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The cool breezes. An explosion of color in the falling leaves. Scarves. Are you ready for fall? For some, it’s the best season of the year; and autumn wouldn’t be complete without pumpkin. This popular orange gourd is everywhere as both decoration and ingredient. Celebrate fall in your kitchen with these 10 healthy recipes using pumpkin in both familiar and unexpected ways.
1. Pumpkin Chai Latte
Do you live for pumpkin spice lattes in September and October? Save yourself some money and make your own version at home. This recipe is easy to make, with the option to whip up your own chai concentrate or use a store-bought version. It’s the perfect way to enjoy a lazy Saturday afternoon or make Monday mornings sweeter.
2. Pumpkin and Sage Savory Muffins
Muffins don’t have to be loaded with fat and sugar. This recipe has no added sweetener and the striking flavor of sage turns pumpkin into a delicious savory treat. Eat these muffins alone for a healthy snack or dip them in your favorite soup.
3. Pumpkin Granola
Granola is another food that seems healthy but is often high in sugar and other unhealthy ingredients. You can avoid this by skipping the store-bought version and making your own. Homemade granola tastes a lot better, too. Have it for breakfast with yogurt or milk, dress it up with fresh fruit or enjoy it by itself for an afternoon snack.
4. Pumpkin Hummus
Make your favorite dip seasonal by adding canned pumpkin to traditional hummus ingredients. Simply throw everything into your food processor and blend. Now you have a reason to throw a Halloween party!
5. Creamy No Bake Pumpkin Pie
You didn’t think we’d leave out pumpkin’s star appearance, did you? This recipe is vegan and gluten-free, so you don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving to indulge. Make it now and enjoy a guilt-free dessert or snack.
6. Curried Pumpkin Soup
When the chill really sets in, you’ll be grateful for this tasty and warming soup. The flavors of cumin, coriander and cardamom provide a nice twist on pumpkin, which you might start to get tired of by the time Halloween arrives. If you’re not sick of pumpkin, pair this soup with the savory pumpkin and sage muffins.
7. Pumpkin Black Bean Patties
The hearty taste of black beans is the perfect complement to pumpkin’s subtle sweetness, and this recipe calls for canned pumpkin, so making it is easy. Serve the patties American style between your favorite bun, enjoy them solo for a gluten-free meal or crumble them over a salad, as pictured in this recipe.
8. Pumpkin Ravioli
This recipe is a little more ambitious than the others featured here. You don’t have to carve a pumpkin, but you do have to make each ravioli by hand. However, wonton wrappers are a genius substitution for homemade pasta dough. Just spoon a dollop of the filling onto each wrapper and press a second one on top. Voila – you have homemade pasta. This dish would be even faster and more fun if you made it with friends.
9. Pumpkin Doughnuts
OK, doughnuts may not be the healthiest food on Earth, but anything you make at home is naturally healthier than the store-bought version. So treat yourself with these perfect pumpkin doughnuts. Is there a better companion for coffee, hot apple cider and all your other favorite fall drinks? You could even pair it with the pumpkin chai latte if you can’t get enough pumpkin in your life.
10. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
Last but not least, if pumpkin carving is on your list of Halloween activities, turn the seeds into a yummy, healthy snack. All you have to do is rinse off the pumpkin residue in a colander, pour the seeds onto a baking sheet and stick them into the oven. The recipe also suggests spices you could add for variations.