Hearty Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta Bake: A Fall Feast for Under $12 | Budget-Friendly Recipes

By Sara


Last Updated: August 29, 2023


As the leaves begin to change and the back-to-school season is in full swing, it's time to embrace the flavors of fall.

Our Budget-Friendly Recipes series continues with a dish that's perfect for busy school nights and crisp autumn evenings: Hearty Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta Bake. This comforting meal combines the rich taste of pumpkin with savory sausage, all baked to perfection. Let's explore how to prepare this delightful dish for under $12!


Why Pumpkin?

Pumpkin is not only a symbol of fall but also a nutritious and affordable ingredient. It's rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, making it a healthy addition to any meal. Canned pumpkin puree is readily available and offers a convenient way to incorporate this seasonal favorite into various dishes.


Budget-Friendly Hearty Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta Bake 

Embrace the flavors of fall with this comforting and satisfying pasta bake. It's a perfect meal for busy school nights and can be prepared ahead of time. You can even freeze this and bake it another night! 

  • Note: Our cost estimation is based on average prices in the US, but prices will vary depending on your location. Our goal is to help you find ingredients that are generally more affordable!



  • 8 oz. pasta (penne or rigatoni)
  • 1 lb. sausage, crumbled
  • 1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin puree
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. dried sage
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil


Total cost: Around $12. Serves 6.


Hearty Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta Bake Cooking Directions 

  • Cook the pasta according to package instructions, then drain and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat and brown the crumbled sausage.
  • Add the chopped onion and minced garlic to the skillet and sauté until softened.
  • Stir in the pumpkin puree, dried sage, salt, and pepper, and cook until well combined.
  • Combine the pasta and pumpkin-sausage mixture in a baking dish, then top with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  • Bake at 375°F for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown.

Serve hot and enjoy this comforting fall feast!



Additional Savings and Hot Tips

  • Use Seasonal Produce: Pumpkin is often on sale during the fall season, making it a budget-friendly choice. You may even find bulk options that will make this dish even more budget-friendly. 
  • Get Creative with Sausage: Opt for store-brand or sale-priced sausage to save even more. Different flavors of sausage can add variety to this dish.
  • Stock up on Pasta: If your grocery store is running a sale on pasta, make sure to pick up a few extra boxes to save money and have the ingredients that you need on hand. 
  • Make Ahead: This pasta bake can be assembled ahead of time and baked when needed, making it a convenient option for busy school nights.



Final Thoughts

This Hearty Pumpkin and Sausage Pasta Bake is a celebration of fall flavors and a comforting meal that the whole family will love. It's budget-friendly, easy to prepare, and perfect for those busy back-to-school evenings. Stay tuned for more budget-friendly recipes, and until next time, happy cooking and happy saving!



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