This Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo is creamy, delicious and so easy to make for a chilly Fall evening. Make tonight a comfort food night!
It seems like pumpkin spice season arrives earlier and earlier every year. I’m looking at you, Starbucks. Each year, Starbucks seems to release the Pumpkin Spice Latte (OMG! The #PSL is back!!) earlier than the year before. Don’t get me wrong. I do enjoy a good pumpkin spice latte…but on August 25th!? That’s still summer! To be fair, we can’t really blame Starbucks here. Customers line up out the door to get PSL’s, so can you really fault Starbucks for giving customers what they want?
With the internet going absolutely bonkers for anything and everything pumpkin spice, I decided to add in a pumpkin only recipe. Don’t worry – there are plenty of pumpkin spice recipes on this site, too! Every year, pumpkin alfredo pops up all over the place at our local pasta restaurants. Upstate New York has a strong Italian influence, so we have plenty of restaurants that serve pasta in some form or another.
Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo
Every year, I look at the pumpkin alfredo with a suspicious eye. Why in the world would someone put pumpkin into their pasta sauce!? Well, I finally broke down last year and tried it. Holy cow, Batman! Now I know why people put pumpkin into their pasta sauce. The result is a creamy, delicious sauce that literally comes together in minutes. And while there is pumpkin in the sauce, the other pumpkin spice seasonings are noticeably absent – minus a tiny pinch of nutmeg.
So the first question I had about pumpkin alfredo is “Does it taste like pumpkin?” In my head, pumpkin and pumpkin spice are intertwined, so I was a bit skeptical. Well, this pumpkin alfredo does taste like pumpkin…but barely. In fact, Laura couldn’t identify the pumpkin flavor as it was rather subtle. It’s a delicious, creamy sauce, and it doesn’t taste like a Starbucks PSL (OMG! #PSL!).
I’m here to tell ya – if you’ve never tried Pumpkin Alfredo, then this recipe is worth making! I used cheese tortellini as the base here, but any pasta that works well for creamy sauces could be used instead. Classic options are linguine, fettuccine, tagliatelle and pappardelle. I must say that I’m a bit partial to the tortellini, though. The added cheese really brings a ton of additional flavor to the finished recipe!
I absolutely love the summer, but there’s always something exciting about this time of the year. The slight chill in the Autumn breeze feels amazing, and it really makes me crave homemade comfort food. (It also makes me crave coffee cake, muffins and homemade breads.)
If you want to put a spin on this recipe, then consider adding some crumbled bacon, roasted Brussels sprouts or perhaps even a pan-fried chicken breast. All of these flavors would pair well with creamy Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo! (Just don’t be surprised when your family goes back for seconds of this one!)
Did you make this Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo? Leave a comment, or better yet snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog). I’d love to see your version!
Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo
- 12- oz. cheese tortellini
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
- ¼ cup yellow onion diced
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- ¾ cup canned pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
- ½ tsp dried sage
- pinch ground nutmeg
- 1¼ cups half-and-half
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese plus more for garnishing
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- chopped fresh parsley for garnishing
- Fill a large pot with salted water and bring to a boil. Cook tortellini according to package instructions. Drain tortellini and set aside, but reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
- Using a large deep skillet, add butter and place over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes.
- Add garlic and continue sautéing for 1-2 more minutes.
- Add pumpkin, sage and nutmeg; stir and continue sautéing for 1-2 more minutes.
- Add half-and-half; stir until well combined. Once mixture begins to simmer, reduce heat to medium-low. Continue cooking for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add Parmesan cheese and pepper; stir until well combined. Continue cooking for 1-2 more minutes.
- Add cooked tortellini and toss until well coated. (If necessary, add a bit of the reserved pasta water to loosen sauce.)
- Divide onto plates and garnish with additional grated Parmesan and chopped fresh parsley.
Looking for other tasty pumpkin recipes? Check out some of these favorites, too: