Can’t get enough of everyone’s favorite fall superfood? Try a slice of this savory dish from The Pumpkin Cookbook.

Homemade lasagna is always a labor of love, and this is no different, although using no-cook noodles cuts out one step. This is a pasta dish in which tomatoes make no appearance, as is typical of Northern Italian pastas. Instead, a creamy béchamel sauce separates the layers of pasta, pumpkin, and cheese. Accompany with a salad of crisp greens. If using regular noodles, cook and drain them and reduce the amount of sauce. Use 4 tablespoons butter, 5 tablespoons flour, and 4 cups milk. Serves 8.

Photo © Clare Barboza


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 2 pounds fresh pumpkin, seeds and fibers removed, peeled and chopped (about 4 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ pound bulk sweet Italian chicken sausage
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 12 oven ready/no boil lasagna noodles

Béchamel sauce:

  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 5 cups milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 cups grated part-skim mozzarella
  • 1½ cups freshly grated Parmesan


  1. Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, or until wilted.
  2. Stir in the pumpkin and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with the oregano, salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Add the sausage and cook until it loses its color, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour. Cook for 1 minute, until bubbly. Whisk in the milk and cook, stirring, until the mixture thickens and bubbles, about 5 minutes. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and set aside.
  4. Combine the two cheeses in a medium bowl.
  5. Heat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
  6. To assemble the lasagna, spray a 9- by 13- by 2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Ladle ¾ cup of sauce on the bottom of the pan and top with 3 noodles, placed crosswise.
  7. Pour another ¾ cup of sauce over the noodles, then one-third of the pumpkin filling. Sprinkle 1 cup of the cheese mixture over the filling. Repeat the layers of sauce, noodles, filling, and cheese twice. Top this with the remaining noodles, pour over the remaining sauce, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. The lasagna should look soupy.
  8. Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with nonstick spray and cover the top of the pan, with the oiled side facing down. Bake for 45 minutes, uncover, and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let the lasagna sit for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.
Excerpted and adapted from The Pumpkin Cookbook, 2nd Edition © by DeeDee Stovel.

DeeDee Stovel

DeeDee Stovel is the author of numerous cookbooks, including the bestseller Picnic. A caterer, longtime teacher of cooking and nutrition, and passionate advocate of fresh,… See Bio

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The Pumpkin Cookbook, 2nd Edition

by DeeDee Stovel

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