Weekend Butternut Squash Bolognese

Recipe and photos by Holly Darnell

This recipe provides comfort and warmth without the heaviness of a traditional bolognese. Also, the sauce tastes like it has been simmering on the stove for hours so it makes an impressive weeknight dish. I love using local produce, and fall features some of my favorites. The great thing about this dish is that the ‘noodles’ in the recipe can be interchangeable with a spaghetti squash or sweet potatoes.

Serves: 2
Total time: 45 minutes


  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • ½ butternut squash, peeled and spiralized
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ medium yellow onion, diced
  • ½ pound lean ground beef (1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained for vegetarian)
  • 1 ½ tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup beef broth (vegetable broth for vegetarian)
  • 16 oz. crushed tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ¼ tsp. allspice
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 1 bunch broccolini or broccoli
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut the top off part of the butternut squash. Peel the skin off. Then cut in two halves so it’s easier to handle. Spiralize using the thickest noodle setting on the spiralizer. (If you don’t have a spiralizer, you can use a vegetable peeler to get a noodle-like look)
  3. Place the noodles in a medium-sized bowl and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Divide the butternut squash noodles between 2 lined baking sheets. Roast until soft, about 10-15 minutes.
  4. While the noodles are baking, place a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion to the pan and saute until translucent, about 5-6 minutes.
  5. Add beef to the pan and break up into small pieces until no longer pink, about 8 minutes. Add minced garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes to pan and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add beef broth to deglaze the pan. Add in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and salt, and pepper. Bring sauce to a boil. After coming to a boil, lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  6. After the noodles are done and the sauce is simmering for the first time, place the broccolini in a medium bowl and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.
  7. Place oven on 425 degrees.
  8. Place broccolini on a lined baking sheet and roast for 20-23 minutes, or until roasted and crisp.
  9. Add in the allspice and coconut milk to the bolognese. Simmer for an additional 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in the butternut squash noodles to the pan and stir together until warmed, about 3 minutes.
  10. Take the pan off of the heat.
  11. Serve the bolognese with roasted broccolini. Enjoy!
NFM Staff
Author: NFM Staff

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