Butternut Squash Tortellini Dumplings with a Sage Brown Butter Sauce

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I do not own a pasta maker. I wish I did, but unfortunately I do not. So when I was craving some homemade tortellini, I got a bit creative and decided to use pre-made dumpling wrappers that I had picked up from my local Asian market and whipped up this dish. The tortellini dumplings are filled with butternut squash and a bit of ricotta, and they’re topped with a creamy and nutty sage brown butter sauce.

Burro e salvia, or butter and sage, are a classic Italian pairing, but I added pine nuts and a teensy hint of garlic to the sauce to really bring out the flavor of the butternut squash. It’s all topped off with a bit of parmesan, which adds sharpness and umami to the dish.

Butternut Squash Tortellini Dumplings with a Sage Brown Butter Sauce

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian, Italian Fusion
Servings 1 person


  • ¾ cup butternut squash cut up
  • 1 tbsp ricotta
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 8 dumpling wrappers
  • 1 clove garlic whole
  • 6 leaves sage
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • freshly grated parmesan to top


Making the Tortellini Dumplings

  • Heat up a pan on medium heat.
  • Cut up the butternut squash into small cubes (they don't need to be perfect, they will be mashed shortly, but the smaller they are, the faster they will cook).
  • Once the pan is hot, add in the butternut squash along with a splash of water, cover the pan and let it cook until the squash is completely cooked through.
  • Transfer the cooked squash to a bowl, add in the ricotta, and mash it into a paste-y filling. Add nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste.
  • Place a small scoop of filling into the center of a dumpling wrapper. Wet the edges of the wrapper with water. Fold the dumpling in a half moon shape. Bring both edges of the half moon together until it makes a tortellini like shape. I was able to make roughly 8 dumplings from this amount of filling.

Making the Sauce and Cooking the Dumplings

  • Heat up a pan on medium heat.
  • Add in the butter, garlic, sage, and pine nuts to the pan.
  • Let the butter simmer until it becomes bubbly and turns brown.
  • Add in the dumplings along with ⅛ cup + 1 tbsp of water and cover the pan for 3 minutes to let the dumplings cook through.
  • After 3 minutes, uncover the pan, add salt and parmesan to taste, serve up the dumplings hot, and enjoy!


  • Don’t skip out on the parmesan! It really helps balance out the flavors in the dish. 
  • The brown butter sauce adds a great nutty flavor to the whole dish, and the darker you make your sauce, the nuttier the flavor will be. My butter sauce pictured above is more of a blonde color but you can keep cooking the butter down until it reaches a deep caramel color if you’re feeling extra nutty!
  • You may see milk solids form in the butter, do not be alarmed and just keep them in the sauce, it’ll taste great. 
  • You can remove the whole garlic clove from the sauce one it’s cooked if you’d like, however the garlic does get really nicely roasted and melty and I personally ate mine whole after I ate the tortellini. 
  • Feel free to experiment with the filling or the nuts you use! This would taste great with walnuts or pistachios, or a pumpkin filling as well. 
Keyword Dumplings, Pasta

Enjoy and please leave any feedback or questions in the comments below!

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