Eat Empowered, Healthy Eating Tips

6 Genius Ways to Use Canned Pumpkin

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When fall is in the air, pumpkins are pretty much everywhere, and that means canned pumpkin gets the front-of-aisle-pyramid-spotlight at grocery stores everywhere.

If you’re like many people, you really only think to grab canned pumpkin for that pie you need to bring to Aunt Bettie’s on turkey day. But if you’re like all those other people on the web, you need pumpkin everyday right now for something amazing you’re going to create and post on Pinterest.

The thing is, these pumpkin-recipe-making people are definitely out to get you. Rarely can you find a can of pumpkin that is exactly the right size for your recipe. You buy a can of pumpkin that is 15 ounces (just under 2 cups) and the pumpkin waffle recipe uses only ¾ cup. The pumpkin bread recipe needs 2 ½ cups and the savory pumpkin appetizer calls for 4 tablespoons.

Whatcha gonna do with that leftover orange goodness? I’ve got some ideas for you, and I’m going to be a canned pumpkin pusher, so buckle up.

Pumpkin is ridiculously healthful. It’s loaded with vitamin A (which is important for healthy skin and fighting a cold), flavonoids, carotenoids, and zeaxanthin (which helps keep your peepers strong). On top of that, it’s filled with fiber.

So go grab a few cans (try to make them organic and be sure not to get the kind that has added sugar!) and I’ll tell you how to enjoy canned pumpkin every season of the year and get your pumpkin hashtag game strong on Pinterest.

6 Genius Ways to Use Canned Pumpkin:

1. Add it…

  • To yogurt
  • To oatmeal
  • To pancakes, waffles, crepes
  • To toast with a drizzle of honey
  • To legume dishes, such as lentils, chickpeas or black beans
  • To sour cream (for soups and tacos)
  • To curry, soups, chili, or stew

2. Breakfast it. Pumpkin blends into a smoothie like it was invented just for that purpose. It mixes into your favorite hot cereal without making it too heavy. It spreads on toast like a dream. You can even pumpkin up your morning coffee by mixing a spoonful of pumpkin into your milk and heating it up before pouring it in (and here’s a great place to add a shake of pumpkin pie spices to boost the flavor).

3. Fat-replace it. You already know you can use applesauce in lieu of butter or oil, but pumpkin also works! Try it in corn bread, chocolate cake, and bran muffins. You’ll get all of the benefits, plus the added flavor that your friends will go nuts for.

4. Mask it. Holiday season getting to your skin? Take care of it with a pumpkin mask that is simple to make with ingredients you have in the kitchen. Pumpkin and Greek yogurt in equal proportions is just one simple idea. Just make sure you bring a spoon; you might want to eat the leftovers. Oh, and put leftovers in a Tupperware or glass container to keep it fresh longer.

5. Love it. Pumpkin is a known aphrodisiac. Mix your leftover pumpkin with some essential oils and heat it with a warming candle by your bedside to amp up the passion.

6. Freeze it. Sometimes, you just want to be done with the leftover canned pumpkin. I get it. But don’t toss it, freeze it! Pour it into an ice cube tray. Then, after it freezes save the cubes in a plastic bag in the freezer. You’ll never be pumpkin-less again, and you’ll actually have smaller portions ready to roll for your next pumpkin recipe.

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