Add chicken broth, tomato puree, pumpkin puree, sugar and oregano. Stir, blending well. Bring to a gentle simmer, cook about 20 minutes or until carrots are softened. If mixture appears too thick, add more broth to thin slightly.
  3. Using immersion blender, blend sauce until slightly chunky or smooth. ( If you don't have an immersion blender, transfer the mixture in batches to a blender and blend until smooth.)
  4. Slowly stir in the milk or cream. Heat 5 minutes,  making sure the sauce doesn't boil. Thin with additional broth or milk, if needed. Serve over hot, cooked pasta. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top of sauce.

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