The combo of butternut squash, rigatoni, bacon and smoked cheese makes for a delicious twist on traditional mad and cheese.

Source: Midwest Living


Read the full recipe after the video.

Recipe Summary

15 mins
14 mins
40 mins
1 hr 9 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly butter a 3-quart au gratin or baking dish; set aside. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain; transfer to a large bowl.

  • Meanwhile, in a large saucepan combine the squash and 2 1/2 cups of the milk over medium-high heat. Bring to boiling; reduce heat to medium, and simmer until the squash is tender when pierced with a fork, 18 to 20 minutes. Stir together remaining 1/4 cup milk and flour; stir into squash mixture. Bring to boiling; cook until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 cups of the Gruyere until melted; keep warm.

  • Meanwhile, in a very large skillet cook bacon until crisp; drain on paper towels. Crumble; set aside. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons bacon drippings. Return skillet to the heat.

  • Add onions to skillet; cover and cook over low heat 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and increase heat to high. Cook 4 to 6 minutes more, stirring, until onions are golden.

  • Add squash-cheese mixture, onions, and bacon to the bowl with the pasta. Toss well to combine, then transfer to prepared baking dish.

  • Place bread in a food processor and pulse with two or three on/off turns to form large coarse crumbs (you should have about 2 cups). Transfer to a small bowl; mix with melted butter. Sprinkle remaining Gruyere and the bread crumbs over pasta mixture. Bake until top is browned, about 14 to 15 minutes. Cool 5 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley. Makes 6 to 8 servings.


To make ahead and freeze, omit preheating and prepare through Step 6 before putting in the oven to bake. Cover the prepared au gratin dish with foil. Freeze up to 1 month.

To serve, thaw in the refrigerator 24 hours (casserole will still be icy). Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake, covered, about 1 hour or until edges are bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with parsley.

Nutrition Facts

686 calories; fat 29g; cholesterol 79mg; saturated fat 15g; carbohydrates 77g; mono fat 10g; poly fat 2g; insoluble fiber 5g; sugars 13g; protein 30g; vitamin a 10641.3IU; vitamin c 24.8mg; thiamin 0.8mg; riboflavin 0.7mg; niacin equivalents 7.5mg; vitamin b6 0.5mg; folate 221.8mcg; vitamin b12 1.3mcg; sodium 668mg; potassium 831mg; calcium 605.8mg; iron 3.8mg.