Although pumpkins are most often associated with holiday desserts like muffins and pies, there are many more ways to use this fall squash throughout your meal. When selecting your perfect pumpkin from the patch, opt for smaller pumpkins that are rich in color--larger pumpkins are less sweet. From sweet to savory desserts and dinners, we have tips and ideas for making the most of your pumpkins.
When pumpkin is cooked down, it is very similar in texture to mashed potatoes. Bring a sweetness to your table by adding and/or substituting pumpkin in your potato dishes.
Enjoy the full flavor of the pumpkin by roasting it with other root vegetables such as carrot and celery. Roast it at 350 to 375 degrees until it is soft and similar in consistency to a baked potato. For a more savory flavor, sauté it in butter or throw it on the grill. Grilling pumpkin will bring out the nuttiness of the squash while removing moisture and condensing the flavor.
Pureed pumpkin is a great ingredient to add to your dough when making fresh pasta. Since it is typically made with a potato puree, gnocchi is the perfect pasta to add in a little pumpkin. Another great option is filled pasta, such as ravioli or tortellini.
The delicious smell of pumpkin soup simmering on the stove entices everyone to the table. We have two great soup recipes to make using those abundant seasonal pumpkins. Each one has a special ingredient that combines perfectly with the flavor of pumpkin. We feel sure these two soups will be a hit with your family. Pumpkin Soup Recipes.
Surprisingly, tomato and pumpkin pair very well together. Pumpkin can be a wonderful addition to food that is tomato based, such as pizza or chili. Adding pumpkin will bring a rich and unique texture, as well as a nice flavor component.
Seeds and Rind
You can utilize the entire pumpkin in your meal. Pumpkin seeds can be roasted and enjoyed as a salty snack or used as a garnish for soups, breads and casseroles. They also make a great addition to homemade granola or can be pureed into sauces and pesto. Here’s a fun idea: use a hollowed-out pumpkin rind as a fun and decorative serving bowl.
Pumpkin can be used in many more desserts than just muffins or pies. Next time you’re planning a pumpkin dessert, think about doing a pumpkin-based bread pudding, ice cream, cheesecake, or pumpkin butter. For a frozen treat, try a pumpkin apple smoothie made with pureed pumpkin, apple juice and a bit of yogurt.