Halloween was just here, and Thanksgiving’s around the corner. So, if you’re looking to have breakfast, lunch or dinner by the pool, keep in mind that what you serve reminds your family and friends of the holidays to come.
Pumpkin is the most symbolic emblem of autumn. There is no way to avoid it. It is also the vegetable known to create a jack-o-lantern or an excellent pumpkin pie. But this orangey-yellow winter squash is not just for a lantern or a pie; it is so much more than that.
Pumpkin is a treat that is full of fiber, beta-carotene, vitamin A, and helps reduce blood glucose levels. Ah! Is low in calories too. There are many ways to have pumpkin in your meals. These are just a pinch of the many recipes out there that use this winter squash veggie known as a pumpkin.
A pumpkin-spiced coffee can be done naturally, at your home, without the syrups and other preservatives:
Pumpkin Spice Latte
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond or cashew milk
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spices
- 1/2 cup of strong, hot coffee
- Maple syrup, to taste (optional)
- Combine the pumpkin, vegan milk, and spices in a small saucepan and heat on medium. Don’t bring this to a boil – as soon as you see bubbles, remove the pan from the heat.
- Transfer the pumpkin mixture to your blender and blend on high for a couple of minutes to froth everything up.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture over your cup of coffee, and add maple syrup to sweeten.
Other two recipes involving a pumpkin doesn’t have to be sweet. A great pumpkin/coconut/black bean soup is great for those nights next to a fire pit:
Coconut Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
- 3 sweet peppers, chopped
- 2 cups kale, chopped
- 2 tablespoons walnut oil (sesame oil will work too)
- 15 ounce can pumpkin puree
- 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 13.5 ounce can of full fat coconut milk
- 2 cups veggie broth
- 2 tablespoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1-2 tablespoon smoked pepper hot sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- Toasted pumpkin seeds, optional
- Turn your crockpot to high, and add the peppers, kale, and oil, tossing to coat. Let the peppers cook for a few minutes, then add the rest of the ingredients and stir well.
- Cook on high heat for 30 minutes.
- Optional – Puree the soup with your immersion blender, or in batches in the blender or food processor.
- Serve with crusty bread and top the soup with some toasted pumpkin seeds
Here is another recipe, easy to make and ready in less than half an hour:
Pumpkin Black Bean Enchiladas
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 poblano pepper, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
- 1 teaspoon each cumin and coriander
- A pinch of cinnamon
- 15 ounce can of pumpkin puree (or 2 cups fresh)
- 15 ounce can of black beans (or 2 cups cooked)
- Water, as needed
- Juice of 1 lime
- 2 cups enchilada sauce
- 12 corn tortillas
- I avocado (cut in slices)
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Cook the onion, pepper, and garlic for a few minutes, until the onion turns translucent. Add the spices, pumpkin, and black beans and cook until heated through.
- Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lime juice.
- Spread half of the enchilada sauce onto the bottom of an 8X8″ glass baking pan.
- To roll up the enchiladas, put a few tablespoons of filling down the center of your tortilla, roll it up, and place it seam-side-down in the pan. Repeat until you have enough enchiladas to fill the whole pan, then top with the remaining enchilada sauce.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes and serve topped with sliced avocado.
What else is great about these recipes? They are healthy, easy to make, and delicious. Enjoy!