Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Sage Sauce

gluten freemeat & poultrypaleo
Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

 Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

Christmas at my grandparents’ house growing up meant lots of fish. Seven fishes, to be exact.

However, sometimes, there would also be a lonesome ham. Or, my mother would prepare a ham for leftovers (since fish leftovers just aren’t a thing.)

For those of you who don’t do fish on Christmas and do ham instead (or if you’re like my crazy ma and you make a whole ham just for leftovers), today’s recipe is for you: use those leftovers!

 Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas but you like ham (or pancetta), this dish will soon become a permanent installation into your weekday dinner rotation: it’s that good.

I don’t know if it’s the slightly sweet nuttiness of the parsnips that are cooked in the sweety and savory meat OR the robust flavors in the chicken broth simmered butternut squash sauce, but the flavors in this recipe work… real well.

 Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

I love the crumbling of the fried sage on top (which sets the pace for the entire recipe since the butternut squash is cooked in the sage-infused oil.) It gives the dish a pretty deep green sprinkling of color and it adds so much flavor. Plus, well, who doesn’t love sage? Especially in the wintertime!

The sauce is effortless – just simmer butternut squash cubes with some pressed garlic, red pepper flakes and shallots in chicken broth and then puree into a blender and voila: a healthy, clean-eating friendly sauce that’s really versatile (it’ll work on anything!)

 Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

The trickiest part of this recipe is finding large parsnips (it can be tough!) However, if you can’t find large ones, just spiralize more of the smaller parsnips.

I used pancetta in this recipe, which is the “Italian bacon,” but you can use regular ‘ole ham also. Pancetta’s a bit sweeter, but the flavors will all work famously together – whether it’s that leftover Christmas ham, pancetta or just, ham.

 Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Parmesan Sage Sauce

And if you don’t celebrate Christmas and just want to make this recipe, I don’t blame you – I’m definitely going to be eating it past Christmastime!

What are you cooking on Christmas (if you celebrate)?

Nutritional Information & Recipe


Parsnip Noodles with Leftover Christmas Ham and Butternut Squash-Sage Sauce

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time55 mins
Servings: 3


  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 sage leaves
  • 1.5 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1 large shallot minced
  • 2 garlic cloves pressed
  • pinch of red pepper flakes less than ¼ teaspoon
  • freshly ground sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 3 large parsnips or 4-5 small ones
  • 3/4 cup cubed leftover Christmas ham or cubed pancetta


  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once the oil heats, add the sage and cook until crispy. Set the sage aside on a paper-towel lined plate.
  • Immediately add in the butternut squash, shallots, garlic and red pepper flakes to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until onion is translucent. Pour in the broth and raise the heat to bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the squash is softened, 15-20 minutes.
  • While the squash cooks, peel and spiralize the parsnips. Set aside.
  • Once the squash mixture is softened and easily pierced with a fork, transfer to a high-speed blender. Wipe down the pot and set aside. Blend the squash mixture until smooth, about 1 minute. Taste and season with salt and pepper to your preference. If the mixture is too thick, add in vegetable broth.
  • If not using leftover Christmas ham: Set the pot down over medium heat and once heated, add in the ham or pancetta and cook for 5 minutes or until cooked through and starting to brown on edges. Then, add in the parsnip noodles, cover and toss to cook for 5 more minutes or until al dente. Then, add in the squash sauce and toss altogether to warm sauce. Crumble the sage on top and serve immediately.
  • If using leftover Christmas ham: Set the pot down over medium heat and once heated, add in the ham, squash sauce and parsnip noodles, toss and cook for 5-7 minutes or until noodles al dente. Crumble the fried sage on top and serve immediately.

New to spiralizing? Grab your FREE eBook with our 20 Most Popular Blog Recipes!

Have a spiralizer and not sure where to start?How about making our fool-proof, most popularly made recipes from the blog? In this printable PDF eCookbook you’ll find photos and full recipes of our readers’ favorites to get you started!

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Leave a Comment

Want to share a photo of what you’ve made? Be sure to click the 'Choose file' button below to add your photos!

