Butternut Squash and Sage Pesto is a healthy, flavorful twist on pesto! Made using only a few simple ingredients, this pesto is creamy, delicious, and versatile.
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What are some flavor combinations you can’t get enough of?
I love the combination of butternut squash and sage, and making a pesto seemed like the perfect way to marry the two flavors.
Butternut squash is ideal for adding to pesto because it comes out so creamy. It also allowed me to keep the olive oil scarce to cut down on fat, but you could easily add more to make a looser pesto if you want to use it as a sauce.
I love this pesto recipe because it’s so easy and can be used in a million different ways. Spread it on sandwiches, toss it with pasta, use it as a dip…the list goes on and on!
- Butternut squash
- Olive oil
- Coarse kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Parmesan cheese
- Pine nuts
How to make sage pesto
- On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven at until lightly brown and beginning to caramelize.
- Place roasted squash, 2 tablespoons olive oil, sage, parsley, Parmesan, and pine nuts in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times. Scrape down the sides if necessary, and continue to pulse or process until a smooth pesto forms.
How do you cut a butternut squash?
I use a large, sharp chef’s knife (<— affiliate link in case that’s a new term for you!). Lay the squash down on a cutting board and insert the tip of the knife into the center of the squash, cutting toward the bottom.
If your squash isn’t too large, you should be able to cut down at least half way. You might be able to cut all the way through, if not, turn the squash over and continue the cut from the bottom back to the middle.
Move the tip of your knife back to the middle of the squash and repeat the process toward the stem until the squash is completely cut in half. Scoop out the seeds with a large spoon and discard.
Another option would be to first remove the peel of the butternut squash with a vegetable peeler or by cutting off the top and bottom of the squash to create a flat surface and then cutting the peel off from top to bottom.
If your squash is particularly bulbous, you can cut it in half just above the bulb to make peeling and cutting easier.
Once your squash is peeled, cut the squash into ¼ or ½ inch disks. Cut each disk into cubes, trying to keep them all roughly the same size, removing seeds as necessary.
How to use butternut squash pesto
- As a spread on sandwiches or grilled cheese
- Use in place of pizza sauce or thin with more oil and drizzle over your favorite pizza
- Toss with pasta for a rich and healthy sauce
- Toss with roasted vegetables
- Spread on crostini for a tasty appetizer
- Enjoy as a dip with crackers or whole grain tortilla chips
How to store homemade sage pesto
Homemade butternut squash and sage pesto can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Tips for customizing butternut squash and sage pesto
- Swap the herbs for arugula, kale, or spinach
- Use half oil, half water to cut down on fat
- To make it vegan, leave out the cheese and add nutritional yeast a little at a time to taste
Yes! This pesto freezes beautifully in small, individual portions. I usually spoon about ½ – 1 cup into a little container and just throw it right in the freezer. Allow it to sit in the refrigerator overnight to thaw or pop it in the microwave for thirty seconds or so.
Pesto, like most foods, can be healthy in moderation. It is higher in calories than some sauces but it’s also made with natural ingredients, like butternut squash, olive oil and nuts.
More pesto recipes
- Homemade Pesto
- Walnut Arugula Pesto
- Spinach Pesto
- Pistachio Pesto
- Pesto Tofu with Balsamic Vegetables
- Pesto Linguine with Crispy Balsamic Chickpeas
- Burrata with Tomatoes, Pesto, and Toast
- Oven Roasted Tomato and Pesto Panini
- Pesto Tortellini Salad
- Butternut Squash and Sage Pesto Grilled Cheese
If you make this recipe, be sure to rate it, leave a comment, or tag #theliveinkitchen on Instagram!
Butternut Squash and Sage Pesto
- ¾ cup peeled and cubed butternut squash
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for roasting
- Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup loosely packed sage leaves
- 1 cup loosely packed parsley leaves
- ¼ freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until lightly brown and beginning to caramelize, stirring every 10 minutes or so, about 60 minutes.
- Place roasted squash, 2 tablespoons olive oil, sage, parsley, Parmesan, and pine nuts In the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times. Scrape down the sides if necessary, and continue to pulse or process until a smooth pesto forms. If you’d like a thinner pesto, stream in olive oil while the motor is running until you’ve reached the desired consistency.