Pumpkins aren’t just for jack-o-lanterns. They are a delicious and nutritious addition to your diet.
Here are 14 easy ways to start enjoying pumpkin now:
Roasted — Cut it into slices, lay in a roasting pan, brush some extra virgin olive oil over it and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes to an hour. Serve warm on its own or on top of a green salad.
Stuffed– Cut small pumpkins in half, scoop out the seeds (save them!), brush with olive oil and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour. Serve stuffed with quinoa or rice and cooked mixed vegetables. See: Pumpkin Risotto with Spinach
Soup — Bake pumpkin in the same way as indicated under “stuffed” then scoop out the cooked flesh, add two cups to a blender with some vegetable or chicken stock (to desired thinness), a teaspoon of cumin, a teaspoon of unrefined sea salt, a pinch of black pepper, and a teaspoon of honey or other sweetener. Serve hot.
Pie — Add ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, and/or cloves along with your favorite sweetener, pour into a pie crust and bake for an hour at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. See: Pumpkin Pie with Pecan Crust
Pureed — Place cooked pumpkin (as indicated in “stuffed”) in a blender with a little water, unrefined sea salt, black pepper, a teaspoon of honey or other sweetener, and serve in place of mashed potatoes for a healthier side dish.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds — Remove the fleshy parts from the pumpkin seeds you saved. Toss in a little extra virgin olive and unrefined sea salt. Bake at 300 for 5 to 10 minutes or until lightly golden.
Ground Pumpkin Seeds — Add ground pumpkin seeds to smoothies or on top your hot or cold cereal.
Raw Pumpkin Seed Snacks — Snack on pumpkin seeds (the green seeds, not the whole seed removed from the pumpkin) on their own or with a pinch of unrefined sea salt.
Bread — Add a cup of grated raw pumpkin to your favorite bread recipe to add moisture, flavor, and nutrients.
Cake — Add a cup of grated raw pumpkin and ground cinnamon and nutmeg to your favorite cake as an easy way to spice up a plain cake recipe.
Pasta Filling — Add pureed pumpkin along with your favorite seasonings such as sage and sea salt as a filling for lasagna or ravioli.
Chai Tea or Pumpkin Lattes — Add a tablespoon of cooked and pureed pumpkin to your chai tea or latte for a delicious autumn twist on your favorite beverage. (Click here for a Pumpkin Latte recipe)
Adapted from Care 2 Healthy Living
Stuffed Pumpkin image: care2 healthy living
Roasted pumpkin seeds image: miriam_kato via flickr
Pumpkin latte image: ousam via Flickr