The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Pasta with Smoked Bacon, Butternut Squash and Spinach

4.83 Mitt(s) 6 Rating(s)6 votes, average: 4.83 out of 56 votes, average: 4.83 out of 56 votes, average: 4.83 out of 56 votes, average: 4.83 out of 56 votes, average: 4.83 out of 5

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Level: Easy

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Description

This has all of my favorite things in it: bacon, butternut squash, vidalia onions and spinach. It is so delicious, especially when made with fresh rosemary from the garden!

Ingredients

  • ½ pounds Smoked Bacon, Cut Into Half Inch Pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter, Unsalted
  • 3 whole Vidalia Onions, Quarter Inch Slices
  • 4 cups Butternut Squash; Peeled, Cut Into Half Inch Cubes
  • 1 cup Chicken Broth
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Rosemary, Chopped
  • 1 pound Penne Pasta
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 1 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese, Divided
  • 1 bag Baby Spinach Leaves, Large Bag
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste

Preparation

In a large heavy skillet or Dutch oven with lid, over medium heat, saute bacon until crisp. Remove bacon and drain on paper towels. Leave drippings in the pan and add butter. Heat until butter is melted; add onions and cook, stirring often until brown and caramelized. (I usually add a couple of teaspoons of sugar to the onions to help the caramelizing process.)

Add squash and stir and cook for about 5 minutes. Pour in chicken stock and sprinkle with chopped rosemary. Cover and cook until liquid is reduced, about 2 to 4 minutes. Be careful to NOT overcook the squash.

Bring a large pot of water to boil and add penne and 1 tablespoon salt. Cook until al dente, or just tender. While the pasta is cooking, add the spinach by large handfuls to the onion and squash mixture. Stir, and when wilted, add another handful. Continue until all spinach is added. Don’t overcook!

Toss in 2/3 of the bacon. Drain pasta and place in a large bowl. Add the vegetables along with 1/2 cup parmesan cheese. Toss to mix. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Garnish with remaining bacon and 1/2 cup parmesan cheese. Serve hot.

Note: This makes a HUGE amount. We typically will freeze half in a casserole dish. When you want to serve the second pan, remove from the freezer and thaw in the fridge. Drizzle with chicken broth, cover and bake in the oven to reheat.

6 Comments

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leannen on 11.5.2009

Fast, easy and delicious. Just the way I like ‘em. Also uses ingredients that I always have on hand – even better.

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kourtneyk on 10.28.2009

I LOVED this recipe! I made a few (minor) modifications to make it healthier — doubled the squash, used whole-wheat pasta , and used turkey bacon with a tiny addition of hickory-smoked salt. It was still delicious; so much that I’m serving it for our next family function! Thanks for sharing!

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amesigee on 10.23.2009

We loved this! I did the following substitutions – white wine instead of chicken broth, and dried whole sage and marjoram crumbled in instead of rosemary. Yum!

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ladyspain on 10.19.2009

I made this last night for a friend, and it was DELISH, as my MIL would say… love it! Though I did make the mistake of cooking the squash too long… so for all those after me, I would suggest adding in the spinach when it looks like the squash is just starting to soften up, or a little sooner… otherwise, you’ll have mushy (though still yummy) butternut squash with your pasta. This recipe is a definite keeper though!

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co0kin4theboys on 10.15.2009

This was really good! The rosemary was the perfect touch with the squash and bacon. Three of my four little boys gobbled it right up. That makes it a winner in my book!

6 Reviews

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foxfire on 2.6.2013

Wonderful! My only complaint is that it needs a bit more protein to make it a bit more filling. Over all, it is EXCELLENT, and well worth trying. Even my 1, 3, and 5 year old children loved it

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Kelly on 1.3.2013

Delicious!

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emilyann on 2.25.2012

Wow. I have a husband who generally refuses pasta without a sauce, but he asked for seconds with this one. The rosemary imparted a magnificent flavor to the squash. We used a bit less pasta then called for and the recipe still turned out beautifully! Thank you for sharing your culinary explorations!

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lmackenzie on 1.10.2012

Delicious. I left out the butter and the cheese due to an allergy in the family and it was still amazing. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

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jojo0676 on 11.12.2010

AWESOME! We all loved it. Even my 4 and 1 year old’s. I dumped out most of the bacon grease and only used 1 tbsp. butter and it was still very flavorful.

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