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Get Cookin’ RV Style: Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta


When the cooler weather of fall drops, you probably turn to the sweet and earthy taste of pumpkin. These days, nearly everything gets a pumpkin-flavored twist as soon as October hits. You may not know that pumpkin and pasta is a great combination. In fact, it’s a match made in foodie heaven. This Pumpkin & Sausage Pasta recipe was popularized by TV Chef and author Nick Stellino on his PBS TV series. The subtle flavor of pumpkin and spicy Italian sausage, with hints of sage, garlic and cinnamon are absolutely delizioso!

This recipe is part of Rec Vans new YouTube cooking series: Get Cookin’ RV Style. Each road recipe in this series has a short cooking video hosted by an engaging guest chef. We give you a deeper look at how to make the recipe and offer you RV lifestyle tips along the way. Be sure to subscribe to both our Experience Life blog and our YouTube channel for notifications when each new recipe is released.


They key to any good dish is usually in the ingredients. With this pasta dish, you’ll want to use extra virgin olive oil, fresh garlic and sage, a good quality dry white wine, pure pumpkin puree (preferably organic), and well-made Italian sausage. Depending on your grocery store or butcher shop, you may have an easier time finding Italian sausage in link form versus just packaged ground sausage. Both work equally well for this recipe.

There are A LOT of pasta options on the market today, so depending on your diet and nutritional philosophy, you can go with traditional semolina wheat pasta, quinoa & brown rice pasta, chickpea pasta, or even red lentil pasta. You can buy fresh pasta or make your own. For a lower carb option, you could serve this pumpkin & sausage sauce over riced cauliflower and other veggies. This is a versatile recipe that you can springboard from.

Disclaimer: Rec Van has no connection to any of the companies, brands or products listed in this recipe, blog post and video, and does not receive any financial consideration from the companies, brands, and products mentioned. No endorsement of La Mesa RV by the companies, brands and products mentioned should be assumed.


Ingredients for one serving small batch (3-4 servings):
– ½ Tbsp             Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– 2                      Hot or Mild Italian Sausages, casings removed  (about ½ pound)
– 1 ½ Tbsp          Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– ½ cup               Onion, chopped
– 5                      Garlic Cloves, sliced thick
– 1 ½ Tbsp          Fresh Sage, chopped
– ¼ tsp                Red Pepper Flakes  (optional)
– 2/3 cup            White Wine  (Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, etc.)
– 2/3 cup            Pumpkin Puree, canned  (100% Pure Pumpkin)
– 1/8 tsp            Ground Cinnamon  (optional)
– 1 cup               Chicken Broth or Stock
– 6 – 8 oz            Pasta  (penne, ziti, rigatoni, fusilli, bow-tie)
– Salt to taste (up to 1 tablespoon)
– Shaved or Grated Parmesan Cheese

Ingredients for one serving large batch (6-8 servings):
– 1 Tbsp             Extra Virgin Olive Oil|
– 4                      Hot or Mild Italian Sausages, casings removed  (about 1 pound)
– 3 Tbsp             Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– 1 cup               Onion, chopped
– 10                    Garlic Cloves, sliced thick
– 3 Tbsp             Fresh Sage, chopped
– ¼ tsp                Red Pepper Flakes  (optional)
– 1 ¼ cups          White Wine  (Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, etc.)
– 1 ¼ cups          Pumpkin Puree, canned  (100% Pure Pumpkin)
– ¼ tsp                Ground Cinnamon  (optional)
– 2 cups              Chicken Broth or Stock
– 12 – 16 oz        Pasta  (penne, ziti, rigatoni, fusilli, bow-tie)
– Salt to taste (up to 2 tablespoons)

Instructions (step-by-step):

  1. Chop onion. Measure amount of chopped onion needed for your batch size and place in a small bowl.
  2. Slice garlic cloves and add to onions.
  3. Chop fresh sage leaves and add to onions and garlic.
  4. Remove casings from sausages, if using links, and separate meat into small, bite-size chunks.
  5. In a large sauté pan, over medium heat, add first amount of olive oil (1/2 or 1 Tbsp). Let it heat for 1-2 minutes.
  6. Add sausage to hot oil and cook for 3-4 minutes or until browned.
  7. Remove sausage from pan with slotted spoon and place it in a bowl to set aside. Leave hot oil and browned bits in pan.
  8. To hot pan, add second amount of olive oil (1 ½ or 3 Tbsp) and let it get hot for 1 minute.
  9. Add onion, garlic and sage to pan. Cook over medium-low to medium heat for about 8-10 minutes, until onion and garlic begin to brown. Stir frequently and keep an eye on pan so you don’t burn the garlic.
  10. Add optional ¼ teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes for a spicier dish.
  11. Add cooked sausage back into pan and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring well.
  12. Add white wine and deglaze pan, making sure to scrape up and dislodge all the brown bits on the bottom of pan.
  13. Cook for 8 more minutes to reduce the wine. While sauce is cooking, open the can of pumpkin puree and measure out the amount of puree for your batch size.
  14. Add pumpkin puree and ground cinnamon to the pan and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring well the entire time.
  15. Add chicken stock and bring sauce to a boil on medium-high to high heat. Then reduce heat to low.
  16. Simmer sauce on low heat for 30 minutes.
  17. While sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt to taste to the water.
  18. Once water is at a full boil, add pasta and cook it according to the package instructions.
  19. When pasta is done, drain it.
  20. In a pan, gently stir pasta and sauce together.
  21. Cook for about 3 to 5 minutes over medium heat, to get the dish hot.
  22. Garnish with shaved or grated parmesan cheese.

Start-to-Finish Time: 1.5 to 2 hours


Cooking Tools Needed:           

  • Cutting board
  • Kitchen knife
  • Hand-powered food processor/chopper (optional)
  • Bowls for holding ingredients
  • Large sauté pan
  • Dutch Oven pot or another deep pot – for boiling pasta
  • Slotted spoon
  • Cooking spoon
  • Can opener
  • Measuring spoon set
  • Measuring cup set
  • 1- or 2-cup liquid measuring cup
  • Hand cheese grater/microplane

Looking for more Get Cookin’ recipe videos to elevate what you eat while RVing? Click here for our YouTube playlist.