You can’t go through the fall season without being exposed to autumn’s favorite squash: the pumpkin! I don’t know about you but I’m a huge fan!
The fall food season seems to be all about pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin cheesecake, and pumpkin cookies. While these are delicious treats, it is better to aim for balance with your health.
Here you will find some healthy ways to still enjoy pumpkin, but without all the added sugar.
Pumpkin: Healthy but Delicious Ways to Use It
Health Benefits Of Pumpkin
In addition to how delicious it tastes and how versatile pumpkin is, there are also some great benefits to choosing this vegetable in the fall. Here are some top benefits:
The great thing about pumpkin is that it can be a really neutral ingredient to add to your meals, but can be spiced up to work in sweet as well as savory dishes. Canned or cooked pumpkin goes a long way in desserts, soups, and so many different foods and drinks. You can add it to smoothies or use canned pumpkin in your cake mixes.
Low In Calories
One cup of pumpkin is only 30 calories! This means you can have a good amount of this veggie and all its immense flavor with a low amount of calories.
High Nutrient Content
Pumpkin is loaded with nutrients. In addition to the lower calories and just great taste of pumpkin, enjoying it in the fall can increase the nutrients you are consuming.
Some of the nutrients also vary based on whether you are eating the meat inside the pumpkin, or the actual pumpkin seeds.
Here are some nutrients you will get:
- Potassium – To start with, your pumpkin meat will contain potassium, which is great for helping to lower your blood pressure and boost your heart health.
- Beta carotene – Beta carotene is found in fruits and vegetables that are an orange color, and that includes pumpkin.
- Vitamin C – If you need more vitamin C, but aren’t a fan of citrus fruits, you can get a good amount of it in your pumpkin meat. This is not only a beneficial vitamin on its own, but it can help you to absorb iron.
- Nutrients in Seeds – As for the pumpkin seeds, you will get vitamins like zinc, omega 3s, magnesium, and tryptophan.
Healthier Pumpkin Ideas
Looking for some healthier ways to enjoy your pumpkin? Here are some quick ideas:
I’ve got a delicious and really quick and easy recipe for pumpkin ravioli that is perfect for the season. Cut back on the butter to make it even more nutritious.
Love soup? Try this awesome recipe:
Pumpkin Cauliflower Soup With Ginger by Salt And Lavender
Here’s a healthy waffle recipe that both kids and adults will love:
Healthy Baked Pumpkin Waffles by Amy’s Healthy Baking
Super easy and delicious for breakfast, lunch or a snack!
Pumpkin Pie Smoothie by The Worktop
Pumpkin spice hummus is a great dip for raw veggies or flatbreads.
Keep it healthy and delicious with this recipe:
Healthy Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte by Eating Bird Food
Roasted pumpkin seeds make a delicious snack idea. Check out my recipe and seasoning variations.
Try this yummy pumpkin spice polenta as an oatmeal alternative for breakfast.