Recipe Rating

The maximum upload file size: 300 MB. You can upload: image.


gringalicioustori says:
Fish leftovers should definitely become a thing in my opinion but until then I'm glad to know I can make this yummy pasta! Love leftover recipes!
Thelma Rittmann says:
I was really happy to see you put in a recipe using leftover ham. We had our Christmas get-together last Sunday and now I have lots of leftover ham. I made ham and bean soup and still have lots of ham leftover. Thanks for this new recipe. I try almost all your recipes and really like them--makes me look forward to cooking.
love this! this is the first year i wont have our traditional seven fish with my family on Christmas Eve...instead i'll be at my boyfriend's but I think there will be fish components...Thanks for including this yummy looking dish! have a wonderful holiday. Merry Christmas! xx
What a great way to put leftover ham to use and OMG fried SAGE?? Can't wait to try it!
Maria says:
This sounds fantastic and we are making it as I am typing this note. Your ingredient list states "shallots", but the instructions refer to garlic. Which is correct? Hope that it is the shallots because that is what we are using. Also, which blade? Hope it is the smallest one, because that is what we are using. Keep the great recipes coming!
Anonymous says:
oops; I meant to say.. did you mean shallots versus the onion in the instructions?
It's shallots! And yes, Blade C- you can check out my "how to spiralize" page for info!
Rachel says:
I made this last night and I'm not sure if it's because I a) must not like parsnips [never had them before] and/or b) omitted the meat [vegetarian] but it tasted very, very off-- kind of bitter I suppose? Was I supposed to peel the parsnips? Cook them more?
Ashley Brooke says:
Made this tonight and absolutely loved it. Wish I had caught it before I tossed the leftover Christmas ham! But I used cubed ham and it was very delicious. So filling and flavorful for almost no calories. I like the bitter bite of parsnips combined with the smooth squash and sage.

Latest on Inspiralized

Subscribe to Inspiralized

Subscribe to one or all of our newsletters for amazing
recipes, inspirational content + our free starter guide

remember a couple weeks ago when I sat in front of this same mirror, tucked my long hair into a sweater and debated whether to chop it all off or not? 💇🏻‍♀️ I think we all know what that decision was 🤪⁣

this is still by far the coziest sweater I own and they sell it in a yellow that's perfect for spring and I'm debating whether or not to get it 😬 I've been in a funk all week and can't seem to shake it. retail therapy moment?!⁣

jokes aside, I need a vacation. more specifically, I need 🍹 on a 🏝... anyone else?  ⁣

actually, I put the @oculus goggles on the other night to go to a virtual beach, and I almost started crying... the sounds of the seagulls, the little turtle crawling on the sand, the bright sun, the sounds of the waves crashing, the white stand, the wind and the palm trees.... I had no idea how therapeutic the ocean and the beach are for me!⁣

I've thought a lot about where our first "trip" will be once it's safe to travel again, and I've decided on a beach resort. will you do something adventurous or something lazy and beachy? #liketkit

making a batch of this VEGAN PUMPKIN SNACKING LOAF today 🍞! I love to have a few mini loafs in the freezer to easily defrost for breakfasts or snacks for the kids, but also for myself - slathered with nut butter and a little sprinkle of hemp seeds 🥜 or some honey, butter and cinnamon for the kids 🍯🧈  ⁣

grab the recipe on the blog! happy monday! 🙌🏼⁣

#Vegan #veganfood #veganfoodshare #whatveganseat #bestofvegan #vegetarian #glutenfree #veg #vegetarianfood #plantbased

went for a nice long walk outside with the kids (we haven’t been able to do that for a while, because it’s just been so freezing and/or snowing) 🥶 and then we decided to pick up some to-go sandwiches and while we waited, the kids had some banana bread and juice 🍊🍌🍞 luca said, “mama I want to stay here alllll day!” which made me feel sad, because we haven’t felt comfortable dining indoors yet, and I’m sure he misses the people watching at restaurants on the weekends 😔 it’s okay, I’m just filing this under “things we get to look forward to when it’s safe again” 💋 #jerseycity ...