Pull on your Uggs, grab your vest, and head to your nearest pumpkin patch to Instagram it up because fall is upon us! Crisper, cooler weather and Hocus Pocus on TV are pretty perfect, but it’s that pumpkin flavor in basically everything that makes fall what it is. But the versatile vegetable is for more than just breads and pies. There are so many ways to eat pumpkin that it’s pretty criminal to limit yourself to pumpkin-flavored cream cheese and coffee.
The funny thing is, I’m not a huge pumpkin fan. Pumpkin pie? Not my favorite. I don’t know what it is, but when pumpkin is the literal star of the show, I’m not guaranteed to enjoy it. I like my pumpkin as an added ingredient, giving it just enough of a creamy texture and pumpkin flavor. However, in an effort to be less #basic about fall, I’ve found 11 ways to eat pumpkin. I’m determined to make all of my meals autumn-themed and it doesn’t get much easier than adding some part of our favorite gourde to delicious recipes. These dishes are perfect for any occasion and will totally put you in that seasonal mood. So turn on some Halloweentown, save the pumpkin spice coffee creamer for later, and enjoy one of these 11 ways to eat pumpkin.
1. Roasted Tomato and Pumpkin Soup
Soups are already the perfect fall dish, so adding in some pumpkin is a no-brainer. From A Pretty Life in the Suburbs, this roasted tomato and pumpkin soup is creamy, hearty, and comforting.
2. Pumpkin Churro Waffles
Pies aren’t the only way to enjoy a sweet pumpkin treat. These pumpkin churro waffles from Damn Delicious are perfectly fluffy with a cream cheese glaze and should be eaten any time of the day. No, really. ANY time.
3. Black Bean and Pumpkin Chili
Another quintessential fall meal, chili, gets revved up in this black bean and pumpkin chili recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe. Made in the crockpot, it’s not only delicious and filling, but an easy dinner for those busy days.
4. Pumpkin Maple Cornbread Baked Bean Casserole
There’s nothing like a good casserole and this pumpkin maple cornbread baked bean casserole from Pickles & Honey sounds just about perfect. The ultimate comfort food, this dish is also vegan and gluten-free, so it’s a win for all the members of your family.
5. Pumpkin Spice Caramels
Trying to stay out of the Halloween candy? Make these pumpkin spice caramels from The Brewer and The Baker to satisfy your sweet tooth and get your pumpkin fix. Classic caramels updated with brown sugar, nutmeg, and pumpkin pie spice make these a fun fall treat. I dare you to eat just one.
6. Bruleed Pumpkin Bread Pudding
You guys, I had no idea bread pudding could sound so good. From Love, Cake is this recipe for bruleed pumpkin bread pudding. A combination of pumpkin pie, creme brulee, and bread pudding, this dessert is nostalgia and family poured into a dish.
7. Pumpkin-Maple Gnocchi With Brown Butter and Sage
Dumplings are always good for a stick-to-your rib meal, especially when those dumplings are gnocchi. Offbeat & Inspired has created an incredible pumpkin-maple gnocchi with brown butter and sage recipe to bring all the flavors of fall to a classic dish.
8. Salted Caramel Pumpkin Seeds
Don’t throw out those seeds after carving your pumpkins! Make a perfect snack for watching some spooky movies with this salted caramel pumpkin seed recipe from The Comfort of Cooking. With a sweet and salty combination, these little seeds are totally addictive and delicious.
9. Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a classic, but they deserve a twist every now and then, too. From Steamy Kitchen comes a pumpkin mashed potatoes recipe featuring a bit of sweetness, some creamy pumpkin, and a homey, feel-good taste. These would be great to jazz up the holiday tables this year!
10. Roasted Pumpkin and Sage Grilled Cheese
Grilled cheese is one of my favorite lunches, so I’ll definitely be adding this roasted pumpkin and sage grilled cheese recipe from i am a food blog to my repertoire. With gooey mozzarella and an over easy fried egg soaking the pumpkin with yolk, I’m totally hooked on this sandwich.
11. Pea Shoot and Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Pumpkin flavored pesto? We went there. Kind of. Kitchen Confidante uses green pumpkin seeds instead of pine nuts to help create a gorgeously green pea shoot and pumpkin seed pesto. Use it over pasta or as a spread on your favorite decadent sandwich.
Images: Courtesy of i am a food blog; Mel’s Kitchen Cafe; A Pretty Life in the Suburbs; Damn Delicious; Pickles & Honey; The Brewer and The Baker; Love, Cake; Offbeat & Inspired; The Comfort of Cooking; Steamy Kitchen; Kitchen Confidante