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Pumpkins Aren’t Just for Carving: Recipes, Tips, and Ideas

Pumpkins Aren't Just for Carving: Recipes, Tips, and Ideas

Pumpkins Aren’t Just for Carving: Recipes, Tips, and IdeasThe kids are back in school, the days are getting shorter, and Halloween is right around the corner. In my house, that means it’s pumpkin time! I love everything about pumpkins, so I use them all season long. From the start of Autumn through Thanksgiving, pumpkins are a staple in my house.

Whether you like to hand-select yours at a local pumpkin patch or grab whatever is left in the bottom of the bin at Safeway the day before Halloween, here are some creative and delicious ideas for making the most of your finds.

Healthy Eats

Pumpkins are high in vitamin A, fiber, antioxidants, and potassium. So, eat up (as long as it’s not always in pie form)! Here are some delicious and healthy recipes to mix it up. 

  • Sprinkled with fresh sage, this hummus from Two Healthy Kitchens is healthy, seasonal, and super easy to make.
  • The Movement Menu‘s rich and warming vegan soup is delicious and Paleo and Whole30 compliant. Talk about a win-win!
  • Going to an Ottolenghi restaurant is on my bucket list, but in the meantime I’ll try this recipe myself (with pumpkin or butternut squash).

Sweet Treats

Now that you’ve eaten lots of healthy, nutritious forms of pumpkin in the above recipes, here are the recipes you’ve really been looking for. 

  • This flan from the one and only Barefoot Contessa is like a upgraded crust-less pumpkin pie.
  • You can’t go wrong with a classic pumpkin roll like this one from Gimme Some Oven.
  • Homemade pumpkin ice cream? Yes please! I like this recipe from She Wears Many Hats.

Decor

From simply arranging some funky pumpkins to carving a detailed pattern, there’s a project here for everyone. Plus, you can stretch your decoration budget by using them for fall, Halloween, and Thanksgiving!

  • The kids will love this fun Halloween idea from Lia Griffith, which only requires a few supplies and a bit of craftiness. 
  • White and/or greenish pumpkins pair beautifully with succulents, like in this design from StoneGable.
  • Ella Claire‘s simple and affordable Thanksgiving tablescape features white mini pumpkins and a free printable.

Pumpkin Tips

  • Not all pumpkins are created equally! There are hundreds of varieties, but not all of them are good for eating. Flavor and texture can vary a lot, so ask a vendor at your local farmers market for tips on choosing the best pumpkin (or squash) for the recipe you have in mind. 
  • Uncut pumpkins can last a LONG time. But once you start carving, pumpkins are very perishable. To keep your projects fresh, check out these tips.
  • Pumpkins often go on sale after Halloween, so that’s a great time to stock up for Thanksgiving decor.

What’s one of your favorite ways to enjoy pumpkins? Share it in the comments!

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