10 Easy-as-Pie Pumpkin Recipes
Most Americans think of pumpkin as a Halloween or Thanksgiving food, or maybe a fall spice now that “pumpkin spice” coffee has become a sign of autumn. It doesn’t have to be just baked into a sweet marshmallow-topped casserole or whipped into a frothy coffee drink, however. It’s a delicious and healthy vegetable that should (and can be) enjoyed year round.
Pumpkin is a type of squash, which are a staple year-round in most of the blue zones regions. The easiest and most affordable way to enjoy pumpkin year-round is to buy canned pumpkin puree at the grocery store. Different from pumpkin pie filling, the canned pumpkin that you find in groceries (Libby’s 100% pure organic pumpkin) is usually a blend of different squashes similar to butternut squash. (The round and orange pumpkins we carve into jack-o-lanterns are bred for beauty and are not good for cooking.)
Misnomers aside, canned pumpkin is delicious, affordable, and available year-round. And you can use it to make amazing recipes that are awesome and packed full of vitamins A and C. Butternut squash and kabocha squash (Japanese “pumpkin”) are also favorites in blue zones longevity hotspots, and are not too hard to find throughout the year.
Pumpkin Cranberry Oatmeal
Whether it’s the end of November, mid-July or anytime in between, this Thanksgiving-inspired breakfast from the Blue Zones® Meal Planner brings all the nutrient-packed and pumpkin pie-tasty fun!
5-Minute Pumpkin Tahini Soup
Paired with wilted kale and whole grain toast, this is a bright, flavorful, and nutritious meal from the Blue Zones® Meal Planner that will satisfy every month of the year.
Creamy Squash and Bean Soup
All variations of squash that work for this recipe belong to the botanical family Cucurbitaceae, known for providing high levels of useful carotenoids.
One Bowl Vegan Pumpkin Bread
You’ll only need one bowl for the perfect pumpkin loaf. Your final product is a soft loaf full of pumpkin and warm spices to which you can add nuts, dried fruit, or pumpkin seeds.
Pumpkin pancakes pull together the warmth of cinnamon and sweetness of honey for a cozy combination.
Vegan Pumpkin Pasta
The pumpkin sauce is creamy, dairy free, and delicious. Pair it with your favorite pasta shape!
Smother fresh vegetables in a simple pumpkin curry sauce that’s full of authentic Indian flavors from the Blue Zones® Meal Planner.
Kabocha Squash Soba Noodle Bowl
Kabocha squash is a popular ingredient in Okinawan cooking and is often called the Japanese pumpkin.
Maple Chili Butternut Squash
This Maple Chili Butternut Squash adds the perfect amount of sugar and spice to any meal. Serve in hollowed out pumpkins for fun!
5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Pumpkin Curry Soup
Snuggle up with a warm bowl of goodness, like this Thai-inspired pumpkin curry soup.
Squash: A Blue Zones Longevity Superfood
Kabocha squash, or Japanese pumpkin, is popular in Okinawan cooking and is a good source of vitamins and toxin-removing fiber. All kinds of squash are grown and enjoyed in Ikaria, Greece, including butter squash and pumpkin-type squash. In the Nicoya region of Costa Rica, squash (often ayote or calabaza, similar to hard-shelled squash related to pumpkins or winter squash such as butternut, hubbard, or spaghetti squash) is a staple food that is often referred to as one of the “three sisters.”